Struggling to lose weight?
It’s time for an oil change!
Fat does not make you fat. I’ve been saying this for years. The truth is that good, healthy fats are the number one missing nutrient in the American diet and are essential for lasting weight-loss. One of my favorite good fats to promote and enhance weight-loss is coconut oil.
Healthy Fats – The Fat that Makes You Skinny
Coconut oil comes from the meat of mature coconuts and has been consumed by tropical populations for thousands of years with no detrimental effect. In fact, studies have shown traditional populations that use coconut oil as a dietary staple demonstrate trim bodies and exceptional health, despite the high level of saturated fat contained in the oil 1. For years health officials have warned that consuming saturated fat contributes to obesity, but it is a lie that is killing America. The naturally occurring saturated fat in coconut oil, unlike man-made hydrogenated saturated fat (i.e. trans fat), is key to good health and a component in making coconut oil one of the most effective natural weight-loss tools.
Coconut oil contains a high percentage of medium chain fatty acids or Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs). It is the richest source of MCTs on earth. Most vegetable oils like canola and soybean, on the other hand, contain long chain fatty acids (LCFAs) which are bigger molecules and a challenge to break down. The body metabolizes MCTs differently than LCFAs due to their smaller size. The liver efficiently converts MCTs into clean fuel which is then absorbed for instant energy. Due to the fast absorption and fuel conversion, MCTs are not stored as fat like LCFAs. As a result, MCTs aid in boosting metabolism which in turn leads to weight-loss. And not only do MCTs boost your energy, a study suggested 2 they can also reduce appetite by increasing satiety when replacing LCFAs in the diet. Coconut oil seems to be more satisfying than other types of fats, and by making the swap you could save calories without even realizing it.
Coconut oil also has a unique thermogenic (or “heat burning”) property and can increase your energy more than the same amount of calories from other fats like LCFAs 3. This means coconut oil can help you burn more calories, more efficiently. Athletes have been consuming MCTs in the form of coconut oil for years because it improves overall physical endurance and athletic performance. But you don’t need to be an athlete to benefit from MCTs; coconut oil can positively impact your energy level when consumed regularly. If you’re feeling the “mid-day slump,” take a heaping spoonful of coconut oil for a quick and easy energy boost. What’s more, it does not cause a spike in blood sugar levels, so is beneficial for diabetics or the many struggling with blood sugar issues.
Another benefit of coconut oil is it supports the thyroid gland by raising basal body temperature while increasing metabolism. This can lead to weight-loss because low thyroid function slows metabolism which results in weight gain. Thyroid conditions are a massive modern epidemic, with many unknowingly suffering the effects of an under performing thyroid, including the inability to lose weight. The unique fat ratios in coconut oil make it particularly supportive of the thyroid gland. Common fats consumed today in the form of hydrogenated vegetable oils are highly damaging to the thyroid and are contributing to the epidemic. By replacing toxic vegetable oils with coconut oil you support the health of your thyroid and encourage weight-loss.
Multiple studies have shown coconut oil may also help with losing abdominal fat, the most dangerous place to store fat on the body 4, 5. Abdominal fat lies deep in your midsection crowding between the spaces of your organs. Fat accumulated here is linked to metabolic disorders, cardiovascular disease and diabetes, all of which are triggered by inflammation. Coconut oil can help because of its anti-inflammatory properties 6. Reducing abdominal fat will not only positively impact your overall health and body image but will dramatically lower your risk of developing inflammatory, chronic disease.
In addition to promoting weight-loss, coconut oil is anti-microbial 7, can help with yeast issues like candida 8, may improve good cholesterol 9 and reduce epileptic seizures 10. Dr. Mary Newport also used it to treat her husband’s Alzheimer’s disease, which improved his brain function. Without a doubt, coconut oil is the healthiest oil for regular consumption, and is excellent for use in cooking due to its high smoking point.
To Review: Some ways that coconut oil can help you lose weight:
Coconut oil is a high grade fuel that helps your entire body function better from the cellular level, and is proven to enhance weight-loss efforts. Not all coconut oil is created equal, however. There are many coconut oils sold that have been refined, bleached, and deodorized to be more palatable. Some are even hydrogenated. When shopping, look for an oil that is unrefined, cold-pressed, virgin (made from the first pressing of fresh coconut), pesticide-free and raw. My favorite kind is Skinny and Co. It is wild harvested and the only 100% raw coconut oil on the market. It also has higher levels of MCTs in comparison to other coconut oils. I use it for cooking, as a healthy fat in smoothies, applied topically as a skin moisturizer and sunscreen, swirled into my coffee, or take a plain spoonful as an anytime energy boost. See below for a delicious “fat bomb” dessert recipe that is loaded with good fat from coconut oil and is Cellular Healing Diet approved. Enjoy!
Chocolate Almond “Fat Bombs”
Ingredients (organic when possible):
- 1 cup melted, cold-pressed, virgin coconut oil
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon stevia sweetener
- ½ to 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- ½ cup almond butter
- 2 tablespoons grass-fed butter
- Optional add-ins – almonds, unsweetened coconut, berries
- Paper cupcake liners
- Mix all ingredients in a food processor until smooth.
- Pour mixture into paper cupcake liners.
- Sprinkle in almonds (whole or sliced), berries, coconut shreds, or toppings of your choice. Top with a touch of sea salt if desired.
- Refrigerate until solid and store in the fridge.
- Makes about 12 treats.
1. M.D., F.R.C.P., F.R.A.C.P., I., Davidson, B.H.sc., F., Salmond, M.Sc, C. and Czochanska, DIP. AG., Z. (1981). Cholesterol, coconuts, and diet on Polynesian atols: a natural experiment: the Pukapuka and Tokelau Island studies13. 1st ed. [ebook] pp.1552-1564. Available at: http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/34/8/1552.full.pdf [Accessed 1 Aug. 2014].
2. Jones, P. (2014). Physiological effects of medium-chain triglycerides: … [J Nutr. 2002] – PubMed – NCBI. [online] Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11880549/ [Accessed 1 Aug. 2014].
3. Jones, P. (2014). Greater rise in fat oxidation … [Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord. 2003] – PubMed – NCBI. [online] Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12975635 [Accessed 1 Aug. 2014].
4. Assunção, M., Ferreira, H., Santos, A., Jr, C. and Florêncio, T. (2009). Effects of Dietary Coconut Oil on the Biochemical and Anthropometric Profiles of Women Presenting Abdominal Obesity. Lipids, [online] 44(7), pp.593-601. Available at: http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11745-009-3306-6?no-access=true [Accessed 1 Aug. 2014].
5. Liau, K., Lee, Y., Chen, C. and Rasool, A. (2011). An Open-Label Pilot Study to Assess the Efficacy and Safety of Virgin Coconut Oil in Reducing Visceral Adiposity. ISRN Pharmacology, [online] 2011. Available at: http://www.hindawi.com/journals/isrn.pharmacology/2011/949686/ [Accessed 1 Aug. 2014].
6. Intahphuak, S., Khonsung, P. and Panthong, A. (2014). Anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antipyretic act… [Pharm Biol. 2010] – PubMed – NCBI. [online] Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20645831 [Accessed 1 Aug. 2014].
7. Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov, (2014). In vitro antimicrobial properties of coconut oil … [J Med Food. 2007] – PubMed – NCBI. [online] Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17651080 [Accessed 1 Aug. 2014].
8. Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov, (2014). In vitro antimicrobial properties of coconut oil … [J Med Food. 2007] – PubMed – NCBI. [online] Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17651080 [Accessed 1 Aug. 2014].
9. Feranil, A., Duazo, P., Kuzawa, C. and Adair, L. (2014). Coconut oil is associated with a benefi… [Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2011] – PubMed – NCBI. [online] Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21669587 [Accessed 1 Aug. 2014].
10. Liu, Y. (2014). Medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) ketogenic therapy. [Epilepsia. 2008] – PubMed – NCBI. [online] Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19049583 [Accessed 1 Aug. 2014].