When we talk about superfoods, we often mention popular vegetables and fruits, but what about the other food groups?
Coconut oil is neither fruit nor vegetable, but a superfood nonetheless, which should not be overlooked. Here are some reasons to consider adding it to your diet.
Helps With Weight Loss
One of the primary benefits of coconut oil is its ability to help you lose weight and burn fat. In fact, most superfoods have this function, but no other superfood does it more directly than coconut oil. Coconut oil is mostly made up of medium-chain triglycerides or MCTs and this is known to help with weight loss in two ways:
(a) Increasing energy expenditure: One study found that the long-term substitution of coconut oil in meals and recipes can increase energy expenditure (burning more calories) and result in weight loss. A similar study took a group of lean and obese males and fed them meals with and without coconut oil. The men who ate the coconut oil-enhanced meals experienced an improved metabolic response compared to those who did not. Coconut oil was found to work as a weight loss aid even for those with sedentary lifestyles, so imagine what it can do for someone who trains regularly?
(b) Appetite suppressant: One of the primary effects of fat on our bodies is its ability to suppress appetite. Coconut oil is formed from a type of fat that directly acts on our system and does not need to go through various stages of digestion and absorption. Because of this, consuming meals with coconut oil not only results in burning more calories, but also in prevents excess caloric intake throughout the day.
Improves Immune System Function
Coconut oil has plenty of Lauric Acid, a fatty acid known to ward off infection by killing bacteria, viruses, and fungi. In fact, coconut oil is the second-best known source of auric acid, the first one being breast milk. (No, really). This is also helpful for regular lifters, as hard training depletes the body of nutrients.
Reduces Risks of Cardiovascular Diseases
One of the little known benefits of coconut oil is its ability to improve lipid profiles in the blood. Many people would correlate consuming coconut oil with obesity and heart disease, but the the opposite is actually true. The results of one study showed potential beneficiary effects of coconut oil in reducing lipid levels and LDL while increasing HDL (which is exactly the opposite way that nasty trans fats work).
Acts As An Energy Supplement
Coconut oil can act as a metabolic booster which shreds fat, giving you more energy for your workouts. This makes it a good alternative to energy boosting supplements like caffeine, minus the side effects. (Not to mention, it’s a much cheaper alternative to some other supplements out there.)
Coconut oil has a wide range of benefits, from naturally helping you lose weight to improving cardiovascular health. Fats and oils have earned a nasty reputation in the past, but coconut oil has proven to be a delicious and nutritious superfood.