Recent Research and Recommendations

Maulishree Jhawer
Article Reviewed by Dietitian  on May 20, 2019
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Recent Research and Recommendations

Plenty of studies have been conducted and coconut oil is being researched upon for its weight loss and other health benefits. A study aimed to analyze the effects of dietary coconut oil on the biochemical and anthropometric profiles of women presenting abdominal obesity. The trial involved 40 women aged 20-40 years. The groups received daily dietary supplements comprising 30 ml of either soy bean oil (group S) or coconut oil (group C) over a 12-week period, during which all subjects were instructed to follow a balanced low caloric diet and to walk for 50 min per day.

At the end of the trial, Group S presented an increase in total cholesterol, LDL and LDL: HDL ratio, with a decrease in HDL levels. Such changes were not observed in group C. The study thus proved that the dietetic supplementation with coconut oil did not cause high lipid levels and seemed to promote a reduction in abdominal obesity.

Oils like fish oils, flaxseed, extra virgin olive, krill oil have great health implications. It is preferable to incorporate a small amount of different oils rather than relying primarily on one type. This way one derives benefits from a number of different fatty acids rather than just one.

Fish oils and flaxseed oil are the healthiest options, but virgin olive oil, virgin coconut oil have extraordinary health benefits too and should be incorporated in the diet.

Rejecting the strong set belief of coconut oil being unhealthy for heart health, recent research and study on the nut encourages it to be used for cooking up meals or just as such or in various food preparations. In such a case it should be replaced with the current oil rather than just simply adding it to the day’s intake. An individual’s total visible fat intake (oil, ghee, butter, cream, margarine, mayonnaise) should not exceed 25 to 30ml per day with 30 being the upper limit for sound heart health and 25 being the upper limit for cholesterol reduction.

In a nutshell coconut oil offers protection from heart disease, cancer, and other degenerative conditions, improves digestion, strengthens the immune system, and helps in weight loss to some extent. Coconut oil is now being labeled as one of the 'healthiest dietary oils on earth.'

References:

  1. Enig, M.G. “ Health and nutritional benefits from coconut oil and its advantages over competing oils” Director, Nutritional Sciences Division, Enig Associates Inc., Maryland, USA, Indian coconut journal, September 2010
  2. Carandang, E.V. “Health benefits of virgin coconut oil” Indian coconut journal, January 2008
  3. Experts’ Findings on the Health Benefits of Coconut Oil
  4. Sahelian, R. “Coconul Oil health benefit and nutritional value, review of research studies”

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