Coconut Oil for Weight Loss

Last few decades have seen dramatic rise in population of overweight and obese people around the world especially in developed countries such as US, UK, Germany, etc. Blame it on the type of diet or change in lifestyle more people are obese today than anytime in human history. In United States almost 25% of young population is obese, an astonishing figure, and above 50% of total population is overweight.

Why bother about obesity?  Obesity can lead to many health issues, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, cancer, respiratory issues, hypertension, to name a few.  Obesity around the world is also a major cause of early death.  Thus overweight and obesity is a major problem for each and every one and should be tackled properly.

How do we gain weight?

Before talking about losing weight, we should know how we gain weight. In simple terms whatever we eat gets converted into energy. If there is extra energy, it is stored as fat in fat cells. These fat cells produce cellulite on legs, extra pounds around waist, thighs, etc. Thus more extra calories, more weight gain. But how do our body decides how much to use and how much to store. It is based on our Basal Metabolic rate (BMR) along with the physical activities we do. BMR is rate at which body uses calories to do its maintenance tasks. Thus, given same BMR person who is doing more physical labour will burn more calories.  So, simplistically speaking – if calorie intake is more than required by body (BMR + physical activity) it is stored as fat. 

Our diet and its relation to weight

What we eat determines how much calorie we intake. Proteins and carbohydrates supply close to 4 calories per gram while fat supplies more than twice – 9 calories per gram! This is why it is advised to cut down on fats to lose weight. But our body does need fat to get essential vitamins and nutrients and thus completely eliminating them is not advisable.

Coconut oil for weight loss

Based on some simple weight related concepts learned above, let's see how coconut oil can help reducing the weight naturally. Coconut oil acts at various levels to ensure weight remains in control:

  • Miracle of medium-chain fatty acids : Coconut oil is composed predominately of medium-chain fatty acids (MCFA), also known as medium-chain triglycerides (MCT). The way these are converted in the body is very different from normal fats but similar to proteins and carbohydrates.  MCFA are digested and then sent to liver where they are converted to energy, unlike normal fats which are transferred into blood stream and them stored as fats. Even better is that, while these MCFAs are directly burned into energy like carbohydrates, they do not raise blood sugar, thus making coconut oil safe even for diabetics. As the fats are not deposited, it is effective in preventing weight gain.
  • Coconut oil energy : Further to the above, coconut oil provides lower energy per gram (close to 7 calories per gram) when burned as compared to other fats which provide as much as 9 calories per gram. Thus intake of same amount of coconut oil as other fats release less energy. Thus using coconut oil is better than other oils for weight loss.
  • Coconut oil increases metabolic rate : Even see skinny people who never gain weight whatever they eat and how much they eat? Its primarily because of their high metabolic rate. Their body converts all food to energy and stores nothing.  When metabolic rate of body increases, more energy is burned and less is stored as fat, thus weight control happens naturally. Research has shown that coconut oil has calorie burning or metabolic rate enhancing effect.  MCFAs present in coconut oil enhance the metabolic rate of the body and even help in burning LCFAs with them. This helps in reducing existing fat. A faster metabolic rate also ensures that body is brimming with energy throughout the day.

Coconut oil is one of the healthiest fat one can consume. Regular exercise and slight tweak in the diet by including coconut oil can help in effectively reduce weight. It much more effective than weight loss promises made by starving oneself. Start the coconut oil diet today!