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The Benefits to Coconut Oil

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Coconut oil has been a pretty hot topic over the past few years, with many studies being conducted to determine its benefits. It’s no longer a secret that coconut oil can positively impact your body, but not everyone knows just how it works. Coconut oil has been shown to help balance your body in many ways, from the aging process, to cholesterol and blood sugar levels.

Moisturizer

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Lets start with the obvious; Coconut oil makes a great moisturizer for your skin and hair and can even help with aging. Coconut oil contains a significant amount of Vitamin E, which has antioxidant and protective qualities. Its antioxidant properties promote the circulation of blood to the scalp and help alleviate fatigue and strengthen capillary walls while nourishing the cells. It can be used to treat sunburn and protect skin from the sun. Coconut oil can also aid in the treatment of acne, scars and wrinkles by speeding up cell regeneration, giving coconut oil its anti-aging effects.

Cholesterol

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The Vitamin E in Coconut oil can also help lower cholesterol and risk of heart disease. This fact has become a bit controversial since coconut oil has a high concentration of saturated fats. It is important to know that not all fats are created equal, and this is true of the fats in coconut oil. The saturated fat in coconut oil is called lauric acid; a type of MCT (or medium chain triglycerides) which is easier for our body to digest. Lauric acid has been shown to increase HDL (the good cholesterol in our bodies) and help create balanced cholesterol levels. It also assists in restoring normal thyroid function. (Abnormal thyroid function can contribute to overproduction of bad cholesterol.) Studies have also shown that when your body breaks down MCTs the result is more efficient use of energy and an increase in fat loss.

Digestion

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The saturated fats in coconut oil also have anti-microbial properties.  It can aid in digestion by dealing with many forms of bacteria and fungi that cause gastrointestinal issues. Coconut oil also helps with the absorption of vitamins, minerals and amino acids.

Immunity

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If you haven’t been convinced of the potential benefits of Coconut oil you might wish to know that it can even help boost your immune system thus helping you fight off infections. According to the Coconut Research Center (yes this is a real organization), coconut oil can kill a variety of viral, bacterial and fungal infections. It can kill viruses that cause influenza, measles, hepatitis, herpes, SARS. It can kill the  bacteria that cause ulcers, throat infections, urinary tract infections, pneumonia, and gonorrhea. Coconut oil is also effective on fungi that cause ringworm and athlete’s foot. The human body converts lauric acid into monolaurin which is claimed to help in dealing with the viruses and bacteria that cause these diseases and infections. Studies even suggest that coconut oil may reduce susceptibility to diseases like cancer and HIV and even help with treatment of Alzheimer’s. Yet another amazing fact is that Coconut oil can also be beneficial to your liver, kidneys, bones and teeth. (The list is nearly endless.)  Certainly as is the case with many of natures miracles the science behind some of its inner workings require more research to be fully understood.

Stress

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Finally, if all of the other examples haven’t peaked your interest then this just may. It is fairly obvious, according to popular opinion, that the scent of coconuts can be soothing. This paired with a massage using coconut oil can be the perfect way to alleviate some of your physical and mental stress.

As a consumer it is your responsibility to do your own research before buying a particular brand of coconut oil.  At SciFighting we do not endorse or recommend any specific brand, however here is a helpful tip: buying an organic, cold pressed coconut oil will maximize its effectiveness and minimize the toxins absorbed into your body.

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SciFighting's mission is to bring a higher standard of fitness to both the professional athlete and general population through concise reporting on the latest trends in the science of fighting. Our involvement in mixed martial arts spans both the professional and recreational realms of the sports. In addition to reporting on the news in the industry we function as a think tank, researching new facets of combat science and developing new tools and techniques to analyze theoretical and practical applications.