Coconut oil is a cholesterol free, high heat resistant cooking oil. It can be used for all types of cooking and baking. Because of it's high heat resistance it will not convert to a trans-fat during cooking unlike other cooking oils such as seed oils or vegetable oils.
Coconut oil is primarily a medium chain fatty acid (MCFA) unlike other saturated fats which are mainly long chain fatty acids (LCFAs). Because of this, it is broken down immediately for use rather than stored (which is how cholesterol builds up). MCFA’s aren’t bundled up into chylomicrons for circulation like LCFA’s or long-chain fatty acids. What happens upon intake is that these MCFAs are transported to the liver for conversion into energy. The quick conversion process prevents weight gain as long as calories consumed as Coconut oil does not exceed the body’s natural caloric needs. Not only that, but this particular type of oil is found to speed metabolism and increase energy expenditure, which gives rise to a great deal of interest for Coconut oil’s potential as an aid to help you lose weight.
Raw 100% Organic Virgin Coconut Oil contains:
Alpha Tocopherol (Vitamin E) 0.09mg
Gamma Tocopherol 0.2mg
Caprylic 8 g
Capric 7 g
Lauric 48 g
Myristic 17.5 g
Palmitic 8.5 g
Stearic 2 g
Oleic 6 g
Linoleic 2.5 g
Coconut Oil's Secret Ingredient
50 percent of the fat content in coconut oil is a fat rarely found in nature called lauric acid. If you're a frequent reader of my newsletter you already know that I consider lauric acid a "miracle" ingredient because of its unique health promoting properties.
Your body converts lauric acid into monolaurin, which has anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-protozoa properties.
Monolaurin is a monoglyceride which can actually destroy lipid coated viruses such as:
- HIV, herpes
- Influenza virus
- Various pathogenic bacteria
- Protozoa such as giardia lamblia.
Lauric acid is a powerful virus and gram-negative bacteria destroyer, and coconut oil contains the most lauric acid of any substance on earth!
Capric acid, another coconut fatty acid present in smaller amounts, has also been added to the list of coconut's antimicrobial components.
This is one of the key reasons you should consider consuming coconut oil, because there aren't many sources of monolaurin in our diet. But the health benefits of coconut oil don't stop there.
Article by Dr Mercola
By far the most popular posts that I receive the most comments and questions are the ones I have written on oil pulling. While I endeavour to answer all comments I thought it would be good to have all those frequently asked questions in one place with all the answers. So here goes.
What type of OIl should I use?
There is no right or wrong answer to this question. Any vegetable oil will work but I personally use and recommend coconut oil as it is antibacterial, antimicrobial and antifungal, but many people use sesame oil, sunflower oil, avocado oil or olive oil.
What does Oil "pulling" mean?
In Ayurvedic terms oil "pulling" used to be called oil "gargling", when it was reintroduced it was called oil "pulling" which basically means swishing the oil around your mouth and between your teeth to pull bacteria from your mouth and toxins from your bloodstream.
How long should I oil pull for?
The maximum recommended time to oil pull for is 20 minutes. But there's no hard or fast rule.
What if I can't "pull" for 20 minutes?
If when you first start you find it difficult to pull the oil for a full 20 minutes, then pull for as long as you can and then the next day or time that you try it, add on a bit more time. Eventually you will work up to the full 20 minutes.
How much oil should I use?
You can use anywhere between 1 teaspoon and 1 tablespoon. Remember you will produce saliva which will increase the amount of liquid in your mouth by the end. Start small and work up.
What if I gag?
The gag factor can happen for many reasons. A lot of people can't come to terms with having a mouthful of oil and some people find it overwhelming to not speak for a full 20 minutes or are scared they won't be able to breath. So here's some tips:
- Remember that you don't eat or swallow the oil - it's just resting in your mouth doing yourself and your body a whole heap of goodness.
- 20 minutes is not a long time to be silent - pick a time when you are doing another routine, like getting ready in the morning, showering, shaving etc or maybe washing dishes or preparing breakfast.
- If you are a mouth breather because you have sinus blockages then oil pulling is said to help unblock those sinuses and worthwhile giving it a go.
The best way to overcome any of these is to start with the smallest amount of oil in your mouth (1 or even 1/2 teaspoon) and pull for the least amount of time before you start to panic or gag say 5 minutes or less. Put a timer on so you can focus on the timer if that helps. The next time you oil pull just add a bit more oil in your mouth and add a bit more time on the clock.
Do I rinse beforehand?
I like to. It's not a rule, rather a personal preference. If you are oil pulling first thing in the morning it's good to rinse and have a small drink of water to freshen your mouth but it's not crucial to the process.
What's the best time to oil pull?
The recommendation is first thing in the morning on an empty stomach, but again this isn't a hard and fast rule. There are many reasons for not being able to do it first thing in the morning so rather than not doing it at all, you should fit it into your routine when you know you have the time cleared and won't be disturbed for those 20 minutes.
Can I oil pull more than once a day?
Yes you can. Especially if you are experiencing pain in your mouth either from dental problems or infection or you have a health issue that you want to see improve. When I had serious tooth and nerve pain I was oil pulling sometimes up to 3 times a day because each time I did it the pain subsided.
Why do I spit the oil out in the bin?
For starters the oil that you pulled for up to 20 minutes is now full of bacteria and toxins that have been trapped within the oil and the best place for them is in a bin. Not down your sink because the oil will clog your drain and not down your throat because you've just swallowed all that hard work and achieved nothing, not to mention you may not feel very well.
What happens if I swallow the oil?
Well you won't die, but you may not feel very well and you may even vomit it up.
What if I cough, hiccup, sneeze while oil pulling?
I do have personal experience of this. Especially the sneezing and the coughing one. Usually you will know when you are going to cough or sneeze just prior to doing it, so I usually spit the oil out, sneeze or cough and then start over again. The hiccups is probably going to be the same. If you are hiccuping before you start to oil pull, then wait until the episode has finished. If you start hiccuping during, then spit the oil out and start over again after the episode has finished.
When should I brush my teeth?
Personally I brush after I have rinsed my mouth following oil pulling. Some people like to rinse and then eat breakfast and then brush, but I love the feeling of brushing my teeth directly after. No hard or fast rule.
Do I still have to brush my teeth?
Short answer Yes ! - however, there are some testimonies out there of people having so much success with oil pulling that they have found they don't need to brush as much. Personally I still like to brush my teeth and don't think that oil pulling is enough - however saying that - it would depend on how young you are, in what state of health you are in and whether you already have tooth decay happening. If there are signs of decay I wouldn't be giving up teeth brushing just yet.
Do I still need to floss?
I have found that since oil pulling I don't feel I have the need to floss as much. Since much of the oil pulling grabs all the bits and pieces from crevices that flossing doesn't get to anyway, I find I don't floss as much. However, if I've eaten and because my teeth are not in great condition, I will often floss afterwards to remove food bits and pieces.
Do I still need to have dental appointments?
Yes! You might not need any treatment and you might want to have a really good dentist that you trust is not going to spin you a story. Oil pulling IMO doesn't replace seeing a dentist at least once a year.
Can I oil pull if I have amalgams, bridges, crowns etc?
Yes, mostly, however, there are 2 schools of thought. Some dentists believe that oil pulling affects the bonding (cement) that is used to fix bridges or crowns in place. While others say that oil pulling won't affect them in any way, unless you have had a bad dentistry job or your teeth are further decaying underneath, which then the oil pulling has only highlighted what needs to be treated sooner than later. I stopped oil pulling for 6 months when a filling that was very old came loose late last year. I had two of the worst winter throat infections that I've had in ages and went back to oil pulling again. The filling hasn't budged any further and I am due to see my dentist in another 2 weeks to have the tooth looked at.
Will oil pulling remove plaque?
Yes it will. Clearly not as fast as those little sanders that dentists use in your mouth and possibly do teeth damage at the same time, but yes it will remove plaque. Every so often I will dislodge or have plaque crumble off my teeth which of course can just be spat out.
Will oil pulling stop decay?
Tricky question - probably deserves a whole article (coming soon). Oil pulling will aid the prevention of tooth decay but only if your diet is following along the lines of a traditional diet and not the SAD or some other modern western eating pattern. Remove the refined sugars, excess fruit, juices, sodas, floured products and other processed and junk foods and adopt a diet high in fat soluble vitamins, A,D,E & K + proteins + dairy (if tolerated) and vegetables + plus a few of the less sweet fruits (berries, kiwi's, lemons, limes) and your teeth and overall health will thank you! Read more about tooth decay here.
Will oil pulling remove stains and whiten my teeth?
For some teeth yes for others no. Stains on young teeth and caught early will quite likely be able to be removed. Many people testify of teeth becoming whiter after oil pulling. However, if your teeth have been subjected to an array of illness, poor diet, prescription drugs, smoking, alcohol and antibiotics then you may need to tame your expectations and don't hold your breath waiting!
Will oil pulling work for everyone?
I don't believe that there is a "1 size fits all" in any approach when it comes to health. Some people have found oil pulling to be of no benefit to them, but it's hard to know what they were hoping for to begin with. Others love the feeling of their teeth after they have oil pullied and are satisfied with that and others have had all sorts of ailments healed and health restored all because of oil pulling. Personally it has worked for me and I love the feeling of my teeth after having pulled oil.
How do you know if oil pulling is working?
Oil pulling is a gently form of detoxing and depending on your health status there are a few things you can look out for as indicators or signs of the body purging or dispelling toxins. Sinuses may start to flow and a steady drip or unblocking may occur. Allergies (sneezing, runny eyes, itchiness) slow down, bowels can unclog and hormones can rebalance, so in general you should feel a bit more energy and see signs of clearing in your eyes, your skin, your hair and nails and of course your mouth. Gums tend to look brighter.
Hope that answered all those questions about oil pulling? Leave me comment if you need more answers.
The short answer is Yes! Coconut Oil is good for you and here are the reasons why.
- Coconut oil is a saturated fat but unlike other saturated fats it is made up of medium chain fatty acids (MCFAs). Most other saturated fats are made up of long chain fatty acids (LCFAs).
- MCFAs are shorter and smaller than long-chain fatty acids (LCFAs). Because MCFAs are smaller they digest much more easily and have a greater solubility in water. Unlike LCFAs, pancreatic digestive enzymes and bile are not even necessary for their digestion. Because of this, coconut oil can provide a quick and easy source of nutrition without taxing the enzyme systems of the body.
- Because MCFAs are easily digested they also tend to improve the absorption of other nutrients as well. When coconut oil is added into the diet, it enhances the absorption of minerals such as magnesium and calcium, some of the B vitamins, the fat soluble vitamins (A,D,E,K and beta carotene) and some amino acids (ie protein).
- Because MCFAs are preferentially used by the liver as a source of fuel to produce energy, coconut oil consumption can boost your energy level.
- Because MCFAs are used to produce energy rather than packed away into fat cells, coconut oil can be useful in weight management.
- Coconut oil satisfies hunger better than any other fat, and probably any other food. When you add coconut oil to a meal you become satisfied sooner and do not get as hungry between meals so you can go longer without snacking.
- Coconut oil can lift your metabolism to a higher level. As metabolism increases, calories are consumed at a higher rate. As more calories are burned up, fewer are left to be converted into body fat.
- Studies have shown that after a single meal containing MFCAs, metabolism remains elevated for a full 24 hours! So after eating a meal containing coconut oil your metabolism will be elevated for 24 hours.
- Coconut oil provides a source of highly efficient cellular food.
- MCFAs can be absorbed both externally and internally. This is one of the reasons why coconut oil can work wonders for skin problems. Blemishes such as acne, eczema, psoriasis, fungal infections, wounds, and sores dramatically improve in many cases.
- One of the most remarkable characteristics of MCFAs in coconut oil is their ability to kill germs and parasites. The MCFAs in coconut oil are identical to those in human breast milk and possess the same antimicrobial properties. MCFAs are effective in killing bacteria as well as viruses, fungi and parasites.
- MCFAs and more specifically their medium-chain monoglycerides not only kill many disease causing microorganisms but evidence suggests that they enhance the immune system. The MCFAs in coconut oil can kill off Helicobacter pylori (said to be the cause of peptic ulcers), streprococcus, herpes and candida albicans.
- Coconut oil can aid people with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBS, Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis) by balancing the intestinal environment and protecting and healing inflamed tissues along the digestive tract.
- Coconut oil is a powerful antioxidant. The higher the saturated fatty acid content of a fat or oil, the more stable it is and the more effective it is as an antioxidant.
These are only a few reasons why Coconut Oil Is Good For You.
If you are interested in more information you can go here
I have bought a range of coconut oils over the past 5 years and have found them all to be of good quality and taste. However as I found more and more uses for coconut oil I found I needed to buy it in bulk. That's when I found Niulife. You can read why I chose Niulife here. You can purchase Niulife coconut oil here.
The other oils I have bought in the past are:
Melrose, Aclara, Niugini, Fijian gold. These brands can all be bought from health food shops in Australia.
**Banaban is available in some stores in NSW but is very popular in Qld. It can also be bought online.
Artisana, Garden of Life, Harvest Bay, Jarrow Formulas, Jungle Products, Natures Way, Now Foods, Nutiva, Organic Fuji, Quantum Nutrition, Source Naturals & Spectrum Essentials. These brands can be purchased online at iherb.
The best answer to this comes from Niulife, the inventors of the DME process and the company that I buy my coconut oil from.
What is the difference between virgin and extra virgin coconut oil?
The cheapest coconut oil is made from copra, the dried flesh of coconuts, and must be industrially Refined, Bleached and Deodorised (RBD) in order to make it edible.
Virgin coconut oil is made directly from fresh coconuts and is normally not further refined.
We call Niulife Coconut Oil ‘Extra Virgin’ because, like the best traditional cold pressed olive oil, it is made from the first and only pressing.
The Direct Micro Expelling (DME) system is the quickest in the world, producing delicious hand-pressed oil less than one hour after opening a coconut.
This process locks in all the natural flavour and goodness and produces top quality oil. No further processing is required and we believe ‘extra virgin’ is a legitimate description of this 100% pure and natural, cold pressed coconut oil.
What is the DME process? This answer comes from the Kokonut Pacific website. They are the inventors of the DME process.
Direct Micro Expelling uses a totally different approach to coconut compared to that of the copra industry. With DME we take (small-scale) processing to the nuts rather than taking the nuts (in debased form) to a (large-scale) processing plant. A consequence is that we produce a virgin coconut oil of vastly superior quality.
“Direct Micro Expelling” is highly descriptive of the technology. It is:
• Direct — quick (oil produced within 1 hour of opening the nut) and efficient (OEE 85%)
• Micro — small scale (family farm size)
• Expelling — extraction of virgin oil and meal
The DME Process concentrates on small, manageable, daily batches instead of producing large batches of copra which take many weeks to ship and process. The DME process depends upon simple, easily learned skills, rather than sophisticated equipment. Families really enjoy working together on DME Oil production, whereas they typically describe the making of copra as a form of slavery.
This answer comes from Bruce Fife from his book "Coconut Lovers Cookbook"
What is the recommended daily dose of coconut oil?
Most of the health benefits attributed to coconut come from the oil. For this reason, many people try to add as much of the oil into their diets as they can. The general recommendation is between 3 or 4 tablespoons a day for most adults. This calculation is based on the amount of medium-chain triglycerides a baby receives from breast milk. The amount a baby receives is known to provide protection from illness, support good digestive function, and supply needed energy.
There is no danger in consuming too much coconut oil, except that if you're not accustomed to eating much oil, you may experience runny stools.......Start off limiting your coconut oil intake to 1 tablespoon per day. After a couple of weeks increase it to 2 tablespoons a day and continue in this fashion until you reach the level you feel comfortable with.
Bruce Fife says in his other book "Coconut Cures" that the general recommendation is 31/2 tablespoons a day for an averaged sized adult. This is based on a body size of 150 pounds.
For most people 3-4 tablespoons a day is ample. Don't take this amount all at once. A tablespoon taken every 2-3 hours is a good schedule to follow.
Also take into account that you will get the oil from other coconut products as well.
1 cup of coconut milk = 2 tablespoons of oil
1 ounce of fresh coconut meat = 1/2 tablespoon of oil
1 cup of dried, flaked or shredded coconut = 1 tablespoon
This answer comes from the Niulife Coconut Oil FAQ. They are the inventors of the DME (Direct Micro Expelling) process.
Our process does involve heat in the sense that we semi-dry the raw material before pressing out the oil. This heating process is gentle in that the material is constantly turned and tossed into the air to speed up the drying process. This stage takes about 20 to 30 minutes (depending on the humidity, temperature, breeze, etc). It it is not subjected to the high temperatures of most other oil extraction systems. The coconut is usually between 45°C (110°F) and 60°C (130°F) immediately before pressing. This is "cold" by oil standards. No heat is generated in the gentle hand-pressing of our single pressing Extra Virgin Coconut Oil. The oil is not heated at all after pressing.
Are there "side effects" to taking coconut oil? Generally the answer is no. However some people experience a hardness in their throat and perhaps some nausea. The hardness in the throat could be contributed to the salicylates in coconut. When I first started using coconut oil, I was recommended to take it very slowly because of this reason. I found as I introduced coconut oil through cooking or eating it with other foods that the sensation in my throat disappeared and now I very rarely experience that. This process works on a homeopathic basis. You build your intolerance to the ingredient that you are intolerant to by using small doses of it.
Nausea will usually occur when you take too much coconut oil too quickly. It's the same with any oil whether it's fish oil, flax or olive.
The only other "side effects" could be runny stools or diarrhea. If you are not accustomed to eating much oil then it's recommended that you add coconut oil slowly into the diet and combine it with foods rather than taking the oil straight. Start with 1 tablespoon a day and increase slowly over a couple of weeks to 2 tablespoons a day until you reach a level that you are comfortable with.
Coconut oil melts at about 24 degrees C (76 degrees F)becoming a clear liquid that looks like most any other vegetable oil. Below this temperature, coconut oil will go solid and takes on a creamy white appearance. At moderate room temperatures it has a soft buttery texture and is sometimes called coconut butter. If your kitchen is cooler than 24 degrees C (76 degrees F) the oil will solidify. To liquefy the oil, simply immerse the bottom of the jar in hot water for a couple of minutes. The oil melts fairly quickly.
Coconut oil comes from the processing of the flesh of a mature coconut. There are two types of processing available. Type 1. The industrially manufactured oil that comes from copra, the low grade dried flesh of the coconut. The flesh is transported to major manufacturers in the States and Europe. As transportation takes so long and the shelf life of coconut is limited, the coconut flesh is treated with pesticides and chemicals in order to keep it from becoming rancid. Copra oil is then Refined, Bleached and Deodorised (RBD) to make it edible. This is not the coconut oil I use nor should you. Type 2. "Cold Pressed Virgin Certified Organic" coconut oil. The following description comes from Kokonut Pacific who manufacture Niulife coconut products.
"virgin", as it is made directly from fresh mature coconuts, quickly dried then pressed, settled and filtered. Nothing else. It has not been Refined, Bleached or Deodorised. No chemicals have been added or used in the extraction process.
“Certified Organic” because it is grown without artificial fertilisers, pesticides, or other chemicals and additives and has been certified as such by an IFOAM and USDA accredited agency: the National Association for Sustainable Agriculture Australia (NASAA).
“cold pressed” due to the relatively low temperatures used to dry the grated coconut and nil heating during pressing.
"extra virgin", because it is the first and only pressing made within one hour of opening a coconut; its free acid level is extremely low (<0.3 grams per 100); it is a raw oil that is judged to have a superior flavour and contains no additives.
Coconut oil, unlike other vegetable oils is very stable when heated and does not create toxic byproducts.
It has a smoking point 177 degrees C. No oil should be heated above it's smoking point. Coconut oil will melt at about 25 degrees C. It becomes a clear liquid that is quite transparent. Below this temperature it solidifies and takes on a creamy white appearance. To liquefy the oil, simply immerse the jar in hot water for a couple of minutes.
Virgin Coconut Oil does not readily oxidise like unsaturated oils do when heated, leading to free-radical formation. It is the ideal oil for deep frying and is safe to use several times over. Hydrogenation is not caused by heating coconut oil during cooking. Hydrogenation is an industrial process where hydrogen is introduced into an oil to artificially saturate it so that it will be solid at room temperature. It alters the chemical structure of the oil and creates harmful trans-fatty acids. It is perfectly safe to heat virgin coconut oil for cooking.