Coconut oil has some very impressive health benefits.
It’s been shown to increase metabolism, reduce hunger and boost HDL (the “good”) cholesterol, to name a few.
However, many people are confused about how much to take and how to eat it.
This article explains how to include coconut oil in your diet and the optimal amount to take.
Dosages Used in Studies
A number of studies have investigated the benefits of coconut oil, many of which are attributed to its high content of medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs).
In some cases, the amount of oil given was a percentage of total calories, which varied from person to person.
In three similar studies, a combination of coconut oil and butter were the main fat sources in a 40% fat diet. Normal-weight women experienced significant temporary increases in metabolic rate and calorie expenditure (1, 2, 3).
In a study comparing the effects of different fats on cholesterol levels, a diet with 20% of total calories from coconut oil raised HDL cholesterol in women but not in men. In addition, it was shown to raise LDL cholesterol less than butter (4).
In each of these studies, a person consuming 2,000 calories for weight maintenance would have included 36–39 grams of coconut oil per day as part of a mixed diet.
In other studies, each participant consumed the same amount of oil regardless of calorie intake.
In one study, overweight or obese people taking 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of coconut oil per day for 4 weeks lost an average of 1.1 inches (2.87 cm) from their waists (5).
In another study, obese women took 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of coconut or soybean oil while on a calorie-restricted diet. Their waist sizes decreased and HDL cholesterol increased, while the control group had the opposite response (6).
Bottom Line: In studies, coconut oil has benefits when given at fixed dosages or as a percentage of total calorie intake.
How Much Coconut Oil Per Day?
Studies have found that 2 tablespoons (30 ml) seems to be an effective dose.
Two tablespoons provide about 18 grams of medium-chain triglycerides, which is within the range of 15–30 grams that has been shown to increase metabolic rate (7).
However, start slowly to avoid the nausea and loose stools that may occur with high intake. Take 1 teaspoon per day, gradually increasing to 2 tablespoons per day over 1–2 weeks.
Bottom Line: Consuming 2 tablespoons per day is sufficient to achieve health benefits, but it’s best to work up to this amount gradually.
How to Eat Coconut Oil
There are several ways to include this oil in your diet.
Use it for Cooking
Coconut oil is ideal for cooking because almost 90% of its fatty acids are saturated, making it extremely stable at high temperatures.
It also has a high smoke point of 350°F (175°C).
Coconut oil is semi-solid at room temperature and melts at 76°F (24°C). So store it in a cupboard, rather than the refrigerator, to keep it pliable.
During the colder months, it may become very solid and difficult to scoop out of the container. This can be remedied by whipping it with an electric mixer or in a blender.
Here are several cooking ideas:
- Sautéing or stir-frying: Use 1–2 tablespoons of this oil to cook vegetables, eggs, meat or fish.
- Popcorn: Drizzle melted coconut oil on air-popped popcorn or try it in this stove-top popcorn recipe.
- Baking: Use it to coat poultry or meat before rubbing with seasonings.
Use it in Recipes
Coconut oil can be substituted for oil or butter in a 1:1 ratio in most recipes.
It’s best to melt it and add to smoothies and protein shakes gradually.
Here are a few recipes that use coconut oil:
- Sautéed Zucchini, Squash and Onions.
- Coconut Chicken Thai Curry.
- Strawberry and Coconut Oil Smoothie.
Add to Coffee or Tea
Another way to take this oil is in coffee or tea. Aim for a small amount — about a teaspoon or two. Below is a quick tea recipe featuring coconut oil.
Cocoa Chai Tea for One
- Chai tea bag (herbal or regular).
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder.
- 1 tablespoon cream or half and half.
- 1 teaspoon coconut oil.
- Stevia or other sweetener, to taste.
To make this, pour boiling water over the tea bag and let it steep for 2–3 minutes. Remove the tea bag, add the remaining ingredients and stir until well mixed.
Bottom Line: Coconut oil can be used for cooking, in recipes and to add delicious richness to hot beverages.
What About Supplements?
Coconut oil is also available in capsule form.
In some ways it may seem more convenient, particularly for traveling. However, there’s a distinct downside to this method of delivery.
Most capsules contain 1 gram per capsule. In order to get 2 tablespoons (30 ml) per day, you would need to take about 30 capsules on a daily basis.
For most people, this just isn’t realistic. Instead, try using coconut oil for cooking or include it in recipes.
Bottom Line: Coconut oil capsules need to be consumed in very large quantities in order to achieve an effective dosage.
Calories Still Count
Coconut oil provides valuable benefits, but there are limits to how much you should eat.
In fact, each tablespoon contains 130 calories.
Research has shown that coconut oil is most effective when it replaces less healthy fats in the diet, rather than being added on top of the fat you’re currently consuming.
Taking about 2 tablespoons daily seems to be the best strategy for optimizing health.
Bottom Line: For best results, replace less healthy fats with coconut oil rather than increasing your current fat intake.
Take Home Message
Coconut oil is a natural source of medium-chain triglycerides, which offer several health benefits.
Including 2 tablespoons of coconut oil per day, in cooking or in recipes, is the best way to get these benefits.
Breakfast, blood sugar, & inflammation
Recent research has shown that Inflammation is responsible for 7 out of 10 Deaths in the United States. But it doesn’t have to be the same way for you.
In fact, in a fairly short amount of time, you could start to experience better sleep…less stomach issues…more energy and stamina…less muscle and joint pain…a drop in weight…lower stress levels…and much, much more!
Learn how to Prevent—Even Reverse—Most Major Diseases by “Turning Off” Inflammation!
Did you know that one of the best times to stretch is right before bed? However…
What stretches should you do? Here’s a 1-minute stretch routine you can do before bed...
Lisa, Yoga Coach
eatlocalgrown / wisemindhealthybody
...easy, 3-minute exercise that completely cured his horrendous snoring! We can both finally sleep!
Today is a good day. Tonight will be even better. Why?
Because you're about to learn easy throat exercises that cure (not just treated) your stubborn snoring – in 3 minutes – starting TONIGHT!
...even if straps, sprays and even torturing CPAP masks have failed you in the past.
Most people heal their snoring in just a few minutes per day using these powerful throat exercises. And they're so easy, you can do them, regardless of your age or physical shape.
Use them anytime, anywhere... even while stuck in traffic or watching TV.
Plus the results are permanent!
Did you know that your bodyfat can become "calorie-resistant"?
True. And it's completely unaffected by even the strictest diets... and most intense exercises.
However, there's good news- Calorie-resistant bodyfat can be now removed...
It's a little-known, calorie-burning hormone we all have... just waiting for the right spark to come alive. It's not thyroid, leptin, ghrelin, insulin, adiponectin, HGH or any other "fat loss" hormone you may know. Read more to find out precisely how to unleash its calorie-burning power:
To your health!
PS - Studies show that it can also reduce your risk of diabetes by 53.7%, a heart attack by 83.3% and stroke by 51.4%. Here's more of the scientific proof...
I bet you can’t guess which muscle in your body is the #1 muscle that eliminates joint and back pain, anxiety and looking fat. This “hidden survival muscle” in your body will boost your energy levels, immune system, sexual function, strength and athletic performance when unlocked.
If this “hidden” most powerful primal muscle is healthy, we are healthy.
d) Hip Flexors
Take the quiz above and see if you got the correct answer!
In April, 2009, researchers stunned the medical community when they reported chronic inflammation as the root cause of several major diseases.
See, every year 610,000 people in the U.S. die of heart disease. Cancer claims another 584,000...stroke 130,000...Alzheimer's disease nearly 85,000 — and the list goes on.
Truth is, we now know... chronic inflammation is responsible for 7 out of the top 10 leading causes of death in the United States! Hundreds of studies and scientific reviews prove it.
Fortunately, newer research shows you can prevent-even reverse-most major diseases by "turning off" inflammation. And in our new book, we show you how to do just that.
If you or a loved one is suffering from a debilitating condition-and you"re not sure what the culprit is-now's the time to find out...while you can still do something about it!
--> Grab your FREE copy of this groundbreaking soft cover book today (while supplies still last.)
Over the past year, my friend Dave over at PaleoHacks has been working on a super secret cookbook project with our good friend Peter Servold a Le Cordon Bleu trained Chef and owner of Pete's Paleo...
And today, this new incredible Paleo Cookbook is finally available to be shipped right to your door for FREE!
The cookbook is called Paleo Eats, and it's filled with over 80 chef created, insanely tasty Paleo recipes which means they are free from gluten, soy, dairy, and refined sugar.
Get your FREE copy of Paleo Eats Here. (Grab this today, because they only ordered a small batch of these cookbooks for this freebie promotion, and they will sell out FAST!)
Sponsored Health Resources
In the years that I've been working on this website project I've come across some amazing resources by some very special people. I'd like to share them with you here.
NOTE: I update these links often so please check back to see what's new!
1) Everyone knows green smoothies are healthy right? Have you heard of a “red” smoothie? If not, check out this story…
2) Forget what you've read about 10-day lemonade cleanses, 7-day detoxes with green juices and Gwyneth's gruel. All you need to do, and this is perfect for Saturday or or anytime really, is a simple 1-day cleanse.
3) This “hidden survival muscle” in your body will boost your energy levels, immune system, sexual function, strength and athletic performance when unlocked.
4) I thought it was virtually impossible for a website to be able to tell me anything even a little bit insightful after only submitting my name and date of birth... I was wrong!
5) Turmeric is amazing. The problem is - It's hard to absorb!
6) Wonder why your stomach still sticks out even though you're hammering the core exercises every day? It's a common myth that bulging belly is due to weak abdominal muscles.
7) Even if you're the most active of athletes, you may still suffer from tight hip flexors due to the amount of time you spend each day planted to a chair.
Enjoy! Let me know how these work out for you. And if you run across anything I've missed please let me know.