How Coconut Oil Can be Used To Lose Weight & Belly Fat

by John Staughton (BASc, BFA) last updated -

Adding coconut oil to your diet is an excellent way to increase your metabolism, store less fat, boost your energy levels, suppress your appetite, stabilize blood sugar, regulate hormones and digest your food more efficiently. This powerful oil is an extremely good option for those seeking weight loss, despite being rich in fat and somewhat high in calories. That may sound confusing, but the benefits of this healthy oil far outweigh the potential downsides when it comes to coconut oil.

Coconut oil has become highly sought after in recent years due to the wide range of health effects that it is proposed to have, but it has been a mainstay in traditional medicine for generations. While some people simply lump coconut oil in with a large number of other alternative cooking oils, the unique chemical composition of coconut oil makes it stand out in a crowd.

A woman with a fitness tape, happy with her weight, holding a coconut and scale on a green background

Coconut oil can work as an appetite suppressant by increasing feelings of fullness. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

As per the USDA, coconut oil contains vitamins and minerals such as vitamin E, vitamin K, iron, zinc, and calcium. This oil also contains medium-chain fatty acids, namely capric acid, caprylic acid, and lauric acid, which have antioxidant, antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties. This is why coconut oil is so commonly sought after for hair and skin cosmetic products, but its effect on weight loss is truly impressive. [1] [2]

If you want to lose weight using coconut oil, it is best to consume it thirty minutes before every meal, and most people typically mix it with a small amount of warm water or herbal tea. This can help to increase feelings of fullness and also improve digestion. A good amount to use is no more than 1.5 tablespoons of coconut oil prior to all three meals. Start with smaller amounts, as coconut oil can work as a powerful laxative. Everybody is different, so start with smaller amounts and slowly increase your daily dosage until you reach a level that gives you the results you want, without any undesired side effects.

How Does Coconut Oil Help You Lose Weight?

Coconut oil helps its regular users lose weight by preventing unnecessary fat storage, increasing the metabolic rate, optimizing hormonal levels and reducing hunger between meals.

Prevents Fat Storage

One of the primary health advantages that this oil delivers is in the form of saturated fats. Most people hear the word fat and think that it is a negative aspect of food, but saturated fats come in many forms, and the medium-chain fatty acids found in coconut oil are quite unique. Unlike long-chain fatty acids, these MCFAs are able to easily permeate cell membranes and are easily digested by the body. Furthermore, they are not stored as fat but instead delivered directly to the liver to be converted into energy. [3]

Boosts Metabolism

One of the most passive ways to help increase weight loss is to boost your metabolism. Coconut oil, as mentioned, contains high levels of medium-chain fatty acids, and research has directly linked these MCFAs to increased energy expenditure over the course of a day, meaning that your body’s fat-burning efficiency is increased when these types of fats are introduced to your diet.

Reduces Appetite

When you consume this beneficial oil before having each of your meals, it can significantly reduce your appetite, which results in less calorie intake. It is believed that this appetite suppression is due to how medium-chain fatty acids are metabolized by the body. The ketones produced through MCFA metabolism directly reduce hunger and appetite. Not only will you be able to monitor your meal size more effectively, but also reduce snacking between meals. [4]

Manages Diabetes

Coconut oil’s fatty acids don’t require the production of excess digestive enzymes, which gives the pancreas a much-needed break, allowing it to more efficiently produce and release insulin. Proper insulin levels mean that your cells and organs received the glucose your body needs, preventing the spikes and drops in blood sugar that can lead to diabetes. [5]

Treats Digestive Issues

The anti-inflammatory nature of coconut oil is well known, which helps it decrease irritation in the gut, speed bowel movements, and improve the overall function of the digestive system. Coconut oil is a natural laxative, helping to stimulate peristaltic motion and decrease bloating, cramping, diarrhea, nausea, and even hemorrhoids. Adding a healthy dose of this oil before every meal can also ensure that the nutrients in your food are digested properly, preventing the need for overeating as a result of “mystery” hunger, resulting from nutrient deficiency. Obviously, this can lose weight, as can the laxative effect, given that it helps to “empty” your bowels more smoothly. [6]

Regulates Hormone Levels

The production and release of hormones is a crucial aspect of our overall health, and hormones can’t be produced without some of the critical fats found in coconut oil. Without proper hormone production, your entire body becomes more chaotic, from metabolic efficiency to sex drive and appetite. Ensuring that you have proper hormone levels can help you lose weight simply by regulating your metabolism and desire to take in more calories!

What is the Best Coconut Oil to Use in Weight Loss?

The best coconut oil for weight loss is virgin organic coconut oil, as this is the purest type of oil you can find on the market. Virgin organic coconut oil means that it hasn’t been processed, which often eliminates or compromises some of the volatile fatty acids, minerals, and vitamins that can be accessed in pure coconut oil. Given the massive rise in popularity of coconut oil in recent decades, the availability has increased and the price has decreased, even for the purest forms, which is what you should be using if you are serious about weight loss. [7] Protection Status
About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, publisher and photographer with English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana (USA). He co-founded the literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and now serves as the Content Director for Stain’d Arts, a non-profit based in Denver, Colorado. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

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