How coconut oil can help you lose weight and belly fat

Coconut oil is the most weight-friendly fat in the world.

It contains a unique combination of fatty acids with powerful effects on metabolism.

Several studies show that by simply adding coconut oil to your diet, you can lose fat, especially the "dangerous" fat in the abdominal cavity.

This article explains how coconut oil can help you lose weight and abdominal fat.

Coconut oil has a high content of medium chain triglycerides, fatty acids that stimulate the metabolism

Coconut oil is very different from most other fats in the diet.

While most foods contain predominantly long-chain fatty acids, coconut oil consists almost entirely of medium-chain fatty acids (1).

What happens with these medium chain fatty acids is that they are metabolized differently than longer chain fats.

They are sent directly to the liver from the digestive tract, where they are used to obtain energy immediately or they become ketone bodies.

These fats are often used by epileptic patients on a ketogenic diet, to increase ketone levels and at the same time allow a little more carbohydrate in the diet (2).

There is also evidence from studies in animals that medium chain fats are stored less efficiently than other fats.

In one study, the rats were overfed with long-chain or medium-chain fats. Rats fed medium-chain fats gained 20% less weight and 23% less body fat (3).

Bottom line:Coconut oil has a high content of medium chain triglycerides, which are fatty acids that are metabolized differently to most other fats, leading to beneficial effects on metabolism.

How coconut oil can stimulate metabolism and cause you to burn more calories at rest

A calorie is not a calorie.

Different foods and macronutrients go through different metabolic pathways.

The different types of foods we eat can have a great effect on our hormones and our metabolic health.

Some metabolic pathways are more efficient than others and some foods require more energy to digest and metabolize.

An important property of coconut oil is that it is "thermogenic": its consumption tends to increase energy expenditure (fat burning) compared to the same amount of calories from other fats (4).

In one study, 15-30 grams (1 to 2 tablespoons) of medium chain fats per day increased energy expenditure by 5%, totaling approximately 120 calories per day (5).

Several other studies confirm these findings. When humans replace fats that they eat with MCT fats, they burn more calories (6).

Therefore, a calorie of coconut oil is NOT the same as a fat in olive oil or butter (although these fats are also perfectly healthy).

Bottom line: Many studies show that medium chain triglycerides can stimulate metabolism, in a study that increases energy expenditure by 120 calories per day.

Coconut oil can reduce your appetite and cause you to eat less without trying

"Weight loss has to do with calories, calories."

Although I think this is a drastic simplification, it is above all true.

If your body spends more energy (calories) than it consumes, it will lose fat.

But even though it is true that we need to be in a calorie deficit to lose weight, does not mean that calories are something we need tell or be aware of it.

Humans are very capable of remaining lean and healthy in their natural environment. The obesity epidemic did not start until 1980 and we did not even know what a calorie was in the day.

Anything that reduces our appetite can cause us to consume fewer calories without having to think about it. It seems that coconut oil has this effect.

Many studies on medium chain fatty acids show that, compared to the same amount of calories from other fats, they increase the sensation of fullness and lead to an automatic reduction of caloric intake (7).

This may be related to the way in which these fats are metabolized. It is well known that ketone bodies (produced by the liver when coconut oil is eaten) can have a potent appetite-reducing effect (8, 9, 10).

Whatever the mechanism, it works. In a study of 6 healthy men, eating a large amount of MCT made them eat automatically 256 calories less per day (11).

In another study of 14 healthy men, those who ate MCT at breakfast ate significantly fewer calories at lunch (12).

So ... coconut oil increases fat burning (increases "calories") and also reduces appetite (reduces "calories").

Bottom line:Many studies show that people who add medium-chain fatty acids to their diet have reduced appetite and begin to eat fewer calories automatically.

Coconut oil can help you lose fat, especially "dangerous" abdominal fat

If coconut oil can increase metabolism and reduce appetite, it should help you lose fat in the long term.

In fact, there are several studies that support this.

In one study, 40 women received 30 grams (2 tablespoons) of coconut oil or soybean oil for 28 days.

They were instructed to eat fewer calories and walk every day. These were the results (13):

  • Both groups lost weight (around 2 pounds).

  • Only the group of coconut oil had a reduced waist circumference (abdominal fat) while soybean oil actually had a slight increase in belly fat.

  • The group of coconut oil had increased levels of HDL (good) cholesterol, while soybean oil had reduced HDL and increased LDL.

In this study, coconut oil did not cause a total weight loss compared to soybean oil, but it did produce a significant reduction in abdominal fat.

In another study in obese men, 30 grams of coconut oil for 4 weeks reduced the waist circumference by 2.86 cm, or 1.1 inches (14).

There are also other studies that show that medium chain fats lead to weight loss, reduced waist circumference and several improvements in metabolic health (15, 16).

The weight loss effects of coconut oil appear to be quite mild, except for abdominal fat.

Abdominal fat, also called visceral fat or abdominal fat, is the fat that tends to lodge around your organs and causes inflammation, diabetes and heart disease.

It is likely that any reduction in abdominal fat will have very positive effects on metabolic health, longevity and drastically reduce the risk of chronic disease.

These results are far from dramatic, but consider that everyone These people are doing is adding coconut oil to their diet.

Combined with other proven weight loss strategies (such as reducing carbohydrates and increasing protein), all this can represent a significant amount.

Therefore, coconut oil can support a healthy diet for weight loss based on real foods, but do not expect it to work miracles on its own.

Bottom line: Eating coconut is particularly effective in reducing harmful abdominal fat in the abdominal cavity, which is strongly associated with the disease.

What's with the calories?

It is important to keep in mind that coconut oil is fat.

Fat has 9 calories per gram ... and coconut oil is no exception.

Therefore, if you are eating a fixed amount of calories and then add coconut oil over it, then it is likely to make you gain weight, not lose.

However, most people do not count calories and eat a fixed amount per day.

In these cases, adding coconut oil to your diet will reduce your appetite and probably make you eat less of other foods.

So this really is not about adding Fat calories to your diet, it's about replacing Some of your other cooking fats with coconut oil.

It is also important not to go overboard and think that you need to add tons of coconut oil to your diet to reap the benefits. Previous studies used approximately 30 grams per day, which is equivalent to 2 tablespoons.

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