Many health enthusiasts are learning about the benefits of virgin coconut oil and how it can help to improve their fitness goals. Coconut oil is rich in lauric acid, which converts into monolaurin in the body. This makes it an excellent anti-microbial agent in the body, as athletes are prone to the fungal infection, Athletes foot.
Ketones and Weight Loss
There was a trend several years back in the high protein low carbohydrate diet called Atkins. The low amount of carbohydrates absorbed by the body causes the body to turn to its own fat reserves in the body to use as energy. This releases ketones and results in weight loss and not muscle tone. Virgin coconut oil has a ketogenic effect on the body. Ketones nourish the brain and encourage the body to burn stored fat. This occurs due to the medium chain fatty acids found in virgin coconut oil, which improve the metabolism and provide energy.
Eating a tablespoon of coconut oil will provide approximately 120 calories, but the level of fullness that you can experience can result in a suppressed appetite and continued weight loss due to the higher metabolic rate. Coconut oil is naturally sweet and can reduce the need to eat high carbohydrate sweet snacks prior to a workout.
Japanese Study on Medium Chain Fatty Acids vs Long Chain Fatty Acids
A Japanese study compared the effect of medium chain fatty acids on the energy levels of athletes compared to long chain fatty acids. The conclusion stated that the foods containing medium chain fatty acids suppressed the upsurge of blood lactate concentration and the rating of perceived exertion throughout moderate intensity exercise whilst providing the body with a higher duration to perform high intensity exercise at a rate higher than that achieved by the consumption of long chain fatty acids.
Virgin Coconut Oil and Belly Fat Loss
Josef Brandenburg, a personal trainer in Washington DC, performed a study on the saturated virgin coconut oil vs the polyunsaturated soybean oil in reducing belly fat. After twelve weeks, there was a similar level of weight loss in both groups, but the subjects who consumed the soybean oil did not lose any belly fat, compared to the coconut oil group subjects who lost a substantial amount of belly fat. In addition, the cholesterol levels of the soybean oil subjects increased, while there were higher levels of high- density lipoproteins (healthy cholesterol) in the subjects consuming coconut oil.
This research alone confirms that polyunsaturated oils can suppress the loss of belly fat, while virgin coconut oil is a saturated fat and encourages fat loss in the belly. If you are a personal trainer, athlete, or workout enthusiast, add virgin coconut oil to your diet and your endurance will improve.