0

votes

Can anyone explain why coconut oil/fat helps with weight loss? What is the syndrome where your body starts running on FAT instead of CARB?

Commented on January 02, 2014
Created January 02, 2014 at 5:09 AM

I'm looking for more of the science on how this works. I've read a lot about the dreaded gluten effects on the body and am pretty familiar with the dangers of sugar, but want more info on the fat issue. I have just found that eating a lot of coconut oil (1-2 tbsp day) and cream (4-8 oz day) is not only very satisfying but makes my body almost instantly (within an hour) thermogenic. I don't even have to work out. It's also great on my skin and hair.

2a948c73718167614cbb5130a2f77293

on January 02, 2014
at 10:10 PM

It tastes awesome! :-)

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on January 02, 2014
at 10:04 PM

thx topper, looks like my 1st comment should read more like,

the main three fuels (energy) for the body are glucose, fatty acids and ketone bodies afaik (i think there are some more obscure and minimal energy sources? that the experts out there will know).

the percentage breakdown that the body uses of these three will depend on diet, activity and calorie intake.

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on January 02, 2014
at 10:03 PM

thx topper, look like my 1st comment should read more like,

the main three fuels (energy) for the body are glucose, fatty acids and ketone bodies afaik (i think there are some more obscure and minimal energy sources? that the experts out there will know).

the percentage breakdown that the body uses of these two will depend on your diet, activity and calorie intake.

161750c67d1c0a39309fa8fa06ce1d35

(0)

on January 02, 2014
at 09:41 PM

You put butter in coffee? I can't even imagine how that must taste. :P I'm not sure if I'm adventurous enough to try it!

141c6b3d5e9506dd93881e3f9737f297

(55)

on January 02, 2014
at 09:25 PM

may be it's just the brain, liver and heart that can utilise ketone bodies. wiki Ref

& skeletal muscle prefer fatty acids. wiki Ref

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on January 02, 2014
at 06:47 AM

...or am i mixing up my fatty acids with my ketone bodies...?

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on January 02, 2014
at 06:42 AM

the main two fuels for the body are glucose and ketone bodies afaik (i think there are some more obscure and minimal energy sources? that the experts out there will know).

the percentage breakdown that the body uses of these two will depend on your diet and calorie intake.

the wiki on ketone bodies is worth a read.

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4 Answers

0
161750c67d1c0a39309fa8fa06ce1d35

on January 02, 2014
at 09:40 PM

Ketosis is the word you're looking for and is a form of selective starvation where the body is forced to convert fat stores (or consumed fat) to energy instead of carbs. Using fat stores for energy is more energy intensive than is consuming carbs.

I couldn't answer the other question, though it looks like others have done so pretty well.

0
73405829e4cd62de86d52ef5c557dc42

on January 02, 2014
at 06:29 PM

You consider that a lot of fat? I have 2 tbs butter and 2 tbs of mct oil in my morning coffee. I probably use 2-4 tbs of coconut oil in each meal and maybe some more butter and grass fed beef or wild salmon

161750c67d1c0a39309fa8fa06ce1d35

(0)

on January 02, 2014
at 09:41 PM

You put butter in coffee? I can't even imagine how that must taste. :P I'm not sure if I'm adventurous enough to try it!

0
96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19413)

on January 02, 2014
at 11:37 AM

The word you're searching for is ketosis. Coconut oil is about 50% MCT oil. MCT oil is converted by the liver to ketones - it's very useful for us who've had our gall bladders removed as it doesn't require digestive enzymes to process. This can be used to kick start ketosis.

The remaining half is saturated fats, which are good stable fat that won't burn easily and is great for both cooking and is healthy - unlike PUFAs, it won't oxidize/go rancid, so it's very paleo friendly. Just avoid coconut oil at night, the extra energy from it might prevent you falling asleep (the same can be true of other oils such as fish oil for some people, but not all.)

A lifetime on the SAD tends to shut off the ability to burn fat.... Once your cells get adapted to burning fat (this can take a week or so of very low carb), you'll be able to use ketones as an energy supply. At first you might experience ketone-breath, but once that goes away you'll be adapted to burning ketones/fats instead of carbs.

There's another factor here, if you cut down on the carb intake (and to some extent protein), your insulin levels will go down. When insulin is high, it prevents fat cells from releasing their stores, and all you can do is store fat.

So by merely removing all carbs, or entering a fasting period, you allow your body access to the energy in fat stores, thus are able to burn off fat.

Search for Intermittent Fasting for more details on this mechanism. A good start is:

http://www.precisionnutrition.com/intermittent-fasting

0
Ca2c940a1947e6200883908592956680

(8574)

on January 02, 2014
at 09:34 AM

This would be the most useful place to look: http://examine.com/supplements/Coconut+Oil/

"There appears to be a fat reducing effect of coconut oil and MCTs that exceeds other oils used, which is more readily apparent in obese persons than lean persons. The magnitude of this effect is not astounding (with some studies not noting a weight reducing effect)"

http://nutritionreview.org/2013/04/medium-chain-triglycerides-mcts/

"In addition to their lower caloric content than LCTs, MCTs are not stored in fat deposits in the body as much as LCTs. (2) Furthermore, MCTs have been shown to enhance thermogenesis (i.e., fat burning). (4) So MCTs seem to offer a triple approach to weight loss – they (1) have a lower calorie content than other fats, (2) are minimally stored as fat, and (3) contribute to enhanced metabolism to burn even more calories. This third property may be due to the fact that MCTs behave metabolically in some fashion similar to carbohydrates, as well as their promoting the development of ketones, as mentioned above. (5) Ketone production is a cornerstone of the Atkins Diet, and MCTs may enable those following the Atkins’ program to more rapidly obtain benefits and more easily adhere to the program. Ketones are also one of the two substances which the brain can utilize for energy (glucose, being the other). Dr. Hans Kaunitz speculated that for this reason, MCTs might be advantageous for the aging brain. (6)"

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