Fat Loss Food Health Uncategorized

The Health Benefits Of Coconut Oil

What Are The Benefits Of Coconut Oil?

Coconut oil is basically made up of saturated fat. And saturated fats are often linked to increased bad cholesterol—that is LDL. So how true that coconut oil has health benefits?coconut oil benefits
In this article we discuss the role of coconut oil in our body and how it differs from other foods that contain the saturated fats.

Saturated vs. Unsaturated Fats:
In Biochemistry, these refer to the fatty acids. These molecules make up chains of structures to produce the cholesterol molecules, which can be chylomicron, VLDL (Very Low Density Lipoprotein), IDL (Intermediate Density Lipoprotein), LDL (Low Density Lipoprotein), HDL (High Density Lipoprotein) or triglycerides.
In simple terms, only the HDL or the High-Density Lipoprotein is the “good cholesterol” and the rest are the bad guys. The reason for this is because of the scavenging ability of the HDL against the rest of the bad cholesterol. That means, HDL can destroy and scavenge Lower Density types of lipoprotein (chylomicrons, VLDL, IDL, LDL and triglyceride). This renders the bad cholesterols not to get deposited as cholesterol plaques in the arteries, including the arteries that supply the heart.
The fatty acids are responsible for the formation of the cholesterol molecules mentioned above. These fatty acids can be assimilated from the food we eat and can either be saturated or unsaturated.

Saturated fatty acids make up most of the oils that we get from palm trees, such as dates and coconut. Molecularly, saturated fatty acids have no double bonds between their individual carbon atoms. The term saturated is because the chain of carbon atoms in their structure is full of hydrogen atoms. Other sources of saturated fats are butter, meat, kernel oil, cow’s milk, cocoa butter and other dairy products.

Unsaturated fatty acids, on the other hand, are usually found in fish and plants. The presence of the double bonds in their fatty acid chains make them different from the saturated forms. Moreover, the hydrogen atoms in their molecular structures are eliminated. The term poly- or monounsaturated fat depends on the number of double bonds formed within their fatty acid chains.
Supported by medical textbooks and researchers, saturated fatty acids are often linked with cardiovascular disease. The idea that these researchers raise is that saturated fats can increase the formation of bad cholesterol in the blood when not taken in moderation.
However, a meta-analysis done by Tarino et al in 2010, concluded that there is no significant evidence for concluding that dietary saturated fat is associated with and

Coconut Oil Benefits:

The research by Tarino has been debated by much later studies. There is also the thought that coconut oil is still saturated fat, isn’t it?
The answer is yes and many researches and health organizations advise against consumption of high amounts of coconut oil. Coconut oil contains lauric acid, which is a saturated fatty acid that can raise blood cholesterol through augmenting the LDL (a bad cholesterol). But coconut oil has also some heart-friendly fatty acid the myristic acid according to Dr. Roger Clemens of the Institute of Food Technologists and 2010 Dietary Guidelines Committee.2
On the good side, lauric acid also increases HDL (the good cholesterol), which in turn, can develop a more favorable blood cholesterol profile. This is supported by a meta-analysis in 2003 by Mensink et al concluding that the effects of dietary fats on total:HDL cholesterol may differ markedly from their effects on LDL.

Additionally, a review on by Tran et al in 2006 has mentioned that “lauric acid-rich palm kernel oil and coconut oil (approximately 50% lauric acid), in terms of effect on total/HDL cholesterol ratio, are still a better alternative for the food industry than partially hydrogenated oil in products that require solid fats for texture.

Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO) is currently heralded as healthy oil and can even be good for the heart. VCO contains MCT (Medium Chain Triglycerides), the reason that it is much favored by health enthusiasts. In a study of the effect of MCT’s in rats, low body weight, low fat deposition and excellent survival rate has been shown.5 Medium chain triglyceride in virgin coconut oil is thought to be better than other saturated fats which carry potential cardiovascular risks.
In addition to body fat loss, the energy expenditure is enhanced when MCT is taken at 15 to 30 grams per day according to a study.6 In connection with this, you can increase your 24-hour energy expenditure by 5% , and in the long term, can cause significant weight loss.
Furthermore, MCTs can curb your hunger as shown by a study by Stubbs and Harbron. The study examined the substitution of MCT in the diets of six healthy male volunteers with mean age 27.17 years, mean weight of 63.33 kg and mean height of 1.72 m. The data showed that the substitution can limit the weight gain and excess energy intakes of the subjects.7 The effect on reduced appetite can greatly help in controlling your food intake and thus, may aid in controlling weight gain.
Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO) has also been recently studied and showed beneficial effects on lipid parameters. In this study in 2004, rats were fed with VCO for 45 days and their lipid profile was determined. The results showed that VCO has potential beneficiary effect in lowering lipid levels in both tissues and serum and can cause LDL oxidation through physiologic oxidants. According to the study, the biologically active polyphenol components present in virgin coconut oil may be the reason for such effect.8coconut oil
Other potential health benefits of coconut oil have also been attributed due to its contents. It includes anti-septic effects, moisturizing effects on the skin, hair and scalp moisturizing effects.

Bottom Line:
Coconut oil is a healthy alternative to other saturated fat-based foods and oils. Though being saturated and can increase the levels of LDL, it can also increase HDL, which may counter the effect of the bad cholesterol increase. The virgin form (VCO) is more recommended since it has medium-chain triglycerides that has been studied for its beneficial health effects.

Although other studies and even health organizations advised against the consumption of high saturated fats, coconut oil is not a health-risk if taken in moderation. It has great health benefits and the virgin coconut oil form (VCO) has more positive health effects as proven by studies. Thus, in choosing an oil alternative, coconut oil (more particularly the VCO) is a good choice and is recommended.

1Tarno et al (2010) Meta-Analysis of Prospective Cohort Studies Evaluating the Association of Saturated Fat with Cardiovascular Disease . Accessed: 07/03/14.
2Zelman (2014) The Truth About Coconut Oil . Accessed: 07/03/14.
3Mensink et al (2003) Effects of Dietary Fatty Acids and Carbohydrates on the Ratio of Serum Total to HDL Cholesterol and on Serum Lipid and Apolipoproteins: A Meta-Analysis of 60 Controlled Trials . Accessed: 07/03/14.
4Trani et al (2006) New and Existing Oils and Fats Used in Products with Reduces Trans-Fatty Acid Content . Accessed: 07/03/14.
5Kaunitz (1986) Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCT) in Aging and Arteriosclerosis . Accessed: 07/03/14.
6Dulloo et al (1996) Twenty-Four-Hour Energy Expenditure and Urinary Catecholamines of Humans Consuming Low-to-Moderate Amounts of Medium-Chain Triglycerides: A Dose-Response Study in a Human Respiratory Chamber . Accessed: 07/03/14.
7Stubbs RJ and Harbron CG (1996) Covert Manipulation of the Ratio of Medium-to Long-Chain Triglycerides in Isoenergetically Dense Diets: Effect on Food Intake in ad Libitum Feeding Men . Accessed: 07/03/14.
8Nevin KG and Rajamohan T (2004) Beneficial Effects of Virgin Coconut Oil on Lipid Parameters and in vitro LDL Oxidation . Accessed: 07/03/14.

Fat Loss Fitness Uncategorized

Is This The Fastest Way To Burn Fat?

Almost everybody has tried to lose those extra pounds at some point in their life and most never reached their ideal weight. Blame it on genetics, work, environment, whatever. There is an effective way to lose weight that not many people at the gym are actually doing.musclevsfat
Why? Because its intense. Most people hit the bench press or the ab stations in hopes to get buff and tone down but these exercises often won’t provide you with the results you desire.

Many people jump on the treadmill or bicycle machine and go a reasonable pace for around 45 minutes just like we were taught in school or by the personal trainer straight out of uni. Many people spend a lot of time running or cycling due to fact that it does burn a lot of calories however, once you step off the treadmill you unfortunately stop burning calories as well. Another problem with this, apart from the fact its long and boring is that this sort of exercise produces cortisol AKA the “stress” hormone. Cortisol is actually a catabolic hormone that can result in muscle wasting. If you are just trying to lose fat and not build muscle this may not bother you but if you are looking get ripped, strong, look good, and have a low body fat percentage you may be interested in what is High Intensity Interval Training or HIIT.

Is this the fastest way to burn fat?

HIIT involves a working out at a very high intensity for short amount of time with minimal rests. HIIT works by pushing your body to its limits but not letting it fall in to a steady state or steady speed. To get an idea of how HIIT works I will share with you what I do at the gym to shed fat.

I always do this at the end of the workout otherwise I won’t have any energy to perform my other exercises. I use the bicycle machine and will ride for around about 15 minutes. Once my legs are warmed up I set the resistance nearly as high as it will go (we have electronic bikes with a resistance of around 22). I will then peddle sprinteras hard as I possible can for 30 seconds followed by 90 seconds of slow peddling at level 1 or 2. I will do that 8 times. My only rest is the 90 seconds and when I finish. For those 30 second intervals I am going as hard as I possibly can forcing my body to engage my super fast twitch muscle fibers and promoting growth of more. I will do this 3 times a week and when you add up those 30 second intervals you are only doing 12 minutes of cardio a week. It doesn’t take long but you will see results!

So why does this sort of exercise burn fat in less time? Post Oxygen Consumption or EPOC. This means you will not only burn calories during the workout but when you finish you will keep burning calories for another 24 hours.
My favourite reasons are that this sort of excercise can reduce age related telemore shortening which pretty much means the cells in your body won’t age as quickly therefore you will not age as quickly meaning your body will continue to look younger for longer. Another reason is that this sort of exercise forces your body to create lots of the Human Growth Hormone (HGH). This is the hormone that creates muscle and burns fat fast.

To better understand how HIIT works we must understand the different types of muscle fibers in the body.

Slow (red, oxygen-rich muscle)
Fast (also red muscle that oxygenates quickly, but is five times faster than the slow fibers)
Super-fast (white muscle fibers that contain far less blood and mitochondria)
Super-fast is the only muscle fiber that has a major impact HGH production. Most people whether they are body builders or marathon runners only train their slow twitch muscle fibers which can actually cause your fast twitch fibers to decrease.
Explosive power training plyometrics engage your fast twitch but not your super-fast twitch fibers.
Super-fast fibers are activated when performing the above workout resulting in an increased production of the HGH.

Most people who perform the above exercise will often notice the following results:

1. Improved athletic speed and performance
2. Lower body fat percentage
3. Firmer, younger looking skin with less wrinkles
4. Improved muscle tone
5. Increased sexual desire and energy

Don’t fall victim to sales pitches from people offering synthetic versions of the HGH as this is not the same and can be dangerous. If your body can produce it, don’t inject it.

Fat Loss Food Health Uncategorized

How Much Fat Should You Eat?

Fats along with Protein and Carbohfatydrates are the three macro-nutrients that supply calories to the body. Protein and carbohydrates contain 4 calories per gram whilst fat contains 9.

Although fat has had a bad wrap, it can be our friend if we manage our consumption and eat the right types of fats.

There are 4 major kinds of fats.

First lets start with Polyunsaturated Fats. This fat can help preserve muscle size
while your are having a break and can help increase strength and size during a workout. 33% of your daily fat intake should come from polyunsaturated fats such as salmon, peanuts, hemp, sardines, trout, tuna, cereals, and flax seed.

Monounsaturated Fats are another very important fat. Monounsaturated fats are great at protecting the heart whilst cutting belly fat. Studies from the Canadian Medical Association Journalsaturated fat found that they increase good
cholesterol levels in the body by 12.5% and decrease bad cholesterol by 35%. This fat also should make up 33% of your daily intake. You can get your daily dosage from olive oil, hazelnuts, almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews, and avocado.

Saturated Fats have been given a very hard time in the past. We do in fact need saturated fats in our diet, so avoiding them entirely is not the best thing to do. Saturated fats help your body produce hormones like testosterone. This hormone is your main muscle builder. Aim for around 33% of your daily fat intake. Great sources for this are dark chocolate, red meat, eggs, chicken, cheese, and sour cream.

Tran saturated Fat or trans fat, is the worst fat and should not be consumed. Trans fats lead to weight gain and poor health. According to the Journal of Nutrition, trans fats clog your arteries, have been linked to cancer, and can lead to diabetes. Avoid all foods that contain trans fat. Fried foods, pastries, and biscuits are big carriers of this fat.

If you are wondering how much fat to consume in a day then here is a quick guide. If you are aiming to be leaner then aim for around 1 gram of fat per pound of your target bodyweight. Protein should be around 1.5 grams per pound of your target body weight with carbohydrates at 1 gram. If gaining muscle is your goal then you should aim for 1 gram of fat per target bodyweight, 1.5 grams of protein, and 2.5 grams of carbohydrates. thumb fat

An easy way of calculating your fat portions is with your thumb. The beauty of this method is that it is sustainable and accurate. I doubt you will carry scales with you at all times, but I bet you have your thumb!
Set your goal to include a thumb sized portion of fat with every meal except your post workout meal.

This is the exact method I use in my SHRED21 to help people drop fat for good. They drop it for good because they can always implement this method along with my other teachings. It’s easy. It’s portable. It’s accurate.

Don’t be scared of fat. It is our friend!


21 Days Apart (4)