Can too much coconut oil be harmful? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 17 Old 02-22-2013, 01:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm just wondering, are there negative effects of too much coconut oil? I guess, namely, circulatory issues (BP, cholesterol.. etc)?

 

I know there are many benefits, but I consume a ton of CO!  In a day, I can probably do about 6 tablespoons. I just love the stuff and I feel like I just cant get enough. YUM!

 

Just wanna make sure I'm not overdoing anything. There are times when I've felt a little nauseous, so I cut back, but I think my body is now used to it. I dont seem to have any digestive issues with that amount anymore.


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#2 of 17 Old 02-22-2013, 06:04 PM
 
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I believe that to much of any food can be unhelpful or harmful. As to what the magic amount with something like coconut oil... I have no idea.
I can tell you that for me 6 Tbsp of coconut would be way to much and would feel unhealthy. I consume a good deal of healthy fats (coconut oil, pastured lard, ghee, grass fed butter, olive oil), but the 80+ grams of fat in six Tbsp of coconut oil on top of whatever else I ate would be too much for my metabolism. Everyone is different, though!
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#3 of 17 Old 02-23-2013, 01:32 AM
 
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woah

 

in a 2000 calorie diet only 25 to 30% should come from fat. this includes ALL fats. as pp stated that might indeed be too much along with other fats in your diet.

 

remember after all - any oils coconut, sunflower, peanut, canola - no matter how good is still a processed product. you will never find coconut oil in nature. 

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#4 of 17 Old 02-24-2013, 01:40 PM
 
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woah

 

in a 2000 calorie diet only 25 to 30% should come from fat. this includes ALL fats. as pp stated that might indeed be too much along with other fats in your diet.

 

remember after all - any oils coconut, sunflower, peanut, canola - no matter how good is still a processed product. you will never find coconut oil in nature. 

 

What about if you take the inside of the coconut, blend it with water,

place it in the refrigerator, wait for the oil to go to the top, and eat that oil, is that still considered processed?

 

Would you still get the same benefits if you drank the blended mixture of the coconut inside with water,  would that still be processed?

 

I have read that people do well on 1 to 3 TBS of it, but never heard of  taking 6...

I had an old container & I could take 2 TBS, then when I opened a new one, I could only stomach 1 TBS, I thought I was going to throw up...I wonder if the older one had lost its effects or something???

 

And people do it gradually to avoid stomach problems, lose stools....

Thans in advance :)

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#5 of 17 Old 02-24-2013, 09:51 PM
 
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yes i would still call it processed. simple but still processed. 

 

i grew up in a tropical country. i love, love fresh coconut flesh (meaning the brown time, not green). i'd rather eat the fruit than the oil. 

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#6 of 17 Old 02-24-2013, 09:57 PM
 
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Yeah that is way a lot. They say 3 to 4 tbs is a good range and people who have coconut in their diet tend to only eat 1tbs.
 

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#7 of 17 Old 02-28-2013, 06:45 PM
 
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The jar I have says up to 3 tbs. a day. 


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#8 of 17 Old 02-28-2013, 09:19 PM
 
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lets do the math here shall we?

 

so say in a 2000 calorie diet you are allowed at the max 600 calories or 60 grams of fat. 

 

lets take the measurement of 1TBS of CO - lets take the middle of the line figure (each TBS = 120 calories or 14 g of fat. 

 

this is just coconunt oil. 3 tbs = 360 calories or 42 g of fat. that is over half your fat intake. 

 

which is doable if you are not an avid "meat", dairy, avocado, fried food and nuts eater, or neither a 'junk food' eater. 

 

if you eat a reasonable amount of 'meat' (which happens to be such a tiny amount) or nuts or avocado and other fat containing foods - then you are good to go. 

 

it is amazing how much fat there is in food, without even talking about oil. 


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#9 of 17 Old 02-28-2013, 10:30 PM
 
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I come at this from the Paleo perspective, so take what I have to say with a grain of salt.  I personally do not limit coconut oil and probably eat more than you do.  I distinguish between oils from foods that are naturally oily (ie coconuts, avacados, olives) and oils that must be chemically extracted from food (corn, canola, vegetable).  They have quite different chemical make ups and act very differently in the body.  I do not limit fats I consider healthy.  I personally think our culture is way too fat-phobic.  In the digestive process fat actually stimulates a hormone (I'm totally blanking on the name) that tells the body it's full, which is why it can be hard (at least in my experience) to lose weight on a low-fat high carb-diet because you won't be getting enough of the hormones that tells you you're full.  I know of a couple people who were cutting out all sugar (including fruit) and when they had cravings they would just eat a spoonful of CO and it would immediately stave off the cravings. Coconut oil contains lauric acid which our immune system needs, it's also anti-fungal (and might be anti-viral and anti-bacterial, but don't quote me on that) many people I know increase their intake when they get sick.  You can look up more of the benefits of it online (and there are tons).  Personally like I said, I've been eating more than you for the past 4 months or so and over that time have lost 15 lbs (which is huge for me, I have such a hard time losing weight when breastfeeding) and feel fantastic (despite a baby who thinks sleep is for the weak) and the only time I got sick it was a cold that lasted 12 hours with me taking no supplements (my colds normally last at least 3 days, with me chugging elderberry syrup, garlic, and vitamin C).  I've also been eating Paleo, though, so I don't think I can credit it all to the coconut oil but it certainly hasn't hindered it.

 

As for what I would suggest for you: I would be less concerned about the effect the amount of CO you're eating has on your BP and Cholesterol than the amount of trans fats you're getting through corn oil, canola oil, vegetable oil, soybean oil, I would work on eliminating those from your diet.  I would also try to cut down on processed food (like potato chips, pretzels, boxed cookies etc).  If you're particularly concerned about it you could also cut down on grains and dairy, both of which are inflammatory (which I personally believe has a much greater impact on BP and Cholesterol than fat intake).  If already doing that and eating a mostly whole food diet I would then consider how the CO makes you feel.  Does it make you feel bloated, lethargic, less energetic.  Go a few days without and see if you feel any different.  If fat loss is your goal and you're struggling with it, you could play around with the amount of CO you're eating and see if less helps you lose weight.  But if you're happy with your weight, eating whole foods, and feeling really good, I truly wouldn't sweat it.

 

Again this is just my personal opinion, and I'm sure you would even get different answers from people who eat Paleo.  I would recommend the book Good Calorie, Bad Calorie if you're interested in learning more about the role of fat in the diet.  And maybe you read it and decide it's BS, but I think it's a good view point to consider.
 

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#10 of 17 Old 02-28-2013, 10:59 PM
 
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I totally agree, gypsymama2008. And personally, my diet is over 50% fat, and this has been my healthiest pregnancy yet, with the least weight gain. Your book recos are some of my faves. Gary Taubes science reporting is top-notch.
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#11 of 17 Old 02-28-2013, 11:32 PM
 
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I totally agree, gypsymama2008. And personally, my diet is over 50% fat, and this has been my healthiest pregnancy yet, with the least weight gain. Your book recos are some of my faves. Gary Taubes science reporting is top-notch.

Thank you!  It's nice to see that I'm not the only one who views fat this way :)

 

I wanted to add that if you're eating a lot of coconut oil you probably want to make sure it's a high quality brand.  Tropical Traditions is supposed to be the best.  I've been using Nutiva, which is extra virgin, cold-pressed and organic, but I do want to try Tropical Traditions at some point.

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#12 of 17 Old 03-02-2013, 04:33 PM
 
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Originally Posted by gypsymama2008 View Post

I come at this from the Paleo perspective, so take what I have to say with a grain of salt.  I personally do not limit coconut oil and probably eat more than you do.  I distinguish between oils from foods that are naturally oily (ie coconuts, avacados, olives) and oils that must be chemically extracted from food (corn, canola, vegetable).  They have quite different chemical make ups and act very differently in the body.  I do not limit fats I consider healthy.  I personally think our culture is way too fat-phobic.  In the digestive process fat actually stimulates a hormone (I'm totally blanking on the name) that tells the body it's full, which is why it can be hard (at least in my experience) to lose weight on a low-fat high carb-diet because you won't be getting enough of the hormones that tells you you're full.  I know of a couple people who were cutting out all sugar (including fruit) and when they had cravings they would just eat a spoonful of CO and it would immediately stave off the cravings. Coconut oil contains lauric acid which our immune system needs, it's also anti-fungal (and might be anti-viral and anti-bacterial, but don't quote me on that) many people I know increase their intake when they get sick.  You can look up more of the benefits of it online (and there are tons).  Personally like I said, I've been eating more than you for the past 4 months or so and over that time have lost 15 lbs (which is huge for me, I have such a hard time losing weight when breastfeeding) and feel fantastic (despite a baby who thinks sleep is for the weak) and the only time I got sick it was a cold that lasted 12 hours with me taking no supplements (my colds normally last at least 3 days, with me chugging elderberry syrup, garlic, and vitamin C).  I've also been eating Paleo, though, so I don't think I can credit it all to the coconut oil but it certainly hasn't hindered it.

 

As for what I would suggest for you: I would be less concerned about the effect the amount of CO you're eating has on your BP and Cholesterol than the amount of trans fats you're getting through corn oil, canola oil, vegetable oil, soybean oil, I would work on eliminating those from your diet.  I would also try to cut down on processed food (like potato chips, pretzels, boxed cookies etc).  If you're particularly concerned about it you could also cut down on grains and dairy, both of which are inflammatory (which I personally believe has a much greater impact on BP and Cholesterol than fat intake).  If already doing that and eating a mostly whole food diet I would then consider how the CO makes you feel.  Does it make you feel bloated, lethargic, less energetic.  Go a few days without and see if you feel any different.  If fat loss is your goal and you're struggling with it, you could play around with the amount of CO you're eating and see if less helps you lose weight.  But if you're happy with your weight, eating whole foods, and feeling really good, I truly wouldn't sweat it.

 

Again this is just my personal opinion, and I'm sure you would even get different answers from people who eat Paleo.  I would recommend the book Good Calorie, Bad Calorie if you're interested in learning more about the role of fat in the diet.  And maybe you read it and decide it's BS, but I think it's a good view point to consider.
 

 

Grest post, thanks :)

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#13 of 17 Old 03-12-2013, 10:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks. I think my concerns just stem from the idea that fat is bad. My diet is decent, it could be better. I rarely eat processed foods (tortilla and potato chips are my vice, that's why I rarely buy them). Most foods I eat are fruits, veggies, salads, meats, some grains (in fact, I think I should cut out more fruit than anything), though I limit those, water and fat (mainly avocados, coconut oil, evoo) which began for a baby who had pretty bad eczema and still has allergies that I still nurse.
I just wasn't sure if I was overdoing the co as it seems like it could excessive only because I really don't know anyone who eats that much oil or fat. I've read on some sources, like mercola.com, that fats should make up about 60-70% of your diet. Does that sound right.

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#14 of 17 Old 03-15-2013, 07:23 AM
 
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Originally Posted by meemee View Post

woah

 

in a 2000 calorie diet only 25 to 30% should come from fat. this includes ALL fats. as pp stated that might indeed be too much along with other fats in your diet.

 

remember after all - any oils coconut, sunflower, peanut, canola - no matter how good is still a processed product. you will never find coconut oil in nature. 

As a nutritional consultant I respectfully disagree. This is "old school" and now we know better. we know that it is carbs and "bad fats" (canola oil, soy oil, corn oil, peanut oil, etc) that cause problems, not "good" fats (free range/grass-fed animal fats, avocado, high quality fish/cod liver oil, coconut oil, olive oil, nuts and seeds) or high quality meats. A diet high in good quality animal protein (free of hormones, antibiotics, preferably grass-fed or free range), high in good fat, high in vegetables, greeneries and low-glycemic fruit is an optimal diet for human body. Furthermore, fats help us to feel satisfied with a meal (they actually help us to release a hormone that makes us feel full and satisfied); when we consume not enough fat (of course for our health sake it should be "good" fats) our body does not have that "full and satisfied" response and goes on to crave carbohydrates (carbohydrates cravings often associated with consuming not enough animal protein and/or fat).

 

Of course, we do need to keep in mind that different people are allergic to different things and often it is so called "silent" allergies, that do not show a definite allergic reaction yet can wreck a total chaos in the body and health. So if you suspect your body might react to coconut, then you do need to be careful. Otherwise, go for it, intuitional eating is great. If your body craves a good quality whole food, then it needs it.

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#15 of 17 Old 03-15-2013, 08:19 AM
 
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As for what I would suggest for you: I would be less concerned about the effect the amount of CO you're eating has on your BP and Cholesterol than the amount of trans fats you're getting through corn oil, canola oil, vegetable oil, soybean oil, I would work on eliminating those from your diet.  I would also try to cut down on processed food (like potato chips, pretzels, boxed cookies etc).  If you're particularly concerned about it you could also cut down on grains and dairy, both of which are inflammatory (which I personally believe has a much greater impact on BP and Cholesterol than fat intake).  If already doing that and eating a mostly whole food diet I would then consider how the CO makes you feel.  Does it make you feel bloated, lethargic, less energetic.  Go a few days without and see if you feel any different.  If fat loss is your goal and you're struggling with it, you could play around with the amount of CO you're eating and see if less helps you lose weight.  But if you're happy with your weight, eating whole foods, and feeling really good, I truly wouldn't sweat it.

 

I'm not Paleo, or even Primal because I still eat grains and sugar, but I have reduced my intake of grains and sugar to about 1/8 of their previous levels, and increased my fats from whole foods a TON and......

 

my blood pressure has improved, and my cholesterol went from 210 three years ago to 161 this year (with triglycerides of 105, down from the 150s a couple years before).  Last year I had a 20-point drop and my doctor asked me what I was doing differently, and I said..."Well, I'm eating 2 eggs and 3 slices of bacon for breakfast every morning, and I stopped eating bread."  And she laughed, looked at my textbook perfect complete blood workup again, and said, "Well, keep doing that then!"  lol.gif  I dropped another 13 points to get to 161 this year, and my ratio is spot on.

 

So I'll be another voice suggesting to ditch as much grains and sugar and processed foods as you can comfortably (I keep pushing myself a little more every year, baby steps are my road to success vs cold turkey, which is a disaster for me), and eat a varied diet otherwise, and you'll be fine. 


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#16 of 17 Old 03-15-2013, 11:02 AM
 
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I'm not Paleo, or even Primal because I still eat grains and sugar, but I have reduced my intake of grains and sugar to about 1/8 of their previous levels, and increased my fats from whole foods a TON and......

 

my blood pressure has improved, and my cholesterol went from 210 three years ago to 161 this year (with triglycerides of 105, down from the 150s a couple years before).  Last year I had a 20-point drop and my doctor asked me what I was doing differently, and I said..."Well, I'm eating 2 eggs and 3 slices of bacon for breakfast every morning, and I stopped eating bread."  And she laughed, looked at my textbook perfect complete blood workup again, and said, "Well, keep doing that then!"  lol.gif  I dropped another 13 points to get to 161 this year, and my ratio is spot on.

 

So I'll be another voice suggesting to ditch as much grains and sugar and processed foods as you can comfortably (I keep pushing myself a little more every year, baby steps are my road to success vs cold turkey, which is a disaster for me), and eat a varied diet otherwise, and you'll be fine. 

Good for you, Heather! It is so important that you took charge of your health into your hands. The reason why low carb diet works to reduce your triglycerides is because it is insulin resistance that causes them to be high to begin with. Unfortunately, many doctors are still not aware of what insulin resistance is since they study little to no nutrition in medical school. This website has a good information on what insulin resistance is and how to correct it with nutrition http://www.healthfromscratch.com/Insulin_resistance_info.html

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#17 of 17 Old 03-16-2013, 01:58 AM
 
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Good for you, Heather! It is so important that you took charge of your health into your hands. The reason why low carb diet works to reduce your triglycerides is because it is insulin resistance that causes them to be high to begin with. Unfortunately, many doctors are still not aware of what insulin resistance is since they study little to no nutrition in medical school. This website has a good information on what insulin resistance is and how to correct it with nutrition http://www.healthfromscratch.com/Insulin_resistance_info.html

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