While the “superfood” label is often overused in natural health circles, most researchers will admit that coconut oil deserves it. This edible oil, which is produced from the flesh of coconuts, has been shown to possess amazing antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial properties, improve blood cholesterol levels, boost energy, and much more. However, a peer-reviewed Brazilian studyhas also found that consuming just 30 milliliters (1 ounce) of coconut oil a day can help treat abdominal obesity – providing yet more evidence that healthy saturated fats are essential for long-term weight loss.
For the study, which was published in the medical journal Lipids, the researchers assembled 40 female volunteers between the ages of 20 and 40 who suffered from abdominal obesity. Over a 12-week period, the women were given 30 milliliters of either soybean oil or coconut oil on a daily basis. During this time, the volunteers were instructed to follow their regular diet and walk for 50 minutes per day. At the end of the 12-week period, the researchers found that the women who were given the coconut oil experienced a significant reduction in both BMI and waist circumference, as well as an increase in “good” HDL cholesterol. These results were not found in the group that was given soybean oil.