Coconut oil fights yeast infections

Coconut oil fights yeast infections

Coconut oil has many surprising health benefits. Most of use grew up considering fats like coconut oil to be unhealthy and to be contributors to heart disease.

Coconut oil is composed of a group of unique fat molecules known as medium-chain fatty acids (MCFA). Although they are technically classified as saturated fats, this kind fat can actually protect the heart.

New research from Tufts University shows that coconut oil fights yeast infections.

The study abstract reported the following:

The team, led by microbiologist Carol Kumamoto and nutrition scientist Alice H. Lichtenstein, investigated the effects of three different dietary fats on the amount of C. albicans in the mouse gut: coconut oil, beef tallow and soybean oil. A control group of mice were fed a standard diet for mice. Coconut oil was selected based on previous studies that found that the fat had antifungal properties in the laboratory setting.

A coconut oil-rich diet reduced C. albicans in the gut compared to a beef tallow-or soybean oil-rich diet. Coconut oil alone, or the combination of coconut oil and beef tallow, reduced the amount of C. albicans in the gut by more than 90% compared to a beef tallow-rich diet.

Coconut oil even reduced fungal colonization when mice were switched from beef tallow to coconut oil, or when mice were fed both beef tallow and coconut oil at the same time. These findings suggest that adding coconut oil to a patient’s existing diet might control the growth of C. albicans in the gut, and possibly decrease the risk of fungal infections caused by C. albicans,” said Kumamoto, Ph.D., a professor of molecular biology and microbiology at Tufts University School of Medicine and member of the molecular microbiology and genetics program faculties at the Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences.

As stated by Alice H. Lichtenstein, D.Sc., director of the Cardiovascular Nutrition Laboratory at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University:

This study marks a first step in understanding how life-threatening yeast infections in susceptible individuals might be reduced through the short-term and targeted use of a specific type of fat. As exciting as these findings are, we have to keep in mind that the majority of adult Americans are at high risk for heart disease, the number one killer in the U.S. The potential use of coconut oil in the short term to control the rate of fungal overgrowth should not be considered a prophylactic approach to preventing fungal infections.”

The study showing that coconut oil fights yeast infections was published by the American Society for Microbiology.

Note: None of the information in our website is intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease. The content on our website is for educational purposes only.

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REFERENCES:
1. “Coconut Oil Fights Deadly Yeast Infections, Study Suggests.” GreenMedInfo.com. GreenMedInfo.com, n.d. Web. 09 Dec. 2015.
2. “Coconut Oil Can Control Overgrowth of a Fungal Pathogen in GI Tract, Study in Mice Suggests.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, n.d. Web. 09 Dec. 2015.
3. “Manipulation of Host Diet To Reduce Gastrointestinal Colonization by the Opportunistic Pathogen Candida Albicans.” MSphere. American Society for Microbiology, n.d. Web. 09 Dec. 2015.
4. “Study in Mice Suggests Coconut Oil Can Control Overgrowth of a Fungal Pathogen in GI Tract.” Tufts Now. Tufts University, 17 Nov. 2015. Web. 09 Dec. 2015.

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