Coconut Oil Stimulates Production of Brain Ketones…
Coconut oil is so beneficial for the brain because it assists in the production of ketones, organic compounds that can act as an energy source for the brain. The brain’s main energy source is glucose, but when glucose is not present the brain utilizes ketones for energy. In fact, ketones can supply all of the energy needed to the brain in an individual with defects in their glucose metabolism. Ketones also stimulate blood flow to the brain which improves circulation and delivery of oxygen to brain cells improving overall brain function.
Coconut Oil Activates Proteins That Repair The Brain…
The ketogenic properties of coconut oil are also beneficial because ketones trigger the activation of proteins known as brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNFs). These special proteins stimulate brain cell production and repair as well as help the brain reduce inflammation and remove toxins. BDNFs can also improve insulin sensitivity so that brain cells can take up more glucose for energy.
Coconut Oil Packs Medium Chain Triglycerides
Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs) are a type of dietary fat that are composed of only 6-10 carbon links. Their unique size makes them an important energy source for the brain as many of them can cross the blood brain barrier as well as the double mitochondrial membrane in cells very rapidly without the presence of L-carnitine, as do their longer carbon link counterparts (known as long chain triglycerides). Because they do not require carnitine they leave an excess of acetyl- coA floating around and ultimately will result in the production of ketones (which are excellent for the brain!)
Coconut Oil Offers Neuroprotective Effects…
Remember those MCTs? Well, not only are they excellent energy sources, they also have been shown to have a neuroprotective effect on the brain. One MCT in particular called caprylic acid possesses anti-convulsant properties, shown to be useful in controlling epileptic seizures
Improvement In Brain Function In Alzeimer’s Patients…
In many Alzeimer’s patients there appears to be a reduced ability to utilize glucose in certain parts of the brain, thus coconut oil’s ketogenic properties are especially beneficial. By increasing ketones, the brain cells will have a higher energy supply and can function without the use of glucose. More energy for those cells means improved memory function. In one 2006 study, consumption of coconut oil led to an immediate improvement in brain function in patients with milder forms of Alzheimer’s disease.
To obtain the benefits of coconut oil, be sure to consume it in the diet when possible, in addition to taking an organic coconut oil supplement. Most people take anywhere from 1,000 – 2,000 mg, depending on their diet.
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