Someone has asked me how coconut oil helps you lose weight. Good question. I had to think about it for a bit. In the meantime, I ate some more of the stuff in dishes like my raspberry ripple recipe.

My raspberry ripple, which Veronika M has turned into raspberry ripe crackles! Instructions below…

Anecdotally, according to a survey of one, I know it works. I eat about 2 tablespoons of coconut oil – straight from the jar, or in a sugar-free chocolaty dish like the one above – most days after lunch. And I’ve lost weight from doing so.

If you want to read more anecdotes about weight loss from eating coconut check out these forums.

How does it work? Again, anecdotally, I believe it’s because coconut oil:

a) kills sugar cravings, immediately (I don’t go reaching for more food, especially sweet food, after lunch).

b) fills you up, immediately. After 2 tablespoons I’m not hungry for about four hours. A rare state of being for me.

c) does something else…I’m not sure what…but it certainly seems to speed up metabolism.

I wanted to learn more myself about why this is so, and, so, did some research. I like dot-points, so allow me to present my findings as a series of bulletted factoids and findings:

For more coconut oil recipes like the one above, you might like to download my I Quit Sugar Cookbook.

The saturated fat deal

* Know this: saturated fats, overall, help you lose weight. Coconut oil is a saturated fat. To fatten a pig, farmers feed them polyunsaturated fats (primarily soybean and corn oil). To produce a leaner pork? The Department of Animal Science of North Carolina State University advises you stop feeding them polyunsaturated oils and start feeding them saturated fats. Can you see the picture forming?

* Consider this: we eat less saturated fat then ever before, but we’re the fattest we’ve ever been. Perhaps there’s a connection here?

* Saturated fats are required to absorb nutrients. Four vitamins—A, D, E, and K—are soluble in fat only. We need fat to be nourished fully and to ensure our metabolisms are running correctly.

* Saturated fats promote conjugated linoleic acid (CLA). Which in turn promotes weight loss.

But why coconut oil specifically?

* Medium-chain fatty acids or medium chain triglycerides (MCTs) lead to weight loss. Coconut oil is nature’s richest source of MCTs. Most plant oils are made up of longer chain fat triglycerides (LCTs). LCTs are typically stored in the body as fat;  MCTs are transported directly to the liver, promoting “thermogenesis” which increases the body’s metabolism. There are a stack of studies that have shown this to be the case, like this one. This study shows eating 2 tablespoons of coconut oil with a meal caused body temperature to rise, boosting metabolism.

* MCTs are not easily converted into stored triglycerides and cannot be readily used by the body to make larger fat molecules. Want to learn more, click here.

* Plus coconut oil’s MCTs are a primary fuel source for intestinal cells, aiding digestion overall.

* Coconut oil’s MCTs are most similar to human breast milk. And have similar healing and metabolic properties.

How to eat coconut oil

I could go on. Others have and you might like to scour the net yourself and look at all the research on the topic. Or you might like to try just eating the stuff.

* Try it on its own. A tablespoon or two straight from the jar after a meal.

* By making my coconutty granola

* Making my raspberry ripe

* Cook some pumpkin in it, sprinkled with salt.

* And here are 19 other very clever things to do with coconut oil

Tell me, have you had any joy losing weight with coconut oil…share your thoughts here so others can get a feel for things…


Have your say, leave a comment.

  • BridgetJane

    What about fresh coconut? Meat straight from the nut? That’s how I eat my coconut fat…. Is that the same? Thx Sarah x

  • Karlie

    Hi there, I also eat coconut oil right off the spoon and Miranda Kerr eats 4 tbl spns of the stuff every day! It is fantastic for brain, joint, skin, hair, nail, immune, digestive health and, yes, it makes you feel full and stops sugar/food cravings. Did you know that all of the cultures that traditionally ate coconut in their diets lived the longest and were the leanest?
    Some of my great, sugar free dessert and chocolate recipes are up on my PALEO/SUGAR FREE page too. Feel free to check it out!

  • Simone

    I love it. I cook with it instead of olive oil. I make my own chocolate from it. I even use it as a body and face moisturiser.

  • Simone

    This is my coconut chocolate recipe (from my naturopath friend): HcG chocolate

    1 cup coconut butter (sit jar in bowl of hot water to get
    soft, stir before using as it separates when cold) – get from health food shop
    1 cup coconut oil – from health food shop
    1 & 1/2 cup raw cocoa powder – from health food shop
    Melt above over low heat
    Add Pinch sea salt
    Add Liquid vanilla stevia 1/3 squirt (get from health food
    Add 1/2 cup goji berries
    Add 1/2 cup shredded coconut
    Add some orange or vanilla essence

    Pour onto baking paper tray – freeze then break up. Keep in
    zip lock bag in freezer.

  • SJ

    Indah Organic Coconut Oil, the best tasting stuff I have ever had and it’s hand pressed’

  • Brooke

    Hi Sarah, I recd your IQS book for Xmas – Yay!! Just wondering where do u buy coconut oil from & a lot of the other special ingredients that you use in your book – I live in Sydney..
    Thank you 🙂

  • Angelique

    Put it ‘melted’ in a small cup with some REAL honey, just a teaspoon or so. Tastes like a Mounds / Almond Joy. You can keep it melted by keeping it on a candle warmer.

  • Chris

    No references, we should be skeptical.

  • kathykathy

    It’s not a one size fits all- many people actually gain weight from Coc oil. Whether it be from an intolerance or allergy. It can cause inflammation and water retention as well. I am one of those, I was stumped after hearing/reading about all of it’s benefits only to find out it was the cause of a sudden and quick weight gain. Only after a process of elimination and isolation was I able to contribute it to CC oil.
    Many say its a detox process or yeast die off. I’d believe that, except I eat an incredibly clean/organic diet, with no processed foods or oils,
    Grass fed meats, free range chicken/eggs, etc.
    Some people just can’t do it

  • Skygirl

    I make the best chocolate milkshakes with coconut cream!
    5 crushed ice cubes
    1/3 cup canned coconut milk
    2/3 cup unsweetened almond milk (I like silk)
    1 tblsp vanilla extract
    1 tblesp cocoa powder
    2 packets sweet n low or Splenda.

    Put ingredients in blender or magic bullet and blend and drink.
    I also add calcium suppliment and greens powder to boost nutrients.

  • Jason

    Coconut oil certainly makes me lose weight. However unfortunately I do NOT want to lose weight as I am already underweight due to digestive issues. As soon as I start using coconut oil in my diet my weight drops despite still eating the same amount of food each and every meal. I would love to get all the benefits of coconut oil without the weight loss!

  • Chris

    We are the supplier for COCOS Virgin Coconut OIl and are looking for distributors and wholesalers in your country. Please email me at [email protected] for more information.

  • Tracey Bell

    I think your comments are very misleading with regards to coconut oil! Oil is not a health food, not olive oil, not coconut oil, not any processed oil or fat, from plant or animal sources. There is a huge body of evidence (scientific studies, not anecdotal evidence based on one :o) that links high fat diets (from intake of fat from animal products and vegetable oils) to chronic disease. Oil is 100% fat and contains 120 calories per tablespoon. Oil is extremely nutrient poor and calorie-rich and offers no nutritional benefits whatsoever. We are far better of obtaining essential fatty acids from avocados, nuts, seeds and olives (which also contain fibre, phytonutrients, antioxidants etc). Eating a concentrated source of nutrient poor calories such as oil instead of healthful whole foods, is a good way for most people to gain weight and get into the habit of eating nutritionally poor foods instead of more healthful foods. Leafy greens are a far superior source of healthy fats. Don’t believe me though, check out the research that is widely available on the internet. Plant based nutritionists and doctors the US are now saying we should not eat oil at all (but for those of us who like a bit of coconut oil, just a little bit as part of a plant based diet). Fore more info see :o)

  • Hi! I have a question: why do you have the coconut oil after a meal and not before? In theory having it before the meal makes you to eat less. Just to know! Thanks!

  • Great post. Thanks for sharing. I love the vast amount of information you give in every post.

  • Hi Sarah! I just want to add here small point that Coconut Oil contains a Unique Combination of Fatty Acids With Powerful Medicinal Properties. Other than this very informative blog you have shared with us . Big thanks to you for this.

  • Vandana Das

    Hey Rachael , this is vandana from Odisha . Why don’t you come over to my home here . Not only can I provide you pure coconut oil but many other freshly prepared organic food for less than 5 euro. I have my small organic farm and health center here 🙂 would love to make new friends