Coconut Oil and Ketogenic Diet

Talk about ketogenic diet and energy metabolism, it will not be complete without tracing the use of coconut in the ketogenic diet.

Why Coconut?

The view of many people who consider those who consider coconut oil to be better avoided in routine eating patterns is wrong. Coconut oil is also often accused of being dangerous bad fats. Though the role of coconut oil in the process of reducing excess weight is very large. Not only that, the impact on health is actually very good.

“Coconut oil has been consumed as a dietary ingredient for many groups of people for thousands of years without any negative influence for those who consume it,” added Mary G Enig Ph.D., fat expert and former research associate at the University of Maryland, USA.

So, there is no doubt that coconut oil does not only contain good fat or is known as medium/medium chain triglyceride (MCFA / MCT) triglycerides, which are types of fat that can prevent heart disease. For example, when we eat coconut oil, we don’t need to be afraid of being stored as fat, instead, the body will process it into a source of energy, because MCT does not require pancreatic enzymes for digestion. When it reaches the intestinal tract, MCT is broken down into individual fatty acids (monoglycerides) which are absorbed into the portal vein directly into the liver, the body will accelerate the process of burning calories, and improve thyroid function so that the body temperature returns to normal.

Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO)

VCO is very useful in ketogenic processes. Unfortunately, VCO was involved in the bad issue of coconut oil according to some doctors of heart disease. But since the 2000s, super-quality VCO appeared on the market, making it the main supplement for the ketogenic diet, which basically consumes low carbohydrates and is high in fat.

Body-processed ketones from medium chain fats that we can get from VCO as much as 85 – 92%. Much faster than breaking long chains of meat, eggs, fish or body fat.

Even this was acknowledged by Dr. Mary Newport, a neonatologist, in his book “Alzheimer’s Disease: What Intermittent Fasting Is There a Cure? VCO contains the perfect combination of C8-C10 and C12 which can help restore memory gradually, especially for Alzheimer sufferers. Energy from medium chain fats that have been metabolized into ketones will quickly be used by the brain as a source of energy.

Controversy Consumption of Saturated Fats in the Ketogenic Diet

Eating saturated fats can increase LDL cholesterol levels (Low-Density Lipoprotein) or often called bad cholesterol. Saturated fat is a type of fat that generally comes from animals, such as poultry, red meat, and dairy products that are rich in fat. Saturated fat if consumed in excess can increase the risk of health problems, such as increased inflammation, the formation of plaques in blood vessels, and insulin resistance. Excessive saturated fat is closely related to the risk of heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. This occurs because of an increase in levels of bad cholesterol (HDL) in the blood.

However, this does not apply to followers of the ketogenic diet. Consumption of fatty foods is believed not to cause health problems. Even the more fatty food consumed, will result in a more significant decrease in body weight.

The essence of the ketogenic diet is to change the body’s metabolism which originally relied on glucose as a source of energy replaced with ketones. Glucose comes from changing carbohydrates while ketones come from the conversion of fat. This is offset by physical activity and is not merely a limitation of calories that enter the body.

In the book The Cholesterol Myth: MI Gurr and Uffe Ravnskov refute the Lipid Heart Disease theory from Keys, which states that serum cholesterol from high saturated fat causes atherosclerosis, increased blood cholesterol and heart disease.

Cholesterol Facts and Myths

Myths Facts
Eggs contain a number of cholesterol which causes heart disease Eggs to increase good cholesterol (High-Density Lipoprotein) and are not related to the risk of heart disease. Eggs are rich in protein, biotin, essential fats, vitamins, minerals and other nutrients for the brain and the whole body.
Total cholesterol and LDL are indicators of heart disease attacks. The indicator of a heart attack is far more complicated. Total cholesterol also includes HDL and LDL. Divided into good LDL subtypes (large LDL particles) and oxidized (small LDL particles). Too low cholesterol is also associated with an increased risk of death such as cancer and suicide due to depression.


According to Gurr MI and Uffe Ravnskov humans can still tolerate cholesterol if triglyceride levels are maintained below 100 mg/dl. So they argue that saturated fat increases cholesterol levels. As long as the levels are maintained, it is legitimate to consume high-fat foods.

Why Trans Fat Is Dangerous for Health?

Trans fat is formed when the oil liquid becomes a solid fat. There are two types of trans fat found in food: trans natural fat and trans artificial fat. Natural trans fat is produced in the intestines of some animals and food produced from these animals. For example, milk and meat products.

Artificial trans fat is produced from an industrial process that adds hydrogen to the liquid vegetable oil to make it denser. Most artificial trans fats can be found in fried foods. Frying foods contain trans fat because vegetable oil used for frying undergoes a hydrogenation process that produces trans fat in these foods.

This artificial trans fat from hydrogenation can also be found in many foods that are similar to saturated fats, including:

  • Biscuits
  • Processed frozen food ready to use
  • Snacks (such as potato chips, and other chips)
  • Fried
  • Fast food (fried chicken, french fries, burgers)
  • Coffee cream
  • Margarine
  • HVO (Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil)
  • Shortening

Trans fat can increase LDL cholesterol levels. Too much LDL cholesterol in the blood can cause fat to accumulate in the arteries and block blood flow to the heart and brain. This condition increases the risk of heart disease. Most LDL cholesterol in the body also increases your risk of type 2 diabetes.

What makes trans fat and saturated fat slightly different is its effect on HDL good cholesterol. Saturated fat does not affect the level of good cholesterol in the blood. Meanwhile, trans fats increase levels of bad cholesterol and also reduce levels of good cholesterol. This effect of decreasing good cholesterol levels makes trans fat 2 times more dangerous than saturated fatty acids.

In the body, HDL cholesterol is responsible for transporting bad cholesterol back into the liver. In the heart, this cholesterol will be destroyed or released by the body through the dirt. HDL cholesterol is actually needed by the body to prevent heart disease.

Is it true that the consumption of fat is a trigger for high cholesterol?

Fat is one source of macro nutrition. During this time many opinions stated fat as a trigger for raising cholesterol levels in the blood. This can cause coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, etc. Not all fats are triggers for high cholesterol. The fat to watch out for is trans fat . Trans fat is liquid fat which is converted into solid by the hydrogenation process.

Cholesterol is a substance formed by the liver. Cholesterol is needed by the body to produce hormones, vitamin D and other important products. Cholesterol will move through the bloodstream in a small form by binding to the protein, so it is called lipoprotein. There are 2 types of lipoprotein, namely low-density lipoproteins (LDL) and high-density lipoproteins (HDL). LDL cholesterol is known as bad cholesterol because if this cholesterol level is high it can cause fat buildup in blood vessels. Finally, various health problems arise, such as heart attacks, strokes to heart failure.

Meanwhile, HDL cholesterol is usually considered good cholesterol because it carries fat from parts of the body back to the liver. So this good cholesterol will “clean” all the fats that are usually left in the blood vessels and organs so that it can then be processed by the liver.

Besides HDL and LDL cholesterol, there are also called triglycerides, which play a role in fat storage and are influential in the formation of cholesterol-rich lipoproteins. This cholesterol-rich lipoprotein causes high cholesterol and increases blood clot formation.

Normal Cholesterol in the Body After you know what LDL and HDL cholesterol is in growth, another important thing that must also be considered is the level of LDL cholesterol and HDL. Checking cholesterol levels is one step to prevent chronic diseases, such as stroke and heart disease.

Cholesterol levels in the blood are at least measured once every five years for everyone over the age of 20 years. Lipid profile tests can show the amount of total cholesterol in the body, the amount of LDL, the amount of HDL, and the number of triglycerides.

The limits for each type of test are:

• Good HDL levels in the body are 40 mg/dl or more and can be said to be low if levels are less than 40 mg/dl.

• Good LDL levels in the blood are less than 100 mg/dl and will endanger your health if the levels reach 160 mg/dl or more.

• Good triglyceride levels in the blood are less than 150 mg/dl and are included in the high category if levels reach 200 mg/dl or more.

• Good total cholesterol levels in the blood are less than 200 mg/dl, including in the high category if the levels reach 240 mg/dl or more. Basically, high cholesterol is influenced by certain factors, such as genetics and one’s weight. In addition, physical activity is less active and likes to eat foods that contain trans fat. Many people do not know that they experience this condition, especially if they have never had a checkup. Usually, someone just realizes that he has high cholesterol along with the diagnosis of other diseases, such as coronary heart disease or stroke.