Wednesday, researchers from Tufts University published an interdisciplinary study in mSphere, confirming coconut oil reduced the amount of Candida albicans (C. albicans) in the gastrointestinal tract by more than 90%.
Microbiologist Carol Kumamoto and nutrition scientist Alice H. Lichtenstein along with their team, set out to find if dietary approaches were an effective alternative to antifungal drugs in decreasing the risk of infection caused by C. albicans. “We want to give clinicians a treatment option that might limit the need for antifungal drugs. If we can use coconut oil as a safe, dietary alternative, we could decrease the amount of antifungal drugs used, reserving antifungal drugs for critical situations,” said first author Kearney Gunsalus, Ph.D., an Institutional Research and Academic Career Development (IRACDA) postdoctoral fellow at the Sackler School in Kumamoto’s lab
“C. albicans, a common fungal pathogen, is part of the gastrointestinal tract’s normal flora and well-regulated by the immune system. When the immune system is compromised, however, the fungus can spread beyond the GI tract and cause disease. Systemic infections caused by C. albicans can lead to invasive candidiasis, which is the fourth most common blood infection among hospitalized patients in the United States according to the CDC. The infection is most common among immunocompromised patients, including premature infants and older adults. Antifungal drugs can be used to decrease and control C. albicans in the gut and prevent it from spreading to the bloodstream, but repeated use of antifungal drugs can lead to drug resistant-strains of fungal pathogens. In order to prevent infections caused by C. albicans, the amount of C. albicans in the gastrointestinal tract needs to be reduced.”
Incorporating more coconut oil into ones daily diet can be quite simple! Read on for easy suggestions to get a daily serving of 1-2 tablespoons of this healthy fat and keep C. albicans at bay.
Understanding Candida Symptoms and Treatment
Learn what candida is in this Howcast video about stomach problems and digestive disorders.
When making baked goods, swap coconut oil for the oil or butter in the recipe at a 1:1 ratio.
Grease baking pans with coconut oil instead of butter or shortening.
During the cold mornings of winter, try adding 1-2 tbsp. to coffee, tea, or hot cocoa. Bulletproof coffee is also a popular option and is easy to make.
The following version uses virgin organic coconut oil:
- 1 cup of organic coffee
- 1-2 tablespoon virgin organic coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon organic grass-fed unsalted butter
- ¼ tsp vanilla
- Natural sweetener (optional)
Add all ingredients to blender. Blend until frothy. Enjoy immediately.
Coconut oil is also good in smoothies but make sure to melt it before adding to blender.
Use coconut oil to sauté or stir-fry meats and vegetables. It’s also great for cooking eggs.
Use coconut oil instead of butter on breads, pancakes, or bagels. Stir it into hot cereal like cream of wheat or oatmeal.