Many people tout Coconut oil's anti-bacterial properties as somehow good. However, if it really does kill bacteria, then that means it kills good bacteria as well as bad bacteria when it passes through the gut. If so, is this something that we should be ingesting, especially in the hyper-sanitized world we live in?
Yes we should be ingesting it! The benefits far outweigh any worry about killing off good bacteria - your body is colonized with so much good bacteria that you would have to spend you life eating coconut oil inorder to do major damage (IMO) But definitely watch the amount! Read the post today from ROB re: fat overload and the possibility of a Herxheimer reaction.
I've been regularly consuming and using coconut oil as a moisturizer for the past 2 months and I haven't noticed anything negative. My skin has never been this smooth and I feel better than I have in a long time (not that it all has to do with the coconut oil). My acne and cuts heal faster than before. Also, it hasn't affected my bowl movements negatively either. Sorry my answer isn't scientific or anything, but it's the truth :)
About a year ago I added coconut oil to my typical breakfast of eggbeaters. After cooking the eggbeaters I add a large tablespoon of coconut oil. The first thing I noticed was an improvement in my oral health. My gums seemed healthier. When I went to my regular 3 month cleaning the technician was done in about 15 min. When I questioned her about why it didnt take the normal 30-40 minutes to clean my teeth she said that there is very little plaque. I read more about coconut oil and its antibacterial properties and it made sense to me. If plaque is caused by bacteria and by eating coconut oil I am killing that plaque then I am hoping its doing the same thing to the plaque in my arteries. Im a believer. Just had another appointment and the dentist said since there is so little plaque and gums are in such good shape she should change my cleanings to every 6 months. By the way, I have never had very good oral hygene habits and that continues. I brush my teeth infrequently, maybe 3 times a week. I hate to admit that but its true and so is the fact that coconut oil has healed my bleeding gums and gotten rid of almost all my normal plaque deposits.
I've never seen any evidence that coconut oil is anti-bacterial but rather that lauric acid is anti-fungal (in vitro afaik) and that it may be beneficial from that perspective.
Two very different things...
The Tiana coconut company's website suggests that lauric acid doesn't harm natural bacterial flora but instead exhibits antimicrobial activity only with invaders. Of course, they have a vested interest in convincing consumers that that is the case, and they didn't cite anything, so it's hard to say if that's true. I've been searching for the antimicrobial mechanism of lauric acid, but I can't find anything. That just leaves me with the unsatisfying guess of an answer that if the Tiana people are correct, then our natural flora have evolved to roll with the lauric acid punches in the HG diet, maybe even eat the lauric acid, and the invaders haven't been able to do so.