|Coconut Wonder, Coconut science or Both?|
If you turn your head away from hype and hearsay and take a look at the coconut-science that's out there, the wonder begins to appear "wondrous", but does not disappear.
A recent study from the St. Thomas College in Kualalumpur, for example, does confirm the part where coconut oil made a lame person walk again (any similarities to biblical wonders are obviously mere coincidence ;-)
The said study was published in the International Immunopharmacology and its abstract says that the results of the corresponding rodent experiment confirm the "potential beneficiary effect of PV [virgin coconut oil] on adjuvant induced arthritis in rats" (Vysakh. 2014) - an effect, of which you as a SuppVersity reader already suspected that it was a direct results of the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of virgin coconut oil.
|The beneficial effects on blood lipids are more or less absent with refined coconut oil (Nevin. 2004)|
Basically, the researchers immunized the right hind paw of animals was immunized by injecting 0.1 mL of complete Freund's adjuvant containing heat killed mycobacteria in paraffin oil. This is a treatment that has been used quite successful for decades (Bendele. 2001) and results from previous trials would suggest that there is a satisfactory match between the effects scientists observe in the rodent model and those that occur in follow up human studies. There were three groups of rodents: The "non-arthritic" (=no injection of Freund's adjuvant) control (NC), the "arthritic" rats (AA), and two groups with arthritic rats who received
- 80mg/kg virgin coconut oil orally (HED: 1-1.25g/day for a human being)
- 3mg/kg indomethacin, a std. NSAID (HED: 35-40mg/day for a human)
If you take a look at the results of this process, even you as laymen (and -women ;-) should be able to see the difference between the paw of the AA-rats (B - top right) and the relatively "mild" changes you can see in the histopathologies from the coconut oil treated group (D - bottom right, Figure 1).
"For histological analysis, paw tissues were dissected,fixed in 10% buffered formalin and then decalcified for 7 days in 20% EDTA.
Figure 1: Comparison of histopatho-logies of the paws (Vysakh. 2014)
The tissues were then processed and embedded in paraffin. Synovialfluid was obtained by injecting 100μL of normal saline into the knee joints followed by gentle aspiration.
Paw tissue and blood were also collected for various biochemical estimations." (Vysakh. 2014)
If you take a look at the inflammatory markers in Figure 2, as well, it's actually not surprising to see that this relatively low amount of virgin coconut oil ameliorated the tissue damage. And even the fact that it did just that better than the standard NSAID idometacine, which commonly used as a prescription medication to reduce fever, pain, stiffness, and swelling and works by inhibiting the production of prostaglandins, cannot come as a total surprise - the "coconut miracle" did after all do a much better job as a IL-6, TNF-alpha and even COX-2 inhibitor (see Figure 2).
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