You know I can never answer anything without going into detail!
But if you’re pressed for time and just want a yes or no here’s my quick synopsis:
I don’t feel I have enough proof yet that adding coconut oil is safe- people do sometimes report greater weight loss on the scale when including coconut oil on P2, but I have no proof that this extra weight loss is coming from fat- I have concerns from the few times I tried it early in my hCG diet journey that it was causing excess muscle loss and actual fat gain, despite the scale going down faster. For me, this means I’d rather be safe than sorry and I don’t use it on P2. If I ever get proof that it’s not harming the fat loss/muscle loss ratio results, I will post it here immediately!
Why We Sometimes Consider Alterations to the hCG Diet
So here’s the deal- Dr. Simeon’s original protocol called for strict avoidance of all fats and oils while on the losing weight portion of the Diet- better known as Phase 2 or P2 (if you’re not familiar with all the hCG terminology yet, check out my hCG Diet terminology guide).
But of course he wrote his manuscript in the 50’s- or was it the 60’s? Either way- we all know there are certain items around now that probably weren’t really around then, which has made some wonder if certain modifications to the diet might be okay- like coconut oil.
Why do People Want to Use Coconut Oil on hCG?
- Some people report weightloss at a faster rate than without it.
- It’s usually not counted as part of the 500 calorie diet- meaning it’s kind of like “free calories” to help you feel more satiated
- It makes your chicken or salad taste a LOT better.
- It’s something extra you can EAT! Anything involving eating being okay on human chorionic gonadotropin is usually accepted hungrily with pleasure.
Why Are People Thinking It’s Okay to Use Coconut Oil When Other oils are Not Okay?
Well, coconut oil is kinda different from other oils- it behaves differently in the body- without getting too scientific on you, 60% of coconut oil contains what are called MCT’s- they are basically shorter fat molecules than usual and they are “sent straight to the liver where they are, for the most part, burned as fuel….ordinarily they are not stored to any significant degree as body fat.” So in laymans terms, its kind of like our bodies use MCT’s as this kind of immediate form of energy, and doesn’t store it as fat in the body nearly as easily as regular oils. That’s the idea anyway.
This above quote is from MeltButterySpread’s article that discusses the differences in how our body digests regular fats and oil (with LCT’s- the longer fat molecules) vs. the MCT’s in Coconut oil. You can read an in-depth article on coconut oil and general weightloss and how it interacts with your body here. Here’s another great article on how coconut oil is different from other fats and oils.
Coconut Oil is 40% Something that is For Sure Not Good on hCG
But coconut oil is still 40% LCT’s (the longer, regular fat molecules) which means that 40% of coconut oil is just like any other oil that everyone agrees we should not be eating on this protocol. I try to do all my research guys, but I’m not exactly a savvy scientist, so please someone correct me if I’m wrong! Here is another great article discussing the different fat molecules that make up each type of fat and oil (most of them are a combo of either short and long, or medium and long btw).
In 1 tbs. of Coconut oil there is 13.6 grams of fat. If I’m doing my math right, then 40% of that- or 5.5 grams of fat worth, is just like any other fat- like butter or olive oil= NOT okay on this diet. 60%, or a little over 8 grams of fat, out of that 1 tbs. is the MCT portion- the portion that is digested by the body differently and MAY be okay on this diet.
But this is still theory- we really need some actual proof of this- to me the extra scale weight loss people have reported is not proof- to demonstrate why this is so, listen to this:
Why Extra Weight Loss with Coconut Oil on the hCG Diet Isn’t Proof Enough
a fitness blogger I love recently did an experiment for 7 weeks where he ate healthfully, but stopped his regular diet (intermittent fasting 1-2x’s a week) and he stopped working out- guess what?
He actually lost 2lbs during that 7 weeks. Sounds like a good outcome yeah?
Well…his Dexa body composition testing, which is pretty much the most accurate form of body testing you can do these days, showed differently- he had lost 7lbs of muscle and gained 5 lbs of fat during that 7 weeks. No bueno. Better him than me! But on the scale, it actually appeared as if he had done something right!
That’s why the scale is a very poor judge of what’s actually going on in our bodies and not a reliable tool for scenarios like this one where we’re debating on the inclusion of an oil on the protocol.
So you could potentially lose weight on the scale after consuming coconut oil, but behind that loss is actually a loss of muscle and a gain of fat- I just don’t know the answer to this.
For me, I would probably feel like the 5.5 grams of LCT’s (remember these are the regular fat molecules that we all know and agree are bad on this diet) in 1 tbs. of coconut oil is too much regular fat to be consuming on the hCG Diet in a day- for myself. It’s true that the protein servings we are eating on hCG do contain a small amount of fat no doubt, but Dr. Simeons did encourage cutting off as much as possible, and specifically said certain meats were not okay to eat because the fat was marbled into the meat making it so that you couldn’t remove it- he seemed pretty serious about not eating fats on this process.
Coconut goes a long way though (how does it do that??) and most people could probably easily get away with using just a teaspoon or less a day while on the diet (except if you were using it in chocolate delight and ate one too many- obviously at this point you could easily be consuming way too much coconut oil).
1 tsp. of Coconut oil has only 4.5 grams of fat total, 40% of which would equal just 1.8 grams of fat that would be processed by your body like other fats, and the other 60%, or 2.7 grams of fat, is MCT’s.
So the question is, does the MCT portion of Coconut oil truly not get processed like regular fat in our body while on the hCG Diet? In the sense that we won’t gain fat from consuming it?
I have no idea, but to me it’s an important question. And remember, only 60% of it MAY have this amazing ability while on this diet plan- the 0ther 40% is for sure processed like normal and is NOT good on the protocol for sure. That has led some to feel that using straight MCT Oil might be better.
Robin Woodall, who wrote the excellent hCG diet book Weight-Loss Apocalypse, made her own video on the coconut oil hcg diet controversy- while it’s not a clear answer, it does give us something to think about which is that, consuming the coconut oil is not going to make us burn more calories, or at least not enough more calories so as to outweigh the number of calories we ate in the coconut oil itself. T-nations.com’s article confirms this, most significant being the part that says, “the researchers found that by switching to MCTs, the total energy expenditure of the subjects increased by ~50%. While this might sound amazing, the actual increase in calories burned was a paltry 25 calories; hardly significant if you consider that to get as many MCTs as was used in this study you’d need to ingest 3 tablespoons of coconut oil.”
Why Do We Have Think About This Anyway?
Why does it matter if we take in fat or not on the hCG Diet anyway huh?
Because the hormone appears to make fat, whether from inside our outside our body, very volatile and accessible- way more than normal. It means we can lose weight more quickly, have more of the weight lost be fat (vs. muscle), but at the same time, it makes us equally as sensitive when it comes to consuming it. Fat gain is MUCH easier while on the diet, if you consume fat or too many calories.
I have no idea why- it just is. Hence Dr. S’s instructions. So that’s why the use of coconut oil is such a big concern because obviously gaining fat while on this protocol, or losing more muscle than necessary is a super bad outcome.
Reasons You Might Choose to Avoid Coconut Oil on P2:
1. There simply isn’t enough proof yet that it’s producing the same fat loss- and if it’s not, where’s that extra weightloss coming from? Muscle? If so, it’s no bueno.
2. Even if a tiny amount of coconut oil is okay, who of you have tried it and ended up eating more than you planned?
Say That a Small Amount is Okay- How Should You Go About It?
1. It’s possible that you might choose to use just straight MCT oil over Coconut Oil.
This would eliminated the 40% of fat calories that ARE definitely not good while on this diet plan. MCT oil contains only those shorter fat molecules that are burned up as energy more like a carb than a fat. But it’s true that MCT doesn’t exactly have the same lovely taste and smell that coconut oil has.
2. If you do choose to have one or the other, be very aware of the amounts you consume.
Most chocolate delight recipes involve the use of 1 cup of coconut oil. Of course you are making multiple servings. Right? Right?
Flashback time again! Another past hCGChica blunder here for us all to learn from:
I once made a modified chocolate delight recipe (Hebbie Dobby’s lemon truffle recipe- which for P3 or P4 would be AWE-SOME btw- she came up with this and it’s beyond delicious).
But I ate the entire plate of it in 1 day- on P2.
It had an entire cup of coconut butter (coconut butter is not coconut oil btw) which contains about 136 grams of fat, 40% of which were LCT’s and NOT good on this protocol = I ate 54.4 grams of bad fat on hCG in one day. That was not my intention, on no no no.
“I wouldn’t do that” you say…..
Well, you see what you do when you aren’t eating anything all day and you suddenly have access to a seemingly “legal” food item with no strict serving size that tastes REALLY good.
Okay back to chocolate delight recipes- most contain 1 cup of Coconut oil which contains 218 grams of fat. Of that, 40% or 87.2 grams, is fat that would have a negative impact on us while on the diet, no question.
Earlier we discussed that 1 tsp. of coconut contains only 1.8 grams of the fat we don’t want on this protocol, which may be considered small enough by some to consider experimenting with. So if you make a chocolate delight recipe with 1 cup of coconut oil; there is 48 teaspoons in 1 cup- did that chocolate delight recipe you made last you 48 days? If it lasted 2 weeks, you consumed almost 3.5 teaspoons of coconut oil a day, which had 6.3 grams of bad fat for hCG in it. If it lasted you a week, you consumed almost 7 teaspoons of coconut oil a day which had 12.6 grams of bad for hCG.
So if you do decide to experiment with it, keep the amount minimal and use it in a way that you know you won’t get out of control with it- this diet is not just about what’s legal, but what you can be mentally and emotionally responsible about. I think we all know if we have a weakness there or not.
No Judgments Folks
I don’t judge you if you choose to use Coconut oil on hCG – as you can see from this info, I do have my reasons for being very leery of it, and it’s my own personal decision at this time to completely avoid it while on P2. But that are those who are adamant that consuming it has not harmed their experience on their weight loss journey. Keep in mind though that so far their only proof for saying this is their scale weightloss, which as we’ve discussed is not the best indicator.
Proof Needed to Show Coconut Oil + hCG Diet is OK
The only way I would feel comfortable telling you guys “break out your coconut oil jars folks!!” or using it myself on a future round would be if a person did a whole round of hCG, using coconut oil everyday, and had before and after hydrostatic body fat testing or DEXA scan to show us the results- how much fat loss vs. muscle loss.
Even then it could be hard to compare since the amount of fat and muscle loss varies with each round depending on how overweight you are etc. But to me this would make it more clear- if the fat loss percentage was high and the muscle loss percentage low- in keeping with the types of results I’ve had myself (in the 70-90% range), I would be like YEAH! This stuff ain’t hurting your round!
The problem is I’m not willing to be the guinea pig. If someone else wants to volunteer, lemme know k?
To be honest, I would absolutely LOVE to be able to come on here one day and say hey! The results are in and guess what? Coconut oil is A-OK! For now I can’t.
I hope this helps you in making your decision.
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