As far as the comparison between the Expeller Pressed and Virgin ... EPCO still has the medium chain fatty acids/tryglicerides (MCTs) that are the major reason for the health benefits of Coconut 0il. These are what studies say increase metabolism, fight against viruses and bacteria, etc.
What the EPCO is missing is some of the nutrients and anti-oxidant properties that are in VCNO, like Vitamin E, for example (although Coconut 0il is not a real significant source of vitamin E: Palm oil is better for that.)
How much this affects the body is really unknown. The general rule in nutrition is that the closer to nature/natural the better.
What we do know, is that many of the studies that have been done on MCTs and report their benefits have been done on regular (non-virgin) Coconut 0il, or in some cases pure extracted MCT's taken out of Coconut 0il.
We also know that the refined Coconut 0il is what the Asian population for the most part consumes today, and in countries like the Philippines where it is the common cooking oil you don't see the kinds of thyroid and obesity problems that you see in the US.
The Expeller Pressed Coconut Oil does not have the "taste and smell" of coconuts: it is bland.
Are the Health Benefits of EPCO the same as VCNO?
A recent study done in India comparing refined Coconut 0il (CO) with VCNO found that VCNO obtained by wet process has a beneficial effect in lowering lipid components compared to EPCO. It reduced total cholesterol, triglycerides, phospholipids, LDL, and VLDL cholesterol levels and increased HDL cholesterol in serum and tissues.
The results demonstrated the potential beneficiary effect of Virgin Coconut 0il in lowering lipid levels in serum and tissues and LDL oxidation by physiological oxidants. This property of VCNO may be attributed to the biologically active polyphenol components present in the oil.
VCNO also consistently tests with a higher lauric acid content than EPCO.
There may be other benefits of VCNO over refined Coconut 0il that are as yet untested.
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