Coconut, Dementia and Aging: Part 2

A few weeks ago I posted about coconut oil and the aging brain. If you do decide to try this with your older adult, here are some ins and outs on the use of coconut oil.

Coconut oil can be used to replace many cooking oils and is even safe for frying and baking. It is a solid at room temperature, but melts very easily. Some people will prefer to simply use coconut oil where they are already using other cooking oils, but what about the most effective dose for dementia patients?

For that we look to Axona, the FDA-approved medical food mentioned in the March 22 post. In total, each day’s worth of Axona contains 20 grams of medium chain triglycerides (MCT). Fast-forward through the math and that translates to 7 teaspoons per day of pure coconut oil to get the same amount of MCT. As with any oil, this is going to contribute about 275 calories and 32 grams of fat to the diet. Unlike many cooking oils, most of this fat is saturated.

If this regimen helps your older adult, the first signs of improvement will take weeks to months to appear and continual use of coconut oil will be necessary to sustain the benefits. With all of this coconut oil consumption, you might need to stock up. One of my students, who is an avid fan of coconut oil, suggested Spectrum and Nutiva if you’re looking in stores and Tropical Traditions if you prefer to shop online or buy in bulk.

As always, I would encourage you to talk with your physician or your registered dietitian about this before you begin.

Guest Blogger:  Hannah Martin