A hand holds up a jar of coconut oil next to a coconut tree.

Benefits of Using Coconut Oil with IBS

I am always looking for new recipes and substitutions that will benefit my gut health. I grew up eating lots of "down-home cooking", made with LOTS of butter and heavy whipping cream. Of course, I always ate it, which led to me being overweight as a child, combined with my IBS issues, which I'm sure it didn't help!

Coconut oil vs. butter

A couple of years ago, I was having terrible diverticulitis flare-ups and had to put myself on a strict diet. A friend of mine suggested substituting coconut oil for butter and other unhealthy fats while cooking. I was skeptical since I definitely do not like the taste of coconut. My family was also leery, but willing to give it a chance. Surprisingly, it honestly doesn't taste much like coconut and is very easy to cook with!

Research on coconut oil

According to research studies, consuming non-trans fats such as coconut oil are actually great and needed for our good health! Coconut oil does not contain any cholesterol and the most interesting fact I found is that studies also show that extra virgin unprocessed coconut oil contains both anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties, hence better gut-health!1

Coconut oil is also known for relieving constipation. How so? Coconut oil is a part of something called medium-chain fatty acids, also known as MCFAs. These fatty-acids provide fast energy for our intestinal cells that boost their metabolism. This interesting mechanism stimulates our bowel movements. MCFAs also acts as a stool softener.1

How I use coconut oil

Personally, I used the coconut oil mixed in food, such as when I was sauteing vegetables, but you can also mix it directly into a warm drink such as a hot tea to help relieve constipation. The recommended serving size is 1-2 teaspoons of melted coconut oil daily, and if that doesn't help, you can increase to 1-2 tablespoons.

These recommendations are by a licensed nutritionist, but I would always check with your healthcare professional first! Some IBS sufferers swear by taking 2 tablespoons a day for improved gut health. The anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial benefits alone are definitely worth the substitution to me! 

By providing your email address, you are agreeing to our privacy policy. We never sell or share your email address.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The IrritableBowelSyndrome.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Join the conversation

or create an account to comment.