Benefits of Coconut Oil for Fungus & Yeast Infections

by Marek Doyle

Chronic yeast problems continue to trouble more and more individuals, with modern living conditions contributing to the burden. That's the view of Dr. Lawrence Wilson, who points to high stress levels, a high sugar diet and use of antibiotics as common causes of the problem. Coconut oil stands out as a natural remedy that may help.

Yeast Infections

Systemic infection from yeast and fungi can occur following a disruption in the bacterial population in the intestines. Pathogenic fungi and yeast, such as candida albicans, can become overgrown in such situations. Dr Wilson, a physician who has tailored a number of treatment plans for the condition, explains that the symptoms can vary from one individual to another, but that carbohydrate cravings, concentration problems, fatigue and itching affect many.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil comes from the edible part of the fruit. This textured white endosperm, also known as the copra, contains a high concentration of oil; around 60 percent of this section of the coconut comes in the form of oil. Within this oil, you will find the medium chain fatty acids, credited with most of the therapeutic effects.

Medium Chain Fats

Dr Bruce Fife, the author of “The Coconut Oil Miracle,” explains that the medium chain acids fulfill a unique role in the human body. Named because of the length of their carbon spines, these compounds can diffuse into the cell membranes of various organisms, causing death by dissolving this structure. Fife notes that these medium chain fats work against bacteria, fungi, yeast, viruses and parasites.


In 2007, a team of Nigerian scientists looked into the effectiveness of medium chain fats against a range of fungal organisms. The results, published in the “Journal of Medicinal Food,” found that the compounds were effective at killing off 52 different fungal organisms and suggested that coconut oil could become the treatment of choice in species that have developed resistance to prescription drugs. This study also showed that 100 percent coconut oil was effective against the candida fungus -- a type of yeast -- and was more effective than the leading prescription cream.

Selecting and Using Coconut Oil

As a saturated fat, medium chain fatty acids remain stable under heat. This makes them suitable to cook with, and you can use coconut oil to fry with. You can also use it in recipes in place or butter, or add the oil to soups and teas. To treat fungal yeast and bacterial infections, you may topically apply coconut oil for treatment. Test coconut oil on your skin to make sure you will not have an adverse reaction to it. Rub a small amount of extra-virgin coconut oil on your skin and if the patch is still clear -- no redness or bumps -- after 24 hours, you can proceed with further topical application. Use extra-virgin, cold-pressed, organic coconut oil. To treat a yeast infection, insert the coconut oil into the vaginal area daily until the symptoms subside. This may take 4 to 5 days. Christina's Home Remedies recommends soaking a tampon in warmed coconut oil, inserting it and allowing it to stay in over-night.

Photo Credits

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About the Author

A London-based personal trainer, nutritional therapist and allergist, Marek Doyle runs Blueprintfitness.co.uk and counts world champion athletes and TV personalities amongst his clientele. He has contributed to various publications, including Good Life magazine, Natural News and PTontheNet.