Coconut oil is high in fats called medium chain triglycerides, which are metabolized differently than most other fats. These special fats are responsible for a lot of the health benefits of coconut oil. Several populations around the world have thrived for multiple generations eating massive amounts of coconut. The medium chain triglycerides in coconut oil have been shown to increase calories burned over 24 hours by as much as 5%. The fatty acids in coconut oil can kill harmful pathogens, including bacteria, viruses and fungi. This could potentially help to prevent infections. The MCTs in coconut oil can increase blood concentration of ketone bodies, which can help reduce seizures in epileptic children. coconut oil can raise blood levels of HDL cholesterol, which is linked to improved metabolic health and a lower risk of heart disease. Coconut oil can also be applied topically, with studies showing it to be effective as a skin moisturizer and protecting against hair damage.