Coconut oil (Cocos nucifera) is a member of the Arecaceae/Palmae family. It is derived from the dried nut (fruit) of the coconut palm. Coconut oil is about fifty percent medium chain fatty acids. The most abundant constituents being lauric acid followed by myristic and palmitic acids. It is considered the most saturated oil.
Coconut oil is also known as coconut butter. Coconut oil can be found in many different forms, such as refined, unrefined, fractionated, or hydrogenated. Coconut oil has many different applications as well. It can be used in cooking, manufacturing, in cosmetics, and in skin care products. Coconut oil has also been used for weight loss, as an emollient, for energy, and for boosting the immune system.
The one caution with coconut oil is an increase in cholesterol. Coconut oil is high in fat and this should be kept in mind.