Coconut oil contains fatty acid chains called Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs). MCTs are believed to be metabolized in the body differently than other fats. They are said to be transported directly from the digestive tract to the liver, where they are more likely to be used as fuel. They have been known to simultaneously raise the metabolic rate, resulting in less fat that might be available to be circulated throughout the body and deposited in fat tissues. Consuming coconut oil has also been shown to control the appetite by increasing satiety, leaving you feeling fuller, for longer periods of time after meals, thereby decreasing the chances of overeating.
Because the Medium Chain fatty acids are funneled directly to the liver and converted into energy -- and are easily absorbed by the energy-producing organelles of the cells --metabolism may increase. This burst of energy is believed to have a stimulating effect on the entire body.
Coconut oil also contains a compound called Lauric Acid that makes up about half of the fatty acids in coconut oil. When coconut oil is broken down in the digestive tract, it forms a substance called Monolaurin, which is a monoglyceride -- the mono-ester formed from glycerol and lauric acid. Both Lauric Acid and Monolaurin have been scientifically shown to help kill bacteria and fungi. Experts agree that the next best source of monolaurin after mother's milk is coconut oil with 50% of its saturated fat being lauric acid.