The antioxidants unique to virgin coconut oil have been found to reduce inflammation caused by arthritis, according to a 2014 study published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information. The coconut oil used in this study was manufactured by using a wet-milling method, followed by heat.
Arthritis is one of the major disability-causing diseases, as noted in the same research study, and it accounts for more than 120 ailments and conditions that relate to the joints and associated tissues.
The antioxidants taken from the coconut oil were injected into rats with induced arthritis, explains the abstract in the NCBI posting. This treatment proved to be more effective in reducing inflammation than other pharmaceutical drugs, including non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, commonly referred to as NSAIDs, that are typically used to treat the condition. As an added benefit, antioxidants found in coconut oil, unlike pharmaceutical drugs, are free from side effects such as stomach issues, heartburn and high blood pressure.
Health Impact News notes that while coconut oil has many health benefits in addition to being an anti-inflammatory, not every type of coconut oil has the same level of antioxidants present, making them less effective in treatment. This is due to the different ways in which the oil is produced.