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CHAPTER II REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE AND STUDIES Local Literature Jon J. Kabara, Ph.

D, Professor Emeritus from Michigan State University, writes, "Never before in the history of man is it so important to emphasize the value of lauric oils. The medium-chain fats in coconut oil are similar to fats in mother's milk and have similar nutriceutical effects." Coconuts and their edible products, such as coconut oil and coconut milk, have suffered from the repeated misinformation because of a study conducted in the 1950's that used hydrogenated coconut oil. Though coconut oil is very high in saturated fat, namely 87 percent saturated, in its unrefined, virgin state, it is actually beneficial, largely because of its high content of lauric acid, almost 50 percent. Because lauric acid has potent anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties, recent studies have considered coconut oil as a possible method of lowering viral levels in HIV-AIDS patients. The lauric acid may also be effective in fighting yeast, fungi, and other viruses such as measles, Herpes simplex, influenza and cytomegalovirus. Because the short-and medium-chain fatty acids of extra virgin coconut oil and coconut milk are easily and quickly assimilated by the body, they are not stored as fat in the body like the long chain triglycerides of animal products. Studies have shown that populations in Polynesia and Sri Lanka, where coconuts are a diet staple, do not suffer from high serum cholesterol or high rates of heart disease. Extra virgin coconut oil used in a study conducted in the Yucatan showed that those who used the coconut oil on a daily basis had a higher metabolic rate. Though they regularly consumed considerable quantities of the saturated fat, the participants retained a lean body mass. Another facet of the Yucatan study noted that the women participants did not suffer the typical symptoms of menopause. Foreign literature From fertility taboos to unseen magical forces, fascinating folklore practices revolving around the coconut have evolved throughout the tropical regions . Until the early 1900's, a whole coconut was the accepted form of currency in the Nicobar Islands, just north of Sumatra in the Indian Ocean. In the South Pacific, pieces of coconut shell carved into coin-like spheres served as currency. In Northern India, coconuts were valued as fertility symbols. When a woman wanted to conceive, she would go to a priest to receive her special coconut.

Samoans believe that a coconut lying on the ground is not free for the taking but that it belongs to someone who knows it is there. If you should claim the taboo coconut when no one is looking, the tapui, a magical spirit, will taunt you. This unseen force may strike you by lightening or punish you with a painful, incurable illness. The first solid food eaten by a Thai baby is three spoonfuls of the custard-like flesh of young coconut fed to him or her by a Buddhist priest. Natives of New Guinea have their own version of the coconut's origins. They believed that when the first man died on the island, a coconut palm sprouted from his head. In Bali, women are forbidden to even touch the coconut tree. Because females and coconut trees both share the ability to reproduce, men fear that a woman's touch may drain the fertility of the coconut tree into her own fertility