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Dr. Bruce Fife's Positive Review of Coconut Oil

A Reply to Dr. Ken Woliner

By Bruce Fife, ND, CN

Updated May 30, 2014

Henrik Sorensen/Digital Vision/Getty Images
Updated May 30, 2014
By Bruce Fife, ND, CN

A note from Mary Shomon: The May 20, 2003 issue of the weekly newsstand publication, Woman’s World, featured a cover story "The New Thyroid Cure." Since that article hit the newsstand, I was deluged with emails from people who want to know if what the article seems to claim is true: Can coconut oil "cure" your hypothyroidism and ensure rapid weight loss? In May, I asked holistic physician Dr. Ken Woliner to respond to this question, which he did in his article, Is Coconut Oil Really a Thyroid Cure? A Holistic Physician Looks at the Question. There are some practitioners and experts who believe that coconut oil is extremely beneficial for the thyroid, and Dr. Bruce Fife is one of the more well-known figures who has spoken out in favor of coconut oil. Dr. Woliner discusses Dr. Fife in his article, and here Dr. Fife offers his thoughts on coconut oil for the thyroid, and a rebuttal to Dr. Woliner’s position.

In May of this year, Woman’s World published a cover story titled "The New Thyroid Cure."It described how protein and coconut oil can help improve thyroid function. In response to this article many people started asking if coconut oil can really improve thyroid function and promote weight loss. Mary Shomon published an article written by Ken Woliner, MD to answer this question. Although I’m sure Dr. Woliner is a competent physician with a great deal of experience treating thyroid problems, this doesn’t make him an expert on coconut oil. Judging from his article, he apparently knows little about the relationship between coconut oil and thyroid function, and frankly, few people do. Unfortunately, his article contained many inaccurate and misleading statements.

Many readers of recognized the faults in Dr. Woliner’s article and asked me to write a response to clear up any confusion his article may have caused and to answer the question: is coconut oil really a thyroid cure?

To keep this article brief, I’m going to direct my remarks specifically to the statements made by Dr. Woliner in relation to coconut oil and thyroid function. Let start by saying that I agree with Dr. Woliner in his recommendation not to take what you read in Woman’s World as medical advice. Woman’s World is a weekly newspaper. As with any newspaper, articles are written by reporters. They report news. The coconut oil thyroid connection is news. The problem is that reporters don’t always report the news accurately, especially when it comes to medicine. The Woman’s World article, as Dr. Woliner pointed out, made it sound like if you simply added coconut oil to your diet it would cure hypothyroidism. This is not true.

Low thyroid function has many causes and no one therapy can cure all thyroid related diseases. Coconut oil is just part of the solution. For some people coconut oil may be of little help. However, when used properly and in conjunction with other things it can have a very significant effect on the most common forms of hypothyroidism.

Dr. Woliner seems to favor the use of medication in treating hypothyroidism. Like a true allopathic physician bent on suppressing natural approaches to medicine, he criticizes coconut oil and me personally to support his position. He infers that my sole purpose is to profit off coconut oil sales. I have never met the man, yet he claims to know all about my financial affairs, stating that I derive all my income from the coconut oil industry. Where he got that idea I don’t know, but it’s false. I do not work for the coconut oil industry nor am I paid by or associated with any coconut oil company. All of my income is derived from writing and speaking.

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