Results of DOST-FNRI study on effects of VCO published in international journal – DOST chief

Published May 29, 2021, 12:14 AM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza 

The results of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST)- Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI) on the effects of virgin coconut oil (VCO) to suspect and probable cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) have been published in an international journal.


DOST Secretary Fortunato “Boy” T. de la Peña said the Journal of Functional Foods published on May 25 the results of DOST-FNRI study on the effects of VCO as an adjunct supplement against COVID-19.

“The study involved a 28-day randomized, double-blind, controlled intervention among 63 adults in two isolation facilities in Santa Rosa, Laguna. The participants were randomly assigned to receive either a standardized meal (control) or a standardized meal mixed with a predefined dosage of VCO,” he said during his weekly report on Friday, May 28.

He said changes in clinical markers were measured at three time points (day 0, 14, and 28), with daily monitoring of COVID-19 symptoms.

“Participants in the intervention group showed a significant decline in the C-reactive protein level, with the mean CRP level normalized to ≤5 mg/dL on the 14th day of the intervention. As an adjunct therapy, meals mixed with VCO is effective fostering faster recovery from COVID-19,” de la Peña said.

The DOST-FNRI is leading a study to evaluate the beneficial effect of VCO given to suspect and probable cases of COVID-19 who are quarantined in a center or hospital.

DOST-FNRI Director Dr. Imelda Angeles Agdeppa is the lead person on the “randomized double-blind controlled intervention trial” on VCO.

The project is implemented on May 1, 2020 to June 31, 2021.

De la Peña noted that based on the VCO study in Santa Rosa, Laguna, result showed that meals mixed with VCO could reduce COVID-19 symptoms in suspect and probable cases, thus, possibly preventing the progression or severity of the disease.

In December 2020, the FNRI team reported the effectiveness of VCO on 57 probable and suspected cases at the Santa Rosa Community Quarantine Facility and in Santa Rosa Community Hospital.

Results of the FNRI study on VCO as dietary supplement among COVID-19 probable and suspect cases showed that “five of the 29 patients who were served meals with VCO manifested diminishing signs and symptoms as early as the second day, while only one patient served with the same meals but without VCO showed similar improvement.”

The VCO group of patients who were served meals with VCO showed no COVID-19 related symptoms at Day 18, while symptoms persisted in some patients of the Control Group of patients who were served the same meals without VCO until Day 23, it showed.