A local manufacturer of virgin coconut oil (VCO) asked the government to provide support for more research and development (R&D) on the antiviral and immunomodulatory properties of VCO.
Growrich Manufacturing Inc. said this would provide more Filipinos an accessible and alternative way of protecting themselves against the dreaded novel coronavirus 2019 as well as promote the interests of poor coconut workers and the coconut processing industry.
Retired general surgeon Dr. Ed Lalusis, president and CEO of Growrich, said the recent findings of a study on the efficacy of VCO at the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center in Cebu City where all mild COVID-19 positive inmates and employees were treated and recovered from COVID-19 infection was another reason to push for R&D that would establish the antiviral and immunomodulatory capabilities of VCO.
"The government should be more aggressive in supporting controlled studies to establish the medical benefits of VCO so that we can develop a much in-demand product not only here in the country but all over the world because of this pandemic," Lalusis said.
Lalusis patented the process technology invention of encapsulating cold processed pure VCO which his company is manufacturing out of a Caloocan City plant. The Growrich VCO capsules are sold over the counter as a food supplement at popular drugstores.
Lalusis said Growrich has seen the benefits of people turning to VCO for its known or anecdotal ability to boost immunity as well as other health benefits.
He said that by establishing the other medical benefits of VCO such as its immunomodulatory and antiviral properties, the local VCO makers and other coconut processors would reap gains.
Ateneo de Manila University Prof. Fabian Dayrit and Cebu City integrative medicine expert Dr. Jose Ray Mondejar earlier disclosed the results of a study on mild COVID-19 inmates and employees at CPDRC who were given VCO among a cocktail of treatments who subsequently recovered. This made the jail free of COVID-19 despite the high number of cases around it in Cebu City.