Distilled Monoglyceride, Glycerin Monolaurate, Glycerol Monolaurate, Glycerol 1-monolaurate, Lauricidin, Lauric Acid Monoglyceride, 1-Lauroyl-rac-glycerol, Monoglycéride Distillé, Monolaurine.


Overview Information

Monolaurin is a chemical made from lauric acid, which is found in coconut oil and human breast milk.

Monolaurin is used for the common cold, flu (influenza), shingles (herpes zoster), and other infections, but there is no good scientific evidence to support its use.

In foods, monolaurin is used in the production of ice cream, margarine, and spaghetti.

In manufacturing, monolaurin is used in making cosmetics, detergents, and insecticides.

How does it work?

Early research suggests monolaurin can prevent the growth of some bacteria in test tubes.


Uses & Effectiveness?

Insufficient Evidence for

  • Overgrowth of bacteria in the vagina.
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).
  • Common cold.
  • Flu (influenza).
  • Shingles (herpes zoster).
  • Strengthening the immune system.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of monolaurin for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

When taken by mouth: Monolaurin is LIKELY SAFE for most people when used in amounts commonly found in foods. There isn't enough reliable information to know if monolaurin is safe when used in medicinal amounts.

When applied to the vagina: There isn't enough reliable information to know if monolaurin is safe when applied as a gel in the vagina.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Monolaurin is LIKELY SAFE when consumed in the amounts found in foods. There isn't enough reliable information to know if monolaurin is safe to use in medicinal amounts when pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and stick to food amounts..



We currently have no information for MONOLAURIN Interactions.



The appropriate dose of monolaurin depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for monolaurin. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

View References


  • Clarke NM, May JT. Effect of antimicrobial factors in human milk on rhinoviruses and milk-borne cytomegalovirus in vitro. J Med Microbiol 2000;49:719-23. View abstract.
  • FDA, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, Office of Premarket Approval, EAFUS: A food additive database. Website: (Accessed 23 February 2006).
  • Holland KT, Taylor D, Farrell AM. The effect of glycerol monolaurate on growth of, and production of toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 and lipase by, Staphylococcus aureus. J Antimicrob Chemother 1994;33:41-55. View abstract.
  • Mancuso AC, Widdice LE, Hughes BL, et al. Five Percent Monolaurin Vaginal Gel for the Treatment of Bacterial Vaginosis: A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial. J Low Genit Tract Dis. 2020 Jul;24(3):277-283. View abstract.
  • Projan SF, Brown-Skrobot S, Schlievert PM, et al. Glycerol monolaurate inhibits the production of beta-lactamase, toxic shock toxin-1, and other staphylococcal exoproteins by interfering with signal transduction. J Bacteriol 1994;176:4204-9. View abstract.
  • Ruzin A, Novick RP. Glycerol monolaurate inhibits induction of vancomycin resistance in Enterococcus faecalis. J Bacteriol 1998;180:182-5. View abstract.
  • Schlievert PM, Deringer JR, Kim MH, et al. Effect of glycerol monolaurate on bacterial growth and toxin production. Antimicrob Agents Chemother 1992;36:626-31. View abstract.
  • Strunk T, Gummer JPA, Abraham R, et al. Topical Coconut Oil Contributes to Systemic Monolaurin Levels in Very Preterm Infants. Neonatology. 2019;116(3):299-301. View abstract.
  • Witcher KJ, Novick RP, Schlievert PM. Modulation of immune cell proliferation by glycerol monolaurate. Clin Diagn Lab Immunol 1996;3:10-3. View abstract.

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CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

This copyrighted material is provided by Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Consumer Version. Information from this source is evidence-based and objective, and without commercial influence. For professional medical information on natural medicines, see Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Professional Version.
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