I have long been a convert to and believe in the benefits of coconut oil.
I’m like the dad in My Big Fat Greek Wedding who puts Windowlean on everything, except its coconut oil.
Why use coconut oil?
Coconut oil is a saturated fat with a high content of lauric acid. If you’ve heard of or have switched to, a low carb high fat lifestyle then you’ll know that the body uses fat as energy. Fat is vital for proper brain development in babies and children and for brain function in adults. It is a far better fuel than carbs. However, not all fats are created equal – we need good fats. Coconut oil is packed full of those good fats.
What are the benefits?
Aids weight loss
The fatty acids in coconut oil are said to help in weight loss and research suggests that it helps reduce obesity in women. It is easy to digest and supports the thyroid and endocrine system. Coconut oil is known to increase the body’s metabolic rate because it is thermogenic, which means it increases energy expenditure by burning more fat.
Coconut oil has antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties thanks to the lauric acid, capric acid, caprylic acid and antimicrobial lipids. All of which are good things for your immune system.
Good for the skin
Coconut oil is incredibly moisturising and has been known to effectively treat skin conditions such as eczema, dermatitis and psoriasis. It is also full of antioxidants so it has anti-aging properties.
Good for the hair
Coconut oil is great for hair has it helps with protein loss (weak damage prone hair), restores shine and moisturises. It is great for those who suffer from dry scalp or dandruff.
The body needs fats to create and balance hormones. Coconut oil will help with this function.
How to get more coconut oil in your life:
Cook with it
This is an easy one. Coconut oil is great for cooking as it is stable at high temperatures (unlike canola, sunflower or olive oil). So it’s perfect for frying. We use it religiously in our household. I have also used it when baking and have had no worries. It is solid at cold temps, but a quick spin in the microwave will have it liquid in no time.
Add to hot beverages
I add a spoonful to my lemon water in the morning. Eating coconut oil is the best way to get the benefits. It doesn’t have a slimy texture at all. You just need to get over the visual aspect (puddles of oil floating on top of your drink is off-putting at first.)
I love oil pulling and I don’t do it nearly often enough. It is an awesome way to detox your body and is especially great for those who suffer from sinus issues. Again the sensation takes some getting used to, but I find that coconut oil is the best for this as it has a very mild flavour.
Include it in your skincare
Coconut oil has many uses in skin care. You can use it as an oil cleanser to remove makeup, add a bit of bicarb to a scoop of oil and you have a great facial exfoliator, massage it into your hair for a wonderful treatment, add brown sugar to create a body scrub, use it as an overall moisturiser (great for pregnancy and stretch marks). The uses are endless.
Good for baby
Coconut oil is a natural nipple cream that provides relief to dry, sore nipples during breastfeeding. Bonus: it’s great for baby too. You can also use it as a barrier cream to treat nappy rash.
Trying to conceive? Coconut oil is a great natural lubricant during sex.