What have you heard about coconut oil?
Coconut oil has many uses for health and beauty purposes. It may be taken internally or applied topically. It has healing properties for our internal organs and also our skin and hair.
Coconut oil used to be thought of as a bad fat because of it’s 92% saturated fat content. In recent years, coconut oil has regained it’s proper standing. Though most of it’s fat is saturated, it is in the form of medium chain triglycerides. As opposed to short and long chain fats, the medium chain triglycerides react much differently when consumed.
What are medium chain triglycerides made up of?
The MCTs contain three types of fat. Lauric acid, which is beneficial for immune function, caprylic acid which has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, and Capric acid which has both antimicrobial, and immune boosting properties.
What is the difference between medium chain fatty acids
and long chain fatty acids?
Medium chain fatty acids need not be broken down to be digested and absorbed. Therefore they are sent directly to the liver for digestion. Since they need no bile or pancreatic enzymes to break them down, they are healthy fats. Also going straight to the liver produces more energy and may increase the metabolism. The medium chain and short chain fatty acids, such as are in coconut oil, are healthier for people who have certain health conditions, such as gall bladder disease, high colesterol, or diabetes.
On the other hand, long chain fatty acids need to go through a digestive process that usually starts in the small intestine. They must be broken down before our body can use them. This is accomplished by the use of bile acids and lipases. In the small intestine, the bile acids emulsify the long chain fatty acids, and the lipases break down the monoglycerides and triglycerides. These smaller fatty acids are absorbed through the intestinal wall and then carried into the body through the lymph system.
How does coconut oil benefit our health?
Coconut oil’s antimicrobial and antibacterial properties are healing for our bodies. The lauric acid and capric acid have immune boosting properties. The medium chain fatty acids contained in coconut oil don’t need to be broken down in the small intestine. They go directly to the liver, and produce energy.
Coconut oil is beneficial for many health conditions.
Below is a list of some of the benefits of coconut oil for our health:
When consumed daily coconut oil may:
- Be an immediate source of energy
- Help speed weight loss
- Help with anxiety and depression
- Improve sleep
- Boost hormone production
- Increase absorption of calcium and magnesium
- Support thyroid function
- Improve insulin levels
- Aids digestion and infections of the gut like candida
- Contribute to focus and mental performance
- Provide immune support
When used externally, regular use of coconut oil may:
- Help skin heal faster from an injury or infection
- Relieve hemorrhoids
- Boost circulation
- Whiten and remineralize teeth
- Rid the body of cellulite
- Moisturize skin
- Be an anti aging facial moisturizer
- Heal skin irritations
- Kill yeast infections
- Soothe itching
- Help speed healing of ear infections
- Softens impacted wax
Cooking with coconut oil:
- Remains stable at high temperatures
- Doesn’t go rancid quickly
- Contains beneficial nutrients
- Roll vegetables in it for roasting
- Fry foods without the guilt
- Use in baked goods for healthier fat
Other ways to consume coconut oil:
- Use a tablespoon in your morning coffee
- Incorporate into smoothies
- Slip into your favorite recipes
- Use as a substitute for other oils
- Add to any hot food to add flavor and nutrition
Beautify with coconut oil:
- Use as moisture lotion
- Excellent eye makeup remover
- May lighten age spots when applied regularly
- May be used as a low SPF sunscreen
- Moisturizes lips
- After shower cream
- Rub on cuticles for nail health and growth
- Massage lotion
- Natural deodorant
- Personal lubricant (won’t disturb vaginal flora)
- Heal dry skin or skin irritations
Coconut oil for hair :
- Acts as a hair mask or hot oil treatment
- Moisturizes and nourishes dry hair
- Conditions and promotes shine
- Heal scalp irritations
- Reduce dandruff
Use as a base for creams, lotions, lip balms, etc.
Coconut oil may be used as a base for making homemade creams and lotions. Other oils may be added for a fragrant massage oil. It may be used in homemade soap or homemade lip balm. It can be mixed with sugar as a soothing body scrub in the shower. Or mixed with salt to remove dry skin on feet. It can be whipped with shea butter for a body balm. If mixed with baking soda it makes a whitening tooth paste.
Healing herbs may be steeped, strained and mixed for a healing cream.
I used to make a healing cream for my elderly parents with coconut oil for the base. I used comfrey leaves, calendula flowers, rosemary, vitamin e oil, honey, aloe from aloe plants and anything I could think of with healing properties. I added some bees wax to keep it firm. Coconut oil is firm when stored in a cooler place; but melts down to an oil in a warmer place.
Comfrey (also called bone knit) is good for healing broken bones. I started making this healing cream when my mother fell and broke her arm in two places. It also helps to fade black and blue marks faster. It is not recommended for open skin wounds. It may heal the skin so fast that an infection could be healed over before it is able to drain. It worked wonderfully to keep my dad’s bottom from getting open sores, as long as it was used regularly.
Coconut oil for our pets:
Coconut oil is also a healthy oil to give our pets, or use topically for skin problems.
Given internally it will help with digestive problems and some allergies. It may improve their health and prevent infections.
Rubbed into skin or brushed through their coat, it helps with skin allergies, fleas, mites, and dry skin. It also is good for itchy skin and helps heal sores from scratching. It may be helpful for ear mites or itchy ears.
Cats: Start with 1/4 teaspoon and gradually increase gradually to a tablespoon
Dogs: Small dogs start with 1/2 teaspoon, medium 3/4 teaspoon, and large dogs 1 teaspoon
Increase gradually to 1 to 2 tablespoons
What type of coconut oil should I use?
There are different kinds of coconut oil. It can be confusing as to which kind is best. Be sure to choose a virgin or extra virgin coconut oil, or organic unrefined coconut oil; especially if you are going to ingest it. There are many good kinds of coconut oil. You can consult the web for the best choices.
I personally like the extra virgin coconut oil from Swanson Vitamins. It is packaged in a dark container so it stays fresh longer. I like the coconut taste and smell; but if you don’t they do have some that doesn’t have a taste. It is reasonably priced and I usually buy more at a time if there is a sale on. You can buy it from Amazon below. Simply scroll down and click on Shop now.
Want a larger container?
I hope this post has helped you understand some of the ways you can use coconut for your health and beauty. There are more uses, I’m sure. If you want more information, just type something like “Uses for coconut oil” into your search bar. There is much information to be found on the internet
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask in the comment section below. Please feel free to leave a comment with your thoughts on this subject; or if you can think of other uses. What are your experiences with using coconut oil for health. Have you received benefits from using coconut oil? Do you have any good recipes you would like to share? Do you make your own creams, soaps or lip balms? I would love to hear from you.
I hope you stop in again. I love company!
At your service,
Disclaimer: I am not a medical doctor. The information contained in this post was obtained by various sources on the internet and from personal experiences. I can say with some authority that unless you are allergic to coconut oil; it will not harm you. I can testify from personal experience of coconut oil’s healing properties, it’s value as a moisture cream, and some of the other claims herein. I cannot guarantee that everyone will have the same results. I love coconut oil and am very pleased at some of the results that I have experienced using it. If you have any concerns, please check with your physician or veterinarian, before taking yourself or giving to your pets.
Please check out my post about the benefits of apple cider vinegar for health here: