I’ll admit it. I can really geek-out over anything that makes both my body and soul feel nourished. My husband just rolls his eyes at me and say “yes, dear” when I really get going. But the more I think about the different ways you can use coconut oil, the more nerdy excited I get. And if you are in the middle of an eye roll directed at me too, wait until I go over exactly what I find so exciting.
Here’s how coconut oil can heal your body!
1. Coconut oil is a great source of needed dietary fat
Fat is an essential nutrient. Fat is used to create cells, hormones and is essential for the absorption of fat-soluble nutrients. And coconut oil is a wonderful, healthy fat source And yes, it’s mostly saturated fat, but don’t let that make you nervous. A high percentage of that fat is in the form of lauric acid which has a different chemical composition than, let’s say, animal sources of saturated fat. This type of fat has shown to lower cholesterol and promote overall health.
2. Coconut oil may protect your body against an array of diseases
Studies show that cultures that consume high amounts of coconut oil don’t have nearly the disease of most modern, developed nations. Coconut oil is used in the field of natural medicine to help support the body in many ways. Here are just a few examples
*It is considered beneficial for an under-active thyroid due to its stimulating nature.
*There are claims that it is healing to those with IBS due to its anti-inflammatory qualities and its negative effect on the bad bacteria in the gut.
*Some studies show it to be good for those with diabetes for its positive effect on insulin.
*It can feed brain cells through the production of energy supplying ketones, which may be protective against Alzheimer’s.
3. Coconut oil can be beneficial for weight-loss
The fat in coconut oil is mostly composed of medium chain saturated fatty acids. Many studies show that these fatty acids not only improve energy expenditure, they also increase feelings of fullness after a meal. So while you won’t lose weight just by eating coconut oil, it can assist in your weight-loss efforts.
4. Coconut oil is the best oil for cooking
Most oils aren’t suitable for cooking. Vegetable oils like canola, sunflower, and safflower oil have a very low smoke point. What this means is that they will start to burn and become rancid at very low levels of heat. These rancid oils are toxic for the body. Conversely, the saturated fat in coconut oil is perfect for cooking and can withstand up to medium heat.
5. Coconut oil can make healthier treats seem decadent
It is especially good for making food creamy. Try adding one to three teaspoons of melted coconut oil to a smoothie. You will feel like you are drinking an ice cream soda or a milk shake. It can also be a great substitute for butter for those who don’t eat dairy. Spread it onto a bagel or toast, melt it over a baked potato or drizzle it over lightly steamed vegetables. Yum. It also can be used to give a creamy texture to healthy treats. Blend dates, almonds and shredded coconut in a food processor and a little coconut oil. Then mold your mixture into raw cookies. There are so many fun ways to make healthy creations with coconut oil.
6. Coconut Oil can be a non-toxic beauty product
So many body products are full of chemicals and the all-natural alternatives are extremely expensive. Coconut oil can be a great alternative. Use it to moisturize your skin, soften your cuticles, remove makeup and brush your teeth (it will kill bacteria). It can also make a great conditioning hair mask. Take melted coconut oil (make sure it’s not too hot), and work it through your hair. Then let it cool. It will harden into a conditioning mask. Let sit for 10 minutes and then wash out.
7. Try the ancient practice of oil pulling
Oil pulling is an ancient tradition to help remove toxins from the body. It involves swishing a tablespoon of oil in your mouth for about 5 to 20 minutes a day ( 20 for best results). Coconut oil is one of the best oils for this practice because of the anti-microbial properties found in lauric acid. Oil pulling with coconut oil kills gingivitis, plaque and other micro-organisms in the mouth. It has also been known to help detox the body, alleviate headaches, clear the skin, promote oral hygiene and improve hormonal balance. Just make sure to spit the oil into the trash (not the sink) when done.
8. Replace those chemical filled house cleaners
Coconut oil can do a wonderful job removing shower scum. It can also polish wood in a natural way. Coconut oil can be used to loosen hinges, just like WD-40. Just make sure it is melted before using.
I recommend getting extra virgin, cold-pressed coconut oil if possible. Keep in mind, coconut oil is solid at room temperature but becomes liquid at 76 Fahrenheit. It is really important for health to consume good quality foods. It’s just as essential to put good quality ingredients onto your body. There’s also value in making your surroundings as toxin-free as possible. Coconut oil is so versatile in that it can promote health in so many ways. So, if you don’t already have some on hand, pick up some coconut oil and discover how you enjoy using it to promote your health today.
I have started using coconut oil. I buy it in the solid state. My cardiologist suggested Coconut Oil as it can improve blood Cholesterol Levels. That I am working on.
That’s great Arleen! I’m glad to hear of a Western doctor looking at nutrition as part of treatment. Too many doctors only prescribe pills. In my opinion, a combination between both is best.
Jacqueline Gum says
I just started using coconut oil in my protein shake every day. I buy it in the solid state (extra virgin and cold pressed) and use a heaping glob! LOL I have always loved the flavor of coconut too. But I haven’t tried it yet for cooking. Very interesting to use it like WD-40 and to clean the shower!
You should definitely try it for cooking Jacquie! It is such a good oil to cook with and I think it gives your food a nice taste. I’ve put it in my smoothies like you, and I do love the creamy taste it provides.
You have convinced me – I need to invest in some coconut oil! I eat raw coconut and use coconut shampoo and conditioner in my hair.
Well, then you’re already there Phoenica. I hope you do buy it. Since you already use so many coconut products, I’m pretty sure you will really like it.
Patricia Weber says
Wow Erica. I have coconut oil in the solid state and on occasion use it for cooking. What I am going to do after reading your tips here, is to first use it as a mouthwash! Wow. I’ll find the oil form. I love these kind of all natural tips. Thanks.
Hi Patricia! I’ve updated my blog since you read it since I got the impression that many people were confused. Coconut oil is solid at room temperature. It will turn into a liquid at 76 degrees Fahrenheit. So the solid coconut oil that you have just needs to be heated by running the jar under some warm water and you will have a liquid oil! I hope that helps.
Beth Niebuhr says
It sounds like coconut oil is the perfect oil. I’ve used it a little but you have encouraged me to start using it more. So many great benefits! Thanks.
That is great Beth. I hope you enjoy new ways of using coconut oil.
Donna Janke says
I’ve read a fair bit about the benefits of coconut oil and would like to start using it a bit in cooking. Is the solid form okay to use for cooking or is there another form to use?
Hi Donna! As soon as you start to heat the solid coconut oil, it will melt into a liquid. It should take a couple minutes to melt at medium heat. Coconut oil will only be a liquid when it is heated above 76 degrees Fahrenheit. Since grocery stores are air conditioned, you will always buy it in the store in solid form!
Ken Dowell says
I think I need to go get a gallon jug of coconut oil. Who knew? The benefits of oil pulling are really astonishing.
Yes, oil pulling is a very interesting practice. I would say, give it a try and see what benefits you find.
Thanks a lot for this post. I really didn’t know that coconut oils too can be so beneficial.
Recently I have developed some dark circles around the eyes. Can coconut oil help in reducing or eliminating these?
Hi Tuhin. I’m not sure about dark circles around your eyes. My (non-medical) guess would be that dark circles are more of a sign of an internal imbalance. Perhaps you have an allergy or a food sensitivity. However, there is no harming in putting it under your eyes and seeing if there are any benefits.
Erica, I love this post. What really surprised me is that it can lower cholesterol. I’ve always heard the opposite. I am definitely going to get some. I’ve been using coconut water in my green smoothie but I will be trying coconut oil for a change of pace.
I love the natural products that you can use for more than one purpose and this one is a winner.
Hi Lenie. Well, coconut oil has been shown in some studies to raise HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol) so it helps your ratio of good to bad. However, someone who is being watched for high cholesterol would probably want to talk with their doctor before including too much coconut oil in the diet to see how it might affect their individual imbalance.
Meredith @ The Palette Muse says
I’ve recently started geeking out about coconut oil too! I’ve heard the term oil-pulling, but didn’t know what it was. Not sure I’m ready to give that a try just yet. My favorite use for coconut oil though, is in body scrubs with sugar and essential oils. They feel heavenly and work really well.
I’ve never tried that body scrub, Meredith. It sounds very nice, so I will have to give it a try!
The thought of using coconut oil never crossed my mind until a few weeks ago when I got a free jar in a Klout perk package that was filled with organic products. Turns out this guy I’ve been dating uses it for just about everything under the sun, so now I’m joining the coconut oil bandwagon as well 🙂
Wow, sounds like kismet, Jeri. Seems like the world just wants you to start using coconut oil! That is so nice that you got a free jar. Whatever a great opportunity to try it out.
Marquita Herald says
I’m still relatively new to coconut oil and while I’m already a fan of it for skin care and in my protein shake in the morning, it never occurred to me to use it in cooking. Good to know and I will definitely give it a try.
Yes, you should definitely use it when you use oil for cooking Marquita! If you cook with oil, it is really one of the absolute best oils to use. If you never cook with oil, then there is no need to start. You can get the nutrients from coconut oil from your smoothie.
Pamela Chollet says
Coconut oil is wonderful. I practice Ashtanga yoga which creates an abundance of heat in the body. We use
coconut oil to release the excess body heat. Before showering, begin rubbling the oil into your scalp and hair, then in a circular motions cover your body from toes to face. Try and wiat about 30 minutes before showering. Some people sleep oiled up , a bit much for me. But I tell you, it cools you down, it’s a great way to beat the summer heat.
I’ve done mostly Hatha yoga Pamela, but that does sound interesting. I would agree that sleeping covered in oil would be a bit intense. But hey, whatever works for the individual!
Sabrina Q. says
I didn’t know that coconut oil may be good for under-active thyroid. I think I will try it and see if it helps. Thanks for sharing this wonderful information.
Hi Sabrina. Give coconut oil a try. If you have an underactive thyroid, you probably know it can be a complex issue, and it is, of course, important to find the combination of approaches that works best for you!
Sorry but this is important and adds a number nine to your list. It is also a great lubricant with scents of exotic locales 🙂
Lol, good one Tim! Just be careful where you put it if you are using a condom unless you like to be surprised with a newborn!
William Rusho says
Coconut oil is extremely helpful. I discovered it when an elderly friend had beginning signs of dementia and Alzheimer’s. The regiment of coconut oil helped them within weeks. Thank you for sharing this with us.
Wow, that is a really interesting story, William. I’ve never heard a personal story using coconut oil with Alzheimer’s. It is so nice to hear that it has been helping this friend and I hope it continues to help for as long a time as possible.
Jason B says
I didn’t know coconut oil had all these uses. I have olive oil and sesame oil in my cabinet. I need to add some coconut oil as well.
I love Coconut Oil Erica. I use it on my hair, body and for cooking. I didnt know it could lower cholesterol. Wow! i didnt know coconut oil had so many benefits. Thanks for sharing x
Erica. I could use coconout oil for my daughter’s smoothies. Is it safe?
Hi, Rosy. Yes, it should be safe to use coconut oil in your daughter’s smoothies. I often put coconut oil in my smoothies. The only reason I can think of to not use coconut oil in a smoothie is if the person is allergic or sensitive to coconuts (though coconuts are not a food that commonly gives people problems.) It gives smoothies a nice, creamy texture!