Coconut oil has been a base of tropical diets and wellness for centuries. Several studies support the unique benefits of coconut oil, centred around the medium chain fatty acids (MCFAs) it contains. There is so much you can use coconut oil for, in fact the options are endless!
Coconut Oil is incredibly versatile and has many health benefits, including some of the following.
- Protect your skin from UV rays
When applied to your skin, coconut oil may protect it from the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays, which raise your risk of skin cancer and cause wrinkling and brown spots. One study found that coconut oil blocks about 20% of the sun’s UV rays (1Trusted Source). However, keep in mind that it doesn’t provide the same protection as conventional sunscreen. Another study estimated that coconut oil has a sun protection factor (SPF) of 7, which is still lower than the minimum recommendation in some countries.
- Aids in Liver and kidney health
A healthy liver and kidneys keep the body free of toxins and improve blood flow.
Coconut oil can aid in guarding against damage to the liver and kidneys, and the antifungal and antimicrobial properties of the MCFAs can aid in treating urinary tract infections.
- Stress reducer
Coconut oil has been known to be extremely soothing, ultimately resulting in stress relief. According to Meghan Telpner, “applying coconut oil to the head followed with a gentle massage helps in removing mental fatigue.”
Coconut oil contains fatty acids that are absorbed quicker and easier in the digestive track. Adding just a small amount of coconut oil to your diet can help decrease your digestion issues.
The benefits of coconut oil on your skin are endless. Use it as a daily moisturiser. Apply on your skin to improve issues such as dermatitis, and eczema. Replace your expensive shaving cream and use it for soft, hydrated skin after shaving. Use it as an eye makeup remover and even try it out as a nighttime face moisturizer/cleanser.
There are many research studies that have found applying coconut oil to a cut, scrape or burn on your skin can help you heal more quickly. Coconut oil is also very effective on bruises as it speeds up the healing process by repairing damaged tissues.
Use coconut oil on your scalp to help with flaky, dry skin issues, or as conditioner it can help reduce protein loss in damaged and undamaged hair.
- Oral Health
Oil pulling is an effective natural oral health practise that has been around for thousands of years. Oil pulling is the act of swishing oil in your mouth for 15 to 20 minutes and then spitting it out. It removes harmful bacteria and plaque.
Here’s more detailed info about how oil pulling can improve your dental health.
- Stain remover
Coconut oil can be used to get rid of stains, including spills on carpets and furniture. Combine one-part coconut oil with one-part baking soda mix into a paste. Apply to the stain, wait five minutes, and wipe away.
HOW TO CHOOSE COCONUT OIL
It is important to note that you will find both virgin and refined coconut oil on your supermarket shelves. Virgin coconut oil is less processed and preserves it’s coconutty flavour. Refined coconut oil goes through more processing, which removes the coconut flavour. To get the best health benefits you should opt for organic, unrefined virgin coconut oil in a glass jar because it's minimally processed and isn't cut with chemicals. However, it's always important to read labels to make sure that you know what you're getting. I highly recommend adding this oil in to your diet. Replace your fancy moisturisers with it and even your morning cup of tea with hot water and coconut oil. Give it a go!