Some Coconut Oil Health Facts And Why I Like It So Much
There is no doubt about it, Coconut Oil is one of my absolute favourites! I use it for cooking, oral care, skin care and hair care and I love it! And it’s a pretty good thing that I do love it so much because it has great qualities and it offers a vast range of health benefits.
It is anti-bacterial, anti- fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-viral and anti-microbial making it beneficial for countless health related concerns and issues such as cholesterol (it improves the ration of HDL (good cholesterol) to LDL (bad cholesterol), acid reflux and indigestion ( when taken after a meal), eczema, flaky dry skin, gum disease, thrush…. among many, many others.
How Coconut Oil Can Help With Weight Loss
When you think about weight loss, you might think you should minimize fat consumption. This type of thinking may be sabotaging your weight loss efforts. Instead, think about consuming the right types of fat. One of the fats that has been found to be beneficial for weight loss is coconut oil.
Consuming coconut oil is very different than consuming other types of fat, because it reacts differently within your body. Most types of dietary fats contain long-chain fatty acids, but coconut oil contains medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), which are metabolized in a unique way.
When you consume the MCTs in coconut oil, they move from the digestive tract to the liver. Since the MCTs in coconut oil are "thermogenic," meaning that they require a higher amount of energy to digest and metabolize, they help to boost your metabolism and provide you with additional energy throughout the day.
Since the body processes MCTs in this way, they increase the energy that is expended (compared with other types of fats). When energy is used at higher levels, fat loss occurs.
Researchers at the University of Geneva found that when 1 to 2 tablespoons of coconut oil is consumed each day, energy expenditure increases by about 120 calories each day.
Tips for Buying Coconut Oil
Since coconut oil is becoming more popular, you can find it at most grocery stores. Not all coconut oil is created equal, so you’ll want to be selective about the type you purchase.
When you are shopping, you will see two main categories of coconut oil: refined and unrefined. The refined coconut oil will not have the coconut taste, but it has been altered from its original form.
For the best health benefits, purchase unrefined coconut oil. Since it hasn’t been processed, it contains more antioxidants and polyphenols, which help to combat free-radical activity within the body. Look for labels with words such as "virgin" or "extra-virgin" to make sure that you are buying unrefined coconut oil and purchase organic whenever possible.
How to Use Coconut Oil
In The Kitchen
You can start using coconut oil where you might usually use other oils or butter. For example, if you are using a recipe that calls for 3 tablespoons of canola oil, try using 3 tablespoons of coconut oil instead.
Here are a few ideas of how I like to incorporate coconut oil into my diet:
Stir fry vegetables in coconut oil
Add a tablespoon of coconut oil into a smoothie
Spread coconut oil on your toast instead of butter
Use coconut oil as a butter substitute in baking
Fry eggs in coconut oil
Make popcorn with coconut oil
For Oral Care
You can start to use coconut oil for oral care by oil pulling a few times a week.
Make sure that you are using unrefined oil, organic if possible. Oil Pulling works by cleaning (detoxifying) the oral cavity, freeing it of toxins.
If you are new to oil pulling follow these simple directions:
Should be done first thing in the morning prior to brushing your teeth or eating/drinking anything
Place 1-2 tbsps. In your mouth and gently “swish” it around for 10-20 minutes and be sure not to swallow any of the oil!
Spit it out into the trash (it can clog your pipes if you spit it in the sink) and rinse immediately with warm water
Brush your teeth as normal
For Skin and Hair Care
You can start to use coconut oil to remove make-up (place a small amount on a cotton ball and gently cleanse your face), as a night moisturizer (gently rub a small amount on your face after cleansing), as a lip balm (rub a small amount on your lips), dry hand relief (rub a small amount on your hands after doing dishes/washing your hands), dry skin relief (gently rub a small amount on dry skin daily), place a couple of drops of oil on your scalp and gently massage to keep your scalp moisturized, help reduce dandruff and keep your hair looking shiny, if you have dry/split ends you can rub some oil on the ends of your hair.
There are so many beneficial uses for coconut oil; try some today and I’m sure you won’t be disappointed!