Yoga Mail

By Jessica.S

Coconut oil isn’t new to the world by any means, but over the past decade, its uses have certainly become a major health trend. The uses and health benefits of coconut oil can seem endless and are widely touted. Coconut oil, which is high in natural saturated fats, not only increase the healthy cholesterol (known as HDL cholesterol) in your body but also help convert the LDL (‘bad’ cholesterol) into good cholesterols. By increasing the HDL in the body, it helps promote heart health and lower the risk of heart disease. In the household, coconut oil is ideal for cooking because almost 90% of its fatty acids are saturated, making it extremely stable at high temperatures. It’s also a beauty multitasker that you can use to hydrate your skin, fight frizzy hair and reduce premature signs of ageing.

Here are Eight Ways to Use Coconut Oil to Better Your Life:

Hair mask

While in the shower, after shampooing, apply a generous amount of the oil to wet strands and twist hair into a bun. Let it sit for at least five minutes before rinsing to add moisture and shine back into limp locks.

Body oil

Apply a quarter-sized amount right after you get out of the shower so that it can sink into your warm skin.

Lip balm

Chapped lips don’t stand a chance against the ultra-hydrating coconut oil. Dab it on your lips with your finger throughout the day to avoid getting chapped lips.

Cuticle softener

Say goodbye to ragged cuticles. Using your finger, swipe a small amount of the oil onto each of your cuticles and allow it to sink in. The coconut oil will strengthen your nails and hydrate the delicate cuticle skin, making your hands look more youthful.

Under-eye cream

The skin under your eyes is thin and delicate, making it prone to fine lines, puffiness, and dark circles. Just rub a pinch in between fingers to warm it up before patting it underneath your eyes.

Frizz fighter

Rub a pea size amount of coconut oil between your fingers to warm it up, and then apply it to the bottom couple inches of your hair for all-day frizz protection. If you have thicker, coarser hair, apply the coconut oil from mid-shaft to ends for added frizz control. It also leaves hair extra shiny and soft.

Makeup remover

Just a teaspoon can take off a day’s worth of makeup with ease, no matter the staying power. Massage a dollop of liquefied coconut oil straight onto skin and watch as the makeup melts away. Then rinse with water.

Body scrub

Mix half a cup of sugar with an equal amount of coconut oil. Use your hands to rub it over any rough patches of the skin. The scrub moisturizes while removing dead skin cells.

Coconut oil can also be used for weight loss. The best time to take coconut oil is 20 minutes before mealtime as it significantly reduces one’s appetite.

However, many people are confused about the quantity to be consumed. Start with small amounts to avoid loose stools that may occur with high intake. Take 1 teaspoon per day, gradually increasing it to 2 tablespoons per day over 1-2 weeks. Consuming 2 tablespoons of coconut oil per day is sufficient to achieve health benefits, but it’s best to work up to this amount gradually.

Be aware that not all coconut oil is created equal for weight loss purposes. Using only organic virgin coconut oil therapeutically for your weight loss efforts is a good idea as all the delicate micronutrients in the oil will be preserved and no chemicals will have been used in processing. How to identify a good quality coconut oil? The first thing to look for is virgin coconut oil. Virgin coconut oil outweighs RBD (Refined, bleached, and deodorized) oil. The lesser the processing food undergoes, the higher the nutrient content and the healthier it is. Processing removes and destroys nutrients. Virgin coconut oil is made from fresh coconut without high heat or chemicals.

Another thing to look for in a higher quality coconut oil is aroma and flavour. Virgin coconut oil should always retain a coconut smell and taste. If not, they have been highly refined. If no flavour, they are essentially RBD oil, even if they did come from fresh coconut. Some virgin coconut oils have a very strong flavour or smell. These are almost always of poor quality. The smell and taste come primarily from contaminants and not from the coconut. The best virgin coconut oil does not have a strong roasted or smoky taste or smell. They should have a very mild coconut aroma and flavour.

Coconut oil has been used for thousands of years by cultures all over the world to treat respiratory issues, fight infections, regulate digestion, preserve oral health and prevent malnutrition. There is no end to the uses of coconut oil and you should really have it in your house for daily use.