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Coconut Oil - Health and Beauty benefits!

Hello beauties! I am coconut oil obsessed lately! It is so amazing all the things this oil can do for your body, inside and out.

Coconut oil is a medium chain fatty acid with small molecules that allow it to penetrate into the skin and triglycerides that help retain moisture. It is rich in Vitamin E (skin healing properties) and Caprylic, Capric, and Lauric Acid which all have anti-microbial and disinfectant properties.

Before I discuss everything this oil can do, it's important to know what to look for when choosing which brand you want to buy:        Look for coconut oil that is unrefined; you may also see the words virgin, cold-pressed, and organic. All of these things are good! Avoid any refined coconut oil, they are usually refined using a chemical distillation process dependent on lye or other harsh solvents.

You can find great coconut oil at any health food store - my favorite is:

IMG_5474Nature's Way EfaGold Coconut Oil. I purchased mine at Vitamin Shoppe for $8.99

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IMG_5527Some key words on the label - unrefined, non-bleached, pure extra virgin, certified organic, cold pressed & hexane free... Not all labels will list everything this one does, but unrefined is probably the most important thing you want to look for.

IMG_5475I should have taken a picture before I started digging into it but, it should be pure white (refined ones are sometimes an off-white color). It stays solid at room temperature but turns into a liquid at 76 degrees F and will return back to a solid once it's cooled. I keep it as a solid (keeping it as a liquid can get messy), and it turns to liquid immediately with body heat - right when you touch this, it will turn into an oil. It's pretty cool but takes some getting used to.

Now for the fun part! :)

Health Benefits:

  • Increases metabolism - studies show women who took 2 tablespoons of coconut oil daily had a decreased amount of fat in their abdomen.
  • Boosts immune system
  • Lowers cholesterol
  • Improves heart health
  • Anti-cancer fighting properties
  • Energy boosting
  • Helps insulin resistance
  • Can be used to reduce symptoms of Alzheimer's
  • Studies have shown it has an anti-viral effect for patients with HIV/AIDS

There are many ways you can incorporate this into your diet for all the health benefits. You can simply take it as a supplement, a spoonful 1-4 times daily, but it has a very weird texture that takes some getting used to so I like to add it into different things I eat or drink throughout the day.

You can cook with it, in replace of butter or any oils you use.

Add it to smoothies or if you "juice"

I LOVE it in my coffee! Every morning I put a spoonful in (keep the spoon with you to continue mixing, the oil will rise to the top if left for a few minutes) and it adds a delicious coconut flavor to my coffee.. Of course, if you aren't a coconut fan you may not want to do this but I loooooove the taste!

I also enjoy spreading it on toast in the morning, it adds a really nice flavor!

Put a small amount in a bowl, into the microwave for a few seconds and then drizzle over popcorn in replace of butter! (Thank you, Amanda for that great suggestion!)

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Beauty Benefits:

  • Super hydrating - Amazing moisturizer - face, lips, and body - it won't clog pores!
  • Makeup remover
  • Eye cream - said to help prevent signs of aging!
  • Hair masque - can tame frizziness, dandruff, adds shine, and is protein rich (can help hair growth)
  • Shaving oil
  • Cuticle oil
  • Add it to a bath for super smooth skin
  • Psoriasis and Eczema treatment
  • Treats diaper rash
  • Acne treatment
  • Anti-fungal properties that help heal infections, such as athlete's foot and ringworm

For a moisturizer, I like to take a small amount and warm it up in my hands and then apply it where needed! Same goes for as a cuticle oil. I keep a small jar of it, dip my finger in and rub it into my cuticles. It's so moisturizing!

For treatment of Psoriasis - studies have shown amazing results from using CO as a topical treatment. Of course it can't cure it, but it can make a big difference in the symptoms (itching, redness, dryness, etc.).

Hair Masque recipe - you can apply just the coconut oil or you can also mix two spoonfuls of coconut oil with one egg! It adds lots of protein and shine to your hair! I usually don't add the egg because just the coconut oil alone works wonders and it makes my hair SO soft. It works better than any masque I use. I'd say to use this maybe once a week if you have dry and damaged hair, less often if your hair is healthy - you don't want to overload healthy hair with more protein than needed! To apply: First, I'll rub some in my palms and on my fingertips and work it really good into my scalp - it's great for dryness and dandruff - and then I'll work it into the rest of my hair and focus a good amount on the ends. Then once all my hair is saturated, I'll either put a shower cap on for a few hours or even just clip it up, but be careful because it can get messy! Leave it in for a few hours, or put a towel on your pillow and wash it out in the morning; be sure to rinse really good and shampoo and condition like you normally do, I usually shampoo twice to make sure it's all out.

For an acne treatment - it has anti-microbial and disinfectant properties so it's great for acne! Whether you take it as a supplement or use it as a moisturizer (or both)! I know putting oil on your face when you have acne is a scary thought, but there are healthy oils for your skin and coconut oil is one of the best! :)

Facial exfoliator recipe - Mix a quarter size of coconut oil with some honey and baking soda! The baking soda will exfoliate, the honey and coconut oil are both have antibacterial properties and are super moisturizing. Rub it into your skin gently for a minute or two and then rinse with warm water.

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These aren't even all of the things this oil can do! It is truly amazing!

Do you use coconut oil? List in the comments all your uses for it! :)

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