The Amazing Health Benefits of Consuming Coconut Oil
Coconut Oil- Is it in your kitchen or bathroom?!
Nutritionally speaking, the fatty acids in coconut oil lend can have significant effects on your wellbeing. Just take a look at some of the body-wide benefits you can reap just by adding this oil to your diet:
•Supports proper thyroid function – Unlike soy oil and other vegetable oils, coconut oil does not interfere with thyroid function. It has anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce inflammation that may lead to hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism.1
•Promotes heart health – Animal and human studies found that heart disease risk factors such as total, LDL and HDL cholesterol levels were greatly improved by taking coconut oil.
In particular, coconut oil’s saturated fats may actually increase “good” HDL cholesterol, while also helping convert “bad” LDL cholesterol into a less harmful form.2 (More on this later)
•Promotes healthy brain function – Researchers found that ketones may work as an alternative energy source for malfunctioning brain cells, which has been found to reduce symptoms in Alzheimer’s disease patients.3
•Gives your immune system a boost – The lauric acid, antimicrobial lipids, capric acid, and caprylic acid that coconut oil contains are known for their antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties.4
Regularly using it may help prevent colds/flus, and alleviate illnesses like hepatitis C, herpes and the Epstein-barr virus.5
•Helps promote weight loss – Coconut oil provides an excellent “fuel” for your body and stimulating your metabolism to help you shed excess body fat.
•Aids in digestion – This oil is easy on your digestive system, and will not produce an insulin spike in your bloodstream. The medium-chain fatty acids can also be absorbed easily in your digestive tract, comparted to longer chain fatty acids found in polyunsaturated vegetable oils.
•Maintains healthy and youthful looking skin – Applying coconut oil topically benefits your skin as it helps reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. This is because the oil keeps your connective tissues strong and supple.
It can also exfoliate dead skin cells, giving your skin a smoother and healthier appearance.
•Keeps candida yeast from wreaking havoc on your body – A study published in mSphere found that mice that were given coconut oil had a 10-fold drop in the colonization of Candida albicans yeast in their gut, compared to mice that were given soybean oil or beef tallow.6
•Promotes good oral health – One study found that massaging coconut oil on your gums for 10 minutes a day, for at least three weeks, has a significant effect on reducing plaque and decay-causing Streptococcus mutans.7
But aside from its internal health benefits, coconut oil has countless other uses. You can rely on it for topical beauty applications or a first-aid treatment. It can even play a role on your household cleaning and sanitizing (more about this later)!
Coconut Oil as a Toiletry, a Cleaner — Even an Insect Repellent
If you haven’t had a chance to explore all the amazing uses of coconut oil you may be in for a pleasant surprise. Besides its ability to promote heart health and squelch the risk of stroke, it’s been shown to strengthen your immune system even as you attain soft, supple skin.
Coconut oil works well as a facial cleanser and makes a great shaving lotion. Slathering it on dry, lifeless hair for 15 minutes helps restore lost moisture and shine.
While it doesn’t impart the minty aftertaste that most toothpastes pride themselves on, using it before bed helps not only freshen your breath, but kills bacteria that cause plaque and other problems, without the fluoride (and if you miss the minty taste, just add a drop of essential oil- Peppermint. If you’re looking for a natural deodorant that will last and won’t pose potential health risks from added aluminum, thoroughly mix:
•3 Tbsp. organic coconut oil
•3 Tbsp. non-GMO cornstarch or arrowroot powder
•3 Tbsp. Baking Soda
•2 drops of essential oil of your choice, or a pinch of clove powder
As for the Insect repellant a good recipe combines coconut oil with a high-quality essential oil such as peppermint, lemon balm, rosemary, tea tree or vanilla, which may help keep insects from biting, as opposed to applying toxic sprays like DEET.