Coconut oil has been described as “the healthiest oil on earth.” That is quite a remarkable statement associated with this natural and humble oil.
The coconut tree is considered the “tree of life”
Recently, the ancient virtues of Coconut oil is being rediscovered by western cultures.
Coconut oil has a multitude of health benefits, which include but are not limited to skin care, hair care, improving digestion and immunity against a host of infections and diseases.
The oil is used not just in tropical countries,for thousands of years, people are discovering the wonders this oil can create and it is again gaining popularity throughout the world.
That Coconut oil provides numerous nutrients important for good health, fighting various diseases and supporting metabolism.
Though ostracized in recent decades due to its bad-for-you saturated fat, science is finally convincing skeptical researchers that this ancient oil has unique and essential properties for optimal health.
In Ayurveda, the coconut is considered a “functional food,” meaning that beyond its many useful vitamins and nutrients, the coconut also functions to restore optimal health. The oil of the coconut was revered around the world as a concentrate of what many consider to be the perfect food. Calms Vata and Pitta, Supports Kapha.
So how are people using coconut oil?
What are some of the health benefits of coconut oil being reported? Some of the most recent research has come from people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, with reports of people improving or even reversing the effects of Alzheimer’s by using coconut oil, as drug trials on Alzheimer’s drugs continue to fail. Alzheimer’s is now seen as a type 3 form of diabetes, and for years we have seen positive results from people with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes in using coconut oil. We have also seen a lot of reports of coconut oil health benefits from those suffering from hypothryroidism, as coconut oil helps boost metabolism and raise body temperatures to promote thyroid health. Restricting carbohydrates and increasing coconut oil in the diet has also led many to report losing weight with coconut oil. Candida sufferers also report health benefits with coconut oil as research now confirms, and those suffering from various skin diseases are also seeing tremendous health benefits by applying coconut oil directly on the skin. The benefits of coconut oil for healthy hair are also well known, and other healthy benefits of coconut oil included fighting off bacterial infections and viruses. Coconut oil is also increasingly being seen to benefit athletes and fitness trainers giving them an advantage in sustaining energy levels longer without drugs or stimulants.
Coconut oil is excellent massage oil that acts as an effective moisturizer on all types of skin, including dry skin. Unlike mineral oil, there is no chance of having any adverse side effects on the skin from the application of coconut oil. Therefore, it is a safe solution for preventing dryness and flaking of skin. It also delays the appearance of wrinkles and sagging of skin, which normally accompany aging.
It helps in preventing degenerative diseases premature aging due to its well-known antioxidant properties. It also helps in treating various skin problems including psoriasis, dermatitis, eczema and other skin infections. For that exact reason, coconut oil forms the base ingredient of various body care products like soaps, lotions, and creams that are used for skin care.
Coconut oil helps in healthy growth of hair and gives your hair a shiny quality. It is also highly effective in reducing protein loss, which can lead to various unattractive or unhealthy qualities in your hair. It is used as hair care oil and is used in manufacturing various conditioners and dandruff relief creams.
Coconut oil is extensively used in the Indian sub-continent for hair care. It is an excellent conditioner and helps the re-growth process of damaged hair. It also provides the essential proteins required for nourishing and healing damaged hair. Research studies indicate that coconut oil provides better protection to hair from damage caused by hygral fatigue.
By regularly massaging your head with coconut oil, you can ensure that your scalp is free of dandruff, even if your scalp is chronically dry.
Melt a jar of 2 spoon coconut oil in warm water.
Stir in 4 drops of lavender, rosemary essential oil, or ylang ylang.
Apply on dry hair and gently comb mixture through hair.
Cover with towel, and leave on 2 hours or overnight.
Rinse with water, wash with natural shampoo, and towel dry.
Repeat at least once a week.
There is a misconception spread among many people that coconut oil is not good for heart health. This is because it contains a large quantity of saturated fats. In reality, it is beneficial for the heart. It contains about 50% lauric acid, which helps in actively preventing various heart problems like high cholesterol levels and high blood pressure. Coconut oil does not lead to increase in LDL levels, and it reduces the incidence of injury and damage to arteries and therefore helps in preventing atherosclerosis. Study suggests that intake of coconut oil may help to maintain healthy lipid profiles in pre-menopausal women.
Coconut oil is very useful for weight loss. It contains short and medium-chain fatty acids that help in taking off excessive weight. Research suggests that coconut oil helps to reduce abdominal obesity in women. It is also easy to digest and it helps in healthy functioning of the thyroid and endocrine system. Further, it increases the body’s metabolic rate by removing stress on the pancreas, thereby burning more energy and helping obese and overweight people lose the weight. Hence, people living in tropical coastal areas, who use coconut oil every day as their primary cooking oil, are normally not fat, obese or overweight.
It strengthens the immune system because it contains antimicrobial lipids, lauric acid, capric acid and caprylic acid, which have antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties. The human body converts lauric acid into monolaurin which research has supported as an effective way to deal with viruses and bacteria that cause diseases like herpes, influenza, cytomegalovirus, and even HIV. Coconut oil helps in fighting harmful bacteria like listeria monocytogenes and helicobacter pylori, and harmful protozoa such as giardia lamblia.
Internal functions of coconut oil occur primarily due to it being used as cooking oil. It helps to improve the digestive system and thus prevents various stomach and digestion-related problems including irritable bowel syndrome. The saturated fats present in coconut oil have antimicrobial properties and help in dealing with various bacteria, fungi, and parasites that can cause indigestion. It also helps in the absorption of other nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and amino acids.
Candida, also known as Systemic Candidiasis, is a tragic disease caused from excessive and uncontrolled growth of yeast called Candida Albicans in the stomach. Coconut provides relief from the inflammation caused by candida, both externally and internally. Its high moisture retaining capacity keeps the skin from cracking or peeling off. Capric acid, Caprylic acid, caproic acid, myristic acid and lauric acid found in coconut oil help in eliminating Candida albicans.
Further, unlike other pharmaceutical treatments for candida, the effects of coconut oil is gradual and not drastic or sudden, which gives the patient an appropriate amount of time to get used to the withdrawal symptoms or Herxheimer Reactions (the name given to the symptoms accompanying body’s rejection of toxins generated during elimination of these fungi). But, in the treatment of this condition, people should systematically and gradually increase their dosages of coconut oil and shouldn’t initially start with a large quantity.
Healing and Infections:
When applied to infected areas, coconut oil forms a chemical layer that protects the infected body part from external dust, air, fungi, bacteria and viruses. Coconut oil is highly effective on bruises because it speeds up the healing process of damaged tissues.
According to the Coconut Research Center, coconut oil kills the viruses that cause influenza, measles, hepatitis, herpes, SARS, and other serious health risks. It also kills bacteria that cause ulcers, throat infections, urinary tract infections, pneumonia, and gonorrhoea. Finally, coconut oil is also effective in the elimination of fungi and yeast that cause ringworm, athlete’s foot, thrush, and diaper rash.
Coconut oil is strongly recommended for a number of other benefits that are explained below. Using coconut oils has been shown to mildly help the following:
• Helps in preventing liver, kidneys diseases, is also believed to be useful in treating pancreatitis.
• Coconut oil is very soothing and hence it helps in removing stress. Applying it to the head, followed by a gentle massage, helps to eliminate mental fatigue. According to research virgin coconut oil gives relief from stress and has antioxidant properties.
• Coconut oil helps in controlling blood sugar, and improves the secretion of insulin. It also promotes the effective utilization of blood glucose, thereby preventing and treating diabetes.
• As mentioned earlier, coconut oil improves the ability of our body to absorb important minerals. These include calcium and magnesium, which are necessary for the development of bones. Thus, it is very useful to women who are prone to osteoporosis after middle age.
• Calcium is an important component of our teeth. Since coconut oil facilitates absorption of calcium by the body, it helps in developing strong teeth. It also stops tooth decay. Recent research suggests that coconut oil is beneficial in reducing plaque formation and plaque induced gingivitis.
• It is believed that coconut oil plays an instrumental role in reducing a person’s viral susceptibility for HIV and cancer patients. Preliminary research has shown an indication of this effect of coconut oil on reducing the viral load of HIV patients.
• Coconut oil is often used by athletes, body builders and by those who are dieting. The reason behind this being that it contains less calories than other oils, its fat content is easily converted into energy, and it does not lead to accumulation of fat in the heart and arteries. Coconut oil helps boost energy and endurance, and generally enhances the performance of athletes.
Use as Carrier Oil
Carrier oils are those oils, which easily penetrate or absorb into the skin and thus facilitate seepage or absorption of other oils (such as essential oils) and herbal extracts through the skin when mixed into it. It is easily absorbed through the skin’s pores and thus is used as carrier oil. Furthermore, being one of the most stable oils, it doesn’t go rancid, nor does it let the other oils, herbal extracts, or medicines spoil inside of it. It does not alter the properties of the oils and herbs mixed within it. It also protects the herbs and oils from microbial or fungal interactions. Coconut oil is expensive in several countries; however, in tropical countries its cost is low enough to make it affordable as carrier oil.
Composition of Coconut Oil
More than 90% of coconut oil consists of saturated fats (Don’t panic! It’s not as bad as it sounds, read to the end of this review and your opinion may change), along with traces of a few unsaturated fatty acids, such as monounsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids. Virgin coconut oil is no different from this.
Saturated fatty acids: Most of them are medium chain triglycerides, which are supposed to assimilate well in the body’s systems.
-Lauric acid: It is the chief contributor, representing more than 40% of the total, followed by capric acid, caprylic acid, myristic acid and palmitic. The human body converts lauric acid into monolaurin. Lauric acid is helpful in dealing with viruses and diseases.
-Capric acid: It reacts with certain enzymes secreted by other bacteria, which subsequently convert it into a powerful antimicrobial agent, monocaprin.
-Caprylic acid, caproic acid and myristic acid: They are rich in antimicrobial and antifungal properties
Unsaturated fatty acids: Polyunsaturated fatty acids- linoleic acid, monounsaturated fatty acids- Oleic acid
Poly-phenols: Coconut contains Gallic acid, which is also known as phenolic acid. These polyphenols are responsible for the fragrance and the taste of coconut oil and Virgin Coconut Oil is rich in these polyphenols.
Derivatives of fatty acid: Betaines, ethanolamide, ethoxylates, fatty esters, fatty polysorbates, monoglycerides and polyol esters.
Derivatives of fatty alcohols: Fatty chlorides, fatty alcohol sulphate and fatty alcohol ether sulphate.
Coconut oil is great for cooking at a high heat because of its high smoke point. Many other oils like olive oil can oxidize when heated but because coconut oil is made up of healthy saturated fats it remains stable under high temperatures.
Recipe of Coconut bars:
Ingredients for filling:
100 g of almond
90 g of shredded coconut flesh
10 g of coconut flour
5 spoons of coconut oil
50 g of agave (or maple) syrup
½ teaspoons of vanilla powder
For chocolate topping:
40 g of coconut oil
30 g of cocoa (or carob) powder
20 g of agave syrup (or another raw sweetener)
1) Soak almonds for the night, wash them well and then peel their ,,skin”.
2) Mix all ingredients for filling and add some water if mixing doesn’t go smoothly.
3) Let the filling stay in the fridge for 15 minute.
4) Meanwhile mix all ingredients for topping and let it stay in room temperature.
5) Make bars from chilled coconut mass (but make it fast, because you don’t want to warm up the mass), then soak it in chocolate and trickle down the excess of chocolate.
6) It is the best that you let the bars freeze overnight.
This is an amazing gift of nature to man!
Boswellia club recommends coconut oil for use anytime and anywhere.
The information presented here is for educational purposes of traditional uses. You are responsible for understanding the safe application of these products. If you have any questions, please email us for further information.