I love, love, love coconut oil for a myriad of reasons that relate to many different aspects of my health and wellness. First of all, coconut oil is a medium-chain fatty acid. This is a saturated fat that’s found in coconut and in mother’s milk. Because of the medium bonds in this fat, it burns in a completely different way than other fats. Coconut oil is burned in the liver instead of going through the longer process of using bile and breaking down into a usable fat. This becomes a fast food source as it can raise metabolism and help thyroid function. I witnessed this many times with my daughter Maci when she would consume coconut oil when she had IBS. She would suddenly get a burst of energy and I would hear her dancing and exercising in her room when moments before she had been laying around. Coconut oil is burned like a carbohydrate and will burn first and not last like most fats. In addition to being a good energy source, coconut oil contains lauric acid, a fat found in mother’s milk that has anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and antioxidant properties. I witnessed this firsthand when it got rid of a case of my ringworm (which is caused by a fungus). Coconut oil also removed cysts that I had on my skin for years that would never go away – after I started applying coconut oil topically, they dissolved and went away. I was amazed. It is fabulous for diaper rash and will work miracles on skin issues of any kind.
Since it is so powerful, why did this super fat disappear for many years? It got a bad rap because they took this incredible oil and changed it through the process of hydrogenation which will make any fat a bad fat. Then they did studies on the hydrogenated fat, deemed it bad, and we all stopped using it. Coconut oil faded into the background while polyunsaturated fats took its place. They changed it to make oils more stable on store shelves, because fats can go rancid very quickly. Coconut oil doesn’t have this problem; but just the same, they changed it anyway and turned it into a harmful fat. Fortunately, that has all changed and it is back in its original form. It has been shown that lauric acid increases the good HDL cholesterol in the blood to help improve cholesterol ratio levels and now many are singing its praises.
It is great for helping to kill candida because of the caprylic acid, a potent anti-fungal agent, that it contains. You will have a significant die off from consuming this, so don’t be surprised if you detox from coconut oil when you start consuming it.
I use it to cook with and even at high heat it remains stable. It’s wonderful in breads and baked goods, does great with sprouted flour, and is wonderful when making a tub of popcorn or putting a spoonful in smoothies.
I use it on my skin as a lotion. When applied to the skin, coconut oil can block out up to 20% of the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays, as shown in this 2011 study. We use it daily instead of toothpaste and my toothsoap is made with coconut oil. You can find the recipe here. It works wonders on gum disease, too.
There are many coconut oils on the market and here are some of the ones I use. Virgin coconut oil which has a coconut taste but I also use the organic expeller pressed coconut oil which has no flavor at all and is made the “old” way by expeller-pressed mechanical extraction. Last year I couldn’t find my coconut oil anywhere and finally found it in the garage with my husband. He was so excited because he found that coconut oil is fabulous for waxing our boat, so I bought him his own bucket of coconut oil.
These are just a few of the ways I use it and consume it. Now I want to show you how I make it into a body butter that is creamy and whipped which makes it easy to apply. Here are a couple of my favorite things to make with coconut oil.