Coconut oil has been used by more than a third of the world since time began. It has only been in recent years that coconut oil became popular throughout the world due to celebrities and influencers endorsing it over social media.
**Disclosure: Some of the links in this article are affiliate links, which means if you click on them I and make a purchase I may make a commission at no extra cost to you**
According to science, excessive oils containing mainly fats are never good for human consumption and coconut oil is one of such oils that is 100% fat. However, some fats, especially the good fats, are needed for the body to function properly and coconut oil is filled with such good fats.
Read also Is Coconut Water Good For You?
Therefore, instead of adding more fats, be it coconut oil or another fat, to one’s diet, one should replace one’s fat consumption with coconut oil to better reap its benefits and improve one’s overall health and well-being.
What is coconut oil?
Coconut oil is the edible oil that comes from the copra or white flesh of mature coconuts harvested from the coconut palm tree when the coconut drupe is about 20 months old because young coconuts do not have much copra.
This coconut oil can be extracted by various processes. The worst one for human consumption is via the dry process where the copra is first dried then pressed to produce the coconut oil. This is preceded by refined coconut oil which has no taste nor aroma.
Wet processes use raw coconuts and the best one for human consumption would be virgin coconut oil where fresh copra or fresh coconut milk is used to produce the premium coconut oil which is light yellow in color and has an aromatic coconut flavor with sweet taste.
As coconut oil has a very high smoking point at 232 °C (450 °F), it is suitable for cooking under high heat conditions such as deep frying without oxidizing. Due to its taste, coconut oil works well in both savory and sweet dishes and can replace dairy products to make pastry and creamy desserts.
Coconut oil can also be fractionated to separate its various fatty acids for their own specific uses such as medical applications, special diets, cosmetics, and as a carrier oil in fragrance and pharmaceutical industries.
Due to its high saturated fat content, coconut oil is a white cream color in its stable solid state at room temperature. As coconut oil is slow to oxidize, it has a long shelf life and can be kept for up to six months at room temperature, that is 24 °C (75 °F), without turning rancid and spoiling.
Nutritional Facts Of Coconut Oil
For the different varieties of coconut oil, the average nutritional value per 100 grams of coconut oil is as compiled in the following table with the Percent Daily Values based on a diet of two thousand calories:
|NUTRITION INFORMATION||AMOUNT||DAILY % VALUE|
|From Fat||862 kcal|
|Total Omega-6 Fatty Acids||1800 mg|
|Vitamin E (Tocopherol)||0.20 mg||1.4%|
|Vitamin K||0.6 mcg||1%|
As seen in the table above, providing 862 calories in a hundred grams, coconut oil is one of the most concentrated sources of energy containing zero cholesterol. All the calories that are found in coconut oil come from fat.
Although that may seem unhealthy at first glance, one must realize that fat is a necessity in human diets for optimal health because it absorbs vitamins so that they can be used by the body, protects organs, creates hormones, and maintains a normal body temperature. As fat is required to perform these numerous functions in the body, as much as thirty-five percent of our calories need to come from fat.
Based on a two thousand calories diet, this would mean seven hundred of calories from fat or 78 grams of total fat. A tablespoon of coconut oil has 13.5 grams of total fat, that is 120 calories, and gives 31 percent of your total fat allowance for the entire day.
Dietary fat is either solid which is saturated fats derived from animals, for example lard, drippings, butter; or liquid which is unsaturated fats derived from plants, for example olive oil and nut oil.
The difference between a saturated fat and an unsaturated fat is the way that the carbon atoms in the long chains of fatty acids found in fat molecules are connected to one another. In a saturated fat molecule, all the carbon atoms are held together with single bonds and the fat molecule cannot take on any more hydrogen atoms.
In an unsaturated fat molecule, one or more carbon atoms are linked by double bonds so one of these bonds can loosen and connect to a passing hydrogen atom thereby adding another hydrogen atom to the molecule.
This ability of unsaturated fats to take on hydrogen atoms is exploited when vegetable oils are hydrogenated and converted into solid trans fats which are the worst type of fats for consumption because the human body cannot readily process it.
However, trans fats are cheaper than normal saturated fats and is used for industrial scale baking as they have a longer shelf life. A fat is monounsaturated if it contains only one double bond among its carbon atoms and polyunsaturated if it has many double bonds.
All oils are a mixture of saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated fatty acids, and the most damaging artery-clogging fatty acid amongst them is saturated fat. However, the human body requires some saturated fat because fifty percent of our cell membranes are made of saturated fatty acids whose job encompasses everything from enhancing the immune system to protecting the liver from toxins.
The hundred percent of fat in coconut oil contains more than eighty percent of saturated fats. It is indeed one of the rare plant sources of saturated fat as these type of fats are usually found mainly in animal products as fore-mentioned.
Generally, too much saturated fat is considered harmful because it raises bad cholesterol levels which sticks to the inside of arteries and makes them hard rather than pliable. This increases the risk of heart diseases as the heart works harder to keep blood moving, adding unnecessary wear and tear to the heart muscle. Therefore no more than ten percent of our calories should come from saturated fat, that is two hundred calories or 22 grams, for a two thousand calories diet.
However, the saturated fat content in coconut oil is very different from your normal harmful saturated fats. This is because there are different types of saturated fats. Some are long-chain and have more than 12 carbon atoms while some are medium-chain and have less than 12 carbon atoms.
These medium-chain fats are considered good saturated fats because they raise the good cholesterol levels and lower the risk of heart diseases by transporting the bad cholesterol to the liver for deconstruction and removal.
Good cholesterol should be consumed as cholesterol is needed for optimal brain health because the human brain, spinal cord, and nerves, are made up of twenty-five percent cholesterol. Do note that some long-chain saturated fats, for instance stearic acid, have little impact on bad cholesterol.
So let us take a look at the composition of fatty acid content in coconut oil:
|Type Of Fatty Acid||Percentage In Coconut Oil|
|Caproic saturated C6||5%|
|Caprylic saturated C8||7%|
|Decanoic saturated C10||8%|
|Lauric saturated C12||48%|
|Myristoleic saturated C14||16%|
|Palmitoleic saturated C16||9.5%|
|Oleic monounsaturated C18:1||6.5%|
This table shows that the majority of saturated fats in coconut oil are the medium-chain ones and half of all that saturated fat is lauric acid (C12). The rest of the medium-chain ones are decanoic acid (C10), caprylic acid (C8), and caproic acid (C6). Altogether they make up 68 percent of the total saturated fats and 59 percent of the total fat content.
In the gut, these medium-chain fats are directly absorbed into the bloodstream without any barriers so that saves energy and induce quick satiety. The other significant saturated fats are palmitoleic acid and myristoleic acid while monounsaturated fats form 6 percent of total fats and polyunsaturated fats form 2 percent.
Coconut oil also contains phytosterols, namely gallic acid which is a phenolic acid. These polyphenols are responsible for the fragrance and taste of coconut oil.
Coconut oil is not rich in other micronutrients with trace amount of a few: there is the mineral iron which assists oxygen transportation; there is a minuscule amount of vitamin K which assists blood clotting; and finally there is a little vitamin E which is an antioxidant vitamin that fixes damaging free radicals and shields all cells.
Health Benefits Of Coconut Oil
One may consider replacing one’s current fat consumption with coconut oil for the following health benefits it brings.
Prevents Heart Diseases & High Blood Pressure
As afore-mentioned, coconut oil is high in natural good saturated fats which increases healthy cholesterol and decreases bad cholesterol thus reducing high blood pressure and heart diseases.
Improves Neurological Health
Coconut oil metabolizes quicker than other fats because of its high medium-chain fatty acids. These fats only go through a three-step process to be turned into fuel whereas other fats have to go through a 26-step process.
They are easier to digest being smaller in size which allows easier cell permeability for immediate energy and these medium-chain fatty acids are not readily stored as fat because they are processed by the liver which means they are immediately converted to energy.
When the liver digests these medium-chain fatty acids, it creates ketones which are readily accessible by the brain for energy. What normally happens is that the brain creates its own insulin to process glucose into energy but ketones supply energy to the brain without the need of insulin to process glucose into energy.
This means coconut oil is an easier to use energy source and so fuel the brain cells more efficiently which improves neurological health such as boosting mental performance, cognitive abilities, focus, memory and recall abilities, and preventing Alzheimer’s disease.
These saturated fats may also help those already with Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy, seizure, and depression, whose malfunctioning brain cells are unable to create their own insulin to use glucose properly and are therefore starving.
Ketones from coconut oil can create an alternate source of energy to help repair brain function. This is particularly useful in treating drug-resistant epilepsy which requires a ketogenic diet — a very low carb and high fat diet to increase the concentration of ketones in the blood.
Additionally the phenolic compounds and hormones that are found in coconut oil prevent the aggregation of amyloid beta peptides that cause Alzheimer’s.
The fatty acids in coconut oil prevents liver diseases and directly protects the liver from damage because they are easily converted into energy when they reach the liver thus reducing its workload and prevents fat accumulation.
The medium-chain fatty acids in coconut oil are easy to digest and do not require the pancreatic enzymes to be broken down which in turn eases the metabolic strain on the pancreas. This keeps the pancreas healthy and is useful in treating pancreatitis.
Improves Type I Diabetes
The medium-chain fatty acids in coconut oil balance the insulin reaction in the cells due to the ketones they produce which gives the body consistent energy source that is not dependent on glucose reactions as explained above. Its effect on insulin secretion allows blood glucose levels to be better regulated and balanced thus improving diabetes.
Prevents Insulin Resistance & Type II Diabetes
Insulin resistance is the precursor to type 2 diabetes. This happens when cells do not respond to insulin thereby unable to take in glucose for energy. In response, the pancreas produces more insulin to compensate and creates an overproduction cycle which causes type 2 diabetes.
Medium-chain fatty acids in coconut oil control blood sugar and improves insulin secretion by balancing the insulin reactions as described above thereby promoting the effective utilization of blood glucose and improves, prevents, and treats diabetes.
Prevents & Treats Cancer
Coconut oil can fight against cancer in two ways. Firstly are the ketones produced in the digestion of coconut oil which act as a barrier against tumour growth. Tumour cells require glucose to multiply and cannot access the energy in ketones.
Therefore a ketogenic diet aids in cancer recovery where it inhibits the growth of cancerous cells without affecting normal cells. Secondly, the medium-chain fatty acids in coconut oil can digest lipid walls of bacteria and thus kill some cancer-causing bacteria such as the helicobacter pylori responsible for stomach cancer.
Prevents Gall Bladder Diseases
The digestion of the medium-chain fatty acids that are found in coconut oil produces a monoglyceride called monooctanoin which is a cholesterol solvent used to remove gallstones. It also prevents the formation of gallstones and gall bladder diseases.
Treats UTIs & Kidney Infections & Stones
The medium-chained fatty acids in coconut oil work as a natural antibiotic by disrupting the lipid coating on bacteria and killing them. Thus coconut oil can heal kidney infections and clear up urinary tract infections. Additionally, the monooctanoin mentioned above can also dissolve kidney stones.
Reduces Inflammation & Arthritis
Inflammation causes many chronic diseases and conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and pain. Coconut oil has anti-inflammatory properties that relieves pain and suffering. Virgin coconut oil has higher levels of antioxidants that treats arthritis and reduces inflammation, pain, and fever. It can suppress inflammatory cells by working as both an analgesic and anti-inflammatory by increasing antioxidant enzymes while decreasing the expression of inflammatory genes like COX-2, iNOS, and IL-6.
Coconut oil strengthens the immune system because it contains anti-microbial lipids, caproic acid, lauric acid and caprylic acid, which have anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and anti-viral properties.
Caproic acid reacts with certain enzymes secreted by other bacteria and converts into the anti-microbial agent monocaprin.
Caprylic acid, caproic acid, and myristoleic acid are rich in anti-microbial and anti-fungal properties.
Lauric acid is naturally found in breast milk which protects newborns from infections and pathogens. It is converted to monolaurin in the body which increases immunity by fighting diseases and eliminating a large variety of bacteria by disintegrating their lipid membrane and destroying the organism as well as create a hostile environment for viruses.
Together, ingesting these components in coconut oil can destroy bacteria and viruses leading to ulcers, throat infections, dental cavities, food poisoning, pneumonia, gonorrhoea, herpes, measles, influenza, hepatitis, SARS, and AIDs, as well as pathogens such as cytomegalovirus, HIV, Listeria monocytogenes, Helicobacter pylori, Staphylococcus Aureus, and harmful protozoa such as Giardia lamblia, as well as the yeast Candida Albicans. Used externally, coconut oil can prevent and treat fungi and infections such as ringworm, athlete’s foot, thrush, and diaper rash.
Hence one should replace the grains and sugar in one’s diet with coconut oil as natural fuel source when one is sick because sugar feeds the growth of bad bacteria.
Treats Candida & Yeast Infections
The caproic acid and lauric acid found in coconut oil makes it an effective natural remedy for candida albicans and yeast infections when one removes processed sugar and refined grains from the diet and consume a tablespoon of coconut oil three times daily.
Candida, which is also known as systemic candidiasis, is caused by an excessive uncontrolled growth of the yeast Candida albicans in the stomach. Coconut oil provides internal and external relief from the inflammation caused by candida. When ingested, the caproic acid, caprylic acid, myristoleic acid, and lauric acid, found in coconut oil removes the yeast as described in the above section.
Applied topically, its ability to retain moisture prevents the skin from cracking and peeling off. Unlike any other pharmaceutical treatments for candida, the effects of coconut oil is gradual and not drastic or sudden.
That gives the patient an appropriate amount of time to get used to the Herxheimer reactions which are the withdrawal symptoms accompanying a body’s rejection of toxins generated during the elimination of these fungi.
Boosts Digestive Health
Consumption of coconut oil aids the digestive tract by improving the absorption of nutrients, fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K, minerals such as calcium and magnesium, and amino acids, making them readily available for use by the body. It improves gut health by destroying bad bacteria and candida as described above.
Coconut oil corrects the candida imbalance that decreases stomach acid which in turn causes inflammation and poor digestion thereby treating and preventing stomach ulcers, colitis and digestion-related problems including irritable bowel syndrome. The medium-chain fatty acids in coconut oil promote the breakdown and complete digestion of lipids by improving the efficiency of enzymes related to metabolism.
As stated above, coconut oil improves the absorption of calcium and magnesium — the minerals necessary for the development of bones — in the gut which in turn increases bone volume and structure and decreases bone loss due to osteoporosis especially for middle-aged women who are prone to osteoporosis.
Coconut oil also has high levels of antioxidants to fight the oxidative stress and free radicals causing osteoporosis. These properties make coconut oil a leading natural treatment for the painful debilitating condition.
Stabilizes Thyroid & Hormonal Balance
The thyroid regulates bodily functions such as breathing, heart rate, and hormones production which regulates the speed of metabolism. The fatty acids, especially caproic acid, in coconut oil improves thyroid functioning, allowing the body to regulate thyroid cell metabolism and maintain a low resting heart rate, steady body weight, and balanced hormones production.
This is useful for menopause because the reduction in oestrogen levels during menopause has an adverse effect on plasma lipids and lipoproteins in women. Coconut oil increases the levels of beneficial proteins that conserve oestrogen and leads to healthier lipid profiles.
Improves Energy & Endurance
Coconut oil is used by athletes, triathletes, and bodybuilders, as their source of fuel during training and races for long-distance events as it enhances their performance because coconut oil is easy to digest and the fats are sent directly to the liver to be easily converted into energy which doesn’t lead to fat accumulation in the heart and arteries but boosts a longer sustained energy and endurance while increasing metabolism.
Eliminates Free Radicals Damage
When one play sports, exercises, and workout, free radicals are produced as the natural by-product of cellular respiration. When these free radicals build up excessively, they cause oxidative stress on the body leading to muscle fatigue and other diseases that inhibit an active lifestyle. Coconut oil enhances the body’s anti-oxidant defense system which inhibits this oxidative stress.
Coconut oil can treat poisoning, especially from aluminum phosphide which is often used in the grain storage facilities to control pests and rodents. Coconut oil prevents the absorption of the poison into the mitochondria of cells where it can cause rapid harm.
Promotes Prostate Health
When men age, the prostate gland which is an important part of the male reproductive system can become enlarged and makes it difficult for them to urinate. Coconut oil is an effective and natural treatment for men with benign prostatic hyperplasia as it reduces prostate weight and the ratio of prostate weight to body weight which are markers of testosterone-induced prostatic hyperplasia.
Anxiety & Stress Relief Aids Sleep
Although a little stress is useful to strengthen our physical and mental states, extreme constant stress is detrimental to the body physically and mentally. Coconut oil has medium-chain fatty acids that reduces stress and prevents the onset of stress-induced depression when ingested. When massaged to the head, coconut oil is soothing and eliminates mental fatigue. Coconut oil is also the perfect carrier oil because it easily penetrates skin pores and gets absorbed into the skin to facilitate seepage and absorption of other essential oils and herbs when making soothing and relaxing home remedies that aid in anxiety and insomnia. Due to its stable state at room temperature, coconut oil does not go rancid nor let the other oils and herbs and medicines spoil inside of it. Neither does coconut oil alter the properties of the components mixed within it but instead protects them from microbial and fungal interactions.
Speeds Up Healing
Wound healing involves the repair of damaged skin and tissues. When coconut oil is applied to these areas, it forms a chemical layer that protects them from external dust, air, fungi, bacteria, and viruses. Coconut oil enhances one’s healing ability and can heal bruises effectively as it speeds up the healing process of damaged tissues. Wounds treated with virgin coconut oil also heal much faster as it develops new blood vessels and increases proliferation of fibroblasts which are connective tissue cells in collagen.
Coconut Oil For Beauty
Coconut oil can be ingested to improve one’s body shape and can also be used externally for cosmetic purposes to improve one’s skin, hair, and dental health.
Coconut oil has no carbohydrates; easily creates energy and not be stored as fat; increases fat oxidation which causes less fat to be stored in the body; improves digestion and stimulates the body to burn more calories — all of which is beneficial in losing weight. In addition, coconut oil decreases appetite and hence caloric intake and helps to particularly shed belly as explained below.
Caproic acid in coconut oil decreases food consumption and a parallel loss of body weight due to its significant improvements in thyroid function which aids the body in burning fat for energy that mimics the characteristics of fasting where the body uses its energy reserves most effectively and speeds up the breakdown of needless fat reserves.
The medium-chain fatty acids together in coconut oil have lower calories than other fats and increase the amount of calories burnt as compared to long-chain fats because they speed up the body’s metabolism by removing stress on the pancreas thereby burning more energy which causes weight loss. These medium-chain fats can also reduce hunger due to the way the fats are metabolized to produce ketones that curbs cravings and appetite which leads to reduced body weight. Coconut oil thus helps to increase satiety to avoid overeating and snacking between meals.
Instead of lingering in our organs like long-chain fatty acids which are stored as fat in the body, medium-chain fatty acids are quickly metabolized as they rapidly cross the mitochondria membrane and are sent directly from our digestive tract to the liver where they are either immediately utilized for energy or transformed into ketones.
Coconut oil is a natural mood enhancer that makes one feel more motivated and energetic which helps with weight loss. It also balances hormones to reduce stress and anxiety which aids in shedding belly fat.
Last but not least, the reason why coconut oil is found in many products that build muscles is because of its effect on the pancreas to regulate insulin that controls blood sugar levels and pump nutrients into muscles. Consuming coconut oil therefore increases muscle mass and improves body shape.
Coconut oil has many beauty applications for the skin due to its afore-mentioned properties which also works when applied externally due to its medium-chain fatty acids being able to be absorbed readily through the pores. Before purchasing, note the label to ensure the coconut oil is extra virgin and has not been hydrogenated, bleached, or refined, in any way with fragrances and dyes.
For its anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and hydrating properties, coconut oil can be used as:
Our skin needs to be cleansed due to the chemicals it is being exposed to daily be it from makeup, air pollution, or dust and grease in the air. These toxins enter skin pores and clog them. Dehydrating effects of air conditioning and heat make skin dry and flaky causing keratin caps on skin pores that keep sebum trapped in follicles.
Coconut oil cleanses gently and thoroughly by softening keratin caps to allow easier exfoliation. The light spreading texture of coconut oil gets absorbed deep into the follicles and dissolves the hardened sebum and brings it up to the skin surface.
- Makeup Remover
In addition to the above anti-microbial properties, coconut oil is able to readily dissolve makeup, including mascara and eye makeup, with the abilities of a gentle grease-cutter without traumatizing soft skin on the face including the sensitive eye area but instead hydrating, protecting, and enhancing the skin’s natural flora. For the same reasons, coconut oil can clean makeup brushes and even disinfect them by removing grime, fungus, and bacteria.
When applied on the face or body as an all-natural moisturizer, coconut oil is non-greasy and melts on the skin to be quickly absorbed deeply and thoroughly to replenish the skin’s natural oils, conditioning it to look soft, glowy, and radiant.
Just a thin layer of coconut oil is sufficient for its fatty acids to reinforce the skin’s natural lipids barrier and prevent moisture loss through evaporation from the skin surface. This can also be used in the bath as a bath oil to calm and moisturize skin. Application on the hands as a hand cream makes hands look youthful especially when coconut oil hydrates the cuticles.
Similarly, coconut oil can also be used on the feet as a soothing foot rub especially for dry cracked heels. Additionally, coconut oil also strengthens nails as its medium-chain fatty acids easily transports nutrients to these cells and prevents hangnails while allowing manicures and pedicures to last longer.
- Night & Eye Cream
The hydrating and antioxidant properties in coconut oil are excellent for locking in moisture and warding off free radicals thereby smoothing fine lines and wrinkles while reducing puffiness and eye bags.
- Anti-Aging Cream
Coconut oil prevents free-radical formation and fades age spots when applied directly on them. Similarly, it can remove dark patches on elbows and knees. The medium-chain fats in coconut oil also attract protein molecules to ensure the timely repair, formation, and replacement, of collagen in the skin to keep it firm, elastic, and smooth. This collagen production connects and strengthens tissues to reduce sagging baggy skin.
- Exfoliating Scrub
Coconut oil is most often used as an exfoliating scrub by combining it with salt, sugar, or ground coffee beans, for a facial, body, or lip scrub to remove dead cells and dry skin so that smooth skin can be achieved that prevents ingrown hairs, acne, blackheads, or other unwanted dullness.
- Anti-Celulite Cream
Coconut oil helps stimulate circulation by increasing metabolism in cells and encourage cellular detox to smooth out texture when massaged in a firm circular motion unto cellulite.
- Acne Cream
Coconut oil is a natural antibiotic and can kill bacteria which causes irritation, breakouts, and acne, that proliferates due to the skin’s oil imbalance either because of dehydration or hormonal imbalance. The lauric acid found in coconut oil acts as an anti-bacterial shield to protect the skin against potential pathogens.
- Eczema/Psoriasis/Dermatitis Cream
Coconut oil can be used for many skin disorders due to its fatty acids’, especially caprylic and lauric acid, ability to reduce inflammation. Together with its effective moisturizing abilities, coconut oil is used as a topical treatment for atopic dermatitis where skin is extremely dry and susceptible to Staphylococcus aureus colonies and for eczema and psoriasis to naturally heal dry and flaking skin. In addition, the antioxidants in coconut oil heal the skin problems and infections.
- Sunscreen/Sunburn Cream
Coconut oil is SPF 8 and can protect against some solar radiation and sun damage. If skin has been over-exposed to sunlight, coconut oil can be applied unto affected areas to reduce inflammation, promote healing, and soothe pain.
- Stretch Mark Reducer
Rub coconut oil on stretch marks that occur when skin’s elasticity is compromised. Coconut oil fades dark marks, discolouration, and redness, while hydrating the skin and promoting healing. It can also reduce appearance of varicose veins when used topically.
- Shaving Cream
Coconut oil has a slick texture that razors glide across thus preventing razor burns and nicks while shaving. Its antimicrobial and soothing hydrating properties smooth hair follicles for a close and smooth shave while softening skin for hairs to grow through follicles properly hence preventing ingrown hairs and skin irritation while leaving skin hydrated.
- After-Shave Lotion
Rub coconut oil to heal skin after shaving, for razor burns, and areas prone to bumps and infection.
- Home Wax
Use coconut oil to prep skin before waxing and use it to remove wax from the skin afterwards.
Coconut oil has antibacterial properties which keeps body odour at bay.
- Eyelash Serum
The fatty acids found in coconut oil makes for an excellent base in an eyelash growth serum. Coconut oil stimulates and boosts growth thus leading to more and longer lashes with better pigmentation.
- Makeup Primer
The key to flawless makeup lies in its base. Coconut oil has hydrating essential fatty acids that are deeply absorbed into skin to keep it glowing all day long. It also enhances the skin’s natural pigments while reflecting light.
Makeup highlighters are used to brighten up the face, perk up tired looks, correct flaws, and enhance features via illumination in the correct places. Even without any makeup, one can apply coconut oil to add shine to cheek bones and eye lids for a natural youthful glow or apply the oil on top of makeup for the same effects.
Coconut oil is able to take care of the entire mouth — from those luscious lips forming that smile to pearly whites and divine breath — in the following ways:
- The Lips
Dry chapped lips are a definite no-no when it comes to framing a perfect smile. Use coconut oil as a lip balm to hydrate, heal, and nourish the lips thereby preventing cracks and flakes while protecting them from sun and wind damage. Add a little colouring to the coconut oil for a tinted lip gloss or more for a lipstick.
- Oral Health
Oil pulling with coconut oil improves teeth and gums health by detoxifying the mouth thus preventing gum disease and killing bad breath via fighting bacteria, curing tooth decay, and boosting immune system.
By swishing coconut oil in your mouth, the oil denatures the bacteria and removes it thereby quickly healing gums and repairing teeth which reduces periodontal diseases and whitens teeth as toxins are removed from them.
Coconut oil with its anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties can also be used as a toothpaste to clean teeth for preventing plaque formation and buildup that causes tooth decay and gingivitis. Used as a mouthwash, coconut oil freshens the breath with its anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties.
Coconut oil is the solution to all hair needs and can be used for the following purposes:
Use coconut oil to clean hair and hair brushes as it can remove grime and grease and has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties to serve as a protective barrier.
Coconut oil is effective as a conditioner for dry scalp and hair. It rebalances dry scalp via its hydrating moisturizing properties thereby removing dandruff and controlling scalp problems such as xerosis.
Coconut oil produces silky locks as it rebalances hair proteins with its small molecular structure penetrating hair shafts to moisturize and protect against environmental damage. It can also be used as a leave-in conditioner and hair mask for this purpose to minimize split ends and add shine to hair.
Coconut oil has a high moisture-retaining capacity because it is very stable and does not easily evaporate thus preventing moisture from escaping. As a result, this keeps hair shimmering moist and soft and prevents frizzy and flyaway hairs. The vitamin E, vitamin K, and iron, in coconut oil also strengthens hair to make it healthier.
- Hair Protectant/Shield
Before dipping into the pool or ocean, coat hair with coconut oil to protect from the sun and chlorine. Coconut oil provides a barrier so that hair absorbs a minimal amount of chemicals and salt, leaving it untangled and silky smooth post-pool instead of dry and crunchy.
Coconut oil also prevents combing damage and reduces protein loss in hair due to its affinity for hair proteins and is able to penetrate into the hair shaft because of its small size. Hence the perfect combination of linear arrangement, low weight, small size, and high protein affinity makes coconut oil an efficient hair protectant.
- Head Coolant
Coconut oil has a cooling effect when applied on the head and scalp which is used to cool and soothe people with hot heads and those suffering from severe scalp sweating.
- Scalp Boils
Some people experience boils on the scalp during winter or when exposed to heat or sun for a long duration. Coconut oil keeps scalp and hair clean thereby relieving the uncomfortable and unsightly problem.
- Aging Hair
Grey hair, hair loss, and baldness, come with age while others have it as a premature condition. Coconut oil with its properties described above stimulates hair growth when rubbed into the scalp daily, and even for eyebrows. In addition, coconut oil aids in the re-growth process of such damaged hair by providing the essential proteins required to nourish.
- Lice Removal
Coconut oil should be used to remove head lice instead of the standard treatment involving the insecticide permethrin which has strong chemical components that damages hair and scalp. Coat wet hair with coconut oil and fine comb it to remove lice.
- Styling Gel Cream
Coconut oil is used for styling hair because it melts when heated and condenses when cooled. Apply a thin layer and heat from the scalp will spread the coconut oil evenly. When hair comes in contact with air, the coconut oil on the hair condenses and works like a styling gel or cream.