Healthy Living

How Coconut Oil Can Work Wonders On Your Health


It wasn’t until a few years ago that I started to pay attention to coconut oil – in fact, I can’t even really remember how I actually began hearing about it. Though, it also wasn’t as mainstream popular as it is today, so maybe it was just one of those things that never really caught on until some health guru somewhere wrote about its amazing benefits.

Coconut oil, like many other exotic seed and nut oils isn’t exactly available at a bargain basement price, but it’s also not the most expensive by comparison, and honestly, for the things it can be used for, as well as its shelf-life, it’s actually one of the most affordable, all round household items you could have.

You may already use coconut oil, and know about some of the benefits it offers, but each time I use it, I discover that it’s even more versatile than I first thought, and I’m constantly discovering new and unique uses each time, so here are a few you possibly weren’t aware of.

  • Skin-care: for the past 11 years, I lived in a very hard water area, and I can tell you that winter was the season I dreaded most – not just because I’m a summer girl and don’t appreciate the cold too much, but because winter meant my skin would become incredibly dry. I hated it, and tried every cream going – I honestly dread to think how much I spent over the years with very little success. That was until I tried coconut oil. At first, I thought it was odd to put oil on my face and didn’t want to walk around looking greasy, but the trick is to apply coconut oil to damp skin (not wet) straight after showering and let it absorb. Not only does it keep skin moisturized and protected, but it provides a nice smooth surface for applying and removing some make-up;
  • Hair-care: this is probably my favorite use for coconut oil, and one that I recommend for everyone. It doesn’t really matter if you live in a hard or soft water area – your hair still needs to be conditioned because lots of different environmental factors will eventually take their toll on your hair. To use coconut oil as a conditioner, I recommend using it only once per week, as too often will make it greasy. Depending on how dry your hair or scalp are, scoop out about 2-3 tablespoons of oil and place them in your hand with your other   hand covering it to allow them to melt slightly, then just massage the oil into your scalp and down to the tips of your hair. Leave it in and wrap your hair in a towel for anywhere from 30 minutes to 8 hours (overnight) before rinsing out and then finishing with shampoo and conditioner. If you suffer from a dry scalp in winter, then you’ll quickly become addicted to how good the oil feels when you massage it in;
  • After-sun: while coconut oil is an amazing after-sun treatment and actually helps in relieving sunburn and other types of burns, it is absolutely not to be used before going in the sun – this can result in very nasty burns and can actually require medical treatment, so it doesn’t matter what celebrity or beauty magazine is suggesting this as a tanning method, it’s extremely dangerous, so please don’t do it. If you do get a bit too much sun, then apply a light layer of oil that’s preferably been cooled in the fridge. Not only will this provide you with relief, but will prevent further burning, and will protect your skin from drying out;
  • Oral-care: although I don’t recommend completely replacing regular toothpaste with coconut oil, I do think it makes a wonderful addition to a daily oral health routine. Methods such as oil pulling, which involve swishing and pulling the oil around the mouth for up to 20 minutes are said to remove toxins from the body, maintain fresh breath, reduce the risk of gum disease, and even whiten teeth. The texture of the oil isn’t something most people enjoy, so it can take a while to get used to it, but with all the benefits it provides, it’s worth it to keep nasty dental problems away and reduce the risk of having to look up to find an emergency dentist at a crazy time of the day;

Of course coconut has such an array of incredible benefits that it’s impossible to list all of them here, but hopefully now you have some more ideas on how to use this versatile oil on a daily basis, put something natural on your skin, and actually save more money than on a load of fancy creams and cosmetics.

Karla Urwitz
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