While you might not be the biggest fan of eating pure coconut (though there are some that love it), you might have heard that the oil that comes from coconuts can be beneficial. Coconut oil is the extract that is taken from a coconut and produced in many different ways. Like peanuts, avocados, canola and many others, we have found that there are plenty of uses for coconut oil, and it certainly is edible.
There have been some people that say coconut oil does not have much of a benefit, though there are plenty of studies to show that there is much more good done than harm. So what type of benefits can you get from using coconut oil in your everyday life? Here are just some of the wonders that it can work, and how to use coconut oil more efficiently.
Inner Beauty of the Coconut
Your first thought about coconut oil might be to ingest it, but its greatest benefits seem to come from the beauty department. You may have seen many different beauty products that are using coconut oil, and it isn’t just for the fantastic smell. When it comes to skin care, coconut oil acts as a great hydrator of skin, helping you prevent that dry and cracked skin that can have you feeling and looking older.
Applying coconut oil to your skin will give it that healthy glow that many of us are after, and it works as an exfoliant without any nasty side effects. There are also plenty of skin conditions that many of us suffer including psoriasis and eczema. Daily use of coconut oil can help ease the symptoms, and even prevent or get rid of them entirely.
The main beauty products that we see coconut oil being used in, though, are shampoos and conditioners. Coconut oil is incredibly good for your hair, though most people just think it gives you more of a shine. While it certainly does do that, it also strengthens your hair and prevents protein loss. This means that your hair will be thicker, stronger and grow back much quicker. You can even skip the shampoo and apply coconut oil straight to your scalp for the benefits.
Coconut oil can also be used to help remove makeup each evening, and even help your finger and toenails grow longer and stronger. There are no harmful chemicals found within coconut oil, so it can be used to create your own toothpaste. It’s an effective method if you are looking for a natural toothpaste.
Weight Loss Mystery
There have been a lot of concerns about what coconut oil can do to help you lose weight. Some argue that the high calorie and fat content found in coconut oil will likely lead to weight gain. There have also been studies that show that coconut oil will not make you gain weight, however. One major study showed that consuming two tablespoons of coconut oil each day for three months did not cause weight gain, but instead maintained weight while lowering body fat.
Your energy will increase thanks to coconut oil naturally that will last up to 24 hours. Your metabolism will also increase, with some studies showing that people who ingest coconut oil will burn more than 100 extra calories per day. That doesn’t seem like a lot, but it can add up for a huge weight loss over time.
Not only can it help you reduce body fat, but it can help you lose weight in other methods. Due to the high amount of fatty acids found within coconut oil, it takes your body a bit longer to metabolize. That means you will be feeling less hungry throughout the day as your body digests the coconut oil. One study showed that men who ingest coconut oil daily wound up eating fewer calories than those that didn’t.
How About the Heart
Just like the effects of coconut oil in weight loss, there have been some disputes from both sides of the aisle about the effects of cholesterol. One of the main components of coconut oil is lauric acid, which has been found to raise both good (HDL) and bad (LDL) cholesterol. While that can sound a bit scary, it would be better to raise your good cholesterol along with bad then not raising your good cholesterol at all.
Studies have shown that your heart health can be increased overall with coconut oil, though. The fat content of coconut oil increases the strength of your arteries, preventing damage and many of the heart diseases associated with damaged arteries. Since coconut oil can increase the efficiency of your thyroid, that will improve your cholesterol levels, as well.
Coconut oil is very high in antioxidants, which can increase your overall health almost instantly. The lauric acid within coconut oil kills many harmful germs in your body, preventing a lot of bacteria and viruses from causing diseases. Even yeast infections can be prevented with regular use of coconut oil.
The digestive benefits that you get from coconut oil will increase the functions of your kidneys, liver and most of the other organs in your body. In turn, that will help your immune system. Fighting off those minor diseases that we see throughout the year is a nice benefit, especially when you can fight off the major ones down the road. Even bone diseases such as osteoporosis and diabetes can be prevented by coconut oil.
Summing it Up
There are some fantastic benefits with coconut oil, and taking in a small amount each day will help you tremendously. Of course, there is no such thing as a wonder tonic that will prevent every disease or help you lose weight with 100 percent efficiency. So what are the negatives of coconut oil?
Taking in too much can increase your cholesterol to unhealthy levels, though you would have to consume much more than the normal recommended amount. Also, coconut oil is high in calories, so you shouldn’t be taking more than the daily two tablespoons. That is around 250 calories alone from coconut oil, so make sure to watch your calorie count outside of ingesting coconut oil.
Lastly, there are some people that are allergic to coconuts and coconut oil, and might not even know it. This can cause some distress in your digestive system or even skin irritation. Before adding coconut oil into your daily routine, make sure to go through an allergy test to see if you can take it. Other than that, taking coconut oil in moderation is going to be very beneficial to your health, and should become a daily use when preparing foods or even on its own.