What are virgin coconut oil health benefits? Well, the truth is, coconut oil is a fantastic product that has so many uses it really is hard to know where to begin, and it’s been an absolute staple in my life for many reasons.
For example, did you know you can use coconut oil to aid weight loss? Or to make easy homemade chocolate? Or even that this scrummy chocolate can help to boost weight loss? Yes, you heard that right, and that’s just for starters – read on for many more amazing coconutty benefits and prepare to be converted!
1. WEIGHT LOSS
It seems unbelievable that a fat can make you lose fat, but it absolutely can. Coconut oil helps with the fat burning process and is known for reducing belly fat specifically. Belly fat is very dangerous as it entwines itself around your internal organs and can causes all kinds of damage; not only that, it is also the only fat in the body that releases its own hormones which can be the trigger for diseases such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
Coconut oil burns calories!
The medium chain triglycerides found in coconut oil can increase the amount of calories you burn by up to 5%. Now this may not seem like much but just think about how this adds up to over time. It works out about 100 calories a day, which is 700 a week and 2800 a month. But these figures are based on the consumption of 15-30 grams of coconut oil per day, and it is not recommended that you eat more than that otherwise you may actually just gain weight instead.
You must also be sure to add this oil INSTEAD of other oils and not as an extra on top, otherwise you will just be having too many calories that still need to be burnt off.
On top of its weight loss benefits coconut fat is a hunger suppressor, and its fatty acids make you feel satiated and full thus helping you to consume less calories overall. So not only does it help your body to burn fat but it also lowers appetite, making it one great oil for your weight loss diet.
How to use coconut oil
You can use this oil in most of your cooking or shallow frying, and in baking and sweet products. It goes especially well with stir-fries and vegetable dishes, but remember, you will get a slight coconutty taste from it, which personally I love but you may want to experiment with for yourself. And fortunately, you can actually buy taste-free coconut oil if you really don’t like the taste of it.
For extra fat burning power you should also be eating coconut oil alongside lots of other weight loss foods, as these will also boost fat burning a lot faster for you.
2. WONDERFUL SKIN MOISTURISER
In fact, coconut oil does not just moisturise skin but also acts as an all in one cleanser, toner and moisturiser. How fantastic is that? 3 products rolled into one, and easy on the wallet too!
It nourishes, feeds and protects, is anti microbial, anti fungal, and its lauric acid content makes it anti inflammatory as well. This means it’s also great for treating skin problems such as eczema, psoriasis, dandruff and dermatitis.
3. SKIN TREATMENT FOR ACNE
Coconut oil’s lauric acid content plays a big part in helping to clear acne when taken both internally and externally, and its anti bacterial components help it to ward off the nasty bacterial infections that worsen this condition. You can simply put your coconut oil straight onto the skin as a moisturiser and it will sink in pretty fast; it may seem oily at first, but your skin will soon become accustomed to it.
4. ANTI AGING
Coconut oil helps repair skins collagen, which is obviously a dream come true for most of us who are trying to look as good as possible for as long as possible. Collagen is a structural protein in the skin that keeps it smooth, elastic and wrinkle free, and coconut oil penetrates deeply into the skin attracting the protein molecules needed to repair your precious collagen.
Coconut oil also plays a protective role for skin:-
Coconut oil also prevents skin from premature aging due to the protective role it offers from your exposure to pollution, UV rays, and all the other chemicals you may put on your face and body in the form of soaps, creams and make up. It counteracts these things by not only forming a protective layer on your skin, but also by its antioxidant action which reduces oxidative damage.
There are many other natural anti aging products that will work well alongside coconut oil to protect you from telomere aging. These are strands of DNA that shorten as you get older and are responsible for aging in general, but preventing them from shortening in any way you can is crucial to keeping you youthful for longer, both on the inside AND out.
5. INTENSIVE HAIR TREATMENT
Coconut oil is seriously one of the best at home, deep conditioning hair treatments I have ever tried – I love it! It not only thickens and moisturises, but actually helps your hair grow faster, especially if you add a couple of drops of rosemary essential oil that is also a great hair follicule stimulator.
How to use:-
Melt a little oil either in your hands, or over a very low heat in a saucepan (you will only need a matter of seconds) and apply straight onto dry hair about an hour (or as long as possible) before a shower. Massage the oil into the scalp to stimulate hair growth and then take all the way down to the ends. Beware, it does take about 3 shampoos to get rid of the oily residue, but the good news is you won’t need a conditioner as your hair will be left super soft by the oil.
6. ALL OVER BODY MOISTURISER
This is best done straight after a shower or bath, and also whilst skin is still damp as this will allow the oil to just melt straight in, seeping into the pores for intensive moisturisation. Just put the coconut oil straight in your hand and massage between your palms to melt, then apply all over the body vigourously massaging as you go, which will also help to get the blood flowing and break up cellulite.
7. IMPRESSIVE AFTER SUN TREATMENT
Not only does coconut oil marginally protect from the suns harmful rays with its SPF of 4, but it’s also great when used as a soothing after sun lotion. It really helps to take the sting out of sun burnt skin whilst also keeping it wonderfully moisturised.
8. LOWERING OF BAD CHOLESTEROL
Although coconut oil contains 90% saturated fatty acids, new data has shown that these are virtually harmless. It contains healthy saturated fats that may increase good HDL cholesterol in the body and convert the bad LDL into a more harmless form.
But even knowing this, you should always eat coconut oil in moderation for these benefits (around 2 tablespoons a day is enough). Any more could be detrimental!
9. IMPROVED BRAIN FUNCTION
Coconut oil may improve brain function in those with Alzheimer’s disease, and although more trials need to be done some studies suggest that the fatty acids in coconut oil may increase levels of ketones in the blood, thus supplying more energy for brain cells and therefore reducing symptoms.
As you can see, the health benefits of virgin coconut oil are many and it certainly makes a great addition to your diet as it’s easy, cheap, and highly effective for so many diverse uses. A large tub will last you quite a while, but be sure to buy reputable and organic brands to make sure you are getting top quality, if you don’t do this then these benefits may suffer.
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I would love to hear from you guys and if you have any questions, or even your own uses for coconut oil that I could add to this already long list then please comment below and I will get back to you as soon as I can. Please check out my other natural steps to beauty for more tips on all-natural products and how to use them. Thanks for reading!