I introduced coconut oil into my daily routine about two years ago after reading Emily Skye’s ab shred eating plan, before then I knew very little about the benefits of this so-called ‘Superfood’ and was really only cooking with it because it’s what the recipes told me to use. However, I’m far more educated now and want to share with you some of the amazing discoveries I’ve made, along with some scientific facts about why you also need coconut oil in your life.
There’s been a significant shift in recent years from the message “Eat less fat” to “Eat the right fats” as not all fats are created equal. Coconut oil is made up of 90% saturated fat, which for a long time, got an incredibly bad rap, however recent studies have shown this reputation was a little unjust.
Coconut oil contains short term medium-chain saturated fatty acids (MCFAs), which is recognized as a healthy form of saturated fat. When consumed our body metabolises these fats in the liver, immediately converting this into energy rather than being stored as fat. One study found a weight loss link in women who consumed 2 TBSP of coconut oil daily for 12 weeks, not only did they not gain more weight but it actually lowered their amounts of abdominal fat, which is typically a difficult area to lose weight from. The study also showed consumption of coconut oil sped up their metabolism with the women burning more kilojoules on average in a day than those who consumed less.
The saturated fat in coconut oil has also been found to aid poor digestion and stomach bloating. Fatty acids in coconut oil contain anti-microbial properties, which not only help to keep your gut flora healthy, but also has a soothing effect on bacteria and candida. Furthermore it assists in the absorption of other nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and amino acids.
Coconut oil has many uses and you might be surprised to learn that it’s not just for cooking. Because of it’s natural antibacterial and antifungal properties, coconut beauty devotees all over the world swear that this is an all-purpose beauty booster you must add to your daily routine.
Apply coconut oil directly to your face to help soften the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles or massage coconut oil into your skin to help replenish natural oils and maintain suppleness. Apply directly to your skin after a shower, you’ll find at room temperature the coconut oil will be solid but will melt under the heat of your skin and cocoon you in its soft, tropical coconut scent.
Try using it as a hair mask or a deep conditioning treatment to bring out your natural shine. While in the shower, melt the coconut oil by running the jar under the warm water. After shampooing, apply a generous amount of the oil to your hair and leave to sit for five minutes before rinsing.
And just when you thought it couldn’t get any better, coconut oil also helps tame the dreadded halo of frizz many of us suffer from. Rub a pea size amout of coconut oil between your palms or fingers to warm it up, then apply directly to the ends of your hair or wherever you’re prone to fly aways.