The Coconut Myth
The coconut tree is one of the most versatile plants in existence. Whilst we are all familiar with the coconut as a food source not many of us know the myriad of other benefits the coconut holds. In many countries, coconut husks are woven into fabrics for mats, insulation and much more. The shells themselves are used as bowls, to make utensils and as floatation devices for rafts. Yet it is the coconut itself that draws the most interest. Coconut flesh has a beautiful taste and is used all over the world in a variety of cooking styles. Coconut milk is gorgeous to drink on its own and also is the chief ingredient in curries all over the world.
A lot of controversy still surrounds the actual health benefits of coconut and debates still exist as to whether claims of its benefits have been exaggerated.
We have carefully researched the benefits of coconut oil and outlined at length all the fantastic qualities that can come from eating coconut oil and applying it to your skin. We have left out some purported benefits through lack of evidence to support them and hope that this report will go some way to dispelling the myths surrounding coconut oil, whilst providing you with knowledge of coconut oil treatments that will be applicable to everyone in their normal lives.
Coconut oil and your hair
Coconut oil has long been regarded as one of the best hair conditioning natural health products in the natural world.
Many people worldwide use coconut oil as their sole hair conditioning product as it is relatively cheap and gives remarkable results.
The benefits of coconut oil for your hair are numerous. Coconut oil helps keep your hair fully moisturised, it promotes full growth and creates strong hair whilst keeping the scalp free from flakes. Its main benefit comes from increasing the protein retention in your hair – allowing for fuller and stronger growth.
Whilst many companies use tiny amounts of virgin coconut oil in their high-end products a lot of people are now turning to pure virgin coconut oil for the benefits it brings.
The key benefits of using coconut oil or even coconut oil cream in your hair can be exposed by looking at the chemical properties of coconut oil. Often people prescribe coconut oil as a remedy for hair loss – or at least to slow the onset of hair loss.
Coconut oil and Skincare
Coconut oils natural health benefits extend far beyond the fantastic benefits for your hair that we saw in the first section of this book.
Coconut oil has a large number of fantastic benefits for your skin as well.
The first as we have already seen is the great benefit of Vitamin E. Vitamin E keeps your skin healthy, spot free and protects against skin cancer.
Vitamin E in coconut oil acts as an antioxidant – meaning that it protects skin cells from UV light, pollution and the negative effects of smoke and other “free radicals”. The most notable of these is of course, the prevention of skin cancer-making coconut oil one of the most beneficial forms of sunscreen available.
Vitamin E also helps reduce the appearance of stretch marks and prevents the appearance of age spots by rejuvenating the skin cells over your body.
As coconut oil has a high yield of vitamin E many people are now using it as a substantive replacement for expensive sun creams, or as a supplement to sunscreen as it is less harmful to the skin.
Coconut oil also has fantastic moisturising benefits that extend beyond simply the high content of vitamin E.
Virgin coconut oil is a highly effective and completely natural moisturiser. It is unlikely to create adverse reactions as it is completely natural meaning that, unlike many moisturisers, you don’t have to worry about rashes and unsightly blemishes appearing on your skin. Further compared to most moisturising creams – which let’s face it carries an extortionate price tag- coconut oil is cheap to buy and lasts a long time.
In terms of natural remedies coconut oil treats and alleviates many common skin conditions including eczema, dermatitis and psoriasis. This is why it is a common ingredient in skin treatments worldwide.
So by now you are probably thinking this is great I’ll buy some, but there’s actually more benefits to your skin from coconut oil still to come.Finally, then coconut oil actually works as an anti-ageing cream. The antioxidants of vitamin E provide an initial layer of protection against the sun but the combination of this with the Lauric acid found in coconut oil keeps the skin bacteria free. This means that coconut oil is giving your skin a double helping of beneficial effects. This promotes anti-ageing skin as it fights off bacteria and strengthens the skin tissue.
Coconut oil really is one of nature’s most wonderful products!
Coconut oil and weight loss Part # 1
Many people think that because virgin coconut oil has a high proportion of saturated fat it is bad for you to eat.
This is one of the greatest myths surrounding coconut oil and now turn to dispelling this myth and seeing how you can use coconut oil as an aid to weight loss.
The chemical make-up of coconut fats
90% of coconut oil is saturated fat. Sounds like a nightmare doesn’t it, but a closer examination reveals the surprising truth.
This is because most of the saturated fatty acids in coconut oil are what are known as medium chain triglycerides. Medium chain triglycerides are actually easier for your body to break down than other saturated fats. Especially those found in fast food and other artificially created products. This is because there are fundamental differences in the chain composition in these fats which mean they are harder for your body to breakdown – which in turn means they are more likely to accumulate in your arteries and in your skin tissue.
Further, the saturated fats in coconut oil – especially the Lauric acid actually increase the body’s metabolism and promote optimal health of the thyroid and enzymes systems. Having a high metabolism means that the body burns calories at an increased rate. This is due to the acidity of your stomach acid and how effectively it can convert food to energy. Having a healthy gut will greatly increase your chances of having a high metabolism and help you start shedding weight.
Weight Loss Part 2
The enzymes contained within coconut oil actually act as catalysts to your stomach acid and help you break down fat at an increased rate- and as your metabolism is also increased you can burn a higher proportion of the calories you take in. They also help to promote a healthy gut by fighting bacteria and strengthening the stomach lining. Hence coconut oil actually is much better for you to use in cooking and food than other alternatives as it has added benefits not found in vegetable and olive oil.
Virgin coconut oil as it contains 50% Lauric acid is definitely well worth including in your diet. The easiest ways to do this are to replace your cooking
oil with coconut oil – which incidentally is much more complimentary to the tastes of many foods, especially curries and stir-fry. Alternatively, you can also use coconut milk more regularly in your cooking as it can be a key ingredient in a variety of delicious curries.