Coconut oil contains a variety of health benefits, some of which may come to a surprise to you. Coconut oil can be used from everything to a skin moisturizer, as an aid in losing weight, to helping you control your blood sugar. When purchasing coconut oil it is important to buy a virgin or an unrefined variety, as it holds more nutritional content and will enhance the health benefits that are listed below. If your budget allows, you should also purchase an organic brand. I personally use the Whole Foods 365 brand as pictured below, which costs about $8.00 in my area in the Northeast. Read on to hear more about the health benefits of coconut oil.
The Top 5 Health Benefits of Coconut Oil Include:
1). It increases your metabolism, which in turn helps your body burn fat and lose weight. Despite it’s high saturated fat content, coconut oil is composed of the medium length chain fatty acids. These fatty acids are good for your body in small doses (approximately 1/4 – 1 teaspoon daily) and have been shown to help increase your metabolism.
2). It contains lauric acid, which has anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. If you suffer from candida, or have an over abundance of yeast in your body, coconut oil can help balance out the good bacteria in your gut and reduce the amount of yeast in your system. Take a small amount (approximately 1/4 – 1 teaspoon) of coconut oil daily. You can do this by just taking coconut oil plain or adding it to your morning smoothie.
3). It helps keep you skin moisturized. Coconut oil is a great natural skin moisturizer. Just put a small amount, about 1/4 teaspoon, into your hands and it will begin to melt and turn into a liquid. Rub the liquid on your hands, face, lips, or wherever you have dry skin. A little goes a long way! Coconut Oil also works well as a hair mask to tame split ends and dry scalp.
4). It is good for your heart and helps minimize the risk for heart disease. Instead of using butter or refined oils for cooking, try using coconut oil instead. Using a small amount, like 1/2 – 1 teaspoon, works great when sauteing vegetables and it gives them a slightly nutty flavor.
5). It helps regulate blood sugar. There are multiple studies showing how coconut oil helps diabetics by regulating their blood sugar. This quote sums up the process nicely, “[Coconut Oil] slows the digestive process to ensure a steady, even stream of energy from your food by lowering the overall glycemic index of your meal. When you include coconut oil in a meal with carbohydrates, the carbs are broken down into glucose more slowly, so blood sugar levels remain steady even after you eat.” [Source: Natural News]
One of my favorite and most popular recipes, Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies, contains coconut oil as well as coconut flour. If you haven’t already done so, try the recipe so you can get all of these amazing health benefits of coconut oil!
**SPOILER ALERT** I will be posting a delicious new recipe next week which also contains coconut oil, so stay tuned
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