Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO) seems to be the new, natural wonder oil boasting a myriad of health and well-being properties. Celebs such as Miranda Kerr, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessica Alba, Jennifer Aniston, Giselle Bündchen and Angelina Jolie regularly use it, and currently Coconut water is the latest health craze due to its nutrient-rich, super hydrating qualities. Is the humble coconut really the source of so much goodness? See what you think…
Coconut Oil aids with digestion, improves bone health, strengthens the immune system and even prevents wrinkles and skin dryness. Some celebrities use it on their skin as they claim it gives a clear complexion.
Recent studies have shown that coconut oil has an active anti-cancer component, heals damaged cells and could possibly help to fight HIV. It boasts anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-microbial properties, which means it can be used as a natural alternative to treat fungal, viral and bacterial infections.
Maybe the most compelling reason to try VCO is claims that it can reduce appetite and help with healthy weight loss. There are now a plethora of articles detailing the type of fat contained in VCO and its health benefits, which is a complete u-turn to a few years ago when scientists were telling people to avoid it simply because it is high in saturated fat. Turns out that it’s a different kind of saturated fat (medium-chain fatty acids) which is actually good for you! Although some people simply use it as a source of healthy nutrition, for example Olympic Gold Medallist Apolo Ohno.
6 Unusual Uses
The most commonly known uses of VCO are as a moisturiser and eye-make up remover. Here are six more that you may not have heard of:
Add a spoonful to your morning coffee
As well as promoting heart health a spoonful of VCO gives you that extra boost of energy to start the day, you can even skip the milk or creamer using VCO as a rich flavoured alternative. Full of goodness, it’s a great way to set you up for the day.
Boost the nutrients in your smoothie
If you still need a kick of energy but a morning smoothie is more your thing, try adding one or two spoons of VCO to a fruit smoothie. This not only hosts cholesterol fighting compounds on top of the many other health properties but also improves the texture and taste.
Use as a light, natural sunscreen
Using VCO as a natural alternative is a great way to keep away from all the nasty chemicals found in most sunscreens. The first sunscreens actually contained coconut oil as their main ingredient, but are now packed with not so nice chemicals instead; it’s rumoured that people of the South Pacific used Coconut Oil for hundreds possibly even thousands of years as a natural sun block. VCO sits between an average of SPF4 and SPF 10, so it’s good for light sun protection.
A Natural Insect repellent
Get yourself a spray bottle, then mix a few drops of peppermint, tea tree oil and some rosemary with a tablespoon of coconut oil. This is a great natural alternative to other insect repellents laden with chemicals and will help keep away mosquitos. Plus it smells nice too!
Help to keep you pooches coat shiny
A teaspoon or two of VCO mixed in with your dog’s food once every now and then can keep your beloved canine’s coat healthy and shiny, this can help with digestive issues too. You can also apply VCO to their coat directly to alleviate skin allergies or itchiness.
As an alternative cooking oil
Coconut oil is great for cooking at high temperatures, this is because coconut oil is made up of healthy saturated fats which remain stable under high temperatures. You can also melt or add straight over hot cooked grains and cereals. This is a good way to boost and regulate metabolism and keep your weight in check.
There are probably hundreds more ways to use Virgin Coconut Oil, feel free to let us know if you think of any others, we’d love to hear from you!