Coconut oil is one of the most commonly used oils in Indian households. Aside from being used as a cooking oil, it is also used to cure hair and skin problems. Because of its numerous benefits and applications, it is often known as a “lifeline of health.”
Coconut oil is derived from the nut (fruit) of the Arecaceae family’s coconut palm. The word coconut is derived from the Old Portuguese word coco, which means “head” or “skull.” Indonesia, the Philippines, and India generate around 75% of the world’s coconut supply. Coconut holds a unique role in Hindu rites, both culturally and religiously.
Coconut oil comes in two varieties
Refined coconut oil
Refined coconut oil is a heat-processed oil. Because of the dried coconut or copra processing, it has a subtle coconut flavor. First, roast the coconuts before extracting the oil. The oil is then “bleached,” which kills germs and removes dust particles and insects. Bleaching does not require the use of a household cleaner. It is a filtration technique in which the oil goes through a bleaching clay. The end result is a transparent, mild-tasting oil.
Virgin coconut oil
Virgin coconut oil is the finest type, made from fresh mature coconut meat and coconut milk. The extraction of virgin coconut oil may or may not need heating. However, no chemical processing is used, which aids in the preservation of the oil’s natural properties. It is renowned as the mother of all oils because it contains a wealth of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that promote good health.
Virgin coconut oil may appear to be the same as ordinary coconut oil. They have comparable fatty acid composition, but virgin coconut oil includes far more vitamin E and other substances such as polyphenols.
Benefits of coconut oil
It has antimicrobial properties.
Lauric acid accounts for around half of the fatty acids in coconut oil. Lauric acid is extremely effective in killing bacteria, viruses, and fungi, making it useful for preventing infections when applied externally. A study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food discovered that virgin coconut oil, rather than refined coconut oil, has the most effective antibacterial capabilities.
When you consume coconut oil, it combines with enzymes to generate a monoglyceride known as monolaurin. What’s more, guess what? Monolaurin is also effective at killing dangerous germs! Both of these compounds have been found to kill the bacteria and very deadly pathogen, Staphylococcus aureus, as well as the yeast Candida albicans, which is a major source of yeast infections.
It’s an excellent moisturizer for hair scalp and skin
Coconut oil has been shown in studies to improve the hydration and lipid content of dry skin. Coconut oil can also be highly effective at preventing hair damage. If you suffer from dandruff or dry hair, coconut oil contains fatty acids that can help.
According to a study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Science, coconut oil is the only oil capable of preventing hair damage and protein loss due to its low molecular weight and straight linear chain, which allows it to permeate within the hair shaft. According to the conclusions of the study, use coconut oil before and after washing your hair to gain the benefits.
Coconut oil slows aging
Coconut oil enhances antioxidant levels and possibly prevents aging, according to research published in the medical journal Food and Function. Coconut oil works by relieving liver stress and minimizing oxidative stress.
Furthermore, due to how it interacts with the liver, researchers discovered that coconut oil may aid in detoxifying.
Take one spoonful of coconut oil with antioxidant-rich berries for breakfast to naturally reduce aging. It can also be used directly to the skin for added health benefits and smoothing.
Avoid split ends and hair loss.
Virgin coconut oil protects your hair all throughout. When you use different hair products or iron your hair, it suffers greatly. When the oil coats the hair, it forms a protective layer, which protects against all of this.
Prevent dandruff and hair graying
Dandruff and hair graying can be caused by a variety of factors, including environmental changes, stress, hormone changes, and infections. Because it includes fatty acids as well as vitamins E and K, virgin coconut oil can help treat dandruff.
Gray hair can be reduced by massaging it with a nutrient-rich oil such as virgin coconut oil. Regular application of this oil can make your hair look a lot more shiny, bouncy, and healthy.
Repair skin damage
Coconut oil is excellent for all skin types. It is a multifunctional antioxidant, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory agent. Virgin coconut oil is a nutritious oil since it is nutrient-rich and moisturizes the skin. It forms a barrier over your skin that prevents water from escaping, resulting in sustained hydration and moisture for your skin.
It also contains a lot of fatty acids, which penetrate and restore your skin. Oil used topically can improve your skin’s barrier function and provide UV protection.
Prevent skin diseases
Coconut oil can help with skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis. Many of these skin disorders cause itchy, dry skin. This virgin oil offers anti-bacterial, antiviral, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory qualities that may alleviate your symptoms immediately. Coconut oil can also be used to treat burns and scalds.
Apart from its therapeutic effects, virgin coconut oil is also an excellent natural skin care replacement. It is an excellent base for body washes and can also be used to produce lip balm and other cosmetic products.
How can you use coconut oil in winter?
Coconut oil is a multi-purpose oil that can benefit your skin in a variety of ways. Here are some great ways to utilize coconut oil on your face and skin, especially in the winter:
1. Moisturizer: Since coconut oil is quickly absorbed by the skin, it can treat dry skin and flakiness.
2. Lip Balm: Dry lips are a major issue during the winter. Coconut oil can be used as a natural lip balm to keep your lips hydrated and prevent them from becoming chapped.
3. Cleanser: Coconut oil for the face is an excellent natural cleanser that easily dissolves grime and makeup.
4. Exfoliant: It can be used as a light exfoliator to exfoliate dead skin and soft and supple your skin.
5. Soothing Agent: Because of its natural anti-inflammatory characteristics, coconut oil can be used to treat rashes, wounds, and burns, as well as to calm skin after shaving or waxing.
6. Massage oil: Massage your body with coconut oil to enhance blood circulation and create relaxation.
Can you put coconut oil on your face?
Apply coconut oil to your face as you would use any other night cream. For this, take 1 tablespoon of coconut oil and liquefy by gently rubbing it between your hands. The liquefied oil will be smooth and light in texture. Apply on your face and neck.
Can coconut oil grow hair?
Coconut oil is a natural hair conditioner that can help your hair grow longer and thicker. Coconut oil contains vitamins and vital fatty acids that nourish the scalp and assist to eliminate sebum build-up from hair follicles.
Is it OK to leave coconut oil in your hair?
If you want to use coconut oil to promote hair development, leave it on overnight. However, if you don’t have enough time, you can leave it on for an hour or two and then wash it off.
Do you put coconut oil on wet or dry hair?
You can add coconut oil to dry hair if you just intend to use a small amount. Alternatively, if you want to use it like a natural hair conditioner, apply it to wet hair so it can absorb the oil easier and give the shiny smooth texture.
Is a spoonful of coconut oil a day good for you?
Coconut oil contains a high concentration of saturated fats and should be treated as any other fat or oil. While it can be a healthy element of your diet, limit yourself to not use more than two tablespoons (28 grams).