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Coconut Oil

July 6th, 2013

Coconut Oil Benefits

On Saturdays HSK will publish an article on diet, nutrition and general well-being, written by nutritional consultant and chef, Laura B. Leff. Know why? because a healthy body with a spiritual mind is a blessed soul.

Pacific Islanders pegged coconuts as the “tree of life”. Technically, they are seeds, and the largest ones in the world! The oil extracted from coconuts has been used as a source of food and medicine, by numerous cultures, for thousands of years. Here are a number of ways that coconut oil may be used for it’s health benefits:

1) A moisturizer for the skin and hair. Because coconut oil is rich in antioxidants, vitamin E and polyphenols, it helps to prevent premature aging. It also helps in treating various skin conditions, such as psoriasis, dermatitis and eczema. If you have a wound, apply a thin layer of coconut oil over the wound, which will shield it from outside contaminants. It is naturally antifungal, antimicrobial, antibacterial and antiviral. Therefore, great for any other conditions of the body that are viral, bacterial or fungal.

Most likely what’s good for the skin, is good for the hair. Apply coconut oil to your hair for at least 30 minutes, wash out and style hair as normal. It may also be used to smooth out any stray or frizzy hairs, once it’s styled.

2) Consuming coconut oil has many health benefits. Coconuts are fatty; they contain a certain type of fat, named lauric acid, which is a medium chain fatty acid. At the cellular level, these fatty acids are more easily digested and burn up very efficiently in the body; metabolizing instead of being stored as fat. Ingesting coconut oil is known to assist in a healthy thyroid, increases whole body metabolic rate, lowers cholesterol and increases HDL (the healthy cholesterol), wards off heart disease, aids in kidney problems and aids in brain health.

3) Using coconut oil for cooking is great because it is moleculary very strong and able to withstand high-heat cooking. Using sensitive oils, such as olive oil, for high-heat cooking isn’t good because the heat changes the molecular structure, making it carcinogenic. It may also be used in place of vegetable oil for a baking recipe.

4) For some rather “thinking out of the box uses”, you may:

  • -polish wood furniture–add a little lemon juice and polish
  • -clean and moisturize leather products
  • -mix with baking soda for homemade toothpaste
  • -use as make-up remover–just a cotton swab and a dab of coconut oil and voila
  • -use as deodorant–may be used on it’s own, or in combination with baking powder/arrowroot or cornstarch
  • -use as massage oil
  • -use as a lubricant
  • -use as a body scrub–mix with some sugar and apply all over
  • -use on bug bites

***Expeller pressed coconut oil may be used for anything and virgin coconut oil is best for cooking and baking.

Happy Eating!

Laura B. Leff, Nutritional Consultant and Chef

27 Responses to “Coconut Oil”

  1. Smurf |

    I use coconut oil in my hair and for “oil pulling”
    It’s awesome!


    Anonymous Reply:

    Oil pulling? Please explain.


    Smurf Reply:

    Check it out

    I do it 5 or six days a week for about 15-20 mins ( while I’m doing something else like doing my daily reading or making th bed…so the time passes quickly)
    My breath is incredibly fresh ( no bad breath when u wake up lol), gum look really clean n heathy and my teeth look white.
    I love it. It’s not the most pleasant thing in the world to so though.


  2. Anonymous |

    Great article. Good looking out.


  3. nanmrgn |

    IT can be tricky at first going down the aisles looking for the best coconut oil to purchase.
    There is refined, unrefined, and expeller pressed or cold pressed.

    My preference is unrefined, unrefined may be labeled as virgin or extra virgin.

    Don’t get tricked into paying more if the product says raw or organic. Just because its raw or organic doesn’t mean it’s a superior product especially if it has been manipulated by being expeller pressed, ( unless you plan on frying some chicken or something,)
    When buying coconut oil look particularly to find if its cold pressed or expelled. Cold pressed is better then expelled because the temp did not exceed 120 in the processing of the oil and no chemicals or additives are added.


    So'laced Reply:

    Wow thanks for that information!


  4. kee |

    excellent post! i swear by coconut oil, thanks for sharing.


    Anonymous Reply:

    Love it for my skin and hair. I tried oil pulling with sesame oil. It gives me a headache gargling that long lol


  5. So'laced |

    I never used this oil so maybe I will give it a try. I always search for natural products for my hair.


  6. RC |

    I’ve been using it since the late 1990s & CNO IS THE TRUTH! Good for everything, harmful to nothing, no side effects. I cook w/it, use it on my hair, face & body, for my massage oils & feed it to my cats. But you need to be be careful which brand you buy.

    Coconut palm trees are grown w/out pesticides or fertilizers, generally by family farmers who can’t afford to pay for organic certification. More brands are showing up now that are labeled ‘organic’, but don’t pay extra just to have that on label.

    Expeller-expressed & cold-pressed mean the same thing — i.e. that the oil was extracted from a seed, nut or fruit w/out using chemicals or added heat. All cold-pressed oils are expeller-pressed. But all expeller-expressed oils may not be cold-pressed.

    The pressure plates used to extract oil from a fruit, seed or coconut meat must rub or press against each other to do their job. Pressure causes friction which creates heat. So cold-pressed is really just a bullshit marketing term. Generally-speaking, cold-pressed or expeller-expressed oils are made without exceeding 120 degrees F. (Some companies will state that on the label.) E.U. law requires that any oil sold in Europe that is labeled cold-pressed must be extracted at temp. below 122 degrees F. But I don’t know of any European companies that supply CNO.

    To be certain that you’re getting good quality CNO, make sure whatever you buy:
    – says expeller-expressed/cold-pressed
    – says Virgin (meaning it’s from the 1st pressing). This distinguishes it from RBD oil (refined, bleached, deodorized), which is a cheap by-product CNO sold for industrial & cosmetic use. But in some countries they cook w/it.
    – lists the country origin. Coconut palms grow in nearly any hot climate. But IMO, the best-tasting, highest quality CNO comes from Thailand or the Philippines.
    – comes in a non-tinted glass or clear plastic jar, so you can see what you’re buying. CNO melts above 75 degrees. In liquid form, it shd look just like water, clear & completely colorless. Avoid any CNO w/a yellow tinge.

    In cooler weather, CNO will solidify, which makes it hard to tell if the color is off. In solid form, CNO shd be snow-white in the jar. But again, know your seller. There are a few brands I’ve bought that looked white in the jar but when I got them home & melted them, the oil had a yellowish tinge & tasted bad. Good CNO shd have a mild-to-med. coconut scent & a very mild flavor.

    Whole Foods store-brand (365 Organics) has a good CNO. The best quality & best-priced CNO I’ve found lately is from Dr.Vita.com, which also offers free shipping. (And no, I have no financial arrangement w/them.)

    You can read more abt the benefits of CNO here:


    Kee Reply:

    thank you for the links


  7. Realtalk |

    This is a great post and thanks to all for the added information. It is appreciated.


  8. Solace |

    @RC what oils make the hair grow, Do you happen to know.


    RC Reply:


    It’s too much info to post here, but email me & I’ll send you the recipe & links to buy the items: arcy@hmamail.com


    So'lace Reply:

    Hey RC I emailed you.


    RC Reply:

    And I hit ya back.


  9. Latoya |

    Thanks I use cno but didnt know all of the benefits. Thanks


  10. YaFeelme |

    Argan oil is better for your hair than coconut oil. For healthier skin and overall nutrients coconuts should be consumed buy eating its raw coconut meat.


    RC Reply:

    Sorry YaFeelME, but research has been done comparing CNO to other oils. Argan oil is very good for yr skin & nutritionally, but CNO is the best oil for yr hair. It’s the only one that actually penetrates the hair shaft (vs. just coating it) & reduces protein loss, which is what causes hair loss/breakage. The Lauric acid in whole CNO is what makes it unique.

    2001 study – http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11413497
    2003 study: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12715094
    2005 study – http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16258695

    Argan oil is also a lot more expensive than CNO. Becuz of that, some companies are starting to sell adulterated argan oil becuz it’s very popular now.


  11. Solace |

    Thanxs @ yafeelme


  12. Anonymous |

    Almond oil is great for just washed hair locks in the moisture for days. I have also used coconut oil for awhile it’s great mixed in lotions and hair gels for extra moisture especially in these hot months. Dr. adorable has great products on EBay and Amazon. Also try aloe Vera butter for the hair- good stuff especially if going natural…but go light so your hair won’t be oily.


    Solace Reply:



  13. Anonymous |

    Good info!


  14. PinkKitty |

    Excellent product that I’ve used for some time now. Organic virgin coconut oil all the way!

    I cook with it, use is as a moisterizer, sun block, hair care product, as a intestinal lubricant (1 tbl spoon per day) as a lubricant for those areas were lotions shouldn’t go. I make my own brown sugar and/ or sea salt body scrubs and coconut oil is the primary oil used.

    All aspects of the coconut can be used for many things!

    Coconut milk products instead of dairy (no bovine hormones to worry about nor lactose)
    Coconut water instead of tap water (no floride poisoning)
    Coconut nectar instead of honey or agave nectar ( much healthier sweetener)
    Coconut oil spread instead of butter (tastes magnificent!)
    And, of course the actual white meat of the coconut is a delicious healthy snack!

    The only coconut products that I have issue with is the flour, sugar, butter… The texture, flavor and taste of the three respectively aren’t to my liking at all.


    Black Pearl Reply:

    WOW! This is all new to me. I never knew that there were so many ways to use coconut oil.

    Thanks to all for the info.


  15. Anonymous |

    Don’t forget jojoba oil…most like your natural skin and scalp.


  16. B_LYN |

    I knew Coconut oil was great for the skin and hair and used as a cooking oil…coconut oil have a lot of benefits.


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