Few years ago I bought my first jar of unrefined extra virgin coconut oil. I am huge fan of anything coconut, after I opened the jar, I literally wanted to take a big sip of it. It had a delicate aroma of coconut, just like an island beach vacation... As I later learned coconut oil has endless benefits for human health and nutrition. Nearly one third of the world depends on coconut to some degree for their food and economy. Coconut itself is highly nutritious, rich in fiber, vitamins and minerals. Coconut oil on the other hand possesses healing properties far beyond of any other dietary oil.
The health benefits of coconut oil include stress relief, managing cholesterol levels, increased immunity, wight loss, relief from kidney problems, heart diseases, high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, helps with proper digestion, metabolism, skin, hair and dental health.It's the presence of lauric acid, capric and caprylic acid in coconut oil that has antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti fungal and antibacterial properties. Helps human body dealing with viruses, bacteria causing diseases, like herpes, influenza or even HIV.
Coconut oil has been described as the healthiest oil on earth. What makes it better and healthier from the other oils? There was a common misconception spread among people for decades that coconut oil is not good for the heart due to it containing large quantities of saturated fats, but this same saturated fats have been proven to be unique and different from most all other fats.
To make it short - the saturated fats in coconut oil are mostly medium-chain fatty acids and short-chain fatty acids, as oppose to most other oils in our diet that consist of long-chain fatty acids. The length of the fatty acids is extremely important because our bodies respond to and metabolize each fatty acid differently depending on a size. So naturally medium-chain fats will assimilate better than long-chain fats.
Short and medium-chain fatty acids help with taking off excessive weight. Easy to digest, increase body's metabolism by removing stress on pancreases by burning out more energy which helps with weight reduction. Coconut oil helps regulate thyroid and enzyme systems. Improves digestive system, prevents various stomach/digestion related problems like irritable bowel syndrome or ulcers.
Coconut oil is an excellent moisturizer for skin and hair, including scalp. Massaged into scalp helps with dandruff and regrowth of damaged hair, also is a safe solution for preventing dryness and flaky skin, delays wrinkles and sagging. Coconut oil helps in treating various skin problems including psoriasis, eczema, and skin infections. It's antioxidant properties help with premature aging and degenerative diseases.
To benefit from the coconut oil, an adult would need to consume about 3.5 TBSP of coconut oil per day according to researchers (for more information visit Tropical Traditions FAQ website or Coconut Research Center's website)
Like I already mentioned - I am a coconut freak. So you will be seeing quite a few interesting recipes including coconut oil, or unsweetened coconut. In fact my next post will include Vegan Coconut Bars! Hope to see you there!
[Based on article written by Kiran Patil from OrganicFacts.com]
[Image Source: xsc.hu]