How To Use It: Coconut Oil

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Hey all you nutty kids! Katie and I have a bunch of products that make their way into our daily lives in some form or another and one of those is coconut oil.  We thought it might be helpful to explain how we use coconut oil in case you’re at a bit of a loss.  Personally coconut oil is used so often in my house that I have a jar in my kitchen, bathroom and car!  I can’t get enough of the stuff and while I like other oils too like argon and olive, coconut is so cheap and versatile that I find myself using larger quantities of it than the others.

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Why do I love coconut oil? Well, like its many uses, I have many reasons.  First, it’s anti-fungal, antibacterial and antiviral. Whoa.  Throw your hand sanitizer out the window right now (just kidding! dispose of it properly) because you don’t need it anymore.  Because of all it’s anti-germy-ness coconut oil is perfect for moisturizer, deodorant and general skin soothing.  Besides rubbing it all over my face, hair and body, It’s pretty delicious to consume too. I also find it really easy to substitute into recipes, which makes it a champ in my recipe book.  In the past, coconut oil has certainly gotten a bad rap (more on that below), but thankfully I live by the ‘everything in moderation’ rule so trendy eating habits rarely make their way into my kitchen. Any who, one thing that’s certain is that coconut oil is rich in saturated medium chain fatty acids (triglycerides), which are NOT the devil.  I’ve always had a thing for butter so maybe that’s why I have a love affair with fats. Or maybe it’s the teensy tiny fact that good fats improve your immune system.  When your respected MD tells you a little tidbit to enhance your immune-system health like that you hang onto it for dear life. If only to make you feel better about all dat butta. As much as I love butter, I often sub in coconut oil, but there is so much more you can do with coconut oil in the kitchen!

Cooking:

I find myself using coconut oil a lot in the kitchen.  If you’re still on the fence about coconut oil, read this Authority Nutrition article.  I find I’m still explaining to people why coconut oil is not the most terrible thing in the world for you and I would totally explain it here and now, but that scientific-evidence-based article will do it better than I can.

Use it to sauté and fry veggies – Coconut oil has a high smoke point, which makes it perfect for frying foods. Next time you’re splashing a little olive oil or vegetable oil in your pan, try substituting in some coconut oil instead.

Use it as a substitute for butter when baking.  It can often be used as a substitute for margarine and vegetable oil too!  I try not to use vegetable oil  too often and I replace it with coconut oil whenever possible.

Add it to your coffee + smoothies for a healthy fat boost.  Just a tip, heat up the coconut oil and blend it into your base liquid to incorporate.

Raw treats usually require coconut oil.

Coconut oil works well in bars too.

Body:

Oil Pulling instead of toothpaste – I swish and swoosh coconut oil everyday for twenty minutes.  That may sound like a crazy amount of gargling time, but after the first week my mouth muscles (cheek muscles?) got used to it.  Usually I swish and swoosh while I’m doing daily chores so that I’m not so focused on what I’m doing.  I can honestly say that my breath does not smell in the morning and my teeth are noticeably whiter.

Moisturizer – If I don’t have a homemade lotion bar on hand, I simply rub some solid coconut oil between my palms and apply it when I’m still wet after a shower.  It absorbs easily and really soothes my awfully dry skin.

Scrubs – Coconut oil is a main component in a lot of our concoctions.

Deodorant – Coconut oil is practically made for deodorant, did I mention it’s antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral? I’m just being obnoxious, I know I did.

Make up remover – I put a little bit of coconut oil on a cotton ball and lightly rub it on my eyelids and under eyes to remove any leftover make up after a shower.  I find this technique works better than any others I’ve tried in the past and it doesn’t leave my face tingling.

Hair care – I use coconut oil to tame frizzy fly-aways.  I also use it every once in a while as a deep conditioning treatment and to help moisturizer my scalp.  I lather it on, brush it through and leave it in over night.  Don’t worry, looking like a major grease ball is part of the process. The next morning I wash my hair twice to return it to it’s normal state. I heard coconut oil also suffocates lice, but thankfully I haven’t had to try it out.

That’s how I currently incorporate coconut oil into my life.  I heard it’s great for itchy dogs too.  I’ll have to try that one.  There are lists and lists and even more lists of ways to use coconut oil.  How do you use it?

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2 thoughts on “How To Use It: Coconut Oil

  1. Woah, thanks for that article, I was totally on the fence about coconut oil after I got my most recent (slightly high) cholesterol levels back from the doc. I totally did not do my research (and didn’t totally give it up, just tried to cut back on fats and such in general) but that has me convinced that I should at least be using coconut oil in place of other options, no matter my intake. Oil pulling is amazing, now that I have a dentist I like, I am totally going to grill them on it and see what they know. Go Team Coconut Oil!

    • Yay! I’ve talked to two dental assistants and as far as they were concerned, coconut oil is a great option for removing bacteria and cleaning up the gums, but they both suggested lightly brushing with a dry toothbrush to remove plaque build up. Good luck and let us know what they tell you!

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