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Organic Virgin Coconut Oil Uses & Health Benefits

Updated on September 26, 2015
ChristinS profile image

Christin is a natural health and wellness advocate with 20 years' of experience studying and working in the health and supplement industry.

My Favorite Extra Virgin Organic Coconut Oil

here its in its solid form but will quickly turn to liquid at 76 degrees.
here its in its solid form but will quickly turn to liquid at 76 degrees. | Source

Coconut Oil Uses for Health

Coconut oil is a versatile oil with a wide array of benefits for the body. Coconut is a super food that has been revered by many cultures throughout the ages for it's healing and nutrient properties. Pacific Islanders who follow a traditional diet that is rich in coconut meat and oils have much lower rates of heart disease and obesity than do those who consume other vegetable oils.

There are many myths and misconceptions about coconut oil that need to be clarified. Many sources have stated that coconut oil is bad for your health due to the high level of saturated fats. This is true of hydrogenated coconut oil which is highly processed and should be avoided. Any hydrogenated oils indicate the presence of trans fats and should be replaced with other, healthier oils.

The preferred, healthy coconut oil is the extra virgin coconut oil. It should be organic, cold pressed, and unrefined. This is the oil that contains the heart healthy omega fats that benefit the body. In fact, a diet with coconut oil can help to boost the metabolism and aid weight loss while lowering cholesterol.

Coconut oil contains lauric acid, caprylic acid, and capric acid. These are the active ingredients that give coconut oil its antioxidant, anti-fungal, and antibacterial properties. It is soothing to the body and deeply moisturizing to the skin and hair.

Health Benefits of Coconut Oil

Regulates Cholesterol

Extra Virgin Coconut Oil has fewer calories than other oils and is easily converted into energy therefore not clogging the arteries with excess fat buildup.

Aids Weight Loss

Coconut oil has been shown to control cravings, increase energy levels, and boost thyroid function – all of which can assist in a weight loss plan. In addition coconut oil is readily used by the body as fuel and not readily stored by the body as extra fat.

Boosts Immunity

The lauric acid in coconut oil is used by the body to produce specialized anti-microbial, anti-bacterial substances. Organic coconut oil also helps assist the body in the absorption of several key nutrients needed for a healthy immune system.

Treats Skin Conditions

The natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties in coconut oil make it an excellent natural choice for fighting acne. In addition a diet with coconut oil as well as coconut oil applied to the skin has been shown to be a very effective treatment for eczema.

Aids Digestion & Bowel Function

The anti-inflammatory properties of coconut oil have been shown to soothe the gut and heal injuries to the digestive tract. The anti-microbial properties assist various digestive disorders by killing microorganisms that contribute to chronic inflammation.

Promotes Dental Health / Prevents Bone Loss

Coconut oil aids in the absorption of calcium and magnesium to prevent bone loss and protect teeth. In addition the anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties of coconut oil can help with good oral hygiene. Some people brush their teeth with coconut oil and baking soda as a natural tooth cleanser.

How to Use Coconut Oil

As a Supplement

The suggested therapeutic dose is around 3 tablespoons of raw coconut oil per day. Coconut oil has a fantastic, mild coconut flavor which is excellent blended into smoothies or even used as a spread instead of margarine. If you dislike the taste of coconut, capsules can be purchased.

Spread your coconut oil out throughout the day and build up gradually if you have been on a strict low or no fat diet as a sudden consumption of this amount could cause diarrhea.

Cooking with Coconut Oil

Coconut oil has a melting point of 76 degrees and can go from a solid to a liquid and back to a solid again. This is no cause for concern and perfectly normal. Sauté stir fry vegetables in a couple of teaspoons of coconut oil for an interesting flavor.

In baking, melt the coconut oil to its liquid form as a replacement for other oils for best results. For items like pie crusts or pastries it can be used in its solid form.

Coconut Oil for Skin and Hair

Coconut oil has many uses other than cooking and can be used externally for skin and hair care. It's antimicrobial and anti-fungal properties make it a great acne treatment. It's omega fatty acids also make it an excellent, all-natural moisturizer for the skin and conditioner for the hair. Extra virgin coconut oil can be applied straight to the skin/hair. It smells wonderful and is fabulous at softening the skin.

Make an incredible scrub by simply mixing solid coconut oil with a bit of sugar or sea salt and rub the mixture gently in a circular motion to exfoliate and nourish the skin. The oil melts as you rub it into the skin and moisturizes. This will leave your skin feeling soft and supple and is a lot less expensive than getting a facial or spa treatment!

Use coconut oil as a hot oil treatment or deep conditioner for the hair. Apply generous amounts to saturate dry hair, allow to sit for 30 minutes and then shampoo as usual for a deep conditioning treatment. You can also apply as you would regular conditioner after shampooing, comb it gently through the hair and rinse it out after a couple of minutes. On humid days I take a pea size dollop and melt it in my hands and apply to the ends of my hair to help tame frizz.

If you have never used coconut oil before I highly recommend it. You'll find it's a real treat to your body both inside and out. It is truly one of the most versatile oils there is and its health benefits can't be beat.

**Make sure you are using the right kind of coconut oil! It should be extra virgin and organic for the full range of health and beauty benefits**

Nature's Way is my personal favorite of the different coconut oils I've tried. It has a silky, but thick texture when solid and it adds great flavor to stir fry. I also use this daily for oil pulling. Coconut oil is one of the best things you can do for your dental health. It whitens teeth with regular use and promotes tight, healthy gums.

Because I use it daily I use Amazon's subscribe and save feature and have a new jar delivered every other month.

Do you use coconut oil? vote here or share your thoughts/experiences in the comment section :)

See results

© 2012 Christin Sander


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    • ChristinS profile imageAUTHOR

      Christin Sander 

      3 years ago from Midwest

      Thanks Rachelle, glad you enjoyed the hub and I appreciate the comment :)

    • Rachelle Williams profile image

      Rachelle Williams 

      3 years ago from Tempe, AZ

      This hub is definitely a keeper - I had no idea that coconut oil curbs the appetite...Thanks for sharing.

    • ChristinS profile imageAUTHOR

      Christin Sander 

      4 years ago from Midwest

      That's too bad lovenatural :(. I guess it depends on where you buy it from. In the US it's pricier than other oils for sure, but it's so versatile and healthy that it's worth it. I get a large jar of it for $14 or so US dollars.

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      I bought coconut oil for R100 a litre (South African currency) and would love to use it for lots of stuff, but its way too expensive!

    • ChristinS profile imageAUTHOR

      Christin Sander 

      6 years ago from Midwest

      Thanks for the comment Kalux. I see no reason why you can't use it on the face as it is completely natural. Mix a dab with a little sugar and do a scrub - it will leave you smooth and silky. I use coconut oil in all my handmade soaps and lotions for it's skin soothing and softening properties :)

    • Kalux profile image


      6 years ago from Canada

      Very useful! I just got a jar of coconut oil and have been looking for ways to use it. I tried it in my hair and plan to use it as a deep conditioner at least once a week. I've heard mixed reviews about using it on your face, a little timid to try that.

    • ChristinS profile imageAUTHOR

      Christin Sander 

      6 years ago from Midwest

      @Angela - thanks for sharing!

      @ MsLofton - yes indeed, I use it as a deep conditioner for my hair periodically in the summer when I've been out in the sun/wind a lot. Works very well and smells good too!

      @ Dirt Farmer - stir fries and many other foods are awesome with xtra virgin coconut oil - just make sure you get the right kind of coconut oil and it's very healthy and tastes great.

      @Peter I agree it does soak readily into the skin. I use a great deal of it in my homemade soaps and lotions because it does a great job.

      @morningglory Thanks! glad you enjoyed it.

    • morningglory24 profile image


      6 years ago

      LOVE Coconut Oil. Great Hub!

    • Peter Geekie profile image

      Peter Geekie 

      6 years ago from Sittingbourne

      Thank you very much ChristinS for throwing more light Onto coconut oil and it's uses. I use distilled coconut oil as a base or carrier oil in some of my essential oil blends. I like it because it is very light and almost vanishes into the skin.

      Kind regards Peter

    • The Dirt Farmer profile image

      Jill Spencer 

      6 years ago from United States

      I enjoyed your coconut oil hub very much. It is super informative & makes me want to try coconut oil in my diet. Voted up & interesting. Thanks!

    • MsLofton profile image


      6 years ago from IL

      Thanks for this! I hear that Coconut oil is good for hair too.

    • Angela Brummer profile image

      Angela Brummer 

      6 years ago from Lincoln, Nebraska

      Great article. I will share this!

    • ChristinS profile imageAUTHOR

      Christin Sander 

      6 years ago from Midwest

      thanks penguin, coconut oil (the right kind) is very healthy for the body and metabolism and it tastes good in smoothies so I'm sure you'll enjoy that. Thanks for commenting

    • penguinforsale profile image


      6 years ago from Kentucky

      I like coconut oil to cook with (and make DIY conditioner) but had no idea there was a difference between hydrogenated and EV coconut oil. Actually, I didn't even know there was such a thing as extra virgin coconut oil. I'm going to check my jar at home, out of curiosity, to see which kind I have.

      I also didn't know about coconut oil in smoothies, but I will definitely be modifying some smoothie recipes now!

    • ChristinS profile imageAUTHOR

      Christin Sander 

      6 years ago from Midwest

      thanks taw for reading and commenting - it's appreciated.

    • taw2012 profile image


      6 years ago from India

      Coconut oil is the most used oil in my place - Kerala. nice hub.

    • ChristinS profile imageAUTHOR

      Christin Sander 

      6 years ago from Midwest

      thanks for stopping by and commenting billybuc - hope you enjoy the coconut oil when you try it :)

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      6 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Well look at all the stuff I didn't know. Very useful hub and I do believe I'll be buying some of this very soon.

    • ChristinS profile imageAUTHOR

      Christin Sander 

      6 years ago from Midwest

      Hi learner thanks for commenting - I love using it on my hair and I make soaps and always put coconut oil in it too for the lovely lather and moisturizing properties.

      Lilleyth thanks for commenting - I have found its much less expensive to purchase online. Also, you get what you pay for and coconut oil is definitely worth a litte extra in my experience. A little goes a very long way with this stuff too. Hope you get a chance to try it sometime :).

    • Lilleyth profile image

      Suzanne Sheffield 

      6 years ago from Mid-Atlantic

      I picked up a bottle at the store having heard recently about it being better than other oils, but it was over-priced so I said "forget that". Good information though.

    • learner365 profile image

      Saadia A 

      6 years ago

      Useful information about coconut oil.My experience shows that it definitely works for skin and hair dryness.The hot oil treatment for dry hair is really a good remedy.Haven't tried it in any form of cooking though.But i think i will try using it for pie crusts and pastries as you have mentioned above.

      Thank you for sharing great information with us :)

      My vote up and useful !!!


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