Monday, September 24, 2012

COCONUT OIL - the ins and outs


Coconut oil has been used for decades in Indian Ayurvedic practices. Our bodies convert lauric acid which is found in the coconut into monolaurin which is claimed to help in dealing with viruses and bacteria causing diseases such as herpes, influenza, cytomegalovirus, and evenHIV. It helps in fighting harmful bacteria such as listeria monocytogenes and heliobacter pylori, and harmful protozoa such as giardia lamblia. Coconut oil is 92% fatty acids.

How to apply to hair:

  • You may use the oil as often as desired. If you want to use it as a deep conditioner massage it into your scalp all the way down to your ends and leave it overnight or even longer and then wash out. If you have an overly oily scalp then only apply this oil the ends.
  • Leave in Conditioner. Apply a few drops to the palm of your hands and spread evenly throughout your hair. This helps curly hair particularly stay tamed in most weather climates.
  • Use as often as you would like. It does however vary from individual to individual. Your scalp may produce a lot of its own oils and you will want to apply it less often.

Benefits when applying to your hair

  • Coconut oil is known to make damaged hair healthier
  • Relieves dandruff caused by dry skin

How to apply to skin:
  • Apply straight oil or you may mix it in with lotion so it is not as oily. I do recommend you do not wear the oil when you are out in the sun. It is after all oil and your skin is flesh so it will burn quickly.
Benefits when applying to your skin:
  • It helps improve flaking skin
  • Prevents wrinkles & sagging of skin
  • Your nails will grow longer, thicker, and stronger over time from being in contact with the oil. (no need for acrylics!)
  • treats psoriasis, dermatitiseczema and other skin infections

It is just as important to take care of yourself on the outside as much as inside. Most natural things such as coconut oil are just as beneficial both when applied to the outside of the body as when digested by you. Usage of coconut oils mildly helps for the following:
Liver: The presence of medium chain triglycerides and fatty acids helps in preventing liver diseases as they substances are easily converted into energy when they reach the liver, thus reducing work load on the liver and also preventing accumulation of fat.
Kidney: Coconut oil helps in preventing kidney and gall bladder diseases. It also helps in dissolving kidney stones.
Pancreatitis: Coconut oil is also believed to be useful in treating pancreatitis.
Stress Relief: Coconut oil is very soothing and hence it helps in removing stress. Applying coconut oil to the head followed with a gentle massage helps in removing mental fatigue.
Diabetes: Coconut oil helps in controlling blood sugar, and improves the secretion of insulin. It also helps in effective utilization of blood glucose, thereby preventing and treating diabetes.
Bones: As mentioned earlier, coconut oil improves the ability of our body to absorb important minerals. These include calciumand magnesium which are necessary for development of bones. Thus coconut oil is very useful to women who are prone to osteoporosis after middle age.
Dental Care: Calcium is an important element present in teeth. Since coconut oil facilitates absorption of calcium by the body, it helps in getting strong teeth. Coconut oil also stops tooth decay.
HIV and Cancer: It is believed that coconut oil plays an instrumental role in reducing viral susceptibility of HIV and cancerpatients. Preliminary research has shown indications of the effect of coconut oil on reducing the viral load of HIV patients (Reference).
Finally, coconut oil is often preferred by athletes and body builders and by those who are dieting. The reason behind this being that coconut oil contains lesser calories than other oils, its fat content is easily converted into energy and it does not lead to accumulation of fat in the heart and arteries. Coconut oil helps in boosting energy and endurance, and enhances the performance of athletes.
Coconut Oil and Alzheimer's Disease: There are reports of  research conducted by Dr. Newport stating that coconut oil is useful for treating Alzheimer's disease. Apart from this there is no scientific evidence or traditional knowledge or coconut oil being used for treating Alzheimer's. It was also not known traditionally that coconut oil helps in the brain function. 

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