• Health & Fitness

All Hail Coconut Oil: Why I’m So In Love!

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There it sat in my pantry, my 14 ounce jar of LouAna-brand coconut oil. I’d just completed Dr. Oz’s interesting, yet very effective 3-day juice cleanse (read about my juicing experience here) and used the oil as one of the key ingredients. I had no idea what to do with the remaining. I’d tapped out on blended smoothies and finely processed health drinks so I did what any frugal person would do and researched ways to take advantage of my $6.50 investment in coconut oil.

I don’t think rubbing mud and ripe berries on my face is a bad thing, I’m just not that type of person. I’ve always been accustomed to buying beauty products off the shelf (though I admit to falling victim to some terrible ads for subpar products), so this was a big step for me. I started slow, applying a little to my hair and venturing to other uses. Check out  how I incorporated this tropical oil into my beauty routine. 

Hair:

I predominately use coconut oil as hydrating therapy for my ends, especially when bantu knotting my hair or maintaining my curly wash-and-go. One or two days before my weekly shampoo and condition, I heap coconut oil onto sections of my hair. Then I braid it before going to bed for extra moisture. Since I’ve been regularly applying coconut oil to my hair, I’ve found a lot fewer dead ends around my sink. It also facilitates an easier detangling process. This is made possible by the penetrating power of coconut oil, versus other oils that simply coat your hair.

A fellow coconut-oil enthusiast also recommended massaging my scalp daily with coconut oil for 5 minutes to increase blood flow and overall hair growth. I have yet to try it, but if you have please share your experience in the comment section below.

Skin:

At least four times a week I apply coconut oil to designated areas including my knees, elbows, and heels of my feet after showering. When I want a shiny (not annoyingly greasy) look for a night out I put a small coat on my entire body, and I’m good to go.

I also apply it to my cuticles for extra moisture during the dry winter months.

Internal Health:

I can’t attest to the flavor or the long term benefits of coconut oil consumption as I can its topical use. But many rave about its nutty, almost sweet taste. It’s often used as a butter substitute because it is has lauric acid, a healthy type of saturated fat. This fat is proven to improve levels of “good” cholesterol in our bodies. The Wall Street Journal reports that coconut oil is also easy to digest and convert into energy. Berkley Wellness determined in a 2012 study that small doses can treat Alzheimer’s disease and provide an alternative energy source for brain cells.

On the other hand, experts at Berkley Wellness advise caution for claims that coconut oil assists in weight loss, and prevents heart disease or diabetes as these have not 100% verified. Nutritionists also discourage the consumption of highly-processed versions of coconut oil that include fragrances and trans fats.

I’ll let you make the decision on whether or not you want to incorporate coconut oil into your diet, but I’d definitely encourage you to try it. Prevention Magazine also published  a beneficial article highlighting 10 ways to use coconut oil, from shaving your legs to removing stubborn eye make up. Happy oiling!

Kelli Bennett is a freelance writer and editor recognized for her feature writing, business reporting, personal/business profiles and social media skills. She combines her passions for service and creativity with her inquisitive personality and writing ability. This equation ignited a yearning in Kelli to be the “Voice for the Unheard.” The excitement Kelli felt while writing her first feature remains with each story she writes.  She has been privileged to cover several stories for the Indiana Minority Business Magazine, Atlanta Tribune: The Magazine, Ball Bearings Magazine and numerous other publications. Kelli received her Bachelor of Arts, with honors, in Journalism from Ball State University in May 2013. When not investigating or constructing intriguing story angles, Kelli finds escape in music and serving her sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Kelli will never neglect her first love: music. She has been honored to sing for the National Department of Defense and other community organizations.

1 Comment

  1. Karnesha Slaughter

    May 20, 2015 at 1:55 pm

    Great piece! I love coconut oil, I’ve yet to try the “scalp stimulation” so I’ll have to try that one!

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