Yep, I said it… coconut oil can be used for pretty much everything under the sun. You might think that sounds like quite an exaggeration, but this post alone shares a whopping 50 uses for coconut oil, and after reading this you’ll see that the options really are seemingly endless.
It’s no wonder that in the Philippines the coconut palm is highly valued as the Tree of Life, it’s wide variety of uses have been enjoyed as part of everday living for thousands of years. It truly stands out as a natural wonder, capable of remedying all kinds of ailments, and nourishing wellness in a multitude healthful ways.
Coconut Oil and Saturated Fat Explained
Before we get to the uses, I feel it’s important to address the saturated fat in coconut oil, since the fear of consuming saturated fats is huge and we are taught to avoid them at all costs. While it’s true, we’re better off avoiding most types of saturated fats, in order to have a better understanding, we must first understand the different types of saturated fats and how their reaction within the body varies.
The reality is that most saturated fats and oils we eat are comprised of long-chain-triglycerides (LCT) which make your digestive system sluggish and are stored in the body as fat. Easy to understand why we don’t want that.
Coconut oil, however, is different in that it is composed of medium chain triglycerides (MCT). Unlike bad fats, MCT molecules are smaller making them easier for the digestive system to break down and are more readily absorbed, and converted by your liver into energy as a clean, healthy source of fat.
MCT also boosts metabolism by providing your cells with energy which can increase endurance, lead to quicker recovery time, faster healing of injuries, healthy immune system function, and aid in weight loss.
Many studies have also shown coconut oil to actually contribute to healthy cholesterol levels and promote overall heart health. It has been shown to support thyroid and brain health, especially exciting is more recent research being done regarding the potential benefits of reversing early stage Alzheimer’s.
Natural Defense Against Harmful Microbes
Lauric acid is one of the medium-chain fatty acids (MCFA) contained in breast milk, providing the baby protection against harmful microorganisms. These fatty acids help develop nice strong immune systems. Interestingly enough lauric acid is also the main MCFA in coconut oil.
This acid is the main shield of defense, and destroyer of all sorts of microbes from viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites, which is why coconut oil is so beneficial in the treatment of things like candida, yeast infections, allergies, skin conditions, and more.
Now for the fun part! Here are 50 ways you can use coconut oil and why I always keep it on hand in my kitchen pantry.
Uses for Coconut Oil in the Kitchen
1. Saute with it, has a high heat point and will not become damaged, and doesn’t go rancid.
2. Bake with it.
3. Put it in smoothies.
4. Spread it on toast or baked goods instead of butter, or on crackers with almond butter.
5. Add a spoonful to your tea or coffee to balance blood sugar.
6. Eat a tablespoon plain for a quick energy boost.
7. Add into oatmeal, hot cereals, raw energy balls, and raw truffles.
For Personal Care
8. Oil pulling. Take a spoonful of oil and swish it around in your mouth, pushing, and pulling it through your teeth for 15 minutes. This will pull out bacteria and debris so be careful not to swallow any oil before spitting it out. Rinse your mouth with water. In the morning, before breakfast is the best time. To maximize your efforts, do twice daily.
9. Toothpaste. Mix 4 Tbsp coconut oil with 1 Tbsp baking soda and store in a container for a quick fluoride free anti-bacterial toothpaste. Or try my all natural toothpaste recipe.
10. Deodorant. For a quick fix mix 6 Tbsp coconut oil, 4 Tbsp baking soda, and 4 Tbsp arrowroot powder or cornstarch, add essential oils if desired and store in a jar or old deodorant container. For a stronger version try my homemade deodorant recipe.
11. Makeup remover. Apply to a cotton ball or moist washcloth and gently wipe off makeup.
12. Facial wash. Massage a dollop into face and neck. Run a washcloth under hot water and place it over your face gently removing oil, and let skin air dry.
13. Facial Scrub. Mix equal parts oil with oatmeal and a drop of your favorite essential oil for a quick, gentle scrub.
14. Facial moisturizer. Apply a dollop to cleansed skin.
15. Apply around eye areas and gently massage into lashes to promote growth.
16. Cuticle cream. Massage small amount into cuticles to soften dry areas.
17. Use as a base in homemade soap recipes.
18. Body Scrub. Mix with organic cane sugar in a glass jar for a spa treatment.
19. Body moisturizer. Rub into body concentrating on extra dry areas like elbows, knees, and feet. Or try my whipped body butter recipe.
20. Lip balm. Apply small amount to lips as moisturizer. Or try my fiercely moisturizing lip balm recipe.
21. Deep conditioning treatment for hair. Rub oil into dry hair from scalp to ends, pin up, and put on a shower cap for an hour to overnight and wash as usual. For split or dry ends you can also rub some into just the ends of washed hair before going to bed, it will absorb by morning, with no need to rinse or wash out.
22. Use to shave face, legs, underarms, and bikini lines with. Soothing and antibacterial to help heal nicks faster.
23. Diaper cream. Apply to baby’s bum as a natural antibacterial and soother.
24. Pregnant belly balm. Massage into belly to prevent stretch marks and relieve itchy skin. My whipped body butter recipe is great for existing stretch marks or preventing them.
25. Nipple cream. Soothe dry or cracked nipples when breastfeeding.
26. Natural personal lubricant.
27. Massage. Add lavender for relaxation, orange for invigoration, and eucalyptus for sore muscles.
28. Natural SPF, but only 4. For higher SPF try my homemade sunscreen recipe.
29. Insect repellent. Mix essential oils like citronella, geraniol, neem, tea tree, and lemongrass with coconut oil for a natural bug repellent.
As a Natural Remedy
30. Topically for athlete’s foot, toenail fungus, or ringworm. Internally for vaginal yeast infection. You can mix in a small amount of tea tree or oregano oil.
31. Mix in a small amount of oregano oil and apply to cold sores at the first sign of one.
32. Apply to skin rashes or irritations, psoriasis, eczema, acne, bug bites, stings, cuts, and scrapes. Works great mixed with activated charcoal.
33. Perineal massage. Starting a month or so before your due date, massage oil into perineum daily to reduce risk of tearing/the need for an episiotomy. Continue to apply after birth to speed healing.
34. Add a small amount of lavender to oil and apply to hemorrhoids for relief and healing.
35. Place a couple of drops into each ear for ear infections. Or try my homemade garlic ear oil.
36. Mix with a couple drops of eucalyptus oil as a decongestant vapor rub. Important: Eucalyptus oil should not be used on children under the age of 10 years.
37. Use with apple cider vinegar for a head lice treatment.
38. For cradle cap, gently massage into baby’s head, leave on for a few minutes, then rinse gently with a warm washcloth.
Around the House
39. Season cast iron skillets.
40. Condition wooden cutting boards.
41. Non-toxic homemade wax melts make the house smell great.
42. Condition leather furniture or goods. Test a small area first.
43. Use in place of WD-40 to lubricate hinges, and other metal parts.
44. Remove tar from feet (great for beach days:)
For Internal Health Benefits – Eat 1-2 Tbsp a Day
45. Boost metabolism.
46. Boost brain power and healthy moods.
47. Support thyroid function.
48. Increase energy and mental alertness.
49. Promote healthy hormone production.
50. Last but not least, let’s not forget our furry friends. It’s great for both dogs and cats. I give my cat 1/2 tsp a day to prevent hairballs, keep her skin healthy, and her coat soft and shiny. She comes running when she hears the lid opening and licks it right off my hand.
Refined, Unrefined, Virgin & Extra Virgin???
For internal use, organic unrefined (which means not processed), extra virgin coconut oil is the way to go. If you choose, for external use, refined or virgin will do.
I’ve shared some of my favorite coconut oils with you, below. They taste great, have a pleasant odor, and mix well in DIY projects. You can go smaller or bigger, but I usually buy the 54 oz size since it doesn’t go rancid, and saves money in the long run, annnddd as you know, I use it for pretty much everything : ))))) Happy, healthy coconut-oiling!!!
A long-standing reference on this amazing super food, you may like The Coconut Oil Miracle.
What are some of your favorite ways to use coconut oil? Share in the comments below!