Coconut Oil

I LOVE coconut oil. It’s so soft and smells delicious! There are so many ways to use coconut oil, but I especially love to use it for my babies hair and skin. Just rub some on any irritated areas and voila it’s like magic! I swear Nico started developing a rash on his face and I lathered those sweet cheeks up and the next day they was noticeably better. After a couple days it’s practically gone! Below you will find some other ways to use coconut oil that I found.

Coconut Oil – An Overview

Offering a myriad of health benefits, coconut oil is affordable, readily available and completely natural. I use it for EVERYTHING. Literally. I buy it in 5 gallon increments and keep it all over my house. I even have some in the car. So here is a little information to inspire you to check out this amazing oil!

Coconut Oil Is:

  • Anti-bacterial (kills bacteria that cause ulcers, throat infections, urinary tract infections, gum diseases, and other bacterial infections)
  • Anti-carcinogenic (coconut oil has antimicrobial properties so it effectively prevents the spread of cancer cells and enhances the immune system)
  • Anti-fungal (kills fungi and yeast that lead to infection)
  • Anti-inflammatory (appears to have a direct effect in suppressing inflammation and repairing tissue, and it may also contribute by inhibiting harmful intestinal microorganisms that cause chronic inflammation.)
  • Anti-microbial/Infection Fighting (the medium-chain fatty acids and monoglycerides found in coconut oil are the same as those in human mother’s milk, and they have extraordinary antimicrobial properties. By disrupting the lipid structures of microbes, they inactivate them. About half of coconut oil consists of lauric acid. Lauric acid, its metabolite monolaurin and other fatty acids in coconut oil are known to protect against infection from bacteria, viruses, yeast, fungi and parasites. While not having any negative effect on beneficial gut bacteria, coconut oil inactivates undesirable microbes.)
  • An Antioxidant (protects against free-radical formation and damage)
  • Anti-parasitic (fights to rid the body of tapeworms, lice and other parasites)
  • Anti-protozoa (kills giardia, a common protozoan infection of the gut)
  • Anti-retroviral (kills HIV and HLTV-1)
  • Anti-viral (kills viruses that cause influenza, herpes, measles, hepatitis C, SARS, AIDS, and other viruses)
  • Infection fighting
  • Has no harmful for discomforting side effects
  • Known to improve nutrient absorption (easily digestible; makes vitamins and minerals more available to the body)
  • Nontoxic to humans and animals

Daily Dosage:

Here is a chart outlining the recommended daily dosage of virgin coconut oil for persons over the age of 12. Coconut oil may be consumed by children under 12 but it is advisable to check with a healthcare practitioner on the proper dosage. Any good naturopath will have the information at the ready. (Starting at 12 months of age, I gave my daughter one teaspoon per day and she weighed about 16 pounds at that time.)

Weight in pounds/kilograms Number of tablespoons of coconut oil daily
175+/79+ 4
150+ /68+ 3 1/2
125+ / 57+ 3
100+/ 45+ 2 1/2
75+ / 34+ 2
50+ / 23+ 1 1/2
25+ / 11+ 1

Type of Coconut Oil to Use:

  • Virgin (unrefined) coconut oil tastes and smells coconutty and is great for cooking and baking where you want that flavor. You can use it for anything but it will impart a coconut taste (mild) and odor (pleasant in my book)! Unrefined coconut oil retains the most nutritional value and is superior to refined oil.
  • Expeller pressed (refined) coconut oil can be used for anything. It does not have a coconutty smell or taste. It is still outstanding to use but does lose some of it’s health properties during the refining process.
  • Food grade should always be used.

160 Uses for Coconut Oil

80 Uses for Coconut Oil

Personal Hygiene/Body

1.       Moisturizer – simply scoop some out of the jar and apply all over your body, including neck and face.
2.       Eye cream – apply under the eyes to reduce puffiness, bags, and wrinkles. Use on the lids in the evening.
3.       Preshave – coconut oil will prep skin for the pending damage caused by shaving.
4.       Aftershave – coconut oil will help heal your skin after shaving without clogging pores.
5.       Deodorant – coconut oil alone can be used as a deodorant, but even more effective in combination with cornstarch/arrowroot powder and baking soda!
6.       Hair Conditioner/Deep Treatment – use as a leave in hair conditioner by applying a teaspoon of coconut oil to your ends and then running your fingers through your hair to distribute the rest! For a deeper treatment, rub in a tablespoon of coconut oil onto your dry scalp and gently work through to the ends. Put a shower cap on to prevent transfer onto bed linens and leave on overnight.
7.       Hair Gel/Defrizzer – rub a little between your palms and either scrunch into hair (for curly hair) or finger comb in through from scalp to ends (for wavy/straight hair).
8.       Toothpaste – there are numerous recipes out there but I just mix coconut oil and baking soda and dab a little of the mix on my toothbrush.
9.       Make up remover – use a cotton swab and a dab of coconut oil and you would be amazed at how well it works!
10.   Chapstick – just rub a little into lips and it not only acts as a softening agent but it also has an SPF of about 4 so you get a little protection!
11.   Massage Oil – pretty simple; grab some and rub!
12.   Lubricant – it is an all natural, perfectly safe personal lubricant. Not compatible with latex!
13.   Sunscreen – see my post on natural sunscreen for more detailed information.
14.   Stretch Mark Cream – coconut oil is great at nourishing damaged skin. It may not be the magic stretch mark cure but it will help.
15.   Nipple Cream – works great to nourish cracked, sore, or dry nipples. Apply to a cotton ball and leave on your nipples between feedings.
16.   Diaper salve – very comforting on a rashy bum with no harsh chemicals. Also safe for cloth diapers.
17.   Cradle cap – having issues with dry skin on your baby’s scalp? Coconut oil will not only nourish your baby’s skin, it also helps eliminate cradle cap. Just rub a teaspoon onto scalp daily.
18.   Body scrub – mix coconut oil and sugar together and rub all over! Rinse off and your skin will be super soft! You can add in essential oils if you would like a specific smell.
19.   Healing – when applied on scrapes and cuts, coconut oil forms a thin, chemical layer which protects the wound from outside dust, bacteria and virus. Coconut oil speeds up the healing process of bruises by repairing damaged tissues. Plus, it smells a heck-of-a-lot better than anything from the pharmacy.
20.   Bug Bites – when applied directly to a bug bite, coconut oil can stop the itching and burning sensation as well as hasten the healing process.
21.   Skin problems – coconut oil relieves skin problems such as psoriasis, dermatitis, and eczema.
22.   Swimmers Ear – mix garlic oil and coconut oil and put a few drops in affected ear for about 10 minutes. Do this 2-3 times a day and it usually works within one or two days.

General Health and Wellness

23.   Stress Relief – relieve mental fatigue by applying coconut oil to the head in a circular, massaging motion. The natural aroma of coconuts is extremely soothing thus helping to lower your stress level.
24.   Digestion – the saturated fats in coconut oil have anti-bacterial properties that help control, parasites, and fungi that cause indigestion and other digestion related problems such as irritable bowel syndrome. The fat in coconut oil also aids in the absorption of vitamins, minerals and amino acids, making you healthier all around.
25.   Fitness – coconut oil has been proven to stimulate your metabolism, improve thyroid function, and escalate energy levels, all of which help decrease your unwanted fat, while increasing muscle.
26.   Nose bleeds – coconut oil can prevent nose bleeding that is caused by sensitivity to weather such as extreme hotness and extreme coldness. This condition happens when the nasal passages become dry because of cold or dry air resulting to burns and cracks in the mucus membranes so bleeding happens. To prevent this just put coconut oil in you nostrils. Coat your finger with coconut oil and then lie down and coat your finger inside your nose. Doing this will strengthen and protect the capillaries in the nasal passages. A Vitamin C supplement will also help prevent nose bleeding.
27.   For breastfeeding moms, consuming 3 ½ tablespoons of coconut oil daily will enrich your milk supply.
28.   Helps with weight loss & controlling cravings.
29.   Helps keep blood sugar levels stable and/or helps with cravings in those with diabetes.

Health Problems (that coconut oil is known for aiding, relieving, or even curing when taken internally)

30.   Eczema – in addition to taking it internally, many have success applying it externally, some don’t
31.   Skin problems
32.   Toenail fungus
33.   Hot flashes
34.   Bleeding hemorrhoids (can also be applied externally twice a day)
35.   HIV
36.   Head lice
37.   Improvements in menstruation regarding pain/cramps and heavy blood flow
38.   Migraines (with regular use)
39.   Mononucleosis
40.   Parasites
41.   Thrush
42.   Relieve gallbladder pain
43.   Has helped some people improve symptoms of an underactive thyroid gland, results have shown subsequent thyroid blood tests becoming normal
44.   Energy boost
45.   Flaky, dry skin
46.   May relieve acid reflux and indigestion when taken with each meal
47.   Adrenal fatigue
48.   Alzheimers
49.   H. pylori
50.   Candida albicans
51.   Asthma, even in children
52.   Autism
53.   Cholesterol – improves HDL (‘good’ cholesterol) to HDL (‘bad’ cholesterol) ratio in people with high cholesterol
54.   Chronic fatigue
55.   Circulation/feeling cold all the time
56.   Stronger immune system
57.   Mental Clarity
58.   Depression
59.   Helps with inflammation in Crohns

Health Problems (that coconut oil is known for aiding, relieving, or even curing when applied topically)

60.   Athletes foot
61.   Back pain/sore muscles
62.   Canker sores
63.   Acne
64.   Cellulite
65.   Herpes (applied topically and taken internally)
66.   Genital warts (through topical application over 6 weeks, and coconut oil enemas twice a day depending on the location of the warts)
67.   Circumcision healing – although I am personally against circumcision, I have read that coconut oil is a really great healer for this.

Cooking

68.   Use 1 cup to 1 cup ratio when replacing other oils/butter in recipes with coconut oil.
69.   Replacement for butter/lard/Crisco/PAM in it’s solid form – greasing pans, pie crusts, etc.
70.   Replacement for various oils in liquid form – baking, cooking, sautéing, etc.
71.   Nutritional supplement – melt and add to smoothies.

Other Uses

72.   Insect repellent – mix coconut oil with peppermint oil extract and rub it all over exposed skin. Keeps insects off better than anything with Deet! Tons safer too.
73.   Great for dogs and cats for general wellness. Just add a teaspoon to their water bowl daily.
74.   Goo Gone – just mix equal parts coconut oil and baking soda into a paste. Apply to the “sticky” area and let it set for a minute. Then scrub off with an old toothbrush or the scrubby side of a sponge.
75.   Chewing Gum in Hair Remover – just rub some coconut oil over the stuck chewing gum, leave in for about 30 minutes, then roll the gum between your fingertip. Voila! It’s out!
76.   Polish Furniture – coconut oil with a little bit of lemon juice to polish wood furniture. However, I recommend you test it first on a very small, unobtrusive part of your furniture to make sure it works the way you’d like.
77.   Polishing Bronze – all you have to do is rub a little oil into a cotton towel and then wipe down the statue. It cleans and helps deepen the color of your bronze.
78.   Seasoning animal hide drums
79.   Seasoning cookware
80.   Moisturizing and cleaning leather products

Did I miss any? Do you use coconut oil for something not on my list? Please add it in the comments. I am always excited to find new ways to implement coconut oil!

Thank you Jennifer from Hybrid Rasta Mama for compiling this list!

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Deney April 9, 2012 at 1:56 pm

We feed coconut oil to our girls (dogs). Definitely helps on those days when they get so picky and won’t eat their dry food. I also rub very little amount in their ear. They’re a bit sensitive to dry weather so it helps soothe the itchiness.

Josefa April 9, 2012 at 7:16 pm

Great idea Deney! Thanks for sharing those tips!

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