Until a few months ago, the only recipe I used coconut oil for, was to make Home-made Ice-Cap Chocolate Sauce (the sauce hardens when poured onto ice-cream). These days I have a 1 liter tub of coconut oil next to my stove and another in my bathroom and I use it for anything and everything! These days I feel the same about coconut oil than the dad in the movie “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” felt about Windex – it is the solution to any problem you may be presented with! It can be used as moisturizer, bum cream, lip balm, teeth whitener, eye-makeup remover, antibacterial skin cream, body scrub (just mix with equal parts sugar), to name a few of the hundreds of uses.
Until not so long ago, the only coconut products we knew, was desiccated coconut that is used to make Coconut Ice. These days coconut products, such as coconut flour, coconut water, coconut chips, etc. can be found in most health shops, pharmacies and fruit and veg shops. Scroll down for photo’s of the different products. Be sure to try my recipe for Coconut Flour Crumpets.
Coconut oil by nature is a refined product, because oil does not grow on a tree – coconuts do. Coconut oil is extracted from unrefined coconut milk, and is primarily composed of saturated fats. Due to the latter, coconut oil was considered to be unhealthy in the past. The truth is that coconut oil is actually a heart-healthy food that can keep your body running smoother in a few different ways. Studies have show that intake of coconut oil can help our bodies mount resistance to both viruses and bacteria that can cause illness. Coconut oil can also positively affect our hormones for thyroid and blood-sugar control. People who take coconut oil also tend to have improvements in how they handle blood sugar since coconut can help improve insulin use within the body. Coconut oil can boost thyroid function helping to increase metabolism, energy and endurance. It increases digestion and helps to absorb fat-soluble vitamins.
There are two broad categories of coconut oils: those that are mass produced at an industrial level and need to be refined, and those that start with fresh coconut and have much less refining. The term that is used for the least refined coconut oils is “virgin coconut oil.”
Organic Virgin Coconut Oil
- Made from fresh (raw) coconut meat
- Cold-pressed, and filtered
- Retains its natural coconut scent
- Rich in natural micronutrients
- More expensive than refined coconut oil
Organic Refined Coconut Oil
- Made from dried coconut meat
- No coconut scent
- Fewer micronutrients
- Less expensive than virgin coconut oil