7 Unexpected Coconut Oil Uses: For Your Hair, Skin, and More

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7 Unexpected Coconut Oil Uses: For Your Hair, Skin, and More

Coconut oil helps with everything from detangling hair, to flavoring smoothies, to even treating skin problmes like eczema! Take a look at the research behind these claims, and, with your doctor’s supervision, try incorporating them into your diet or beauty regimen!

1. Dash Sautéed Dishes With Coconut Oil at Certain Temps

When you’re cooking on a higher heat, it’s a misnomer that coconut oil is always a good option. It may be, but you just have to choose the right one. Virgin coconut oil can only tolerate 350 degrees F before breaking down, says Low Dog. For higher-heat cooking, opt for an organic refined coconut oil, which can take temps up to 450 degrees F.

2. Add Coconut Oil to a Smoothie for a Flavor Burst

If you like the way coconut oil tastes and the texture it adds to a smoothie, go ahead and add a small dollop into the blender to give your drink a dose of fats. There are other ways to get fat into your smoothie, like nut butter; make sure you’re adding fat in moderation, as multiple sources can add up quickly in terms of calories.

3. Use Coconut Oil as a Natural Treatment to Soothe Eczema

If you’re hoping to help tame an eczema flare-up, you may want to give coconut oil a try, says Low Dog. Thanks to itchy skin, scratching can potentially introduce staphbacteria (Staphylococcus aureus, which requires antibiotics). On the other hand, “one study showed that applying it daily on your skin for a month led to a 95 percent reduction in staph on the skin,” says Low Dog. Coconut oil is rife with lauric acid, which has antibacterial and antifungal activity that fights harmful bacteria. As a moisturizer, it also may help repair the skin’s barrier, which is your body’s first line of defense against infection.

4. Use Coconut Oil to Moisturize Your Children’s Skin

If your kiddos are dealing with skin conditions like eczema or are have sensitive skin, coconut oil may be a great natural hydrator that contains no added fragrance or other ingredients that can cause irritation. “The compounds in coconut oil are safe and highly effective for restoring moisture to skin,” says Low Dog. In a study published in December 2015 in the Journal of Tropical Pediatrics, coconut oil was used on preterm infants to help reduce water loss through the skin. To avoid any potential danger, just be sure to talk to your child’s doctor before introducing any new products to his or her skin.

5. Swish Coconut Oil in Your Mouth to Potentially Boost Oral Health

A technique called oil pulling (involving swishing oil around in your mouth) is often done with olive oil, something that has benefited Low Dog’s patients with gum problems or plaque overgrowth. But you may want to try it with coconut oil, too. “There’s some reason to believe that coconut oil would probably be beneficial to the oral microbiome and oral health in general,” she says. Just know that while there’s a wealth of anecdotal evidence for oil pulling, strong scientific research on the practice is limited, and the American Dental Association doesn’t recommend it as a replacement for traditional dental care, according to a January 2017 article in the Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine.

Read on: 7 Unexpected Coconut Oil Uses: For Your Hair, Skin, and More | Everyday Health

The health and medical information on our website is not intended to take the place of advice or treatment from health care professionals. It is also not intended to substitute for the users’ relationships with their own health care/pharmaceutical providers.

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