Coo-Coo for Coconut.
The first recorded sighting of a coconut came from Costas, an Egyptian traveler, who in 5th century A.D came across what he referred to as an “Indian Nut.” Finally in the 1700’s the Portuguese gave this “Indian Nut” its current name of Coconut. For thousands of centuries, people have been using the coconut (meat and fibers) for many different uses. For instance, some people utilize the leaves of the tree to make baskets, the water to hydrate and the shell to make clothing. The coconut tree, as a whole, has been a blessing to various cultures throughout history.
In modern day America, we are using coconuts for everything from body oil to dental hygiene. The possibilities are endless. There was a day when the only coconut you’d find in my home was a Bath & Body Work’s product. Now, I’ve found so many ways to incorporate the benefits of coconut in my home.
Because coconut oil is naturally high in saturated fats, it’s a wonder worker when it comes to our heart health. In fact, using coconut oil in place of canola oil is a healthy alternative. Being a medium-chain fatty acid allows for your body to easily digest the content and convert it to energy instead of fat. This is great for someone who wants to continue to indulge in fried food options.
Coconut oil can also be used for dental hygiene as well. In Ayurvedic medicine, coconut oil is used to treat mouth ailments such as gum disease and pesky cavities. Oil pulling is quite simple and only requires 10-20 minutes of your daily time. My friend Katie over at Wellness Mama has an amazing how-to that you can visit here.
Not only is Coconut Oil great for internal uses but it can be used in a variety of ways externally. One of my favorite (cleaner and cheaper) options for moisturizer is mixing coconut oil and lavender essential oil. I also enjoy making my own body scrubs. You can do this by combining coconut oil, sugar, and essential oils.
My top five favorite ways to use Coconut Oil:
- Oil Pulling
- Homemade Body Scrub
- Sunburn Healing
- Deep Hair Conditioning
An amazing alternative to the sugar-filled sports drink, coconut water also boasts amazing health benefits. Coconut water (not to be confused with the milk) is the juice present in the endosperm of a young coconut. This sweet liquid is filled with amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and electrolytes.
- Helps with muscle cramps
- Treats diarrhea
- Provides instant energy
- Cures hangovers
- Balances pH levels
- Prevents and treats dehydration
So the next time you are tempted to grab a sports drink, go for a coconut water instead. This is my favorite brand to keep on hand.
The milk of a mature coconut is an excellent source of nutrient-dense fat. Now, before you run off at the word fat, please know that healthy fat is an excellent energy builder for our bodies. It fuels our cells, fights inflammation and balances blood sugar. Fat, if used correctly, can be our best friend.
I not only love coconut milk for its excellent source of fat but I love to use it in place of dairy. This makes coconut milk an amazing ingredient in most anything that I would use regular milk for.
These are just some of the amazing ways I like to incorporate coconut into my everyday life. For more information on coconuts benefits and for great recipes, be sure to check out some of my favorite resources below.