Divinity Oil

Mother Jai’s Pure Divinity Oil

This oil blend is purely divine with historically healing oils including Frankincense, Myrrh, Sandalwood, Jasmine and Ylang Ylang. This blend smells divine and is amazing for balancing hormones and alleviating depression. Use it as a full body moisturizer or natural perfume.

Frankincense: is used by either inhaling the oil or absorbing it through the skin, usually mixed with a carrier oil, such sunflower oil. It’s believed that the oil transmits messages to the limbic system of the brain, which is known to influence the nervous system. A little bit of oil goes a long way; it should not be ingested in large quantities as it can be toxic.

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The health benefits of frankincense essential oil can be attributed to its properties as an antiseptic, disinfectant, astringent, carminative, cicatrisant, cytophylactic, digestive, diuretic, emmenagogue, expectorant, sedative, tonic, uterine, and a vulnerary substance. Frankincense oil relieves pain associated with rheumatism and arthritis. It helps to heal boils, infected wounds, acne, circulatory problems, insomnia, and various types of inflammation as well.

Jasmine: also known as the “Queen of the Night” or “King of Oils” is a highly intoxicating plant. Its strong, heavy yet sweet scent has been used for years to invoke love and happiness.

The health benefits of jasmine essential oil can be attributed to its properties as an antidepressant, antiseptic, aphrodisiac, antispasmodic, cicatrisant, expectorant, galactagogue, emmenagogue, parturient, sedative, and a uterine substance.

Myrrh: Myrrh is a sap-like substance (resin) that comes out of cuts in the bark of trees that are members of the Commiphora species. It is familiar to many as one of the traditional resinous gifts mentioned in the Bible. It has been used for thousands of years in traditional healing therapies and in religious ceremonies. Its amber scent creates a warm, calming environment. The oil is often used during meditation to create a relaxing and uplifting atmosphere.

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Myrrh is commonly used for indigestion, ulcers, colds, cough, asthma, lung congestion, arthritis pain, cancer, leprosy, spasms, and syphilis. It is also used as a stimulant and to increase menstrual flow. Applied directly to the mouth for soreness and swelling, inflamed gums (gingivitis), loose teeth, canker sores, bad breath, and chapped lips. It is also used topically for hemorrhoids, bedsores, wounds, abrasions, and boils.

Sandalwood: commonly known for its woodsy, sweet smell. It is frequently used as a base for products such as incense, perfumes, cosmetics and aftershave. It also easily blends well with other oils. Sandalwood essential oil helps users to achieve more clarity and calmness due to its extensive therapeutic benefits. This special essential oil can also have an effect on overall well-being and mental health, along with many other surprising healing properties.

Sandalwood oil has a classic scent and a very interesting agglomeration of benefits. It has antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antiphlogistic, antispasmodic, astringent, cicatrisant, carminative, diuretic, disinfectant, emollient, expectorant, and hypotensive properties. Sandalwood essential oil is a great memory booster, sedative, and tonic.

Ylang Ylang: (Cananga odorata) essential oil comes from flower petals of the large, tropical ylang ylang tree. Ylang ylang actually means “flower of flowers” and was given this name because of its sweet, floral scent. In fact, you can recognize ylang ylang’s smell as one of the key ingredients used in the legendary perfume Chanel No. 5.

Research shows that this oil has positive effects on immune health, blood flow and emotions, making it a natural remedy for the endocrine, cardiovascular, reproductive and digestive systems.

So as you see Mother Jai’s Divinity Oil is an amazing blend that smells wonderful and provides the body with a multitude of nourishing and healing compounds. Get your bottle below.

Palmarosa Oil

Cymbopogon martinii – Palmarosa grass at full Flower blooming stage.This photo at Sesha farms www.sfpalmarosaoil.com during the month of December

Palmarosa Oil (Cymbopogon martini)

Cymbopogon martinii is a species of grass in the genus Cymbopogon (lemongrasses) native to India and Indochina, but widely cultivated in many places for its aromatic oil. It is best known by the common name palmarosa (palm rose) as it smells sweet and rose-like. Other common names include Indian geranium, gingergrass, rosha, and rosha grass.

Origin of Palmarosa Oil

It is a wild growing, herbaceous green and straw-colored grass, with long slender stems, terminal flowering tops and fragrant grassy leaves. It is harvested before the flowers appear and the highest yield is obtained when the grass is fully dried – about one week after it has been cut.

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There are two varieties of grass from which the oil can be extracted – motia and sofia. We find the sofia chemotype to be far more active and pleasant smelling – and for this reason the oil sold by us is from this chemotype.

Extraction of this essential oil is done by steam distillation of dried grass which is harvested before flowering. The chief constituents of this oil are geraniol, geranyl acetate, dipentene, linalool, limonene, and myrcene. This oil smells like rose oil, which is how it got the name, palma rosa.

It is often used as an ingredient of soaps, perfumes and cosmetics, and is also used in the flavoring of tobacco.

Composition of Palmarosa Oil

The main chemical components of palmarosa oil are myrcene, linalool, geraniol, geranyl acetate, dipentene and limonene.

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In general terms, Palmarosa Essential Oil contains approximately 70-80% monoterpenes, 10-15% esters and around 5% aldehydes. It does not contain the abundance of citral (aldehyde) that Lemongrass Essential Oil and Citronella Essential Oil possesses.

Palmarosa oil is an antifungal that fights against Aspergillus niger (commonly known as black mold), Chaetomium globosum (also known as moldy soil), and Penicillium funiculosum, which is a plant pathogen.

The essential oil of this plant, which contains the chemical compound geraniol, is valued for its scent and for traditional medicinal and household uses. Palmarosa oil has been shown to be an effective insect repellent when applied to stored grain and beans, an antihelmintic against nematodes, and an antifungal and mosquito repellent.

Benefits of Using Palmarosa

Palmarosa oil calms the mind, yet has an uplifting effect, while clearing muddled thinking. It is used to counter physical and nervous exhaustion, stress-related problems and nervousness.

It is most useful during convalescence and cools the body of fever, while aiding the digestive system, helping to clear intestinal infection, digestive atonia and anorexia nervosa. It is effective in relieving sore, stiff muscles.

Palmarosa oil moisturizes the skin, while balancing the hydration levels and stimulating cell regeneration. It balances production of sebum, to keep the skin supple and elastic and is valuable for use with acne, dermatitis, preventing scarring, rejuvenating and regenerating the skin, as well as fighting minor skin infections, sore tired feet and athlete’s foot.

Palmarosa Essential Oil Uses

Sinusitis & Excess Mucus:  anti-inflammatory effects reduce inflammation caused by infection and irritation. Mucolytic benefits thin mucus and help clear membranes.

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Cystitis & Urinary Tract Infection: antibiotic or antimicrobial effects reduce infection and anti-inflammatory benefits to reduce inflammation and increase water and toxin removal.

Gastrointestinal Disorders: it assists in improving intestinal flow and nourishes intestinal flora. It also helps to thin and remove mucus buildup that happens in the intestines with inflammatory foods. Its carminative benefits calm the digestive tract and assist in the expulsion of gas.

Wounds & Scarring: through cytophylactic action it assists in wound healing and tissue regrowth.

Acne: through antiseborrheic actions it helps to reduce oil production of the skin cells. Antibacterial actions reduce skin infection. Anti-inflammatory benefits reduce redness and irritation of skin.

Fungal Infection: its antifungal and antimicrobial benefits reduce fungal growth on the skin and throughout the body.

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Restlessness & General Fatigue: Palmarosa has calmative effects that assist in calming the mind and nervous system and allowing the body to relax and heal. Its cephalic actions help to clear the mind and assist in focus.

Muscular Aches: through mild analgesic properties it assists in relieving muscular pain associated with overuse or injury.

Stress & Irritability: as a gentle sedative, relaxant and uplifting oil it helps to counteract the effects of stress on the body and to bring balance to moods.

Insect Bites & Stings: antibacterial and anti-inflammatory benefits reduce the pain and swelling associated with insect bites or stings.

How to Use Palmarosa Oil

Burners & Vaporizers: In vapor therapy, palmarosa oil can help during convalescence. It relieves fatigue, nervousness, exhaustion and stress, while having an uplifting effect on the mind and clearing muddled thoughts.

Blended massage oil or in the bath: In a blended massage oil or diluted in the bath, palmarosa oil can be used on convalescent patients, to fight exhaustion, fatigue, nervousness, stress, bolstering the digestive system, while boosting the health of the skin.

Wash, lotions and creams and used neat (undiluted): Palmarosa oil can help clear up infections and prevent scarring when added to the water used to wash the wound. When included in creams and lotions, it has a moisturizing and hydrating effect on the skin, which is great to fight wrinkles. It also balances the natural secretion of sebum, which keeps the skin supple and elastic.

On cellular level, it helps with the formation of new tissue and for that reason is great for rejuvenating and regenerating the skin. It is most useful when fighting a dry skin and treat skin infections. Some people find that they have great results when applying palmarosa oil neat or undiluted to the affected area of athlete’s foot – but please keep in mind that we do not advocate the use of neat essential oils on the skin.

Precautions

Palmarosa oil has no known contra indications and is considered a non-toxic, non-irritant and non-sensitizing essential oil.

References:

https://www.aromaweb.com/essential-oils/palmarosa-oil.asp

https://essentialoils.co.za/essential-oils/palmarosa.htm

https://www.essentialoilsdirect.co.uk/palmarosa-cymbopogon_martinii-essential_oil.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cymbopogon_martinii

https://www.nativeoilsaustralia.com.au/palmarosa-essential-oil/

https://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jf00073a015

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12809717

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4276358

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0926669004000317

https://westminsterresearch.westminster.ac.uk/item/93598/antimicrobial-action-of-palmarosa-oil-cymbopogon-martinii-on-saccharomyces-cerevisiae

Prashar, A.; Hili, P.; Veness, R.; Evans, C. (2003). “Antimicrobial action of palmarosa oil (Cymbopogon martinii) on Saccharomyces cerevisiae”. Phytochemistry. 63 (5): 569–575. doi:10.1016/S0031-9422(03)00226-7.

Rajeswara Rao, B.; Kaul, P.; Syamasundar, K.; Ramesh, S. (2005). “Chemical profiles of primary and secondary essential oils of palmarosa (Cymbopogon martinii (Roxb.) Wats var. motia Burk.)”. IIndustrial Crops and Products. 21 (1): 121–127. oi:10.1016/j.indcrop.2004.02.002.

Kumar, R.; Srivastava, M.; Dubey, N. K. (2007). “Evaluation of Cymbopogon martinii oil extract for control of postharvest insect deterioration in cereals and legumes”. Journal of Food Protection. 70 (1): 172–78.

Kumaran, A. M.; D’souza, P; Agarwal, A; Bokkolla, RM; Balasubramaniam, M; et al. (2003). “Geraniol, the putative anthelmintic principle of Cymbopogon martinii”. Phytotherapy Research. 17 (8): 957. doi:10.1002/ptr.1267. PMID 13680833.

Mallavarapu, G.; Rajeswara Rao, B.; Kaul, P.; Ramesh, S.; Bhattacharya, A. (1998). “Volatile constituents of the essential oils of the seeds and the herb of palmarosa (Cymbopogon martinii (Roxb.) Wats. var. motia Burk.)”. Journal of Plant Nutrition. 13: 167–169. doi:10.1002/(sici)1099-1026(199805/06)13:3<167::aid-ffj719>3.0.co;2-b.

Guenther, E (1952). “Recent developments in essential oil production”. Economic Botany. 6 (4): 355–378. doi:10.1007/bf02984884.

Your Skin

The Skin

The largest organ of the body, with a total area of about 20 square feet. The skin protects us from microbes and the elements, helps regulate body temperature, and permits the sensations of touch, heat, and cold. Skin has three layers:

  • The epidermis, the outermost layer of skin, provides a waterproof barrier and creates our skin tone.
  • The dermis, beneath the epidermis, contains tough connective tissue, hair follicles, and sweat glands.
  • The deeper subcutaneous tissue (hypodermis) is made of fat and connective tissue.

The skin’s color is created by special cells called melanocytes, which produce the pigment melanin. Melanocytes are located in the epidermis.

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Your skin’s the barrier between the outside world and the rest of you. It constantly renews itself and produces sebum (oil) to ward off contaminants, pollutants, and microbes. Alas, sometimes it goes under or overboard and you end up with clogged pores that can harbor bacteria and lead to breakouts and infections.

Dry Skin and Infection

To restore your skin to good health, you must actively replenish the moisture down to the deeper layers, not just cover the skin. Moisturized, intact skin is your body’s best defense against bacteria and viruses because it is a natural barrier that keeps moisture in and infectious agents out.

Mother Jai’s Skin Care Recommendations:

  • Skip the glycerin soap when it comes to cleaning your face – all facial cleansers should be glycerin-free.
  • Avoid petroleum based ‘moisturizers’, they only trap moisture, they do not nourish or provide moisture to the skin.
  • Breathing, sweating and most of your other bodily processes remove water from your cells. That is why it is so important to drink at least a half-gallon (2 liters) of water every day.
  • Essential fatty acids are crucial to keeping your skin looking healthy. Omega-6 – poultry, grains, cooking oils; Omega-3 – cold-water fish (salmon, sardines), kidney beans, walnuts, and spinach Gamma linolenic acid – plant oils.
  • Beneficial to both your body and skin, antioxidants are crucial for healthy skin cells. Antioxidants fight free radicals, which can otherwise damage healthy cells.
  • Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet. Findings from a few studies suggest that eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables may help prevent damage that leads to premature skin aging. Findings from research studies also suggest that a diet containing lots of sugar or other refined carbohydrates can accelerate aging.
  • Drink less alcohol. Alcohol is rough on the skin. It dehydrates the skin, and in time, damages the skin. This can make us look older.
  • If you smoke, stop. Smoking greatly speeds up how quickly skin ages. It causes wrinkles and a dull, sallow complexion.
  • Exercise most days of the week. Moving the body and stretching the skin regularly tones and strengthens it, improving tone and tightening wrinkles. Findings from a few studies suggest that moderate exercise can improve circulation and boost the immune system. This, in turn, may give the skin a more-youthful appearance.
  • Wash your face once a day and after sweating heavily. Perspiration, especially when wearing a hat or helmet, irritates the skin, so you want to wash your skin as soon as possible after sweating.
  • Apply a natural facial moisturizer every day. Moisturizers provides moisture to our skin, giving it a more youthful appearance.
  • Stop using skin care products that sting or burn. When your skin burns or stings, it means your skin is irritated. Irritating your skin can make it look older.
  • Exfoliating is essential for skin strength and elasticity. Removing dead skin cells on a regular basis stimulates regeneration of healthy tissue below. It prevents clogged pores, rough and scaly skin, and helps moisturizers absorb more effectively.
  • Get some sun every day if possible. The sun in moderation does not cause cancer. Too many sunburns and overuse of sunscreen cause skin cancer.

Natural Make-Up Remover

Microfiber actually works great for this too and removes even mascara without soap or oils. Plain olive or coconut oil will also remove mascara (even waterproof) and will remove other make-up as well but isn’t as ideal if you have oily skin. For oily skin- Liquid Castille soap in water will remove makeup without adding oils to the skin or stripping the natural ones.

Mother Jai’s Coconut Oil Soaponly organic coconut oil, distilled water and sodium hydroxide (lye). Just like the good ole days! Truly natural and nourishing soap. Great for oily skin types.

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Mother Jai’s Skin Cleanser/Toneryes it does both. Made of distilled organic witch hazel, organic apple cider vinegar, everclear, distilled water, and essential oils.

Lotions and Moisturizers

For most people, pure coconut oil is all that is needed for moisturizing the face. It is naturally full of collagen supporting lauric acid and is easily absorbed by the skin. Even for oily and acne prone skin, coconut oil’s natural anti-bacterial properties make it a great option. Sunflower oil can be a less greasy and less expensive option.

Mother Jai’s Moisture Balmcoconut oil, olive oil and sunflower oil blended together for a non-greasy and deeply moisturizing lotion without any water or preservatives.

Natural Exfoliators

A sugar/oil scrub is great for most skin types when extra exfoliation is needed. Just mix equal parts oil (coconut, olive, sunflower, etc.) and sugar (white or brown) or Epsom salt and use as a whole-body exfoliator. For more oily skin, plain baking soda can be used to exfoliate skin and remove blackheads or dirt.

Mother Jai’s Coffee Scrubcoffee grounds, raw cane sugar, distilled water and Everclear come together to exfoliate and tone skin naturally.

Mother Jai’s Charcoal Mudd Mask activated charcoal, arrowroot powder, and baking soda blended with water and/or honey for an amazing toning, clearing, and antibacterial mask.

Mother Jai’s Mineral Milk Bathbuttermilk, Epsom salt, oatmeal and baking soda blended for exfoliation and nourishment. Use as a body scrub or soak in the tub.

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Natural Anti-Aging

There are a ton of anti-aging products available, but the best options are the ones you take internally. All of the collagen products that are supposed to firm up skin don’t take into account that collagen must be produced internally and is too large to absorb through the skin. To promote natural collagen production use coconut or sunflower oil as a moisturizer and take Gelatin or Arrowroot, Fermented Cod Liver Oil/Butter Blend or eat Sardines, and Vitamin C or eat oranges to support natural Collagen production internally.

Mother Jai’s Face Serum – deeply nourishing to skin with safflower, sunflower and MCT oils. Use after cleansing and toning to hydrate and protect skin.

Mother Jai’s Tightening oil/balm/toner collagen building and skin tightening blends are made with tea tree, frankincense, and geranium essential oils. Strengthens collagen, shrinks pores, smooths lines, and softens skin naturally.

Free Radical and Antioxidants

Free radicals are atoms or molecules with one missing electron. They can be caused by exposure to pollutants/contaminants or created naturally by our bodies over time. Over time, they can cause a wide range of damage (including heart disease and cancer) by “stealing” electrons from important cellular structures.

Antioxidants are substances which can freely, safely ‘donate’ an electron. They make atoms/molecules stable again by neutralizing the free radical.

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Vitamin C: It’s vital in maintaining healthy skin. It’s an important part of collagen production and has antioxidant properties that can limit/reduce damage caused by excess sun exposure. Collagen is part of your skin’s support structure and, when it’s healthy, prevents and reduces wrinkles.

Vitamin E: Sunflower oil is one of the best natural oils for skin care because it’s especially rich in Vitamin E, and Vitamin E’s a top antioxidant. It’s also been shown to help reduce inflammation and moisturize dry or sunburned skin, lessening premature signs of aging.

Vitamin K: This vitamin plays a critical role in a variety of systems, from blood to bones. In skin care, vitamin K plays a major role in wrinkle reduction by preventing the hardening of elastin, the stretchy protein that gives healthy skin its soft, springy texture.

Omega-3, 6 & 9 (Essential Fatty Acids): In addition to Omega-3 and Omega-6, high-oleic sunflower oil contains Omega-9. All three of these monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) help prevent and reduce skin inflammation, protect against infection, and reduce signs of aging caused by sun exposure.

Amino Acids: These are the building blocks of the proteins you need to survive. High-oleic sunflower oil contains a lot of them, and cold-pressing helps preserve them (they’re easily rendered unusable by heat). Think of amino acids as fuel for your skin’s natural renewal process: as cells divide to produce collagen, elastin, new skin cells, and other components of healthy skin, they need enough amino acids “in the tank” to continue functioning properly.

Natural Skin Care

Macadamia nut oil (majestic macadamia trees originated in Australia and are now grown worldwide) is a light, non-greasy healing and regenerative, stable oil. Macadamia nut oil delivers omega-7 and vitamins A and E, and is a protein-rich ultra-moisturizing elixir. This plant oil easily absorbs into skin, scalp and hair due to its uncanny ability to mimic the body’s own natural oils and its high palmitoleic acid content. Other major benefits include UV barrier protection from excessive heat, wind, hair color oxidation and sun and chemical damage. Use generously as a body cream for all skin types; it’s especially beneficial for mature, aging, dry complexions. Renew scalp and hair by massaging in one tablespoon, wrap with a warm towel and shower cap for 15 minutes. Follow with a light shampoo and cool rinse.

Coconut oil is often referred to as “the healthiest oil on earth.” Its essential proteins and capric and lauric acids fight wrinkles, and tone and tighten skin while nourishing healthy hair. As nature’s richest source of MCFAs (medium-chain fatty acids) coconut oil is easily absorbed by the body, strengthening your skin’s connective tissues therefore also promoting a healthy scalp, and reinforcing lackluster hair strands caused by sun, heat and chemical damage. For a special scalp and hair treatment, massage in one tablespoon and then wrap with a warm towel and shower cap for 15 minutes. Follow with light shampoo and cool rinse.

Sweet almond oil, containing vitamins A, B1, B2, B6 and E, is an all-natural beauty treatment for all skin, scalp and hair types. Its anti-aging properties naturally and visibly plump, fill and moisturize your skin. While its B6 benefits are known to promote healthy hair growth – therefore stimulating and rejuvenating the scalp – its fatty acids and mineral content of magnesium, iron and unsaturated triglycerides provides nourishment to the hair. 

Jojoba oil (grown in Northwestern Mexico, California, and Arizona) contains micro-elements such as zinc, copper, silicon, iodine, chromium, and vitamins E and B. It closely resembles your own skin sebum and your skin’s own lubricating medium, giving jojoba a natural affinity to the skin and scalp. It easily absorbs without making the skin feel greasy or tacky and it does not clog pores.  Jojoba oil has exceptional skin-softening properties, as well as the ability to minimize fine lines and wrinkles, promoting suppleness and rejuvenation. Try adding a few drops of jojoba oil to your anti-aging creams, body lotions and conditioners, but the oil also stands well on its own for skin, hair and nail care.

Grapeseed oil (derived from the seeds of a grape) is a very light non-greasy antioxidant that protects skin from free radicals and premature aging. It is loaded with EFAs, proanthocyanidins (known as OPCs) and flavonoid complexes that are known to play a role in the enhancement of collagen and the maintenance of elastin. Grapeseed oil is a great conditioner for the scalp, hair and nails. Use a few drops and massage into desired area for its moisture-retentive properties.

Apricot kernel oil is rich in potent antioxidants and protective fatty acids.  The kernel of the apricot has even been studied for its anti-cancer properties after a particular nutrient called laetrile or vitamin B 17 was found to play a powerful role in killing cancer cells. The kernels also possess antimicrobial properties, which extend the shelf life of this oil to about 6-9 months.  This oil is prized for its ultra-light and easily absorbed molecular structure. It is one of the least pore-clogging natural oils and is a great choice for those with oily or acne prone skin as well as those who do not like a greasy after feel.  Its anti-inflammatory properties also make it a good choice for those who suffer from acne or rosacea.

Hazel nut oil is healing to the scalp and can help promote re-growth of hair. A few drops massaged into the scalp and allowed to absorb in before a light shampoo and cool rinse. Its benefits are increased twice over when combined with rosemary leaves or essential oil.

Applying Oils to the Skin – When applying a single oil or oil blend to the skin, fill the palm with a teaspoon of oil at a time and always start at the bottom of the application area and spread the oil in an upward motion.

Making Your Own Natural Skin Care Products

The first step in making your own skincare is to choose the right ingredients. There are so many wholesome foods and other all-natural ingredients to choose from that make excellent skincare products.

Avocado has amazing moisturizing properties, which makes it especially excellent for dry skin. The healthy fats and other beneficial nutrients in avocado help to prevent premature wrinkling and reduce inflammation. In addition, many facial care experts recommend using avocado oil, since it closely resembles our skin’s own natural oils.

Baking Soda works well as a natural means for exfoliating dead skin cells, leaving your face smooth and clean. In addition, baking soda’s slightly antiseptic properties can help alleviate breakouts.

Egg Whites help to tighten skin, giving your face a healthy glow while diminishing the look of fine lines. Egg whites also help to remove dead skin cells and draw excess oil from the pores while tightening them.

Fresh Fruits often are used in facial products because they’re rich in nutrients that aid in healthy skin. For example, papaya helps to moisturize and even-out skin tone. Strawberries function as a mild alpha hydroxyl acid helping to exfoliate skin, and the antioxidants in blueberries help to hydrate and repair dry damaged skin.

Honey is a wonderful friend to your skin. Its soothing anti-inflammatory properties are perfect for any skin type. Full of B vitamins and polyphenols, honey protects skin from damaging free radicals which helps to reduce wrinkles and encourages the formation of new skin cells. In addition, the antibacterial and antimicrobial properties of honey naturally help acne-prone skin to heal and clear.

Yogurt is a common ingredient used in homemade facial masks. It helps to absorb excess oil and makes your skin feel tighter and smoother. It also helps even out skin tone and has anti-aging properties that help fight free radicals.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil (Cocos nucifera)

Coconut oil, or copra oil, is an edible oil extracted from the kernel or meat of mature coconuts harvested from the coconut palm (Cocos nucifera). It has various applications. Because of its high saturated fat content, it is slow to oxidize and, thus, resistant to rancidification, lasting up to six months at 24 °C (75 °F) without spoiling.

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Due to its high levels of saturated fat, the World Health Organization, the United States Department of Health and Human Services, United States Food and Drug Administration, American Heart Association, American Dietetic Association, British National Health Service, British Nutrition Foundation, and Dietitians of Canada advise that coconut oil consumption should be limited or avoided.

Coconut oil contains a large proportion of lauric acid, a saturated fat that raises total blood cholesterol levels by increasing both the amount of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. Although this may create a more favorable total blood cholesterol profile, this does not exclude the possibility that persistent consumption of coconut oil may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease through other mechanisms, particularly via the marked increase of blood cholesterol induced by lauric acid. Because the majority of saturated fat in coconut oil is lauric acid, coconut oil may be preferred over partially hydrogenated vegetable oil when solid fats are used in the diet. Due to its high content of saturated fat with corresponding high caloric burden, regular use of coconut oil in food preparation may promote weight gain.

Nutrition and fat composition

Coconut oil is 99% fat, composed mainly of saturated fats (82% of total; table). In a 100 gram reference amount, coconut oil supplies 890 Calories. Half of the saturated fat content of coconut oil is lauric acid, while other significant saturated fats are myristoleic acid and palmitoleic acid. Monounsaturated fats comprise 6% of total fats, and polyunsaturated fats comprise 2% (table). Coconut oil contains phytosterols, but there are no micronutrients having significant content (table).

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Nutritional Profile of Coconut Oil: Part of the reason coconut oil is such a powerhouse superfood is its unique nutritional profile. It was avoided and shunned for years because of its 92% saturated fat content but recent research is showing this stigma was unwarranted. Most of the fats in coconut oil are saturated but they are in the form of MCTs (Medium Chain Triglycerides, also called MCFAs), which affect the body differently than short and long chain fats.

  1. Saturated fatty acids: Most of them are medium chain triglycerides, which are supposed to assimilate well in the body’s systems.
  2. Lauric acid: It is the chief contributor, representing more than 40% of the total, followed by capric acid, caprylic acid, myristic acid and palmitic. The human body converts lauric acid into monolaurin. Lauric acid is helpful in dealing with viruses and diseases.
  3. Capric acid: It reacts with certain enzymes secreted by other bacteria, which subsequently converts it into a powerful antimicrobial agent, monocaprin.
  4. Caprylic acid, caproic acid, and myristic acid: They are rich in antimicrobial and antifungal properties
  5. Unsaturated fatty acids: Polyunsaturated fatty acids- linoleic acid, monounsaturated fatty acids- oleic acid
  6. Poly-phenols: Coconut contains gallic acid, which is also known as phenolic acid. These polyphenols are responsible for the fragrance and the taste of coconut oil. Virgin Coconut Oil is rich in these polyphenols.
  7. Derivatives of fatty acid: Betaines, ethanolamide, ethoxylates, fatty esters, fatty polysorbates, monoglycerides and polyol esters.
  8. Derivatives of fatty alcohols: Fatty chlorides, fatty alcohol sulfate, and fatty alcohol ether sulfate
  9. Vitamins and Minerals: Vitamin E, vitamin K, and minerals such as iron.

Medium Chain Fatty Acids (MCFAs) or Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs)

Most of the fats we consume are long chain fatty acids that must be broken down before they can be absorbed. Coconut oil is high in short and medium chain fatty acids, which are easily digested and sent right to the liver for energy production. Because MCFAs are sent right to the liver for digestion, no bile or pancreatic enzymes are needed for digestion, making coconut oil a healthy food even for those with diabetes or those who have gallbladder problems. MCFAs can help increase metabolism since they are sent directly to the liver and give the body an instant source of energy. Most of the MCFAs in coconut oil are the highly beneficial Lauric Acid.

Benefits of MCFAs (MCTs)

  • All of these MCTs are beneficial to the body. They are metabolized differently than longer chain fats, going straight from the digestive system to the liver. This provides a quick source of energy and brain fuel.
  • These rare oils are naturally free of cholesterol and hard to find in nature.
  • This may be part of the reason that coconut oil is so beneficial to the brain and for weight loss. It isn’t digested or stored in the same was as other fats and is more quickly available for use.
  • Coconut oil is also a decent source of several fat soluble vitamins (mainly A and K) as well as healthy polyphenols.

Types of Coconut Oil

Unrefined Organic Coconut Oil: Considered the gold standard. This type of oil offers the most of the benefits listed above. It is extracted from fresh coconut using a wet-milled fermentation process that protects the beneficial properties of the coconut. This type of coconut oil has been found to have the highest antioxidant levels. This process does use heat but studies show that it does not harm the oil or reduce nutrient levels. In fact, the heat may be beneficial and create a higher quality oil.

“Extra Virgin” Oil: The gold standard for olive oil but not coconut oil. This is produced by cold-pressing the oil and does not preserve the antioxidants as well. In 2013, a study that compared “cold extracted virgin coconut oil” (CEVCO) with “hot extracted virgin coconut oil” (HEVCO) and standard refined coconut oil (CCO) was conducted in India, and published in the journal Food Science and Biotechnology. This study, like many others, showed that virgin coconut oils actually lower LDL cholesterol, while raising the “good” HDL cholesterol. This study also confirmed that virgin coconut oil produced with heat produced the highest amounts of antioxidants: “The antioxidant activity in the HEVCO group was 80-87%, 65-70% in CEVCO, and 35-45% in CCO.” The researchers went on to comment why heat is necessary to produce the highest amounts of antioxidants in virgin coconut oil.

Refined Coconut Oils: often tasteless and has no coconut smell. It is usually heated, bleached and deodorized. Healthy options are available but many refined coconut oils do not have the benefits of unrefined.

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Fractionated oil or MCT oil is a liquid oil that does not get solid below 76 degrees like unrefined oil does. It doesn’t contain all of the beneficial properties of unrefined coconut oil but is higher in brain-boosting fats.

Coconut Oil Benefits  

Coconut Oil for Hair– This nourishing oil has been used for centuries in hair and its unique fat composition makes it especially beneficial for certain hair types. Use it as a hair mask, hot oil treatment, or in homemade hair products.

To Moisturize and Nourish Skin– The same properties make coconut oil great for skin as well. Many people like to use it as a natural moisturizer. Its natural antioxidant properties make it great for stopping wrinkles and skin irritation. Coconut oil is wonderful as a face cleanser, moisturizer and sun screen, but also it can treat many skin disorders. The fatty acids (caprylic and lauric) in coconut oil reduce inflammation internally and externally and moisturize, making them a great solution for all types of skin conditions. It protects the skin and has many antioxidants that make it ideal for healing the skin. In addition, the antimicrobial properties balance out the candida or fungal sources that can cause many skin conditions. There’s so much unrefined coconut oil can do for skin.

Help remineralize teeth – Calcium is an important component of our teeth. Since coconut oil facilitates absorption of calcium by the body, it helps in developing strong teeth. It also stops tooth decay. Recent research suggests that it is also beneficial in reducing plaque formation and plaque-induced gingivitis. Oil pulling with coconut oil has been used for centuries as a way to cleanse the mouth of bacteria and help heal periodontal disease. Coconut oil is one of the most effective oils for oil pulling due to its high concentration of antibacterial MCFAs. By swishing the oil in your mouth, the oil denatures the bacteria and sticks to it. Removing oral bacteria greatly reduces your risk of periodontal disease. If you want to heal your gums and repair your teeth, its recommended to do coconut oil pulling three times a week for 20 minutes a day.

Digestive Help– Coconut oil’s concentration of beneficial fats in coconut oil makes it helpful for digestion. Coconut oil helps to improve the digestive system, and thus, prevents various stomach and digestion-related problems including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). The saturated fats present in it have antimicrobial properties and help in dealing with various bacteria, fungi, and parasites that can cause indigestion. It also helps in the absorption of other nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. Coconut oil can help improve bacteria and gut health by destroying bad bacteria and candida. Candida imbalance especially can decrease stomach acid, which causes inflammation and poor digestion. All this together means coconut oil benefits digestive health and helps treat or prevent stomach ulcers and ulcerative colitis.

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Keeping Organs Healthy – The presence of medium chain triglycerides and fatty acids in coconut oil helps in preventing liver diseases. This is because those substances are easily converted into energy when they reach the liver, thus reducing the workload of the liver and also preventing accumulation of fat. It also helps in preventing kidney and gall bladder diseases and helps to dissolve kidney stones. Coconut oil is also believed to be useful in keeping pancreas healthy by treating pancreatitis. The MCFAs of coconut oil do not need the pancreatic enzymes to be broken down, so taking coconut oil eases the strain on the pancreas. Additionally, this superfood is so easy to digest that it has been known to improve the symptoms of gallbladder disease as well. Replace other long-chain fats with coconut oil to improve gallbladder and total body health.

Great Source of Healthy Fats– Over 50% of the fat in coconut oil is lauric acid. In fact, coconut oil is the richest source of lauric acid after breastmilk. Topically, it helps skin heal faster after injury or infection because of its beneficial fats – When applied to infected areas, coconut oil forms a chemical layer that protects the infected body part from external dust, air, fungi, bacteria, and viruses. It is highly effective on bruises because it speeds up the healing process of damaged tissues.

Mental Boost– Studies show MCTs may contribute to focus and mental performance. In a 2004 study published in the Journal of Neurobiology of Aging, researchers found that the MCFAs in coconut oil improved the memory problems in their older subjects. Across all the patients there was a marked improvement in their recall ability after taking this fatty acid. As the MCFAs are absorbed easily in the body and can be accessed in the brain without the use of insulin. Thus, they are able to fuel brain cells more efficiently.

Hormone Support– Getting the wrong kinds of fats can create havoc on hormones. Coconut oil contains specific fats that support the body’s natural hormone production. Coconut oil may help naturally balance hormones because it’s a great source of saturated fat, including lauric acid. Studies have found that coconut oil may be an excellent fat to consume during menopause and also may have positives effects on estrogen levels. In order to naturally balance hormones, reduce sugar and grain consumption and load up on healthy fats from coconut, avocado, flax seeds and ghee. You can also consume other coconut forms, such as coconut butter or coconut water.

Immune Support– The MCTs have antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties that make it beneficial for immune support. It strengthens the immune system because it contains antimicrobial lipids, lauric acid, capric acid and caprylic acid, which have antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties. The human body converts lauric acid into monolaurin, which research has supported as an effective way to deal with viruses and bacteria that cause diseases like herpes, influenza, cytomegalovirus, and even HIV. Coconut oil helps in fighting harmful bacteria like listeria monocytogenes and Helicobacter pylori, and harmful protozoa such as giardia lamblia. According to the Coconut Research Center, coconut oil kills the viruses that cause influenza, measles, hepatitis, herpes, SARS, and other serious health risks. It also kills bacteria that cause ulcers, throat infections, urinary tract infections, pneumonia, and gonorrhea. Finally, coconut oil is also effective in the elimination of fungi and yeast that cause ringworm, athlete’s foot, thrush, and diaper rash.

Helps in AIDS & Cancer Treatment – It is believed that coconut oil plays an instrumental role in reducing the viral susceptibility of HIV and cancer patients. Preliminary research has shown an indication of this effect of coconut oil on reducing the viral load of HIV patients.

Boosts Heart Health – This is a controversial topic. There is enough research to prove that coconut oil is not good for the heart due to the presence of saturated fats. While there is also research that shows that coconut oil is good for the heart. Lauric acid present in coconut oil helps in actively preventing various heart problems like high cholesterol levels and high blood pressure. Coconut oil does not lead to increase in LDL levels, and it reduces the incidence of injury and damage to arteries and therefore helps in preventing atherosclerosis. A study suggests that intake of coconut oil may help in maintaining healthy lipid profiles in pre-menopausal women. So, finally, is coconut oil good or bad for the heart? Well, if you are using it for edible purposes, check your cholesterol levels regularly. If you find them increasing, it is better to stop the intake. In any case, do consult a professional medical practitioner before you start consuming coconut oil. Never play with your (and someone else’s) heart!

Great fat for cooking- Coconut oil is a stable oil that doesn’t break down easily at high temperatures like other oils do. It doesn’t go rancid easily and has amazing nutritional properties. It is great for cooking eggs, stir fries, grain free baked goods, and practically any other cooking use.

Prevents Candida – Candida, also known as Systemic Candidiasis, is a tragic disease caused by an excessive and uncontrolled growth of yeast called Candida albicans in the stomach. Coconut provides relief from the inflammation caused by candida, both externally and internally. Its high moisture retaining capacity keeps the skin from cracking or peeling off. Capric acid, caprylic acid, caproic acid, myristic acid and lauric acid found in coconut oil help in eliminating Candida albicans. Further, unlike other pharmaceutical treatments for candida, the effect of coconut oil is gradual and not drastic or sudden, which gives the patient an appropriate amount of time to get used to the withdrawal symptoms or Herxheimer reactions (the name given to the symptoms accompanying body’s rejection of toxins generated during elimination of these fungi). But in the treatment of this condition, people should systematically and gradually increase their dosages of coconut oil, and shouldn’t initially start with a large quantity.

Speeds weight loss when consumed daily – It contains short and medium-chain fatty acids that help in taking off excessive weight. Research suggests that it helps to reduce abdominal obesity in women. It is also easy to digest as compared to other edible oils and helps in healthy functioning of the thyroid and endocrine system. Further, it increases body’s metabolic rate by removing stress on the pancreas, thereby, burning more energy and helping obese and overweight people lose weight. Hence, people living in tropical coastal areas, who use coconut oil every day as their primary cooking oil, are normally not fat, obese or overweight. Several people focus on exercises to lose weight, from using indoor machines like leg press machines to outdoor exercises like running and playing sports. While this is a good approach to lose weight, including products like coconut oil enhances your weight loss efforts.

Other Benefits – Coconut oil is strongly recommended for a number of other benefits that are explained below. Using this oil has been shown to mildly help the following:

Stress relief: Coconut oil is very soothing, and hence it helps in removing stress. Applying it to the head, followed by a gentle massage, helps eliminate mental fatigue. According to research virgin coconut oil gives relief from stress and has antioxidant properties.

Diabetes: Coconut oil helps in controlling blood sugar, and improves the secretion of insulin. It also promotes the effective utilization of blood glucose, thereby, preventing and treating diabetes. When cells refuse to respond to insulin and no longer take in glucose for energy, then they’re considered insulin-resistant. The pancreas then pumps out more insulin to compensate and creates an overproduction cycle. Insulin resistance is the precursor to type II diabetes. The MCFAs in coconut oil help balance the insulin reactions in the cells and promote healthy digestive process. They take off the strain on the pancreas and give the body a consistent energy source that is not dependent on glucose reactions, which can prevent insulin resistance and type II diabetes.

Bones: As mentioned earlier, coconut oil improves the ability of our body to absorb important minerals. These include calcium and magnesium, which are necessary for the development of bones. Thus, it is very useful for women who are prone to osteoporosis after middle age. Oxidative stress and free radicals are the two biggest culprits of osteoporosis. Since coconut oil has such high levels of antioxidants, which help fight free radicals, it is a leading natural treatment for osteoporosis. Another of the amazing coconut oil benefits is that it increases calcium absorption in the gut. Research on osteoporosis has found that coconut oil not only increases bone volume and structure in subjects, but also decreased bone loss due to osteoporosis.

Boosts Energy: Coconut oil is often used by athletes, bodybuilders and by those who are dieting. The reason behind this being that it contains fewer calories than other oils, its fat content is easily converted into energy, and it does not lead to accumulation of fat in the heart and arteries. It helps boost energy and endurance, and generally, enhances the performance of athletes. Coconut oil is easy to digest and also produces a longer sustained energy and increases your metabolism. When taking a quality unrefined coconut oil, you can get the most coconut oil benefits as its MCFAs are sent directly to the liver to be converted into energy. Today, many triathletes use coconut oil as their source of fuel during training and races for long-distance events. You can make a homemade energy fuel by mixing coconut oil, raw honey and chia seeds together. Simply put together one tablespoon of each and consume 30 minutes prior to exercise.

Coconut oil and Alzheimer’s disease: The research conducted by Dr. Newport states that the oil is useful in treating Alzheimer’s disease. One of the most beneficial properties of coconut oil is the large quantity of medium-chain fatty acids (MCFA) that it contains, as opposed to the long-chain fatty acids that many other foods contain. The reasoning behind the benefits of this type of acid is that medium-chain fatty acids are not only absorbed easily by the liver, but they are also metabolized quickly. This means they can further be converted into ketones. Ketones are utilized by the brain as an important energy source and have been shown to have possible therapeutic effects on people suffering from memory loss, such as in case of Alzheimer’s disease. Additionally, unique phenolic compounds and hormones found in coconut oil may be able to prevent the aggregation of amyloid beta peptides, which are part of a leading theory concerning the cause of Alzheimer’s.

Use as Carrier Oil

Carrier oils are those oils, which easily penetrate or absorb into the skin, facilitating seepage or absorption of other oils (such as essential oils) and herbal extracts when mixed into it. It is easily absorbed through the skin’s pores and thus is used as a carrier oil. Furthermore, being one of the most stable oils, it doesn’t go rancid, nor does it let the other oils, herbal extracts, or medicines spoil inside of it. It does not alter the properties of the oils and herbs mixed within it. It also protects the herbs and oils from microbial or fungal interactions. Coconut oil is expensive in several countries; however, in tropical countries, its cost is low enough to make it affordable as a carrier oil.

Coconut Oil Beauty Uses

Coconut oil is an excellent massage oil that acts as an effective moisturizer on all types of skin, including dry skin. Unlike mineral oil, there is no chance of having any adverse side effects on the skin from the application of this oil. Therefore, it has been safely used for thousands of years for preventing dryness and flaking of skin. Yes, you read it right – thousands of years! Coconut oil usage may be termed as a recent fad, but it has been there for ages.

It also helps in treating various skin problems, including psoriasis, dermatitis, eczema, and other skin infections. For this exact reason, coconut oil forms the base ingredient of various body care products like soaps, lotions, and creams that are used for skin care. What more? It also delays the appearance of wrinkles and sagging of skin, which normally accompany aging. The credit to this benefit goes to its well-known antioxidant properties.

Some examples of uses include:

  1. With other oils as part of an oil cleansing regimen for beautiful skin
  2. Whipped with shea butter for a soothing body balm
  3. In homemade lotion bars with other beneficial ingredients like shea butter
  4. In homemade deodorant– its natural antibacterial properties make it helpful in fighting odor.
  5. Coconut oil makes an excellent eye-makeup remover on its own
  6. It may help lighten age spots when rubbed directly on the skin
  7. To help increase sun tolerance and avoid burning when used internally
  8. As a naturally low SPF sunscreen on its own when used topically
  9. In basic homemade lotion recipes
  10. Add a couple drops of a favorite essential oil to make a delicious massage oil
  11. Mixed with equal parts sugar for a smoothing body scrub (use in the shower)
  12. In homemade slow cooker soap
  13. To make natural Homemade Sunscreen recipes with other protective ingredients
  14. As a natural personal lubricant that won’t disturb vaginal flora
  15. As a natural shave cream and after shave lotion
  16. Use it alone as a great tanning oil
  17. Mix with seal salt to remove dry skin on feet
  18. In natural homemade diaper cream
  19. Use it alone or with baking soda as a natural deodorant
  20. By itself or with baking soda as a naturally whitening toothpaste
  21. Make homemade peppermint lip balm
  22. Or make magnesium body butter
  23. Rub on cuticles to help nails grow
  24. Rub into elbows daily to help alleviate dry, flaky elbows
  25. To help avoid chlorine exposure when swimming
  26. As a completely natural baby lotion
  27. Rubbed on lips as a natural lip balm or used in lip balm recipes

Coconut Oil For Hair –

This thick butter-like oil helps in healthy growth of hair and makes your hair shiny. It is also highly effective in reducing protein loss, which if unchecked can lead to various unhealthy qualities in your hair. This is the reason why it is used as hair care oil, and in manufacturing various conditioners, and dandruff relief creams. Now you must be thinking how to use coconut oil for your hair? Just apply it topically to your hair or use a coconut oil hair mask. It is an excellent conditioner and helps the re-growth process of damaged hair. It also provides the essential proteins required for nourishing and healing damaged hair. Research studies indicate that it provides better protection to hair from damage caused by hygral fatigue. By regularly massaging your head with coconut oil, you can ensure that your scalp is dandruff free, even if your scalp is chronically dry. It also helps in keeping your hair and scalp free from lice and lice eggs (yes, some people do get lice in their hair).

  1. Rub into scalp daily to stimulate hair growth
  2. Or use in homemade shampoo bars
  3. A tiny dab rubbed on your hands and then through hair makes a great anti-frizz treatment
  4. As an incredibly intensive natural conditioner- Rub into dry hair, put a shower cap on and leave for several hours before washing out with several rounds of shampoo

Coconut Oil Uses Around the Home

  1. To make a simple homemade soap
  2. Or make a clay and charcoal soothing soap
  3. Rub a small amount into real leather to soften and condition (shiny leather only… test a small area first)
  4. And use a small amount to dilute essential oils for use on skin
  5. For pets struggling with skin issues when used externally
  6. In coconut oil dog treats
  7. On hands after doing dishes to avoid dry skin
  8. Mixed with catnip, rosemary, or mint essential oils as a natural bug repellent
  9. Natural Remedies for Coconut Oil
  10. Coconut oil – oil pulling chews with essential oils
  11. Rubbed on the inside of your nose it may help alleviate allergy symptoms
  12. The antimicrobial and antibacterial properties make it helpful topically to kill yeast or yeast infections
  13. The antimicrobial properties and beneficial fats make coconut oil a powerhouse in Remineralizing Toothpaste
  14. Can help sooth psoriasis or eczema
  15. Oil pulling with coconut oil and a drop of oregano oil helps improve gum health
  16. Can help improve cholesterol ratios
  17. Can help reduce appearance of varicose veins when used topically
  18. After initial heat is gone, can help speed healing of sunburn
  19. Blend a tablespoon into hot tea to help speed recovery from cold or flu
  20. It’s anti-inflammatory properties can help lessen arthritis
  21. Can reduce the itch of mosquito bites
  22. Can help resolve acne when used regularly
  23. A tablespoon melted into a cup of warm tea can help sooth a sore throat
  24. In homemade vapor rub
  25. Can be used internally and externally to speed recovery from UTIs
  26. In a salve for cracked heels
  27. One reader swears by using coconut oil to treat yeast infection. She suggests soaking a tampon in it and inserting the tampon for a few hours.
  28. Naturally clears up cold sores
  29. Ingesting coconut oil daily can help with allergy symptoms
  30. Some people say ingesting coconut oil daily can increase mental alertness
  31. Coconut Oil for Pregnancies, Babies and Children
  32. As a cloth diaper safe diaper cream (just rub on baby’s bottom)
  33. Used in kids ears with chamomile essential oil to help speed ear infection healing
  34. In place of Lanolin cream on nursing nipples to sooth irritation (also great for baby!)
  35. Nursing moms can take a couple tablespoons a day (and Vitamin D) to increase milk supply and nutrients
  36. To help soothe the itch of chicken pox or poison ivy
  37. Use on skin to avoid stretch marks during pregnancy
  38. Used directly on the perineum to help heal after birth
  39. To get rid of cradle cap on baby- just massage in to head, leave on for a few minutes and gently rinse with a warm wash cloth
  40. With apple cider vinegar as a natural treatment for lice that actually works

Uses for Coconut Oil in Cooking and Recipes

  1. A great cooking oil with a high smoke point. Great for baking, stir-frys or as a dairy free replacement to butter.
  2. Try adding to foods or smoothies daily for energy
  3. Or emulsify into coffee for a homemade coffee creamer (The only way I’ll drink coffee)
  4. In homemade Mayo without the high PUFA vegetable oils
  5. To season cast iron skillets
  6. It’s high Lauric acid and MCFA content helps boost metabolism when used in foods
  7. In healthy brain boosting snack for kids like Coconut Clusters
  8. Add to a filling and energy boosting Brain Power Smoothie
  9. Mix a tablespoon with a tablespoon of chia seeds for an all-day energy boost (do NOT take this at night!)
  10. Use as a replacement for vegetable oils in any recipe or in cooking
  11. Or try your hand at making coconut based grain free granola recipes
  12. My kids love these homemade meltaways (like candy)
  13. Use it as an anti-aging facial moisturizer
  14. Or make coconut cream concentrate for a brain boosting snack

Recipes

Body Scrub – Moisturize while getting rid of dead skin cells by making your own body (or facial) scrub. Just mix coconut oil with coconut sugar to reveal smoother skin. Try it a few times a week.

Coconut Oil Shampoo – Here is one of my favorite coconut oil shampoo recipes, that will leave your hair feeling soft and healthy. As every person’s hair is different, feel free to adjust the coconut oil level to suit your hair needs. For fine hair you may reduce the coconut oil amount as needed to 1/4 cup, and for thick dry or curly hair, you may need to increase this amount or add a few drops of avocado oil as well.

  • 1 cup liquid castile soap
  • 1/3 cup canned coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 50-60 drops of favorite essential oils

Melt coconut oil and coconut milk together over very low heat, as to not damage any of the nutrients. Pour into a bottle with a secure lid, and top with the castile soap. Shake well. And then, shake some more. Add 50 drops of your favorite essential oils, and shake again. Great essential oils for hair include lavender, wild orange, peppermint, lemongrass, rosemary, clary sage, and rosemary. This shampoo will not be as thick as commercial shampoos; squeeze on hair directly from the bottle. Wash, and rinse well.

Coconut Oil Conditioner

  • 2/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon vitamin E oil
  • 1 tablespoon Jojoba oil
  • 10 drops of your favorite essential oil

Mix all ingredients in a bowl with a hand mixer until well combined. This may take several minutes. You want a smooth and creamy conditioner. In the shower, after washing hair with Coconut Oil Shampoo, use a teaspoon or two and smooth through hair. Allow to penetrate hair for the remainder of your shower, and rinse very well.

NOTE: If you color your hair, especially red, coconut oil may fade the color. For most hair types and colors, it will not.

BONUS: Coconut oil is a great base for natural hair colors as it penetrates the hair shaft. For darker hair, mix 2 tablespoons of coconut oil with 1 cup of strong coffee, with 1 tablespoon of spent grounds, and apply to hair. Allow to sit for 45 – 60 minutes, the longer you leave it, the darker the results. Rinse well and style as desired.

For blonde hair, or to add subtle highlights, mix 1/2 cup of strong chamomile tea, ¼ cup fresh lemon juice, and ¼ cup coconut oil in a blender until emulsified. Apply to hair and roots and cover with a shower cap. Sit in the sun, or use a hair dryer to keep the cap warm for 45 minutes to 75 minutes. Rinse well.

References:

  1. https://wellnessmama.com/5734/coconut-oil/
  2. https://draxe.com/coconut-oil-for-skin/
  3. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/oils/health-benefits-of-coconut-oil.html
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  5. http://www.doctoroz.com/article/surprising-health-benefits-coconut-oil
  6. https://draxe.com/coconut-oil-uses/
  7. https://pinchofyum.com/coconut-oil-apple-crisp
  8. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25163649
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  10. https://www.webmd.com/diet/features/coconut-oil-and-health#1
  11. https://draxe.com/coconut-oil-benefits/
  12. http://www.eatthis.com/benefits-of-coconut-oil/
  13. https://www.well-beingsecrets.com/health-benefits-of-coconut-oil/
  14. https://www.webmd.com/diet/features/coconut-oil-and-health#1
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  16. https://www.webmd.com/drugs/2/drug-161163/coconut-oil-oral/details
  17. http://jabsom.hawaii.edu/minimedschool/docs/coconut-macnut-oil.pdf
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Cold Showers

Why You Should Take a Cold Shower

Or, at the very least, rinse off with cold water.

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Taking a cold shower has many more benefits besides waking up a drunk person.

Besides saving you money on heating water, taking a cold shower also:

  1. Increases alertness better than coffee. The cold stimulates circulation by increasing the heart rate and relaxing blood vessels. Your respiration rate increase to warm the body, thus increasing oxygen intake and reducing oxidization within the cells. These two changes wake you up and get you going.
  2. Improves health of skin and hair. Hot water strips away the natural, water soluble oils, excreted by the skin and hair follicles, thus drying them out. Hot water relaxes tissues causing sagging and eventually wrinkling. It opens pores and allows for the buildup of dirt and bacteria. Cold water tightens cuticles, pores, and collagen in tissues. This seals up the skin keeping dirt and bacteria out, thus preventing acne and infection.
  3. Improves immunity and circulation. As in number 1 cold water stimulates circulation, this includes lymph circulation. The better lymph and its associated immune cells can travel through the body the better they can kill and remove invaders.
  4. Aids in weight loss. Due to our body’s habit of storing two kinds of fat, white (excess calories stored around belly/thighs) and brown (surrounds and protects organs, adds insulation from heat/cold). Our body uses or burns very little white fat, especially when we’re hot. The more we expose our bodies to cold the more we develop brown fat and burn white fat.
  5. Eases pain and speeds recovery. With increased circulation comes increased removal of exercise and injury related acid and toxin buildup in the muscles and joints, thus reducing inflammation and associated pain.
  6. Eases stress and it’s effects. Cold stimulus in the shower or outside has been proven to promote tolerance to stress and resulting disease. Again, with increased circulation comes increased removal of toxins. Even those toxins created by feeling stressed. The stress of cold water assists the body in adapting to oxidative stress.
  7. Relieves depression. The stimulation of the nerves in cold water causes the release of an overwhelming amount of electrical impulses from the peripheral nerve endings to the brain. This boosts mood by releasing endorphins and causing a strong antidepressant effect.
  8. Builds will power. It takes a lot of mental strength and will to purposefully take a cold shower, especially after being so acclimated to warm and comfortable showers. The more you do it the more you can do it.
  9. Increase and balance hormones. Along with increased circulation comes nerve and gland stimulation with exposure to cold. As glands are stimulated so are their excretions, which are all hormones. This improves the balance and function of hormones throughout the body.
  10. Improves sleep. By increasing and balancing hormones, it improves sleep hormone production as well. A cold shower before bed can work like a tranquilizer.
  11. Improves breathing. The shock of entering the cold water makes you take a full, deep breath. Breathing in cold water becomes deep and erratic, allowing for more oxygen to enter the bloodstream.

References:

  1. https://www.medicaldaily.com/benefits-cold-showers-7-reasons-why-taking-cool-showers-good-your-health-289524
  2. https://www.menprovement.com/benefits-of-cold-showers/
  3. https://www.healthline.com/health/cold-shower-vs-hot-shower
  4. https://blog.paleohacks.com/6-unexpected-benefits-of-cold-showers/
  5. https://hbr.org/2018/03/cold-showers-lead-to-fewer-sick-days
  6. https://fitness.mercola.com/sites/fitness/archive/2012/04/27/cold-water-immersion-benefits.aspx
  7. https://www.livestrong.com/article/154168-how-to-lose-weight-with-cold-showers/
  8. https://www.drweil.com/health-wellness/body-mind-spirit/hair-skin-nails/are-cold-showers-good-for-you/