It’s been circulating around social media, and you see celebrity after celebrity supporting its use. But what really are the health benefits of coconut oil? Why do people use it?
Coconut oil has several impressive uses that many people say work, but many of its health benefits are even supported by scientific studies.
One of the popular uses of coconut oil is in cooking. What a perfect alternative to olive oil or butter, and it doesn’t even taste bad. Or just plop a spoonful into your mouth like Angelina Jolie does every morning, according to the UK Daily Mail.
Coconut oil contains Vitamin E and is a major source of medium chain triglycerides such as lauric acid. Lauric acid is a fatty acid and, when consumed, is used as a direct source for energy and can help in digestion, according to Livestrong. The lauric acid in coconut oil is what aids in weight loss and higher metabolic rates as it increases the amount of calories you burn compared to other fats.
A study from the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition tested the enhanced ingestion of MCTs on women for 14 days. The results were higher resting metabolic rates and calories burned.
Other uses of coconut oil range from hair and skin moisturizer, makeup remover and even teeth whitening. Its natural antibacterial and antifungal properties make coconut oil great for skin, and it is better able to penetrate hair than other oils. What’s not to like about smelling like a tropical oasis all the time?
But what’s up with using coconut oil to whiten teeth? Can it really be so magical as to take care of all your beauty needs? Apparently, it can. You might as well soak in a bath of coconut oil every day because where else are you going to find such a multipurpose product?
Freshman Brody Hamilton said he uses coconut oil when he cooks and for his teeth as well.
“I do this thing called oil pulling where you swish with coconut oil every morning for a good 10 to 20 minutes,” Hamilton said.
“My gums look and feel a bit better, and my teeth have whitened a bit.”
Because tooth plaque is fat-soluble rather than water-soluble, the lipids in coconut oil are better able to dissolve, according to an interview with actress Shailene Woodley for Into the Gloss. Not only does the oil make your mouth clean, it helps bring out that pearly white shine.
So there you have it, coconut oil covers all the bases—from skin care, weight loss and even dental hygiene. The only question now is: What can’t coconut oil do?