magic in a jar: the wonders of coconut oil

coconut-oilLet’s call me the Washington family minivan on our society’s DIY, organic bandwagon: I’m slow and it takes a lot of convincing to get me to switch lanes.

Maybe it is just the city girl in me that likes things fast and easy. I guess I figure if my mother and her mother used non-organic foods (plus loads of butter) and survived without making homemade laundry detergent, why would I spend the time doing it?

But here and there I have been shoved over to the slow lane thanks to all my organically-correct momma friends.

I loved how economic and quick homemade baby food was to make; I was surprised at how exhausting but yummy canning fruits and vegetables was; and I do enjoy money saved by making my own cleaning spray and laundry detergent.

Don’t give me an award yet: I don’t use cloth diapers, I love Costco, and I am horrible at recycling.

Yet, at a breakfast recently with some of these wonderful granola girlfriends of mine, I stirred my coffee and half-listened to ramblings about milk straight from the cow, homemade medicine and organic produce when something caught my attention: coconut oil.

With a growing belly, it was worth giving a try for preventing stretch marks.

Little did I know that after doing research, I had a jar filled with magic. Coconut oil is shown to help with a number of different things from stretch marks to milk production to healthier hair.

This was a bandwagon I was jumping on even if it is making everything from my skin and hair to our food and coffee smell like coconut (who minds that?).

While coconut oil has worn a bad reputation for saturated fat, recent research overturned that verdict.

The saturated fat found in virgin coconut oil is lauric acid. Many health claims support lauric acid as being antibacterial, antimicrobial, and having antiviral properties.

1-2 tablespoons daily has shown to keep weight off, lower abdominal fat, improve cholesterol, restore thyroid function which boosts metabolism, fight off yeast and fungus, and help control blood sugar levels.

In addition to this, it adds an amazing flavor and healthy fat to your foods. I’ve been using it as my new coffee creamer – yum!

Moreover, the vitamin E in coconut oil is wonderful for hair as a leave-in conditioner or for frizz; skin as your daily moisturizer and to keep you break-out free; and great for our baby’s bodies and cradle cap.

When purchasing your first jar: Get unrefined, virgin coconut oil. Refined coconut oil means it has been hydrogenated, bleached or deodorized.

How to store: At room temperature. Below 76-degrees will solidify and above will liquefy.

Great resources: Dr. Oz http://www.doctoroz.com/videos/surprising-health-benefits-coconut-oil

101 Uses for Coconut Oil http://wellnessmama.com/5734/101-uses-for-coconut-oil/

SEE THIS POST ON THE NEWS REVIEW’S DOUGLAS COUNTY MOMS BLOG HERE & A NEW ONE EVERY WEDNESDAY!

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