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  • This Superfood Can Moisturize Your Skin, Cream Your Coffee, Deter Tooth Decay & More!

    coconut-main

    When it comes to coconut oil, we’re like the dad in My Big Fat Greek wedding is with his Windex.  The superfood has such a wide array of external and internal benefits— if you haven’t tried it yet, you are missing out.

    Not sure where to get a jar and what to do with it if you did? We’ve got you covered. Here are ten ways you can use coconut oil, followed by where you can get your hands on some:

     

    As a nourishing treatment for your hair:

    one

    The idea of putting oil directly on your hair can seem counterintuitive, especially to anyone with naturally oily hair. However, coconut oil is not your typical ‘oil’; the liquid is passed off as oil due to its texture when melted—the original form is a salve.

    When half-melted, coconut oil can be massaged into the scalp or added to shampoo/conditioner to stimulate growth, aid with protein loss, counteract dandruff, condition and tame frizz. Don’t go pouring it on, though—a tablespoon amount is all you’ll need.
    For a deep conditioning treatment, warm the oil up by rubbing your palms together, then work through the hair from root to tip, focusing on the scalp and tips; cover with a shower cap and leave for 1-2hrs before rinsing out with a small (read: tiny) amount of shampoo.

     

    As a facial moisturizer / blemish-reducer:

    two

    This superfood is super good for your skin! Its antioxidant properties can help reduce spots caused by both sebum build-up and sun damage, while also fighting wrinkles.

    Simply pour a few drops onto a cotton makeup pad (or your fingers) and gently rub onto your face.
    Note: Allow enough time for absorption—you may want to do this a few hours before going to bed, so as not to grease-up your pillow.

     

    As a shaving lotion:  

    three

    In liquid form, coconut oil makes for an amazing shaving lotion due to its natural moisturizing properties and lack of perfume and other chemicals found in commercial shaving aids that irritate the skin, and it won’t clog your razor.

    Pour a few drops onto the desired area and rub in lightly before shaving. Remember to go with the direction of growth, not against it!
    Bonus: coconut oil won’t irritate sensitive areas, such as the underarms and nether regions.

     

    As a makeup remover:

    four

    Put down the baby oil, save money spent on ‘professional’ makeup removal potions, and for the love of God do not wash your foundation off with soap! 

    All you need is a few drops of coconut oil on a cotton makeup pad! It wipes your face clean and moisturizes it in the process.

     

    As a nifty nail treatment:

    five

    Just one drop of coconut oil rubbed between your fingertips, then on your nail bed and cuticles can work wonders. The containing Caprylic acid, caproic acid and myristic acid are rich in antimicrobial properties, preventing discolouration and fungal infections, while the dose of vitamins E & K nourish and protect your nails. No more hang-nails and chipping!

     

    As a tooth-decay prevention method:

    six

    If you haven’t heard of the term ‘oil pulling’, listen up because it’s about to change your life.
    This age-old remedy uses natural substances to clean and detoxify teeth and gums. When oil pulling, the coconut oil binds to the biofilm- or plaque -on your teeth, pulling them off and hence reducing the number of bacteria in the mouth. Streptococcus Mutans, which has been studied for its role in tooth decay and gum disease, is one of the most prominent bacteria that in the mouth, and oil pulling has been shown to reduce it!

    All you do is swish 1-2 teaspoons of liquid-form coconut oil in your mouth (your saliva will build on it, so don’t use too much or you’ll get a mouthful!) for 20 minutes, then spit it out into the bin. Note: do not spit the mixture out into the sink, as it may clog the pipes if modified into a salve due to cold temperatures. Afterwards, brush teeth  with toothpaste as normal.

     

     

    As a bad breath neutraliser:

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    The antimicrobial properties found in coconut oil can counteract unwanted odours. Simply swish a few teaspoons in your mouth for 5 minutes and spit out into a bin. Bonus: Unlike commercial mouthwash, this won’t sting, burn or give your mouth an ‘icy’ feeling. Follow up by rinsing with warm water, and you’re good to go.

     

    As a cooking oil:

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    Coconut oil, in its original salve-form, makes for a fantastic vegetable oil substitute when cooking.
    It has a high smoke point, so is great for stir-fry or as a dairy-free butter replacement. It’s also works well when baking!

    There are tons of benefits to be gained from ingesting coconut oil; the high lauric acid content can help lower your cholesterol and blood pressure without increasing LDL, keeping arteries flexible and preventing atherosclerosis; it can boost your metabolism because it travels directly to the liver and hence is used for energy and not stored as fat; and it can also help your body absorb calcium, vitamin D and other minerals.

     

    As a yummy cold/flu/infection preventative method:

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    When you feel a cold coming on you may want to add a few spoons of coconut oil to a hot drink; the antiviral, antimicrobial and antibacterial properties it contains can help you fight infections!
    Mix 1-2 tablespoons into a hot lemon or chamomile tea to counteract a cold and sore throat. Not a tea person? Mix it into your coffee as a creamer!

     

    As a baby care cream:

    ten

    The nourishing effects of coconut oil make for a good diaper cream substitute and cradle cap deterrent, and can be used either in liquid or salve form. Rubbing coconut oil on your belly while pregnant can also help reduce the development/appearance of stretch marks, and a dab [of salve-form] on nursing nipples is a natural replacement for lanolin cream.

     

    Convinced? Get yourself a jar at Nefertari or Imtenan. Prices start at 40 LE (for 125 ml).
    __________

    By Salma Thanatos Rizk

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