The coconut has amazing benefits both inside and out, and there are plenty of health benefits associated with it.
Water from a young coconut is not only a refreshing drink, but also a very healthy one. Coconut water is a good source of electrolytes including potassium, sodium and other minerals and vitamins, such as vitamin C. The white flesh of a coconut contains a high level of potassium and manganese (and tastes great in deserts!).
Coconut Oil Health Benefits
- Heart health
Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in the US, a problem that is almost non-existent in Polynesia and Sri Lanka, where coconut is a dietary staple. Studies have shown that the people in these areas do not suffer from heart disease or high serum cholesterol, even though coconuts contain a large amount of fatty acid. The fatty acid contained in coconuts is lauric acid, and it actively prevents heart problems. Lauric acid is a healthy source of fatty acid! Yes, healthy fats!
Moreover, coconut oil does not increase LDL levels, effectively preventing arteries from injury and damage, which reduces the risk of atherosclerosis.
- Strengthens the immune system
Coconut oil also contains capric acid, antimicrobial lipids, and caprylic acid, all of which are antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral. When lauric acid is converted to monolaurin by the human body, it also becomes an effective way to deal with bacteria and viruses, including HIV.
- Promotes better digestion
Coconut oil health benefits multiply when used as cooking oil, as it can improve the digestive system and protect against indigestion, due to the saturated fats that have antimicrobial properties. No need to worry about parasites, bacteria and fungi that can wreak havoc in your digestive system when coconut oil is part of your diet!
- Skin and hair care
Coconut oil is used in making cosmetics, soaps, hair oil and massage oil, so you know it's safe to use whether it is in a raw or processed form. On the skin, it works as a moisturizer and a cure for a wide range of skin problems, from dermatitis to premature aging. It can also slow down aging, because of its antioxidant properties.
One of the reasons that coconut oil is extensively used for hair care in the Indian sub-continent, is its ability to reduce protein loss, which causes hair damage. It also helps moisturize the scalp preventing dandruff and protects the hair from hygral fatigue.
Coconut oil is also used for oil pulling, which is done to detoxify the mouth and whiten teeth. As an old Ayurvedic tradition passed down generations, you know it works!