Also known as coconut butter, coconut oil is a vital source of health among the tropical communities the world over. It is considered a functional food because of its many health uses beyond its important nutritional benefits. Asian and Pacific communities use coconut oil in traditional medicine for its healing properties that far exceed those of any other dietary oil.
Coconut oil is composed mainly of heart-healthy medium chain triglycerides – which behave more like carbohydrates than fats. They’re broken down quickly, enter our blood stream fast and can be used as an immediate source of energy. Used extensively in Ayurveda – the traditional Indian medicine – coconut oil is anti-fungal, anti- microbial and antibacterial. Its many health benefits include increased immunity, weight loss and maintenance of healthy cholesterol levels. Recent studies show that regualr consumption of the oil seems to help delay the onset of Alzheimers and similar diseases.
The Clever Kitchen recommends keeping a jar of coconut oil in the bathroom as well as the kitchen! Great for the hair and skin and for removing makeup, and for oil pulling improving gum health and detoxification, or make your own toothpaste- 1 cup coconut oil, 3/4 cup baking soda, 20 drops essential peppermint oil.
As coconut oil doesn’t go rancid when heated it is the perfect oil to cook with and can be used for cooking any food.
You can add coconut oil to smoothies, desserts, in tea and coffee, in baked goods, cookies, pancakes, granola, dressing and sauces. Coconut oil is also a great base for your raw chocolate and sweet treats- and some people even eat a spoonful by itself.
Store at room temperature. Above 25 Celsius the oil will melt and below it will solidify.