The jury is out: Coconut oil has so many amazing benefits that span culinary to skin, brain boosting to joint support. All of these are well understood, but from a Chinese medicine perspective, coconut oil is thought to tonify Qi, nourish blood, and "promotes fluids". The translation is equally compelling: It's incredible for joint health, strengthens muscles and joints, supports heart health, and offers anti-microbial properties.
If you haven’t tried coconut oil yet, below I have assembled a handful of the many reasons why you should.
Three Reasons to Embrace Coconut Oil ("Yei Zi"), Now
1. Coconut Oil is what's considered "good fat": Not all fat is created equal, we’ve learned that by now. For example, fats that come from avocados and nuts are very healthy and easy for our bodies to use as fuel. The "medium chain triglycerides" (MCT'ss") in coconut oil are easy to digest and are converted by the liver to ketones to be used for energy. Healthy fats also make you feel fuller longer, reducing cravings and the frequency of meals or snacks.
2. Coconut Oil is "food for your brain": Cholesterol is a major food source for our brain, second only to glucose. Even though our brain is only about 2% of our body’s mass, the brain contains 25% of our body’s total cholesterol. Regular consumption of coconut oil (a major provider of good cholesterol) fuels our brains helping us think more clearly, reduces brain-fog, and by some accounts, prevents or even slows down symptoms associated with dementia.
3. Coconut Oil is offers versatile benefits: Not only is it great to eat and cook with, coconut oil has so many uses outside the body, or for non-toxic cleaning alternatives. I use coconut oil as a moisturizer when my skin is dry. I also use it from time to time when my scalp gets dry and flaky. I’ve put it on cuts and bruises to help stimulate blood flow for wound healing, plus it has anti-microbial properties so the cut stays clean.
And coconut oil isn’t just for us humans, it’s safe to give to pets as a treat (they need less depending on their size), or if they get minor abrasions. I’ve used coconut oil to moisturize my dog’s paw pads after returning from desert camping trips.
How to Start Using Coconut Oil in Your Daily Life
1. As a tasty cooking oil: I only use two types of oil anymore for cooking - olive oil and coconut oil. If I’m cooking something that would taste good with a hint of coconut flavor, then I use coconut oil, otherwise I use olive. I use coconut oil when I bake, make stir-fry, etc. I also use an aerosol version of coconut oil as non-stick spray.
2. Goes great with coffee: Coconut oil is a great replacement for milk or cream! Adding it to your coffee adds a slightly sweet flavor and a creamy texture. DAO Labs added coconut oil as a key ingredient in their Joint Vitality formula. Based on the ancient herbal formula, Du Huo Ji Sheng Tang, this formula is incredible for joint health as well as lower back and knee support. The coconut oil amplifies the effects of the formula, as well as a dose of collagen. Simply add 2 scoops of Joint Vitality to your coffee in the morning to reap the benefits -- and it tastes delicious.
3. The powerful "utility" oil: Check out this link to find many useful ways to incorporate coconut oil into your life. The article explains how to use coconut oil for internal issues, external issues like skin/wound healing as well as great uses for coconut oil around the house.
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