Coconuts are an amazing, multi-use super food with many health benefits! Even though nothing beats drinking refreshing, cool coconut water on a hot day at the beach, there are many ways to enjoy coconuts anywhere. Coconuts can improve your body inside and out through its various products and uses. From conditioning your hair with its rich oil to delicious recipes.
Here is why coconut could be one of your favorite foods:
Conditioner: Using coconut oil as a conditioner can also leave your hair looking more sheen and soft. A study conducted by the Journal of Cosmetic Science found the benefits of mineral oil and sunflower oil on hair were both surpassed by coconut oil. Of the three this is the only oil that reduces protein loss in hair(2).
- How to use Coconut Oil as a Conditioner: A little goes along ways. Depending on your hair type, length, and thickness use 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. First shampoo and dry your hair. Then get the coconut oil to the right oil consistency with no clumps. The type of fat in coconut oil makes the consistency of the oil change depending on surrounding temperature. So if it’s a cooler day, allow the oil to soften in your hands if needs. Apply all throughout hair, especially on the ends where your hair may be damaged. Let the oil sit in your hair for 1-2 hours or even over night if you have a shower cap. Wash thoroughly, then rock your refreshed lovely, locks!
Oil Pulling: Have a headache? Instead frustratingly, pulling out your hair (which is now luscious thanks to coconut oil) try oil pulling! Some people swear by it to relieve headaches, whiten teeth, and others even claim it removes toxins from the body. It’s worth a try!
- What is oil pulling: Oil pulling is the act of swishing roughly a tablespoon of coconut oil around, in your mouth for 15-20. If this is your first time, we recommend that you start with a smaller amount and less time. Start with 1 minutes until you adjust to the feeling, the next day try swishing the oil a little longer until you build up to 5 minutes then 10-15 and so on. You can do this while going about the rest of your morning routine. Once you’ve hit your limit, spit out the oil into the trash. It’s important not to dispose of your oil in the sink because it can clog your plumbing. Now, flash your pearly whites!
To find out more Food Facts on Coconuts check out our Nutrition Factors Library
What else can you do with coconuts?
ENJOY IT! Coconut can add so much flavor to your favorite sweet and savory dishes! Our Recipe Data base is packed with wonderful recipes featuring this topical delight.
One of the recipes in the data base is Half Your Plate’s Coconut Squash Soup. This creamy soup has a wonderful match of coconut milk and squash. With the burst of green color from the spinach, this will be a soup served up often.
Another refreshing recipe in our database is Blueberry Coconut Smoothie. This smoothie is jam packed with minerals and antioxidants. This is a great way to protect your body from the inside out.
How to Crack a Coconut:
Are you convinced about how awesome coconuts yet? Well, if not you’re a tough one to crack! Coconut oil is also a great alternative to other cooking oils. For example, butter can only be heated to 250-200°F before starting to burn where as coconut oil as a higher smoke point at 350°F. Coconut milk, dairy alternatives can put a tropical twist on your breakfast cereals and other favorites. Canned coconut milk is a fun ingredient to make various soups, curries, and sauces with. Shredded coconut and coconut chips can jazz up oatmeal, yogurt, and trail mix. There are so many coconut products out there to mix up your routine and add more health benefits to your diet!
But what if you want to go straight to the source? Well, you might have to travel quite the distance to harvest your own coconut from the tree. Luckily, you can find them at most grocery stores. Some stores will even open the coconut for you when request but if not, are you ready to learn how to crack a coconut?! The easiest way we’ve found is to first drain the delicious coconut water. You can do this by breaking out your tool belt! Take a Philips screw driver and wash the end with dish soap, rinse, dry. Now locate the eyes of the coconut (these are the three holes that make the coconut resemble a bowling ball). One of these is typically a little different and weaker than the other. Place your clean and sanitized screw driver on top of the weakest hole and tap the top of the screw driver with a hammer. (CAREFUL, you don’t want any bruised fingers). Then through the hole you’ve created drain the coconut water into a cup. Once drained, you can now either wrap the coconut in a dish towel, gather the towel on one end and smack the coconut on a hard surface (this can be great therapy) or you can tap the coconut with the hammer all the way around the coconut until you see a hairline crack, twist and pull the coconut apart.