Thrive Coconut OilSome of my friends have asked me: “is coconut oil bad? So I figured it would be best to write a blog post to clarify any questions and provide some information regarding the many benefits and uses of this amazing oil. One thing you must know about me is that I will give you the information without over-glorifying a product, food or supplement. You can always count on me to provide an unbiased review. So first things first, let me explain what is in coconut oil and why there’s so much controversy around it. Coconut oil is comprised of 92 percent saturated fats. When we hear the word “saturated” many of us (me included) have cringed in the past. However, I have learned that saturated fats are actually beneficial to your health. Let me explain a bit further.

Coconut oil has been associated with blood sugar control and therefore may be beneficial to diabetics in the management of this condition. It also helps balance blood lipids. Blood lipids are fat-like substances that are found in our tissue and blood. They are comprised of LDL Cholesterol (or bad cholesterol), HDL cholesterol or (good cholesterol which keeps the “bad” cholesterol in check), and triglycerides (associated with a higher risk for heart disease if the level is too hight). Small amounts of lipids are necessary for our body to work normally. We need cholesterol for hormone production for example.  Coconut oil may prevent kidney and gallbladder stones, it’s been found to protect the liver from damage caused by alcohol and toxins. Because of its high level of saturated fat, this oil will solidify at room temperature. It is thought to be directly linked to better absorption of minerals. It has antiviral, anti-fungal and antibacterial properties. It can be used as a hair conditioner, applied topically to the skin as a moisturizer and to remove makeup.

Refined coconut oil is made from the dried meat or kernel of the coconut (called copra), then laid out to dry in the sun (which is unsanitary). Then they smoke them or they put it through a kiln. This process makes the oil inedible, and because of that, manufacturers will put it through a refinement process that will include the use of high heat to remove the foul smell of the oil, then filtering it by using bleaching clays, adding chemicals like sodium hydroxide to increase the shelf-life and remove impurities, and often times, they will use a process of hydrogenation. In other words, this oil is refined, bleached and deodorized. It also takes the delicious, natural flavor of coconut oil. I always purchase unrefined, ORGANIC virgin coconut oil. The reason I prefer this is because of the flavor. It also contains no chemicals not only during the processing of the oil, but the coconut is grown without the use of pesticides or fertilizers. Always choose “virgin” and not “extra-virgin” since there is NO difference between the extra-virgin and virgin versions.

One of my FAVORITE ways to use coconut oil is in my “Super Coffee” every morning. I blend:

1- cup organic coffee
1/4 tsp coconut oil
1 tsp raw cacao powder
1 tsp maca powder
A dash of cinnamon

I also sauté kale using 1/2 tsp of coconut oil, 1 tsp minced garlic, a bit of Himalayan salt and fresh, organic kale leaves which I have previously chopped. Heat the oil for a few seconds, add the chopped kale, then the garlic and add the pinch of salt when serving. This is my 8 year old’s favorite recipe when it comes to kale. I usually serve it with grilled wild caught salmon or chicken.

You can use it in stir-fries, to make desserts (think chocolate truffles – recipe coming soon). And other delicious treats and foods. Coconut oil is extremely versatile and very beneficial! I also use it for my clients as part of their healing hormone protocol.

Would you like to receive a FREE jar of organic, unrefined coconut oil? If so, click here. Thrive Market is giving away FREE jars of coconut oil if you try them out for a month. I PROMISE you won’t be disappointed! I order my raw cacao, maca powder, shampoo, clay and other natural products from them.