I can use coconut oil for WHAT?

Recently I’ve heard a lot of hype about coconut oil. This miracle product has been touted as the best thing since sliced bread, with all the attributes of a great snake oil. A variety of sources explain that coconut oil is good for you and useful for anything from cooking to baking to moisturizing to cleaning your shoes. I thought I should give it a try. I picked up a small jar at the local health food shop (small jar around $17) but then I couldn’t decide what to do with it. Too many choices! It sat  in the pantry for a few weeks but still I couldn’t decide what to try first. Part of the problem was the versatility. I mean, you can’t exactly cook with a jar of something that you’ve dipped your hands in. Are you supposed to split it into a number of jars? How do you cope?

small jar

Let me tell you how I handled my dilemma. I bought 2 large jars at Costco, put one in the bathroom and one in the kitchen. (These jars each cost about the same as the  small jar.) I have just started doing a bit of cooking with the coconut oil and it works well for sautéing. I haven’t tried any baking yet. I feel a bit conflicted since coconut oil used to be lumped together with palm oil as a “bad” tropical oil. Isn’t it overwhelming trying to keep up?

coconut oil from Costco

I divided the bathroom jar into 2 containers for now. I wanted to try it on my face as a moisturizer so I put some into a small container. It  is weird  use such an inexpensive product on my face when I’ve been suckered into spending a small fortune on teeny tiny jars from cosmetic companies over the years. What am I doing to the country’s economy? I have to say, so far so good for my new face cream. I worried that it would be too greasy, but it soaks in to the skin almost immediately and creates a wonderful matte finish. The coconut scent seems to dissipate quickly. As a body moisturizer it works very well. My only complaint is that the oil is in a solid form. It is difficult to remove from the container – a lot more trouble than pumping out  lotion. I do like the way it melts when it touches your skin and of course it then spreads easily. My chiropractor has admonished me in the past for not using coconut oil on my skin. His logic – the skin is the largest organ of the body, so why would you put something on your skin that you wouldn’t eat? The only way this seems important is if I’m out with friends and we are attacked by cannibals. Then, if my luscious layer of body fat is not enough to tempt them into devouring me immediately, they’ll no doubt be sold by the delicious taste of my coconut oil coating. (If I’m eaten first I won’t have to see my friends suffer.)

both jars

Hopefully I won’t run into cannibals any time soon. There are still a lot of things I need to try with my coconut oil.

14 Comments

  1. Hi Terri!

    Glad you’ve discovered the wonders of coconut oil. I use it as a moisturizer, put it in hair, drink it in coffee, and cook with it (when Vlad lets me).

    Here is one use that will blow your mind: you can use it to wipe off aluminum appliances (fridge, washing machine) and they won’t show smudges for AGES. Just be sure to coat with a VERY thin layer and rub in well (a paper towel will do the trick). The metal will stay shiny and won’t attract dust or thumbprints.

    Also works on countertops….

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  2. You know, I hadn’t considered the threat of cannibals. New fear to add to my list. 🙂 I have some coconut oil, too. I have had a couple of vegetarian recipes that called for it, so I used it then, but other than those occasions, I’ve felt a little unsure. I hadn’t thought about using it as a moisturizer, but now I will! Thanks for the encouragement to do so!

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  3. My oil of choice has always been olive, but I don’t think that it’s as versatile as coconut. Kiehl’s has shampoos and conditioners with coconut oil if you want to pay top dollar for hair care products.

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  4. I have used coconut oil for baking; I melt it first and use it in place of vegetable oil. Works well! I did fry some eggs in it once, but they came out tasting like coconut which was just weird. You can melt it in the microwave right in the jar for measuring and then let it become solid over and over again. Good luck!

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  5. I find all the coconut oil PR very confusing, too. Good for you? Bad for you? I even read that cooking with it can help Alzheimer’s patients. Wonderous product or clog your heart? More to learn, I guess.

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  6. I’ve known coconut oil for a very long time.We always used coconut oil for our hair.It was the best oil for the hair. Coconut itself was used to make dessert,cook shrimp,because it is tasty.Then suddenly there was a lot of literature against it. It was bad for health,we should not use it in food.Now it is good for you. The researchers are telling us a completely different thing about coconut.All this is very confusing.I didn’t know it can be used for cleaning.
    Thank you for posting this.
    Ranu

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    1. If you check the link I put in, there are 15 ways to use coconut listed. The hair conditioner bit seems weird to me since you wash your hair to get out the oil, but I’ll probably give it a try once or twice. I’m glad I’m not the only one who is confused! Thanks, Ranu.

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