Healthy Obsession | Use More Coconut Oil In Your Daily Life
As I mentioned to you all in my last post, I have been making some changes in the past few months. Improving my health and fitness has been a main focus in my life and I am enjoying the process with all of its ups and downs. (Downs being the day I had to go for a 3 hour snowmobile ride dealing with sore glute and quad muscles from my workout the day before - ouch!) Nevertheless, through my exploration of healthy tips and products I discovered coconut oil - with the help of a very good friend! Not only is coconut oil great for cooking with but it has a ton of other great benefits you may not have known about. I'm putting together my favorites and some inspiration for ways to use more coconut oil in your daily life.
My lovely friend who suggested I start using coconut oil, introduced me to the idea of using it in the shower. I started keeping a jar of coconut oil and a pair of exfoliating gloves in the shower and rub it into the skin in a circular motion, serving as a skin treatment and exfoliator at the same time. Pretty quickly, I noticed a change in typically dry areas like my elbows, and a subtle change in the appearance of scars. I have also used coconut oil on my face in the shower also with the gloves, leading to super soft and smooth skin.
After doing some research I found that coconut oil works great as a "shaving cream", additive to hair conditioner, and a remedy for dry ends when used before your normal hair care shower routine. Amazing! Who knew? Well, apparently lots of people other than me - but I'm happy to be in the know these days.
Another tip from my new skin care guru friend was to use coconut oil as an occasional hair mask, leaving it in for as long as overnight (as long as you don't mind having somewhat funky looking hair the next day), to add some serious moisture to your tresses.
OTHER BEAUTY USES
Apparently I've spent all these years using store bought makeup remover, and committing some skincare sin! Coconut oil works great as a natural way to remove makeup, and helps moisturize in the process. I love a multi-tasker!
Other uses include (but are not limited to) makeup brush cleaner, cuticle care, the dreaded sunburn relief, and wrinkle reducer. If you really want to take it to the next level, you can make your own homemade toothpaste using coconut oil, baking soda and peppermint essential oil. Check out this recipe for Homemade Probiotic Toothpaste from Dr. Axe.
I have heard a lot of buzz about using coconut oil in baking recipes but had not tried it myself until recently. I came across this recipe for 130 Calorie Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins from Sally's Baking Addiction. This recipe calls for pumpkin puree for flavor and moisture since there is no oil or fat in this recipe. I had baked with pumpkin before with great success and was excited to try it alongside coconut oil, unsweetened cocoa powder, greek yogurt and maple syrup - yum! Rather than having 130 calorie muffins, I chose to make them as mini-muffins making them 65 calories or less each depending on the yield.
These scrumptious little morsels are moist, and packed with healthy ingredients. If you're looking to add some of the benefits of coconut oil into your diet, or that of your family, try this recipe for Coconut Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies, which look perfectly chewy yet crisp.
Another exciting tip I came across during my "Coconut Oil Recipe" Pinterest searches was a recipe for Coconut Oil Pie Crust! This blows my mind. The best of both worlds, Coconut Oil creates a great texture and mild flavor without the unhealthy qualities of lard or Crisco. I can't wait to try this!
Coconut oil can be used to replace many of your standard cooking oils and fats. The high smoke points makes it great for high heat cooking like stir-fry, and the subtle flavor makes it great for a replacement for butter on homemade popcorn with a sprinkle of kosher salt - yum! If you're trying to get into salads but love those creamy dressings, try this Honey Lime Dressing with coconut oil.
This wonder oil is also has medium chain triglycerides which makes it a great way to boost energy when added to your water with chia seeds and fruit, or add to your morning or afternoon smoothies for a little pick-me-up. I personally make a smoothie for breakfast every morning, and this is a super easy way to add some coconut oil into my diet.
One of the hardest parts of getting healthy have been giving up some of the delicious foods that I love. The more I learn the more I'm able to find healthy swaps for the decadent dishes I crave, and "indulge" without the guilt. I recently found this recipe for Paleo Coconut Oil Hollandaise Sauce - this may save my life! My love for Eggs Benedict goes way back, and I have been longing for that Sunday morning brunch treat, but without all of the butter I can satisfy my craving - finally!
My best advice I can give you all, from my humble beginnings of healthy living, is to keep researching. Pinterest is a great way to follow other Pinners who care about healthy living, and become inspired by the articles and recipes they pin. Create boards to curate all of your awesome new healthy ideas and revisit them as you can. These types of changes are not going to happen overnight. Be patient and have fun with it!
What's your favorite way to use Coconut Oil in your daily life?