Virgin Coconut Oil, or VCO, is the newest, high-value coconut product widely sought after for its human nutraceutical benefits and functional food. As the world becomes more familiar with the incredible health benefits of virgin coconut oil, we now witness the rapid rise of this remarkable substance, with so much potential for growth.
Coconuts have traveled far and wide. What started as folk medicine almost 4000 years ago, is now enjoying a resurgence in popularity throughout the world. Now that they have finally arrived at the mainland- and are somewhat mainstream, this guide is designed to tell you everything you need to know about this new craze in tropical goodness.
Let’s dive in.
What is Virgin Coconut Oil?
Ah, the coconut. Not only does this incredible fruit, nut, and seed transform you into a world of white-sand beaches, palm trees, and strolls on a golden shore, but it can also provide you with astonishing health benefits—especially virgin coconut oil.
Declared as the ‘lifeline of well-being,’ it is known worldwide for its delightful aroma and flavor, as well as its nourishing antioxidants, vitamins, and medium-chain suetty acids.
While coconut oil is assuredly un-foreign to most, virgin coconut oil may be a little unfamiliar.
Simply put, the virgin strain is a new, highly value-added version of coconut oil. But in order to find out what it truly is, we have to look at how it’s produced.
How is Virgin Coconut Oil Made?
Virgin coconut oil is something that preserves the virtues of a coconut. Specifically, white kernel. The coconut white kernel is known as the meat of the coconut fruit, and is used to extract coconut milk and coconut oil.
It enhances the natural beauty as it protects the milk from harm throughout the heating process that conventional coconut oil undergoes.
The only way this is possible is via cold-processed technology. This is what obliterates the need for warming elements during the coconut milk extraction process, and is what secures that this world’s natural goodness endures unimpaired.
So, now that you know what virgin coconut oil is, and how it’s made- what’s the difference between VCO and regular ol’ coconut oil?
Virgin Coconut Oil vs. Refined Coconut Oil
While both are highly wholesome, versatile, and can be solid substitutes for a bunch of baking, cooking, and body care ingredients, there are some critical differences between the two.
Let’s look at refined coconut oil first:
|Refined Coconut Oil
|It contains a neutral scent and flavor
|Heats up to 400F
|Made from dried coconuts
|Steam refined, no chemicals used
Now, virgin coconut oil:
|Virgin Coconut Oil
|Some strains boast a delicious, tropical coconut scent and flavor. However, you may find many different grades of regular coconut oil below virgin coconut oil that have a smell and taste that may seem stronger, tasting a bit burnt, or slightly bitter.
|Heats up to 350F
|Made from fresh coconuts
One of the most paramount variations between VCO and regular coconut oil is the flavor and fragrance. While the virgin strain possesses a delightful, tropical coconut scent and flavor, refined coconut oil has a neutral odor and taste.
VCO vs. Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
Many people also often ask about the differences between the regular and extra virgin coconut oil. But we can tell you right now; that it’s all virtually meaningless.
Since oil experts understand extra virgin to be the best olive oil grade, manufacturers began to label coconut oil as “extra” virgin in order to boast that their brand is the ‘best coconut oil’ one can find.
In retrospect, there are only two types of coconut oils to look out for – virgin, and refined. Coconut governing authorities only accept virgin grade, and don’t recognize extra virgin coconut oil as the real one – so don’t be fooled.
The Health Benefits of Virgin Coconut Oil
When it comes to your health, ditching all chemicals is the best option. Living a natural life – that’s all you need to be complete, and VCO plays a significant role in this.
There are so many health benefits of virgin coconut oil, and we’re going to explain them all next thoroughly.
First up, let’s talk about virgin coconut nutrition.
Virgin Coconut Oil Nutrition
In just one tablespoon of VCO, you can find:
|For a Serving Size of 1 tbsp (14g)
|Net carbs 0g
*The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs.
It’s incredibly similar to olive oil in the sense that it contains 119 calories and 13.5g of fat. (1)
The Benefits of VCO for Skin, Hair & Teeth
VCO can act as a substitute for quite a few things in your beauty kit. It works wonders as a moisturizing agent and can also serve as lip balm, makeup remover, and a frizzy hair contender as it preserves moisture.
The health benefits of virgin coconut oil definitely include those of the skin. It contains anti-aging properties as it blossoms in antioxidants, and it can also be used for cuticle care as the coconut oil’s emollient nature retains softness in the cuticles.
If you’re someone that loves rosy lips, then a fun DIY lip balm made from VCO will be your best friend. All you have to do is crush a few pomegranate seeds and strain them into a small pot, add some VCO and mix thoroughly. Then, refrigerate.
This earthy lip balm will stay good for around a week, and give you luscious lips for months to come.
Are you interested in learning the secret behind the abundant and flowing mane of women (or even men) in the tropics?
It’s virgin coconut oil.
VCO benefits hair in a multitude of ways that factory-manufactured hair-care products will never be able to meet. As the health benefits of virgin coconut oil include lowering protein loss, it helps to keep the hair strong; and adds a sparkling shine to the hair strands.
When applied to the head, it can be rubbed in with a gentle massage. This has been known to help relieve any stress you may have bottled up inside. Due to this, its popularity as a massage oil has also risen immensely.
Furthermore, VCO can also be used as a conditioner to enhance your hair’s overall look and feel. It can help control frizz and make your hair shinier, with an overall healthy glow.
Virgin coconut oil has been involved in a wide range of studies that conclude that it may help fight plaque and gum disease, amongst many other things.
“In one study, oil pulling with coconut oil significantly decreased plaque buildup and signs of gingivitis in 60 participants with plaque-induced gum disease” (2)
Studies also show that VCO attacks Streptococcus mutans and Lactobacillus. Both refer to two groups of bacteria that are to blame for tooth decay. They say that this magnificent strain of coconut can reduce both as effectively as a rigid mouthwash containing chlorhexidine.
The Health Benefits of Virgin Coconut Oil in Controlling Blood Sugar
VCO assists in the control of blood sugar, and may improve the secretion of insulin. Experts say that one huge benefit is that it reinforces the immune system because it holds antimicrobial lipids, lauric acid, capric acid, and caprylic acid. All boast antifungal, antibacterial, and antiviral characteristics.
VCO Benefits for Cardiovascular Diseases and Heart Health
CVD, or, Cardiovascular disease has been labeled as the leading cause of mortality throughout the world. It’s something that is constantly associated with significant overheads and the decline of population productivity.
It all comes down to your diet. Various studies have shown us that a diet rich in good fats, like virgin coconut oil, has been associated with a reduced CVD risk. The studies conclude that it shows increasingly promising effects on improving any risks associated with CVD, thus lowering any danger.
VCO for Cholesterol
In the human body, sits two types of cholesterol. We have high-density lipoprotein (HDL), which is known as the ‘good’ version. And, we have ‘bad’ cholesterol, which is known as low-density lipoprotein (LDL).
VCO has been linked with reducing cholesterol levels, while also maintaining the levels of blood coagulation factors. Studies show us that when consumed, it can prevent any oxidation from the ‘bad’ LDL oxidants. In fact, it promotes the ‘good’ HDL, which in turn, may boost cardiovascular health as a whole.
VCO Benefits for Weight Loss
Although exercise is essential, your diet stands on top. It’s especially vital if you’re trying to lose weight. By just tweaking your diet ever so slightly, you can burn fat and accelerate the weight loss procedure.
Virgin coconut oil can be everything you need and more when trying to shed off the pounds. This incredible substance doesn’t only benefit you in your goal to gaining supple skin and a healthier heart, but it’s also there to assist you on your weight loss journey.
As it’s packed with vitamin E, polyphenols, and antioxidants, VCO can help to balance your hormones, specifically those that prevent weight gain due to an imbalance in hormones. It does not contain saturated fats, which means it can help boost your metabolism, and ultimately, increase your energy.
Due to the factors you see above, VCO has quickly made its way to the top and stands as a staple in sports nutrition, even showing an improvement in the performance of athletes whilst out on the field.
VCO Benefits for Improving Brain Function
Conditions that reduce your brain’s ability to use glucose for energy, like Alzheimer’s disease, are the most common causes of dementia.
The New York Academy of Science conducted a study that revolved around dementia. It suggested that ketones could produce an alternative energy source for any malfunctioning brain cells in the body. Ultimately, the outcome showed us that ketones were able to reduce symptoms of Alzheimer’s significantly.
In today’s world, this wonderful substance is highly recommended for its myriad health benefits. There’s an increasingly positive association between the prevention of Alzheimer’s and VCO, including positive improvements in cognitive and cognition performance, orientation, and semantic memory in individuals after using it.
From this, you can see why health experts worldwide now support the addition of in prescribed amounts to your daily diet.
VCO Benefits in the Potential Prevention of Epilepsy
Here we once again look at the health benefits of virgin coconut oil for the brain, but this time, it revolves around epilepsy.
Similar to ketones that orbit brain function, centuries ago, a “ketogenic diet” was the talk of the town when it came to reducing seizures in some children who possessed epilepsy. It was a huge success, and to this day, it’s still used throughout the fight to reduce the frequency and depth of pediatric seizures.
The VCO benefits kick in through the medium-chain triglycerides it possesses. Experts say that this aspect could aid in increasing the body’s ketones, without necessarily having to first obtain a complete ketogenic diet. Thus, meaning that VCO may aid in the potential prevention of epilepsy.
VCO Benefits in the Possible Obstruction of Yeast Infections
Common yeast infections are produced from a type of fungus known as, you guessed it, yeast. It’s a single-cell organism that exists throughout our environment; however, your body can often handle this fungus without experiencing any significant problems.
Sure, yeast infections can be itchy, uncomfortable, and somewhat challenging to deal with. However, it’s not impossible to overcome the condition, especially with VCO.
Since this fantastic home remedy can act as an antifungal agent, most women now turn to this remedy for an easy cure. A thin layer gently applied on the infection site can help kill some of the yeast, and may even soothe dry, irritated skin, ultimately allowing it to heal.
VCO Benefits for Liver Health
The liver is widely known as one of the most laborious organs in the human body. It helps you detoxify, conceals hormones, strengthens protein, and performs countless amounts of other tasks to ensure your body functions efficiently.
As virgin coconut oil contains the presence of medium-chain fatty acids, it could help to prevent liver disease. This is due to the fact that it can be easily converted into energy as soon as it reaches the liver.
VCO may benefit the liver in two ways:
- It can help to convert fatty acids into energy, which can reduce the liver’s overall workload.
- As it transforms fat into energy, it prevents it from entering the bloodstream, thus lessening fat accumulation in the liver.
How to Use Virgin Coconut Oil
Now that you’re entirely aware of all the health benefits this remarkable substance provides, let’s sum up every single VCO benefit we mentioned, and find out every single way we can use it.
VCO can be used to:
- Shield your skin from UV rays
- Boost your metabolism
- Cook delicious meals safely at a high heat (click here for mouth-watering VCO recipes)
- Promote your dental wellness
- Cure skin irritability and eczema
- Improve function in the brain
- Moisturize your skin
- Help combat infections
- Grow your ‘good’ HDL cholesterol
- Defend your hair from damage
- Decrease hunger
- Encourage bone health
- Decrease inflammation
- Gain energy quickly
- Restore worn cuticles
- Enhance liver health
Storing Virgin Coconut Oil
In order to reap the rewards of the health benefits of virgin coconut oil, you must ensure that you store it correctly. This will help you to preserve it for the most extended amount of time possible, and enjoy all of the natural goodness it brings.
Up next, we’re leaving you with some tips to ensure you store your VCO correctly:
- Store at a constant temperature – When you heat and cool virgin coconut oil, it can cause it to go bad faster. Instead, choose one space for storage, and keep it right there.
- Store in a dark container – This will aid in protecting it from the sunlight, which could compromise the quality.
- Store in a cool, dry place – Storing in a cool and dry place may prevent the oil from melting. While it’s common for coconut oil to melt, some may want it firm. If it does melt, place it in the refrigerator for several hours until it’s the texture you want. If you live in a cold climate and your VCO is firm, don’t be afraid to heat up the required amount – this won’t compromise any nutrients.
- Check-in on your VCO every couple of months – Virgin coconut oil can be stored for several years, but like any food or drink, it’s important to look it over for signs of mold. If you spot anything out of the ordinary, throw it out.
Virgin Coconut Oil – FAQs
Q: How much VCO can I take daily?
A: Studies show that two tablespoons (30ml) are an adequate amount to consume daily. This is a sufficient amount that will help virgin coconut oil reduce fat around the stomach, amongst other health advantages.
Q: Can I drink VCO?
A: When consumed, virgin coconut oil is known to be safe. Look out for the color; if it resembles water in clarity and flow, then go for it!
Q: Will VCO clog my pores?
A: Refined coconut oil is profoundly comedogenic, which means it may clog pores. However, its unrefined organic cousin is a blessing for skincare treatments. Everyone is built with various skin types, if it works for you, then great! If not, use VCO for all the other excellent benefits it provides.
Q: Can VCO remove stretch marks?
A: If consistently applied to the skin, it may help to reduce the occurrence of stretch marks, or even speed up their healing.
Q: Is VCO suitable for babies?
A: VCO is incredibly safe to use on babies and children. It can help to improve any underlying symptoms, as well as moisturize their soft skin.
The earth we live on is large, vast, and beautiful. Its natural excellence has created one of the most nourishing superfoods we will ever see in our lifetime, especially when purchased from the right source.
Coco House organic virgin coconut oil basks in a creamy taste of the tropics. It is excellent when used for baking, enhancing your favorite recipes, self-care, or even reaping the many health benefits this natural substance provides.
We at Coco House prioritize quality and effectiveness. We source our organic coconuts from the Sri Lankan coconut triangle, and specifically sort them for maximum freshness, allowing only the best coconuts into the production process.
Our virgin coconut oil is cold-pressed, retaining the fresh coconut’s natural aroma, taste, and nutrients. We integrate the care of human touch with the precision enhancement of technology.
With this in mind, click here to view our wide range of organic VCO products, and become a part of our natural goodness journey.
Join the tree-to-tree rebellion with Coco House, and find out what makes us so unique.