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The Benefits of Coconut Oil

Brenda Tobin-Flood

10 Facts about coconut oil 10 Facts about coconut oil (Photo credit: thenext28days)

Coconut oil has many great health benefits, not only for people but for animals too. I use it all the time for our house pets and farm animals. Coconut oil is naturally anti-microbial, and its nutritional qualities can relieve joint pain and itchy skin, promote dental health, shiny fur and even help to maintain a good body weight.
There are numerous uses for coconut oil in the barn. I have a pony who gets sweet itch – an allergic reaction to certain insect bites – every spring. But when I apply some coconut oil right onto the itchy spots, he stops scratching at the bites and the raw spots start to heal within a couple of days. It brings him relief for the remainder of the season. I’ve also used coconut oil as a thrush aid in my horses’ hooves. I melt the coconut oil into liquid form, take a clean dropper and place it on the areas of the hoof that need treatment. The Lauric acid in the coconut oil helps fight bacteria and heal the thrush. Another common way to use coconut oil for horses is to simply mix a small amount into their feed – one of the most noticeable benefits will be a shiny, healthy coat.
It’s a great supplement for dogs that have joint issues and inflammation pain. Just add a couple of tablespoons in their food every day and you will see positive results in no time. Not to mention the coconut oil will help put a lustrous sheen on their coat.
It can also help cats who experience fur balls and coughing. In a recent case study, an owner took her cat to the vet for fur ball medication. The cat licked the medication off the vet’s finger at his office, but at home would not touch the medication. The cat kept coughing and leaving fur balls around the house. The owner, who used coconut oil daily for her family, decided to try giving some to the cat. The cat licked the coconut oil off the woman’s finger and was also fed the oil daily mixed into food. Not only did her coughing and fur balls subside completely, but the cat’s coat became soft and shiny.
Even birds can benefit. While studying coconut oil, I read about a parrot with a cracked, bleeding beak. The parrot’s owner cleaned the beak and repeatedly applied coconut oil to the wound, which healed almost completely in several days.
Coconut oil is derived from coconut meat. There are two methods of collecting the oil. In the ‘quick drying’ method, minimal heat is used to dry the meat, then the oil is pressed out. In the ‘wet milling’ method, coconut milk is pressed from the meat and then separated into oil and water. No matter which method has been used, I recommend buying Virgin Coconut Oil.
Coconut oil does not contain enzymes, so it’s not damaged during the cooking process. It contains medium chain fatty acids, also known as medium chain triglycerides or MCT’s. MCT’s increase metabolism and fight viruses and bacteria. The most prominent MCT is Lauric acid, which has been shown to destroy several types of bacteria, viruses and even yeast. Other vegetable oils contain long chain fatty acids – triglycerides commonly referred to as LCT’s – which are stored in the body as fat. MCT’s, though, are burned as energy – which means it can help increase metabolism.
I also use coconut oil almost daily for myself and my family. It’s a great butter replacement, a healthy fat for smoothies, and is a terrific moisturizer. When my son was an infant, I even massaged it on his head to relieve cradle cap.
Delicious, nutritious and loaded with health benefits for you and your animals, Virgin Coconut Oil, in my opinion, should be a staple in every home.


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