Roos Van Montfort and James Duigan both love it, as does Aussie supermodel, Miranda Kerr. In fact, there was quite a media storm (and shopping frenzy) when one of the leading glossies misquoted Kerr as consuming 4 tablespoons, instead of 4 teaspoons of the stuff daily…and I’m talking about Coconut Oil.
If it’s not already a part of your health and beauty regime, I hazard a guess it soon will be. Not only is it highly nutritious and completely delicious – more on this later – its topical uses are multitudinous.
I’ve been busily testing Virdian’s 100% Organic Raw Coconut Oil, which is a Soil Association approved product. For those yet to see it, the oil, taken from the flesh of the coconut, actually comes in solid form and liquifies at just over room temperature.
It also melts with ease when massaged directly onto the skin and makes for a highly impressive lip, face or body balm. You only need the tiniest smidge, and I’m talking less than a quarter of a teaspoon, to hydrate your hands and nails. This oil feels incredibly light and sinks easily into the skin, leaving you with a non sticky gleam and a fresh summery smell – just like coconuts!
And it’s not only the skin that benefits, with hair also reaping the goodness of all those essential fatty acids. Those with thicker, or more dry hair will be able to apply this product like a serum, for added health and shine. Those with finer or more greasy tendrils will fare better using it as an occasional conditioner, rinsing thoroughly.
I’ve also read that others use coconut oil an alternative to make-up removers and shaving lotions; it really is the epitome of multipurpose, which also makes it extremely cost effective. Viridian’s 500g glass jar will keep you at your glossiest for months on end (and each sales sees a donation given to an environmental charity, so you’re also benefiting the beauty of the Earth!)
For those uncomfortable with the idea of whether this is a kitchen or bathroom product, I recommend buying the larger jar (it is also available in 180g) and decanting a small amount into a separate pot. Or else, just keep it in the kitchen, use a clean teaspoon and never double dip!
If you’re not already convinced, the nutritional benefits might just win you over. For this, I am delighted to hand over to Emma Hellewell, who has been busy cooking with Viridian’s Coconut Oil.
With a passion for everything to do with health and wellbeing, Emma Hellewell’s real inspiration is nutrition and how nature’s ingredients, together with good organic food, can pave the way for a healthy mind, body and soul. A student at the College of Naturopathic Medicine, she has a specific interest in digestion, which is ever more important when it comes to our skin health and the way we absorb nutrients. Emma is a firm believer that it is the quality of the ingredients we feed our bodies and put on our skin, rather than the quantity, when it comes to our body and health.
Living in rural Berkshire, Emma has a love for running, walking, yoga, meditation and both reflexology and kinesiology; all of which give her the perfect balance and complement her nutritional studies.
Coconut oil consists of more than 90% raw, saturated fat – an important building block of every cell in the body. It is a healthy saturated fat that supports the immune system function. Coconut oil contains anti-viral and anti-microbial properties, and is easily digested and absorbed by the body. It can be used whilst cooking to enhance the natural flavour of the foods, perfect for when sautéing or stir-frying your favourite organic vegetables. It can also be blended into salad dressings, desserts, baking or mixed into a smoothie.
Improved Digestion – helps to soothe stomach upsets and digestion related problems including irritable bowel syndrome and assists in the absorption of other nutrients.
Immunity – strengthens the immune system: the body converts auric acid into monolaurin which helps the body fight viruses and bacteria causing diseases. It can also help neutralise the harmful effects of many toxins and pollutants.
Weight Loss – coconut oil is a great source of fuel to stimulate metabolism.
Hot Heat – Use as an alternative to other oils when cooking. coconut oil is one of the only oils that does not create toxic byproducts when heated at a high temperature.
Tea Time – Add a teaspoon of coconut oil to your daily cup of green tea (rich in antioxidants-increase skin elastin and contains anti-inflammatory properties) to provide a boost of energy and increase metabolism.
For those unsure quite what to do with their coconut oil, Emma has kindly created two simple recipes that are positively crammed full of goodness. The first is a beautiful smoothie, ideal for a breakfast or on the go boost, and the second is a fantastic salad that ensures an adequate supply of greens. Simply click on the links below and don’t forget to let us know how you get on with these recipes, as well as any of your own top tips.
With a huge thanks to Emma, who can frequently be found tweeting the healthiest smoothie recipes and more! https://twitter.com/#!/EmmaHellewell
Virdian’s coconut oil – £14.00 for 500g