How to Use Virgin Coconut Oil
Some tips on VCO use. VCO solidifies (natutulog) below 25 C. It can be reheated to liquefy as many times as required. VCO can be consumed internally or applied topically. It can be taken by the spoonful or mixed with warm food and drinks. I usually put it in my hot, fresh coffee or spread it on my breakfast toast. It gives a pleasant, delightful coconut “latik” flavour. Most recommended a daily dosage is 1-2 tablespoons for maintenance and 3-4 tablespoons or more daily for therapeutic purposes. In North America where homes are mostly air-conditioned, VCO usually remains solid. Many prefer to use them like butter or spreads. Since VCO solidifies below 25 C, it can easily be liquefied by warming it in hot water or brief microwaving. For use as salad dressing, liquid VCO can be mixed 1:1 with virgin olive oil. Cooking with coconut oil in lieu of other vegetable oils is highly recommended because of it is very stable and highly resistant to oxidation and rancidity. When heated, coconut oil is reported to be 16 times more resistant than soybean oil, 12 times more resistant than canola oil and 300 times more resistant than flax oil!
Applying VCO on the skin and leaving overnight can do wonders. It also can be massaged to the hair and left for about 15-20 minutes or overnight before rinsing. Dr. Fife recommends as well consuming coconut meat, coconut milk and coconut delicacies (prepared with low refined sugar content) as other ways to get the benefits of MCFAs, particularly lauric acid.
In Canada, VCO and RBD products can be obtained mainly from health and natural food stores or ordered through the internet. Philippine VCO are mostly imported directly to the U.S. I know at least one Canadian company that imports high-quality VCO directly from the Philippines. Some producers claim that VCO is processed to the equivalent of premium extra virgin olive oil. However, based on food standards, there is really no difference between Virgin Coconut Oil and Extra Virgin Coconut Oil or Premium Virgin Coconut Oil although the latter labels have been used (not illegal) as marketing ploys. For devotees of organic foods, a number of VCO producers have obtained certification from organic associations and regulators. Thus one should look for the label that says “Certified Organic” (name of certification body included, e.g. USDA – US Dept. of Agriculture) rather than just “Organic” (unofficial). As in most other foods, this entails extra costs.