Coconut oil, extracted from the mature coconut palm, has seen a surge in demand in South Africa and beyond. Its versatility and numerous health benefits make it a popular choice for cooking, treating infections, and cosmetic applications such as moisturizing skin and hair.
This article provides a comprehensive guide on the production of coconut oil, its uses, benefits, current prices in South Africa, and factors to consider when purchasing coconut oil in South Africa. Whether you’re interested in coconut oil for hair, cooking, or skin, it’s crucial to invest in the best and purest organic oil to reap all its benefits.
How Do We Get Oil from Coconut?
Coconut oil is primarily obtained from copra, the dry white flesh of the fruit. The oil is extracted by pressing or cold extraction of the copra. Sold globally as a source for oil production, coconut oil contains 899 kcal per 100 grams and is composed mainly of saturated fatty acids (85.2%), including lauric acid, myristic acid, and palmitic acid. Lauric acid alone represents more than 45% of the fatty acids in coconut oil. Coconut oil doesn’t require refrigeration or direct sunlight and has a long shelf life due to its high antioxidant capacity.
Coconut Oil Benefits
The components of coconut oil offer numerous benefits:
- Antifungal: fights fungi
- Cardioprotective: protects the cardiovascular system
- Antioxidant: stops the damage of free radicals
- Digestive: improves digestions
- Antimicrobial: combat pathogenic germs
- Antiviral: fight against viruses
Current Prices of Coconut Oil in South Africa
The price of 1 litre of coconut oil ranges from R$ 93 to R$ 111 for brands like Wilsona, Oora, WE, and Alexsial. For organic extra virgin coconut oil from Viva, the price ranges from R$ 333 to R$ 370 per litre.
Coconut Oil Uses
Coconut oil has a variety of uses, including:
- Make-up remover: Coconut oil effectively removes makeup, even water-resistant products. Simply moisten a cotton disc in liquid coconut oil and clean your face thoroughly.
- Moisturizer: Coconut oil is a natural moisturizer that hydrates your skin deeply and has a lasting effect. It can replace creams and lipsticks.
- Exfoliant: Coconut oil helps exfoliate the skin and eliminate dead cells.
- Prevent stretch marks: Regular application of coconut oil can prevent the appearance of stretch marks.
- Hair conditioner: Coconut oil is a fantastic option to nourish the hair, especially for those with thick and dry hair.
- Food supplement: Coconut oil can serve as an energy source for morning workouts, aiding digestion, weight loss, and control.
Things to Look Out for When Buying Coconut Oil
When buying coconut oil, consider the following:
- Form: Coconut oil is solid at room temperature and liquefies at about 24/25 °C. Some brands offer deodorized oils for those who prefer not to have a coconut taste in their dishes.
- Refined or Unrefined: Refined coconut oil is deodorized and may have less potent nutrients due to the refining process. Unrefined oil retains the coconut taste and is generally more potent.
- Organic or Non-organic: Organic coconut oil is preferable as it is not contaminated with pesticides and retains its nutrients due to minimal processing.
In conclusion, coconut oil is a versatile product with numerous health benefits. Its price in South Africa varies depending on the brand and whether it’s organic or extra virgin. When purchasing, consider factors such as form, whether it’s refined or unrefined, and if it’s organic to ensure you’re getting the best quality for your needs.