Ask S.C.

Need help with using coconut oil? Ask me anything about virgin coconut oil, refined coconut oil or MCT oil. You're also welcome to help others by sharing your experience. But before you post, read these...

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1,073 chats on “Ask S.C.

  1. How about better body foods organic coconut oil unrefined? Is that a good one to use for constipation? What does unrefined mean ? My daughter bought same thing only it says refined. I have to take miralax to have bowel movements. Would love to try this & have it work!

    • Hi Vicky, unrefined (in this context) means the coconut oil does not go through any high-temperature process for refining and purification. Unrefined coconut oil is also usually extracted from fresh coconut meat rather than dried coconut (copra).

      But most companies will label their unrefined coconut oil as 'Virgin Coconut Oil' or 'Extra-Virgin Coconut Oil'. They mean exactly the same since coconut oil has no official grading system (like olive oil) as to 'Extra-Virgin' is better in quality than ' Virgin'.

      Betterbody Foods Organic Extra-Virgin Coconut Oil... it has gotten some complaints of odd taste or plastic smell in recent years. Could be due to the jar leaching plastic into the oil. If you'd like to go with this brand, get the smallest jar to try out before you invest in bigger container. That's my advice.

      But if you need a recommendation, I'd suggest Nutiva Organic Virgin Coconut Oil in glass (which is one of the brands I'm using).

      Last but not least, if you want to use unrefined virgin coconut oil to help with constipation, bear in mind not to take it on an empty stomach. Spread out the amount to avoid any bad side effects from eating virgin coconut oil. And to enjoy a constipation-free life, besides taking virgin coconut oil, you should also eat more vegetables, increase your water intake and do some exercises to keep your bowels active and healthy at all times.

      • Thank you very much! I drink 4 to 5 bottles of water a day, I do need to get more exercise & I eat veggies &fruits but I probably eat more in the summer because they are fresher! I eat lots of salads, love spinach so not sure why I have such a problem but I am eager to start the coconut oil to see if my constipation improves! When I was younger I had IBS a lot, for years with diarrhea but now it's opposite so any suggestions will be welcome! I'm going to start with a teaspoon twice a day & go from there! Thank you, just hope this helps! I'm so frustrated!

  2. When I have had coconut oil in cooking i.e. curries etc. I find it gives me diarrehea, so I avoid it,afraid what might happen. Use it for my hair and skin. I would like to know where I should keep it, now I know to purchase the virgin oil in glass jars.Thankyou.

    • Hi Donna, putting in too much coconut oil may give you diarrhea. In curries, if you have already added coconut cream, adding coconut oil will increase your chances of getting diarrhea.

      Coconut oil is super good for your health. Don't let its diarrhea-triggering effect put you off. Try adding coconut oil slowly, like start with one teaspoon first this time around. Then next cooking you'll add one more teaspoon and so on until you find the amount you're most comfortable with. You should keep coconut oil in a cool dry place. Not necessary to put in the fridge.

  3. I have been using it on my face and it was fine and then my under my left eye it was puffy then yesterday my right eye is the same way,I don't know why this has happened,it was fine! Could it be that now I apply it differently I now wet my face and put it on a wet face where before I put it on a dry face,my cheeks too are puffy!! What is the best way to put it on my face?

    • Hi MaryAnn, it's funny to hear that coconut oil causes puffy eyes because some people use coconut oil to help them get rid of puffy eyes. So now let's look into what causes your eyes to swell.

      You're probably right. It could be the oil that locks the moisture in your skin and causes it to puff up, which is why coconut oil helps to reduce wrinkle. But that should not last for too long because once coconut oil gets completely absorbed into your skin the swell should subside.

      If it persists, something could have gone wrong with you internally and not the work of coconut oil. Have you been under stress or sleeping badly? Stress and lack of sleep may cause puffy eyes.

      One more possibility, have you been taking food high in sodium recently? Excess sodium can make certain part of your body hold extra fluid. And that depends on where your body chooses to store the fluid and apparently your body tends to store the fluid under your eyes.

      Try reverting to putting coconut oil on your dry face and see if it helps. If yes, keep your face dry before applying, always.

  4. I need advice, I recently traveled to Aruba, and had a local guy talk me into eating part of a raw coconut, it was not rip yet but he said it was safe. I watched him cut it open, but after that I have had diarrhea, this is going onto day 5 with diarrhea. Could it be from the coconut I ate? How long can this go on for?

    • Hi Derick, the "diarrhea" caused by taking raw coconut or coconut oil should last for few or several hours post intake. If you eat few times a day and lots of it each time, of course, the symptoms will continue.

      Otherwise, you could be suffering from food poisoning since I don't know how hygienic that local guy was and the tool he used to cut open the coconut. And when he cut open the coconut, were there many flies hovering over (and some even landed on) the fruit?

      Also, their drinking water – you have to consider that as well because some countries may have their local (somewhat contaminated) water which foreigners find difficult to adapt to and get the runs as a result. What else were you eating there? Think about it carefully and you should be able to identify the causes of your diarrhea.

  5. Thank you so much for this article! I was putting coconut oil in my morning smoothies for a few months with no ill effects (together with coconut milk, banana, blueberries, lemon juice and poppy seeds). Then I bought a different brand of coconut oil (Louana), which I didn't realize was refined. I gradually developed diarrhea, fatigue and itchy skin, but didn't know what was causing it. I went away for a weekend, didn't have my morning smoothies, and the symptoms subsided. I came home, resumed the smoothies, and symptoms returned. Because I have itchy skin along with the diarrhea, I'm wondering if I've developed a sensitivity to salicylic acid, which I understand is found in coconut oil. I've stopped the smoothies for now.

    • Hi Sharon, coconut may contain salicylate (derivative of salicylic acid), but as far as I know, coconut oil does not contain this. If it does, why didn't you develop the reactions before you changed the brand?

      It could be the plastic chemical leaching into the oil (since Louana coconut oil is packed in plastic container) that causes you to develop those symptoms. Buy back the brand you use previously or get a virgin coconut oil that is sold in glass jar instead.