The oil that is extracted from the kernel or white meat inside a ripe coconut is called coconut oil. The oil has many applications in the food, health and beauty industries and is edible just like olive oil or almond oil.
Coconut oil is said to have several benefits to support normal body functions and maintaining healthy systems in our body. Among these benefits are it supports a normal metabolism of our body, it helps maintain normal blood glucose level, it supports a healthy heart and immune system, it maintains normal digestion and nutrient absorption, it hydrates our skin, it moisturizes hair, a source of quick energy, and other benefits.
Coconut oil comes in different brands with the quality, source, and production method as some of the factors that affect the price.
When buying coconut oil, you should look at its price, the color of the liquid, and its scent or smell.
Be aware of the many terms used on the label of a coconut oil product packaging, and it is recommended that you know about these terms to understand the kind of coconut oil you are buying.
One term you will notice is the certified organic coconut oil that signifies no use of pesticides on the coconuts where the oil was extracted from. Another term is the all-natural label that means the coconut oil is manufactured without any use of chemicals during the production process. Coconut oil can be labelled as refined, meaning the oil is processed further to remove impurities and flavour, and the unrefined which means no further process is done on the oil and thus you are left with the original smell and flavour of the coconut oil.
The coconut oil can be labelled too as virgin and extra virgin, although there is no difference except that the word extra reminds you of the higher level grade of the coconut oil.
When the coconut oil was extracted without using high level of heat, then it is labelled as raw coconut oil.
There are three ways in extracting oil from a fresh coconut, and these are by cold-pressed, expeller-pressed and centrifuged. To produce the oil, all the proteins, water and fiber of the coconut kernel are removed from it. You would need 65 coconuts to be able to produce a single gallon of coconut oil plus several processes to accomplish the job.
There are two methods in which coconut oil can be extracted from the kernel and this is through dry or wet process. In using the dry process, the coconut meat is removed from the kernel, dried out under the sun, then the dried meat is either pressed or dissolved with solvents. While for the wet process, the coconut meat is removed from the kernel and immediately pressed giving out a liquid which is a mix of oil and water.