Coconut oil is a tremendous addition to the senior diet. In fact, there are actually a number of ways seniors can use this oil both topically and orally in order to promote overall health. Following are eight ways aging adults and their caregivers can start cooking with and applying this nutrient-dense oil to combat common problems, improve brain functioning and boost overall wellbeing from Scottsdale senior care provider, Home Care Assistance.
Seniors who suffer from dry, cracked skin can get instant relief by simply applying coconut oil on all affected areas. This oil has a surprisingly lightweight feel and is quickly absorbed by the skin. Given the potent anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties coconut oil inherently possesses, rubbing it around the toenails will also help to combat fungal toenail infections and athlete’s foot. This oil is additionally good for addressing moderate skin rashes. It is best applied to exposed skin at nighttime, however, given it lacks SPF protection and could increase the likelihood of sunburns.
If using oil to cook, coconut oil is the best possible option. This oil is highly stable, meaning it does not undergo any significant chemical changes once heated. Although olive oil is great for the diet, it does not retain its nutritional or other health benefits once warmed up. In addition to cooking with coconut oil in the skillet, coconut oil can be used in place of butter when baking or when cooking dishes like oatmeal or pilaf.
Coffee, tea, broths and soups can be livened up with small quantities of coconut oil. This oil is rich in essential fatty acids that promote good brain health. In fact, some studies have shown that the fats in this oil are very similar to the fats found in breast milk. Adding small amounts to warm liquids will also facilitate better digestion, prevent or alleviate mild to severe constipation and help reduce troublesome stores of fat around the abdominal area.
For seniors who are finicky and prone to weight loss, adding a small amount of coconut oil to homemade smoothies is a great way to boost caloric intake and supply the body with essential fats. Best of all, these fats are easily processed and used by the body. Although coconut oil is high in saturated fats, seniors should note that the fats found in this oil are great for lowering bad cholesterol and elevating good cholesterol. They are also great for preventing the development of visceral fat or fat surrounding the vital organs.
Swirling coconut oil around the mouth like mouthwash is known as oil pulling. Oil pulling has amazing benefits for the gums and the natural teeth given coconut oil’s anti-bacterial properties and nutrient-dense composition. Seniors who wear dentures, however, can also benefit from oil pulling. This process pulls toxins from the palate and the back of the throat. It will also gently remove any stubborn remnants of denture adhesives. Seniors should never swallow the oil after oil pulling and should always rinse their mouths clean with a mild saltwater solution when finished.
Looking to do more for your senior loved one’s health? Consider hourly or live-in care in Scottsdale, AZ. An experienced caregiver can grocery shop, cook healthy meals, provide physical assistance during activities or therapy, and promote overall health and wellbeing. Call us today at (480) 771-2710 and a friendly Care Manager will be happy to schedule a no-obligation in-home consultation.