This week campaigner and food writer Heather Mills talks to us about massage with coconut oil
There’s been a lot of talk recently about the benefits of coconut oil due to its saturated fat content. But this fat is different to that found in animal fat, and makes a great substitute in cooking and even massage. While I was visiting India for the first time 30 years ago, I fell in love with Ayurvedic massage. Two ladies massaged me from head to toe with a perfectly timed rhythm. I then decided to introduce it into my own daily routine as I learned it helps prevent the accumulation of physiological toxins and also lubricates and promotes flexibility in the muscles, tissues and joints.
When cooking with coconut oil, it’s all about using it in moderation in your diet. It’s still a saturated fat, though one of the healthiest. Try one teaspoon a day to reap the benefits. But you can use it with abundance for massage, from your hair to your toes. When applied to the skin, the oil passes through the various layers into underlying connective tissues. It then combines with toxins present, especially fat-soluble ones. Within minutes of massaging the skin, the oil will leave the skin along with toxins. The skin is connected to every part of the body through thousands of cutaneous nerves.
This means a daily massage can help to balance the two major systems of the body, the nervous system and the endocrine system. Ideally, it is always good to brush your body with a loofah to get rid of any dead skin cells before self- massage and then take a warm shower. After the shower you should be left with a thin film of oil on the skin that remains beneficial for toning the skin and keeps the body muscles warm throughout the day. If you find you have applied too much oil, you can towel-dry some off. As a result, you will still get the full benefits of the coconut oil on your skin without looking like a greaseball when you head to work. Enjoy!