The Benefits of Coconut Oil Before, During and After Pregnancy March 16, 2013 00:00
Nothing is more important than your health – unless, of course, it’s the health of your baby. Coconut oil has recently gained wide-spread attention for its health-boosting properties. A variety of studies have shown that it can help increase metabolism, balance hormones and improve immune system functioning.
Here are some simple ways that coconut oil can support health for both Mom and baby:
- Regular coconut oil consumption can help balance hormones. Properly-balanced hormone levels make it much more likely for a woman to ovulate and to conceive.
Coconut oil is rich in lauric acid, a rare medium-chain fatty acid that is also present in breast milk. Lauric acid is antiviral, antifungal and antibacterial. Increasing your coconut oil consumption during pregnancy might help support both your and your developing baby’s immune systems.
- There is evidence that coconut oil – by helping to balance blood sugar – might help women avoid or control gestational diabetes.
- Coconut oil can help settle your stomach if you’re coping with morning sickness. While taking the oil “straight up” might be too much for some women, it’s easy to stir some coconut oil into soup, hot cereal or a warm drink.
- Rubbing coconut oil on your skin can help prevent or relieve the itching and discomfort often connected to pregnancy. Coconut oil’s moisturizing properties can also help prevent stretch marks.
- Coconut oil is an excellent personal lubricant. It can help to alleviate the discomfort of vaginal dryness, a symptom sometimes present during pregnancy.
- You can use coconut oil to treat your new baby’s diaper rash and cradle cap. It is non-toxic and very gentle on baby’s skin. And as an added bonus, it smells lovely!
- If you’re breastfeeding, you might suffer from irritated or sore nipples. Applying coconut oil can help prevent and treat cracking and soreness.
- The medium-chain fatty acids in coconut oil are reported to help increase milk flow. Your body needs adequate fat in order to produce enough breast milk to support your baby’s needs.
- The antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties of coconut oil – mentioned earlier – continue to be of benefit after your baby is born. The lauric acid that you consume in coconut oil will be directly passed on to your child through your breast milk.
- Coconut oil is perfect for massaging your new baby. Infant massages can help calm and relax babies, and has been shown to improve sleep. Improved sleep for baby means better sleep for Mom!
Your baby is the most precious, important thing that you will ever hold in your arms. Of course you want to do whatever you can to ensure that he or she will be healthy, happy and strong. Coconut oil is one tool that can help you support both your own and your baby’s optimal health.