Just like every other product, natural or processed, refined coconut oil along with the unrefined one together come with both pros as well as cons. While one might be good for a specific type of usage, the other is good in another area.
However, it is important to make out which one is good and bad for what exactly. And we are here to help you with exactly that!
Refined coconut oil
Even though the name contains “coconut oil”, refined coconut oil does not consist of neither a distinct coconut taste nor its aroma as it is made out of coconut meat, also known as copra, i.e., the dried part of the coconut. This part is filtered and dried before it is pressed into oil.
And after extracting the oil, it goes through one more process where it is bleached so that any dust particles, microbes, etc., are removed from it.
Benefits and uses
Here is a list of ways wherein you can make adequate use of refined coconut oil.
- One of the best and the most effective ways to use refined coconut oil is to incorporate it into your food while cooking. This is because it tends to have a higher smoke point, which allows you to cook your food at high temperatures more smoothly and easily, as a result of which your food turns out to be crispy without getting burnt; sauteing and stir-frying are some methods of cooking wherein you can freely use the product.
- As it has a neutral coconut flavour and aroma, it is of great use for baking purposes so that it won’t clash with the flavour or smell of any other products.
- It serves as an amazing vegan alternative for butter.
- It has a very long shelf life of about 2 long years, which makes it all the more useful.
- It is less expensive than unrefined coconut oil.
- Unlike unrefined coconut oil, this one does not bother you with a very strong smell.
Disadvantages of refined coconut oil
Some cons of refined coconut oil that you should always keep in mind:
- One of the major concerns is that coconut oil tends to contain a lot of saturated fat which is why it might raise your cholesterol in an unhealthy manner if consumed a lot.
- More than helping you with weight loss, it will probably increase your weight as it tends to contain a lot of calories as well as fatty acids.
- It is not that recommended for using on your skin or hair as it is too processed and is likely to irritate your skin more than benefit it.
- If you consume too much of virgin coconut oil, then you may feel nauseous and/or dizzy.
Unrefined coconut oil
Unrefined coconut oil, or more commonly known as virgin oil, is extracted by pressing the coconut meat or copra and undergoes no further or extra processing. And this is the principal reason as to why it is considered to be more natural than refined coconut oil.
It can be extracted in two distinct ways:
- The wet method of extraction: in this method, two products, that are coconut oil as well as coconut milk are both pressed out of fresh coconuts and after that, both the milk and the oil are then separated.
- Dry method of extraction: this method involves the usage of a machine with the help of which, the coconut oil is taken out or directly pressed out of the coconut meat or copra.
Benefits and uses
Have a look at the numerous benefits and uses of unrefined/virgin coconut oil:
- It can work as a moisturiser, thereby helping your dry and flaky skin to become softer and smoother, and even hydrated. It is thus a great alternative for using a pricey moisturising lotion or cream!
- It is quite a healthy substitute for your regular cooking oil.
- Virgin coconut oil also works wonders for your hair. Apply some before or after a hair wash and softly massage your hair as you apply it for healthy and lustrous locks; it also strengthens the root of your hair, thereby helping to prevent hair damage.
- It is a natural remedy to get rid of blackheads as it contains a microbial agent known as lauric acid, which fights the bacteria that produce blackheads and acne.
- As unrefined coconut oil is very less processed, it is great for your skin and hair and causes minimal to almost no reactions.
- You can use it to impart a strong aroma and taste of coconut in your food if you like.
Disadvantages of unrefined coconut oil
Unfortunately, like any other good product, this one has its own limitations which one should take care of:
- If you have oily skin, then virgin coconut oil is a no-go because it will only make it worse by clogging more of your pores.
- Although it is said to be helpful for people who have acne, it might not always work in that department depending on the skin type.
- Your skin might not get the hang of it and start reacting to too much usage of unrefined coconut oil on it. And if you see any rashes, redness, or experience itchiness, then you should stop applying it on your skin right away.
- Using it too much for your hair isn’t the best way to look after your hair either because it might just end up making your hair greasy and might even lead to scalp buildup.
Which one is better?
So, the winner of refined vs unrefined coconut oil is….well, as you might have collected it, it’s a draw!
Both the oils, refined coconut oil as well as virgin coconut oil have their bunch of advantages and disadvantages. So, as long as you use and/or consume these oils in an averagely healthy and recommended amount, then you could go for either of the oils!