Coconut Milk

The milky white liquid obtained from the flesh of coconut is called coconut milk. However, this liquid should not be mistaken with the translucent liquid that is drawn off from a punctured coconut or a fruit which is cut opened. Obtaining coconut milk from a coconut needs some amount of processing. However, you can also purchase ingredients in bottles or cans. Many people use coconut milk in recipes as a cooking base, especially in the cuisine of Thailand and several South and Southeast Asian nations. Coconut milk is also used by people in Hawaii, West Africa and West Indies.

When you cut open a coconut, you will find its white flesh all over its inner walls. A mature coconut, which is perfect for processing to extract coconut milk, ought to have a creamy, thick flesh. If you find that the flesh is somewhat yellowish, it is very likely that the fruit has turned rancid. Even a coconut having a relatively slender, dry flesh can be processed for obtaining coconut milk, but it will produce very less amount of milk. In this case, the milk may not be substantially creamy for preparing specific recipes, especially curries.

To prepare coconut milk, you first need to finely grate the coconut flesh and subsequently steep it in hot water. Then you squeeze the soaked pieces of coconut flesh through cheesecloth. The resultant liquid is coconut milk. You can repeat the process once or twice with a view to make lighter milks. In fact, different dishes require different consistencies of coconut milk. It is collected and used for making various recipes. After you allow the milk extracted from the first processing to settle, the cream will come up on the top. Generally, this is used as an ingredient in rich sauces as well as desserts.

Skin and hair benefits

Coconut milk is packed with various nutrients, including fats and minerals, which are beneficial for the health of our skin and hair. This milk especially contains loads of protein, which is wonderful for damaged skin and/ or hair. Coconut milk is different from the translucent juice that is available when you cut open a coconut. On the other hand, coconut milk is extracted from the flesh of coconut. The flesh is cut into small pieces, steeping in very hot water and subsequently strained to obtain the milky ingredient. After the liquid is allowed to rest for a while, the cream will rise to the surface. This cream is called coconut milk.

Coconut milk has several topical therapeutic uses. This substance can be applied to the skin's surface to add moisture, to pacify the skin as well as combat bacteria. Basically, coconut milk is a blend of fat and water, but is not sticky. As a result, it is absorbed by the skin easily, while the remainder forms a protective layer on the surface, barring foreign elements from invading the skin.

It is advisable that you use organic substances at all times because using synthetic products may not offer the same benefits. Usually, synthetic products also have some undesirable side effects. Coconut milk is an organic substance and, hence its topical applications are effective and free from side effects. Below are some of the benefits of external application of this organic substance.

As topical application of coconut milk helps to form a chemical barrier on the skin, it is helpful in preventing various types of infections. It is important to note that for people suffering from skin conditions like eczema, dermatitis and psoriasis coconut milk is very useful as its topical application helps to alleviate the symptoms associated with these conditions.

Coconut milk sustains the normal chemical stability of our skin. In addition, it makes the skin softer and aids in alleviating dehydration and flaking. Application of coconut milk also helps to put off sagging skin, wrinkles and age spots. In addition, this organic substance helps the complexion and hair to look healthy, while protecting us from the damaging ultra-violet (UV) rays of the sun.

You can ingest coconut milk and also apply it topically to the skin. In both ways it is helpful, as it makes the skin texture smoother.

Blend one part of coconut milk with two parts of olive oil and use the mixture as a make-up remover and moisturizer. It is effective for both purposes. In fact, this organic mixture works much better compared to most synthetic commercially available make-up removers, which are usually alcohol based. Such synthetic make-up removers leave the skin dehydrated.

Chemical analysis of coconut milk has revealed that it contains very elevated levels of vitamin C and the essential mineral copper, which is effective in lessening wrinkles and, at the same time, enhances the elasticity of the skin.

Coconut milk is highly effective in treating sunburn. Apply this substance on the affected area of the skin and you will be surprised to see the results. In addition, coconut milk also keeps the skin in the affected area moisturized and also alleviates pain.

In order to get quick relief from sunburn and the discomfort caused by this condition, you just require a little amount of coconut milk. Applying a small amount of coconut milk to the affected area will lessen the redness caused by sunburn and also restore moisture in the affected area. Ideally, you should apply a mixture of coconut milk (three tablespoons), aloe vera (one tablespoon) and cucumber pulp (one tablespoon). You can also store this mixture in a spray bottle and keep it in a refrigerator for a temporary period and apply it to the sun burnt area when needed.

You can also massage some amount of coconut milk on your scalp; ensure that the milk reaches the inner roots of the scalp. Subsequently, cover your hair with a towel and allow the coconut milk to remain for some hours. Massaging coconut milk in this way will help to keep your hair moisturized. In fact, coconut milk works as a tonic for the hair.