Coconut Oil is available at health food stores as a diet supplement and can also be used as a homeopathic treatment for a nail fungus. The oil hardens when cold but softens to a liquid upon contact with something warm (like skin) and will not irritate.
Coconut oil has been vilified by the media due to its high level of saturated fats – a diet issue that has no relevance to nail fungus except for the fact that you will have to go to a specialty store to find it. Look for cold-pressed or virgin coconut oil – similar in labeling to olive oil – and this will be your best bet for quality. Coconut oil doesn’t go rancid like other oils, so be confident in that whatever quantity you choose to purchase for the purpose of treating a nail fungus, you will have leftovers that you can use in the future if you need to.
How it Works
Coconut oil contains lauric acid, a fatty acid that serves as a natural antifungal, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory. Some coconut oils can have a very light coconut smell. Lauric acid inside the coconut oil treats external Candida yeast infections, skin irritations, nail fungal infections, athlete’s foot, and even eczema and some skin allergies. It is also good as an all-purpose natural moisturizer for dry skin or sunburn. Please note that Coconut oil is not the substance inside the coconut when you break it open, nor is it the coconut milk you find in cans for cooking.
How to Use
After grooming the infected nail(s) and washing and drying them, apply a few drops of Coconut oil to the nail and massage it in, making sure to reach as deep into the nail as you can. Massaging the coconut oil into surrounding nails would not be a bad idea either, as it may prevent the nail fungus from spreading. Coconut oil can be used as a balm for your hands and feet, that may prevent dryness and cracking that can allow a fungus to take hold.
Most information about using coconut oil as a nail fungus remedy is diet-based. There are not a whole lot of reviews specifically pertaining to the use of coconut oil as an antifungal, but the few out there are positive about smell, results, and safety of use.
Conclusions and Recommendations
Coconut oil is not very expensive – a 16 oz container will cost between $10.00 – $14.00 and will last a long time. It’s worth a try if you like coconut smell and are worried your kids or pets may get into it accidentally (since it’s safe to digest as well). There aren’t any side effects to worry about either.