The Miracle Health Benefits Of Coconut Water

Coconut Water Benefits

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Coconut water is the clear, slightly sweet liquid found in young, unripe coconuts. As the coconut ripens, this liquid is absorbed into its flesh, so the riper the coconut, the less coconut water it contains. For drinking purposes, nuts are harvested at 5 to 7 months of age; since the coconut water in younger nuts is bitter and lacking in nutrients, and older coconuts have started to absorb the water into their flesh.

Want to buy some coconut water? Click here to see the coconut water we recommend.

Much more than just a refreshing drink, coconut water contains as much potassium as bananas; as well as providing calcium, magnesium, copper, iron, manganese and zinc. In addition, it contains B vitamins; vitamin C; and phyto-nutrients such as cytokines (which are thought to have anti-aging, anti-cancer, and anti-clotting effects.)

Many claims made about the health benefits of coconut water and preliminary research suggests that most of these claims are true. Recent studies have shown that coconut water has many benefits, such as:

Lowering blood pressure – a recent study showed that when human subjects drank 4mL of coconut water per 100g of body weight for two weeks, there was a reduction in blood pressure for 74% of them. This reduction was up to 24 points for systolic pressure, and up to 15 points for diastolic pressure; a significant change.

Lowering blood sugar – even though coconut water contains some sugars, a study of diabetic rats indicated that it reduced blood sugar levels and oxidative stress.

Treating NSAID-induced ulcers – an animal study showed that coconut water is only slightly less effective than sucralfate (Carafate) in treating NSAID-induced (NSAID – Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug) ulcers. Sucralfate reduced the ulcer area by 56%, while coconut water reduced the ulcerated area by 39%, a difference of only 17%. It has also been suggested that coconut water may have a protective effect as well, preventing the formation of ulcers if used regularly.

Lowering cholesterol – a study comparing coconut water to lovastatin (Mevacor) resulted in similar lowering of total serum cholesterol, VLDL and LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides, as well as an increase in HDL (good) cholesterol; without the dangerous side-effects associated with statin drugs.

Anti-bacterial properties – research has identified three novel anti-bacterial peptides which inhibited both gram-positive and gram-negative bacterial growth. With so many bacteria becoming resistant to currently available antibiotic medications, new antibacterial substances are desperately needed, and this could lead to new and better treatments for infection.

Anti-Alzheimer’s activity – in an animal model of experimentally induced menopausal changes, coconut water appeared to prevent the reduction of brain estrogen levels and the accumulation of Alzheimer’s associated plaque in their brains.

Re-hydration after exercise-induced dehydration – a study comparing water, a commercial sports drink, plain coconut water, and coconut water with sodium added showed that the sodium-enriched coconut water was just as good as the sports drink for re-hydrating the body after exercise, and that the coconut water caused less nausea and stomach upset.

Treating dehydration associated with gastroenteritis

Hangover recovery – the electrolytes and glucose present in coconut water make it an effective natural hangover remedy, while cleansing away nasty toxins and replenishing required nutrients to help you feel a little more human after a big night out.

Further Reading: Top 8 Herbal Hangover Remedies

Coconut water was analyzed to assess its usefulness as an oral re-hydration solution for patients with nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. This analysis showed that with the addition of sea salt to increase the amount of sodium and chloride, coconut water is an appropriate substitute for other re-hydration solutions. Adding this information to the study referenced above, it is likely that coconut water with added salt would be the better alternative, since it is tolerated better and is thus less likely to cause more nausea and vomiting.

Coconut water is available bottled or canned, or you can buy fresh coconuts, which can be stored at room temperature for 5 to 10 days. Once the coconut is opened, you should use the coconut water immediately, or it can be stored in the refrigerator for a day or two. Your coconut water can be drunk plain; iced for an even more refreshing drink; or with lemon slices, mint, or orange zest added for additional flavor.

coconut water cocktailIf you’re feeling a little cheeky, you could even try this Tropical Hurricane Irene Cocktail With Coconut Water from WishfulChef.com.

If you want to take advantage of the fantastic health benefits coconut water has to offer then you can buy coconut water on Amazon. I’ve tried a few different varieties but my favorite is Taste Nirvana Real Coconut Water.

Want to learn more about the miracle health benefits of coconut water? Have a read of Coconut Water For Health and Healing by Bruce Fife (author of Coconut Oil Miracle)

Do you drink coconut water? What’s your favorite brand? And do you have any drink recipes to share that include this wonderful liquid?

Enjoyed this post? You may also enjoy these from the archive…

25 Magical Things To Make With Coconut Oil
Top 7 “Super-Duper” Superfoods From Around The World
The Miracle Health & Beauty Benefits Of Chia Seeds
Top 3 Homemade Sport Drink Recipes

Comments

  1. Being from the carribean we have always drunk coconut water the way people drink coke. Many people who are from the carribean have coconut trees in the back garden so this thing with coconuts, coconut oil,coconut water, coconut milk,etc etc is slightly old hat to say the least I can say. So in terms of fads, just be a bit careful.My annoyance is cost.Just because Gwenyth Paltrow and Madonna has said its great all of a sudden the price has rocketed out of all proportion. Coconuts is used in alot in tropical countries. Its not a fad, or fashion, its a way of life. My friend had UTI ,drank fresh coconut water for a week and her infection cleared up.Its also a great sunscreen for the hair.

  2. I lived in the Carribean for a few years drinking coconut water frequently. It is different than the one with the hard meat inside. I consumed coconut water to quench thirst and when no fresh spring water was available and as way to stay healthy. “It meets the claims in this article” when you can get it fresh you will get the greatest benefit for your health, not so sure about any commercial bottled or canned versions, right out of the nut and then open it to scrape the jelly to eat. I would stand roadside drinking it then have the seller crack it open and hand me the little piece of shell to scrape the jell, yummy. If you watch survivor you will always see the players drinking it for energy.

  3. I grew up in Malaysia and had a couple of dwarf coconut trees in the garden. The young coconuts were very popular for their delicious, exhilarating drink straight out, as well as for the cool, young tender kernel after the coconut water is finished (scraped out of the cracked nut with a spoon).
    The young coconuts sold in stalls in Chinatown are similar, and are not very expensive. The stallkeeper makes a triangular cut into the shell for you and gives you a straw. Great for a summer’s day slurp.
    I still think the greatest coconuts are in Malaysia, and my kids love the drink straight out of the shell, and the sweet kernel after.

  4. In my country, coconut water is a part of our everyday drink especially if you are from the remote villages. Most people who are living outside the city grow coconut trees which they harvest by the time they yield fruit. The best thing about coconuts is that you can make money from almost every part of the tree aside from the coconut water. Aside from being a great alternative for sports drinks, the coconut has been among the top source of income by many people on tropical countries.

  5. Jessica T says:

    I love seeing these comments from people who have had coconut in their food lifestyle for ages. They just confirm it for me that coconuts have always been beneficial and aren’t just the newest thing in real food. Someone like me is not used to anything coconut except those brown balls at the store, that my great grandmother bought me once or twice when I was very young, and did with it what I wanted. It was fun drinking the water and trying to get the darn thing open, but I of course never knew it was actually a good food. At 34 yrs old I am just now getting into coconut because bloggers are talking about it.

  6. Ann Bailey says:

    Thanks for this post, and all of the additional comments. I grew up in the South and remember thinking coconuts were just tourist items people picked up in Florida!

    Now I’m glad to know why coconut water has appeared on the health food store refrigerator shelves… but would love trying the fresh stuff instead.

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