Is Coconut Water Good for You? Top 10 Surprising Benefits Revealed

Is Coconut Water Good for You? Top 10 Surprising Benefits Revealed

Coconut water nutrition has received quite the buzz of as of late. To call it a “super food” (or in this case “super drink”) isn’t a stretch, but we all know how taboo that word has become in the health food world. In short, the answer to this very valid question is yes, coconut water is good for you. High in essential vitamins, minerals, amino acids, AND electrolytes, this coconutified drink certainly deserves the extensive acclaim.[1]

Another question you may be asking is…

What Is Coconut Water?

One thing it’s not: coconut milk. The water of a coconut is clear and slightly cloudy-looking. It’s derived from the heart of the fruit when it’s still young and green. The taste is actually surprisingly sweet, too. Unlike coconut milk, high fat and calories aren’t part of the deal.

There is increasing scientific evidence that supports the role of coconut water in health and medicinal applications.
-Jean W. H. Yong, PhD, Physiologist & Ecologist

Fresh Coconut Water

Top 10 Coconut Water Health Benefits

 1  Blood Pressure Regulator

High blood pressure and imbalance of electrolytes go hand-in-hand. Same with low potassium levels. This electrolyte-rich beverage aids in balancing the various nutrients in our bodies. To get the full effects, make drinking coconut water a daily habit (preferably every morning). Optimal amount of electrolytes = lowered blood pressure.[2][3][4]

 2  Digestion Booster

The bioactive enzymes (acid phosphatase, RNA-polymerases, etc.) in coconut water are what give your digestive tract the boost that it needs to properly digest food. This is especially beneficial to those who suffer from acid reflux or other digestion issues.[5]

 3  Weight Loss

Low calories, low fat. What’s there not to love? You can literally drink as much of this stuff as you want. (Don’t go too crazy with it.) There is absolutely no risk of gaining any weight. And despite this being a liquid, it’s filling, so this can also curb your need for junk-food-snacking.[6]

Naturally sweet, you can kiss your soda-drinking days goodbye and just stick to coconut water. It’s not a little-known fact that sugar-sweetened drinks promote weight gain.

[Related Post: Best Ways to Lose Weight FAST (Even With Low Willpower).]

 4  Promotes Skin Health

The cytokinins found in coconut water are your skin’s friends. Scientific studies confirm that cytokinins substantially slow down bodily aging in general.[7]

This nutritious beverage can work wonders even when applied on our skin. Irrespective of whether you drink it or apply it, coconut water miraculously clears up all acne and other blemishes from your skin, making it look spotless. No wonder so many high end cosmetics use coconut extracts as an ingredient.

 5  Keeps You Hydrated

Well, this is a liquid, so it will undoubtedly quench your thirst, but there’s more to it… Coconut water is isotonic in nature and this is the primary reason why it’s ideal for rehydration. The high potassium levels (higher than a banana!) also is the culprit. If you want to gain the water that you have lost, drinking coconut water is a great way of going about it.

Furthermore, it keeps your sugar and sodium levels in check. More about sugar levels in #7.[8][9][10]

And athletes or gym-goers? This is the perfect and much healthier sports drink replacement.[11] Make coconut water your new Gatorade. 😀

 6  Detoxifier

The undeniable hydrating abilities of coconut water also influence our body’s ability to get rid of those unwanted toxins.[12]

Sure, drinking a lot of water also helps the body remove toxins, but coconut water contains a really similar electrolyte profile to our blood which make this ideal beverage.

 7  Manages Blood Glucose Levels

Thanks to the numerous antioxidants contained in coconut water, blood glucose levels are shown to remain steady in various studies for regular and diabetic test subjects alike.[13]

 8  Naturally Energizing

Coconut water is an excellent source of magnesium, an incredibly important component of our diet that most people are deficient in. Rest assured that if you’re running low on it, your energy levels will more than likely follow suite.

 9  Free Radicals Neutralizer a.k.a. Antioxidant Powerhouse

So I’ve brought up antioxidants quite a bit in this article already, but it’s especially important to add this benefit to the list. Why? The high antioxidant content in coconut water prevents bodily damage mainly triggered by free radicals. Created by our metabolism, neutralizing the damage is a no-go—unless of course antioxidants come into the picture.[14]

 10  Decreased Risk of Stroke

I’ve mentioned the benefits of potassium once (or maybe twice?) and I’ll here’s another: The reason for the decreased risk is because of potassium’s ability to lower high blood pressure levels. High blood pressure and higher chance stroke are directly related.

A clinical study conducted in 2014, concluded that “[h]igh potassium intake is associated with a lower risk of all stroke and ischemic stroke, as well as all-cause mortality in older women, particularly those who are not hypertensive.” [15]

 

Nutrition Profile of Coconut Water

Serving Size – 8 fl oz (240 mL) *Roughly a cup.
Calories – 40
Fat – 0%
Sodium – 2%
Potassium – 14%
Total Carbs – 10g, 3%
Sugars – 10g
Protein – 0g
Calcium – 4%
Iron – 4%
Phosphorus – 5%
Vitamin C – 10%
Magnesium – 15%
Maganese – 17%
Potassium – 17%


What is the Best Coconut Water to Drink?

If you’re going with the store-bought approach, ensure that the bottled coconut water you get is organic, NOT from concentrate, and only has ONE ingredient in it (coconut water). Bob and I have tried several brands and really enjoy the Trader Joe’s variety. (I’m actually sipping on it as we speak.)

Trader Joe's Organic Coconut Water

As you can see, it’s certified organic. It’s also quite affordable (about $1.50 each).

And if you have access to them, simply buy or pick a young coconut when it’s still green. That nutrient-dense liquid you’re looking for is housed within it.

Coconut Water Cartoon

These coconut water health benefits are certainly exceptional, but there are WAY more where that came from. Hopefully this evidence-backed top ten has convinced you to make nature’s sports drink your go-to beverage!

Have you ever tried coconut water before?

Eva Xanthopoulos


Sources
1. “The Chemical Composition and Biological Properties of Coconut (Cocos nucifera L.) Water.”
2. “The Control of Hypertension by Use of Coconut Water and Mauby: Two Tropical Food Drinks.”
3. “Bioactive Enzyme Activity and Medicinal Properties of Tender Coconut (Cocos nucifera L.)”
4. “Coconut Water and Weight Loss by Jessica Hendricks, MA in Nutrition & Dietetics.”
5. “Beneficial Effects of Tender Coconut Water on Blood Pressure and Lipid Levels in Experimental Hypertension.”
6. American Heart Association
7. “Kinetin Delays the Onset of Aging Characteristics in Human Fibroblasts.”
8. “The American Journal of Emergency Medicine.”
9. “Rehydration after Exercise with Fresh Young Coconut Water, Carbohydrate-Electrolyte Beverage and Plain Water.”
10. “The Truth About Coconut Water” by Kathleen Zelman, MPH, RD.
11. “Comparison of Coconut Water and a Carbohydrate-electrolyte Sport Drink on Measures of Hydration and Physical Performance in Exercise-trained Men.”
12. “Does Coconut Water Detox the Body?”
13. “Hypoglycemic and Antioxidant Potential of Coconut Water in Experimental Diabetes.”
14. “Free Radicals, Antioxidants and Functional Foods: Impact on Human Health.”
15. “AHA Journal: Stroke.”
16. “Nuts, Coconut Water (Liquid from Coconuts).”


*DISCLAIMER: Always consult a medical professional before applying the advice given throughout this website. While the articles on HMM are thoroughly researched, it is important to speak with your medical provider before starting a new exercise routine or introducing something new to your diet. We ourselves are NOT doctors, so the information we feature should not be used to replace any of your medications or lifestyle choices that have been recommended by your doctor. Read at your own risk and read our full disclaimer here.*

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8 COMMENTS

    • I’m glad it’s good for diabetics as well! 🙂 Bob and I are addicted to this stuff! It’s so refreshing.

    • Me too! 😀 It depends on the kind of coconut water you purchase. Always aim to drink coconut water with just one ingredient. Some brands do add processed sugar, so steer clear of those.

      In its pure form, coconut water does have some natural sugar (about 10g per 8 fluid ounces/240 milliliters). Many reputable sources I’ve come across even say it’s beneficial for diabetics (despite its sweet taste), particularly because it maintains blood sugar levels.

      Thank you for the question. 🙂 I’m sure a lot of people were wondering the same thing.

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