Coconut Water The Ultimate Sports Drink, Improves Blood Pressure, High in Fiber, Antioxidants, and More

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Recently, coconut water has turned into a very trendy drink. It's refreshing, tasty and turns out, it’s good for you. It's loaded with essential nutrients, which includes minerals individuals don't seem to get enough of.

As you expect, coconut water is a clear liquid you find inside a coconut. Generally, coconut water comes from green, young coconuts, extracted when they are six to seven months old. It's not the same thing as coconut milk, which is made by mixing coconut water with grated coconut.

Research finds numerous health benefits of coconut water from both mature and young coconuts, including the below:

1. Promotes Satiety and Prevents Fat Storage

While they are high in saturated fats, coconuts contain both medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) and long-chain fatty acids (LCFAs). Your body digests medium-chain fatty acids more quickly and converts it into energy quicker as well. The theory is this quick absorption prevents fat storage and promotes satiety, explains the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

2. Improves Systolic Blood Pressure

The West Indian Medical Journal published a study showing coconut water could improve systolic blood pressure in 71 percent of a study's participants; that could be because of high potassium levels, that help counteract sodium's blood pressure-boosting effects.

Lower blood pressure can reduce your cardiovascular disease risk, but there are other components of coconut water that could also decrease that potential. It could help reduce total triglyceride and cholesterol levels, according to a study published by the Food and Chemical Toxicology journal.

3. Provides High Fiber

Young coconuts contain high fiber content. According to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, you find dietary fiber in plants and dietary fiber:

  • Adds bulk to stools

  • Relieves constipation

  • Lowers "bad" cholesterol levels

  • Normalizes blood sugar levels

UCSF Medical Center suggests adults take in 25 to 30 grams daily from food instead of supplements, however, most individuals only consume around 15 grams a day.

A study published in The Lancet found adverse health-based risk reductions when individuals consumed between 25 and 29 grams of fiber daily.

4. Offers Several Important Nutrients

The average green coconut provides you with around 0.5 to 1 cup of coconut water. One cup contains around 46 calories, along with:

  • Nine grams of carbs

  • Three grams of fiber

  • Two grams of protein

  • Ten percent of the RDI for vitamin C

  • Fifteen percent of the RDI for Magnesium

  • Seventeen percent of the RDI for Manganese

  • Seventeen percent of the RDI for Potassium

  • Eleven percent of the RDI for sodium

  • Six percent of the RDI for calcium

Young coconuts may be an optimal choice for people following a low-fat diet since they have less calories, contain fewer carbs and less fat than mature coconuts

5. Restores Hydration After Prolonged Exercise

Coconut water could possibly be the ultimate drink for replenishing electrolytes you lose during exercise and restoring hydration. Electrolytes are minerals that play a few essential roles in your body, including maintaining adequate fluid balance. They include:

  • Sodium

  • Potassium

  • Calcium

  • Magnesium

A couple of studies, published by the National Institutes of Health, found coconut water did a better job restoring hydration after exercise than water and restored hydration just as equally as a high-electrolyte sports drink.

6. Offers Antioxidant Properties

Your cells produce unstable molecules called free radicals during metabolism. Stress or injury increases their production. When you have too many free radicals, it puts your body into a state of oxidative stress, which could cause cell damage and increase your risk of disease. Research published by the National Institutes of Health, has shown coconut water contains antioxidants that modify the free radicals and oxidative stress so they won't cause harm.

The bottom line is coconut water is a nutritious, delicious and natural drink that's very good for you. It might benefit your blood sugar, heart, kidney health and more. While there still needs to be more controlled studies to confirm many of coconut water's qualities, the research available now is encouraging.

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