October 3, 2012

6 (More) Reasons to Drink Coconut Water…Pure Sexy in a Coconut.

Photo: Adam Sammler

If it’s good enough for the Material Girl, it’s good enough for me!

Why do I drink coconut water daily, joining Madonna and an ever-expanding list of celebs advocating nature’s “super drink?!”

Madonna is so mad about coconut water, she’s invested $1.5 mil (U.S. dollars) into Coconut water brand Vita Coco, now valued at over $200 million. On her recent world tour, she was seldom seen without a bottle of coconut water in her hand! Vita Coco sales have gone crazy, jumping from $4 million in 2007 to nearly $100 million in 2011. With sales exploding, even Demi Moore, Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Anthony Kiedis and Matthew McConaughey have invested funds.

Gwyneth Paltrow claims that this “on-the-go snack keeps her slim—a 100ml serving contains only 39 calories! Sienna Miller, Ellen Pompeo, Kellan Lutz, Penn Badgley, Heidi Klum, Jessica Simpson, Chris Pine, Padma Lakshmi Kristin Cavallari, Ed Westwick, Karolina Kurkova, AnnaLynne McCord, Kara DioGuardi and Anna Paquin are all drinking it!

So what’s so good about Coconut water anyway?

Coconut water is the refreshing juice (200-1000ml) from the inside of young green coconuts from tropical Arecaceae palm trees–aged five to seven months. The clear liquid is sweet-tasting, sterile, and rich in sugars, electrolytes, enzymes, amino acids, minerals (Calcium, potassium, manganese, magnesium), vitamins (Riboflavin and Vitamin C) and fiber. It’s low in calories from mainly natural sugars and contains zero fat (unlike coconut milk!).

Sanskrit texts describe the coconut palm as “kalpa vriksha”—the tree of life—indicating that Indians have been using coconuts as a staple food for thousands of years.

Traditional Aryuveda regards the health benefits of coconut water as providing abundant semen, improving the digestive and urinary tract channels.

Coconut water is better than sports drinks like Gatorade.

A study by the School of Medical Science at Universiti Sains Malaysia concluded that coconut water was the best option for athletes.

It found that coconut water performed best—causing less nausea, fullness and no stomach upsets as compared to sports drinks. Sports drinks contain unhealthy refined sugars, artificial coloring and flavoring. Coconut water contains nearly 20 times the potassium in Gatorade. One cup contains more potassium than a banana.

One caveat—most fruit and vegetables are also good sources of potassium, so don’t throw away your bananas just yet. Also, be wary of drinking excessive coconut water, as it can act as a laxative and diuretic. And don’t rely on coconut water alone! A handful of mixed raw nuts is also great for sports recovery.

Admired as a super drink for generations, coconut water is the only natural substance that can be injected into the human blood stream as a blood plasma substitute. It has been used as an intravenous fluid during wars and famine, saving countless lives. In World War II, it was used as a supply of glucose.

Six health benefits of coconut water:

1. Prevents dehydration.

  • >> Refuels and rehydrates—maintains the body’s fluid levels and its potassium content helps maintain water pressure within cells and blood.
  • >> In developing countries where clean water is scarce, coconut water can be life-saving and save people suffering from diarrhea/dysentery/cholera.

2. Fuel for brain and muscles.

  • >> Due to its electrolyte content, improves nervous system function and nerve transmission.
  • >> Prevents cramps and spasms in the muscles.

3. Heart and kidney healthy.

  • >> Reduces the risk of hypertension and strokes and helps prevent or resolve kidney stones.

4. Anti-aging.

  • >> Contains compounds (cytokinins) that protect cells from aging and cancer.

5. Digestive Aid.

  • >> Improves digestion and metabolism via bioactive enzymes.
  • >> Aids absorption of food and efficacy of drugs due to its electrolytic effect.
  • >> Soothes intestinal pain/spasm.

6. Supports immune function.

  • >> Its Lauric acid content is anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and anti-viral.
  • >> It boosts the immune system in fighting infection while helping to eradicate intestinal worms and candida.

Editor: Lynn Hasselberger

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