Unless you’ve been living under a rock, or perhaps are simply against shopping in grocery stores,
you’ve probably heard the hype about coconut water lately.
The newly coined “miracle” drink has become increasingly popular in the past few years.
You may be wondering whether all the hype is fact or merely fiction.
Here is a brief history and some of the benefits of this tasty beverage.
Unlike coconut milk, which is simply a mixture of coconut water and
shaved coconut, coconut water is found in young green coconuts and has a sweet, nutty taste.
Fresh coconut water is easy enough to get if you happen to have access to a few coconut trees or live in Hawaii.
The Hawaiians have been cracking open coconuts for centuries and enjoying the sweet fresh flavor.
If you ever do happen to make it to Hawaii, it’s a delicious treat not to be missed.
And the fresh variety is unpasteurized which means
it contains enzymes that clean and detoxify the body.
Even if you don’t have access to the fresh stuff, coconut water found in the store or at local eateries and restaurants, still has its benefits.
Chock full of electrolytes, coconut water is heavy in potassium and vitamins and is a great choice for body hydration, especially when exercising, spending time in the hot sun or even during a dreaded hangover type situation.
The potassium alone can counteract the effects of a high-sodium diet, which can cause high-blood pressure and hypertension.
All Natural Sugars
If you spend a good amount of your time reading lables, you’ve probably noticed the sugar content in coconut water.
However, unlike sodas, juice and other sweetened beverages, the sugar content is considerably lower in coconut water (nearly 80 percent) and all natural.
However, some coconut water varieties have added flavors or juice such as guava, mango or pineapple, so be aware that they do have added sugars.
Stick to the good old all natural coconut water and stay away from unnecessary calories.
A naturally fat and cholesterol free beverage, coconut water is endorsed by nutritionists, dieticians and fitness trainers galore.
It has fewer calories, less sodium, and more potassium than a sports drink.
Ounce per ounce, most unflavored coconut water contains 5.45 calories, 1.3 grams sugar, 61 milligrams (mg) of potassium,
and 5.45 mg of sodium compared to Gatorade, which has 6.25 calories, 1.75 grams of sugar, 3.75 mg of potassium, and 13.75 mg of sodium.
You may be wondering, well this all sounds too good to be true. It must taste terrible. Well thankfully, this isn’t the case.
Coconut water is refreshing and has a sweet, nutty taste.
And if you want to add your own flavors without adding too many extra calories, simple add a strawberry, raspberry or blueberries to it, this adds a minimal amount of calories and a lot of flavor.
Still not convinced? Another advantage to coconut water is its low cost.
Grab a few bucks and head down to your neighborhood market and try it out. Be sure to select one that’s already chilled, a better alternative to the room temperature variety.
A freelance writer, Wendy Kellison learned about the benefits of coconut water when she visited the Bula Kava House, a kava store in Portland, OR