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Coconut Water Health Benefits, Nutritional Value, Side Effects and Much More!

Last updated on : 10 Jun, 2024

Read time : 10 min

Coconut water is a natural drink rich in essential electrolytes such as potassium, calcium, and magnesium. These minerals make it an excellent choice for hydration, especially after workouts and in extreme hot weather as it helps replenish lost electrolytes and prevent cramps. There are many other benefits of drinking coconut water daily. It is low in calories and contains natural sugars, making it a healthier alternative to sugary sports drinks. It also supports heart health by helping to regulate blood pressure due to its high potassium content. Its natural diuretic properties aid in kidney function by helping to flush out toxins. Moreover, coconut water’s hydrating effects can improve skin health and complexion. Know more about this natural drink, its nutritional profile, uses, benefits of coconut water and much more.

Nutritional Value of Coconut Water

The health benefits of coconut water come from its high levels of electrolytes, including potassium, calcium, and magnesium. For people who are low in these essential minerals, coconut water can be a healthy choice. For others, drinking coconut water may not offer more benefits than a glass of plain water. The nutritional value of coconut water is as follows:

NutrientsNutritional value
Calories19 kcal
Carbohydrates3.71 g
Sugars2.61 g
Dietary Fiber1.1 g
Protein0.72 g
Fat0.2 g
Vitamin C2.4 mg (4% DV)
Calcium24 mg (2% DV)
Magnesium25 mg (6% DV)
Phosphorus20 mg (2% DV)
Potassium250 mg (7% DV)
Sodium105 mg (4% DV)
Iron0.29 mg (2% DV)
Zinc0.1 mg (1% DV)

Health Benefits of Coconut Water

Coconut water is a natural isotonic drink, meaning it has the same electrolyte balance as the fluids in the human body. This makes it an excellent choice for rehydration, especially after physical activity or illness. It replenishes lost electrolytes like potassium, sodium, and magnesium, ensuring that the body remains hydrated and functions optimally. It’s a healthier alternative to commercial sports drinks, which often contain added sugars and artificial ingredients. The other health benefits of coconut water includes:

1) Benefits of coconut water for Improving blood pressure

The blood pressure benefits of coconut water are attributed to the high in potassium, a key mineral that helps balance sodium levels in the body. This balance is crucial for maintaining healthy blood pressure. By reducing excess sodium, coconut water can help lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of hypertension.

2) Benefits of coconut water for improving lipid profile

Coconut water has been found to have a positive effect on lipid profiles. It can help lower low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or bad cholesterol, while increasing high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, or good cholesterol. This balance helps reduce the risk of increasing cholesterol.

3) Benefits of coconut water for preventing oxidative stress

Rich in antioxidants, coconut water helps combat oxidative stress in the body. By neutralising free radicals, the antioxidants in coconut water protect the body from various chronic diseases, including inflammation, ageing, and cancer.

4) Benefits of coconut water for diabetes

Coconut water can be beneficial for people with diabetes due to its low glycemic index and natural sugars. It helps manage blood sugar levels by providing a slow and steady release of energy. Additionally, the magnesium content in coconut water can improve insulin sensitivity, helping to control blood glucose levels. Its natural sweetness makes it a refreshing alternative to sugary beverages.

5) Benefits of coconut water for heart

The heart health benefits of coconut water are attributed to its ability to improve blood pressure and lipid profiles. It reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

6) Benefits of coconut water for improving hemoglobin levels

Coconut water contains iron, which is essential for the production of hemoglobin in the blood. This is particularly beneficial for individuals with anemia or low hemoglobin levels.

7) Benefits of coconut water for kidneys

Coconut water has diuretic properties, which promote urine production and help flush out toxins from the kidneys. This can prevent the formation of kidney stones and support overall kidney function.

Other Potential Benefits of Drinking Coconut Water

The other potential benefits of coconut water include:

  1. Feeding Babies with Intestinal Disorders: Coconut water can soothe and hydrate babies with intestinal disorders, helping to restore fluid balance.
  2. Oral Rehydration: Its electrolyte content makes coconut water an effective natural solution for rehydration, especially after diarrhea or vomiting.
  3. Preventing Body Chillness: Drinking coconut water can help regulate body temperature and prevent chillness by maintaining proper hydration levels.
  4. Preventing Prickly Heat: Applying coconut water to the skin can alleviate prickly heat by cooling and soothing irritated skin.
  5. Reduces Rash Caused by Chicken Pox and Measles: Coconut water’s soothing properties can help reduce the discomfort and rash associated with chicken pox and measles.
  6. Killing the Worms: Coconut water has natural anti-parasitic properties that can help eliminate intestinal worms.
  7. Treating Kidney and Urethral Stones: Regular consumption of coconut water can help dissolve kidney and urethral stones and prevent their formation.
  8. Preventing Urinary Tract Infections: Coconut water can help flush out bacteria from the urinary tract, reducing the risk of infections.
  9. A Tonic for the Elderly and the Sick: Its nutrient-rich profile makes coconut water a revitalizing tonic for the elderly and those recovering from illness.
  10. Urinary Tract Antiseptics: The natural antiseptic properties of coconut water help cleanse the urinary tract, preventing infections and promoting health.

When Coconut Water Could Come in Handy?

Coconut can be handy in the following conditions:

  1. Treatment of Diarrhea in Children and Adults: Coconut water helps rehydrate and replenish lost electrolytes effectively.
  2. Low Blood Pressure: Its natural electrolytes can help maintain fluid balance and hydration, which is essential for managing hypotension symptoms.
  3. Gastroenteritis: It provides essential fluids and electrolytes to support recovery from stomach flu.
  4. After Exercise: Replenishes lost electrolytes and rehydrates the body naturally.
  5. During Illness: Helps maintain hydration and provide essential nutrients when you’re sick, especially with fever or diarrhea.
  6. In Hot Weather: Keeps you cool and hydrated on hot days, preventing heatstroke.
  7. For Digestion: Soothes the digestive system and can help with mild indigestion and heartburn.
  8. After Alcohol Consumption: Aids in rehydration and replenishes electrolytes, helping to reduce hangover symptoms.
  9. Travel: Helps maintain hydration during long trips, especially when access to clean water is limited.
  10. Good Drink in Case of Cholera: Its high electrolyte content makes it an excellent natural rehydration solution for cholera patients.
  11. Detoxification of Toxins in Cases of Poisoning: Coconut water aids in flushing out toxins and rehydrating the body during detoxification.

How to Use Coconut Water

Coconut water can be enjoyed in various ways to take advantage of its refreshing taste and health benefits. Here are the uses of coconut water:

  1. Drink it as a refresher: Enjoy coconut water straight from the coconut or from a packaged bottle for a refreshing and hydrating drink.
  2. Smoothies: Use coconut water as a base for smoothies. Blend it with fruits like bananas, berries, or mango for a nutritious and hydrating smoothie.
  3. Sports Drink: Replace commercial sports drinks with coconut water to naturally replenish electrolytes after a workout.
  4. Infused Water: Infuse coconut water with slices of fruits like lemon, lime, or cucumber for a refreshing twist.
  5. Cocktails and Mocktails: Use coconut water as a mixer for cocktails or mocktails. It pairs well with rum, vodka, or simply with some mint and lime for a refreshing mocktail.
  6. Popsicles: Freeze coconut water with fruit purees in popsicle molds for a healthy and cooling summer treat.

Coconut Water Side Effects

Coconut water is generally considered safe for most people, but there are a few potential side effects to be aware of. Here are the coconut water side effects:

  1. High Potassium Levels: Excessive consumption can lead to high potassium levels, which may cause irregular heartbeats or kidney problems.
  2. Blood Pressure: Coconut water can lower blood pressure, so those with low blood pressure or on blood pressure medication should consume it cautiously.
  3. Diuretic Effect: It has a mild diuretic effect, which may lead to frequent urination and potential dehydration if not balanced with enough water intake.
  4. Allergic Reactions: Some people might experience allergic reactions, although this is rare.
  5. High Sugar Content: Natural sugars in coconut water can affect blood sugar levels, which might be a concern for diabetics.

Precautions for Coconut Water

If you have any of the following conditions, you should consult your doctor before including coconut water to your diet:

  • Severe hyperkalemia: Coconut water contains high levels of potassium. Don’t drink coconut water if you have high levels of potassium in the blood.
  • Cystic fibrosis: Cystic fibrosis can lower salt levels in the body. Some people with cystic fibrosis need to take fluids or pills to increase salt (sodium) levels. Coconut water doesn’t contain enough salt to increase salt levels in people with cystic fibrosis. Also, it might contain too much potassium. Don’t drink coconut water as way to increase salt levels if you have cystic fibrosis.
  • Kidney problems: Coconut water contains high levels of potassium. Normally, potassium is excreted in the urine if blood levels get too high. But this doesn’t happen if the kidneys aren’t working normally. If you have kidney problems, talk to your healthcare provider before taking coconut water.
  • Surgery: Coconut water might interfere with blood pressure and blood sugar control during and after surgery. Stop using coconut water at least two weeks before a scheduled surgery.

Conclusion

Coconut water is the most nutritious, electrolytes, vitamins, and antioxidants rich drink. It helps with hydration, supports weight loss, heart and kidney health, and can improve skin and hair. It is an excellent choice for post-exercise rehydration, to reduce cholesterol, during fever, and for school going kids.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What happens if we drink coconut water daily?

Drinking coconut water daily helps proper hydration and gain essential electrolytes, supporting overall health. It also provides antioxidants and nutrients that may enhance digestion and improve skin health.

Is coconut water actually good for you?

Coconut water provides essential electrolytes, supports hydration, and offers antioxidants that promote overall health. It is a low-calorie, and a natural alternative to sugary drinks.

How much coconut water should I drink a day?

It’s generally safe to drink one to two cups (240-480 ml) of coconut water a day. 

Is coconut water good for the skin?

Ccoconut water is good for the skin as it helps hydrate and provides antioxidants that can improve skin health and complexion. It may also soothe and reduce acne and other skin irritations.

Which time is best to drink coconut water?

The best time to drink coconut water is in the morning on an empty stomach to maximise its detoxifying and hydrating benefits. It’s also beneficial after workouts for rehydration and replenishing electrolytes.

Is coconut water good for hair?

Coconut water is good for hair as it helps hydrate the scalp and strengthen hair follicles, promoting healthier, shinier hair. It can also reduce dandruff and hair breakage.

What vitamins are in coconut water?

Coconut water contains vitamins such as vitamin C, B vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, and B9), and vitamin A and vitamin E. 

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Our healthcare experts have carefully reviewed and compiled the information presented here to ensure accuracy and trustworthiness. It is important to note that this information serves as a general overview of the topic and is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to diagnose, prevent, or cure any health problem. This page does not establish a doctor-patient relationship, nor does it replace the advice or consultation of a registered medical practitioner. We recommend seeking guidance from your registered medical practitioner for any questions or concerns regarding your medical condition.

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