While we use coconut water in all of the juicing we do almost daily! That, along with a mostly plant (veggies, fruits, nuts) based diet is where we get out minerals, electrolytes and nutrients!
While coconut oil and coconut milk are extracted from the kernel or meat of mature coconuts harvested from the coconut palm, coconut water is the liquid found inside young green coconuts.
The coconut water craze – backed by celebrity investors including Madonna, Demi Moore and Matthew McConaughey – has snowballed in the US and Europe with sales doubling to $US265 million last year and expected to double again this year.
“There are few beverages on this planet as biocompatible to the human body and its hydration needs as coconut water,” says Ji, who notes that coconut water has even been used for intravenous hydration of critically ill patients in remote areas.
“While some are concerned about the sugar content of this slightly sweet beverage, recent research shows that it actually exhibits blood sugar lowering properties,” Ji says.
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics spokesperson and dietician Andrea Giancoli explains: “The big deal about coconut water is that it packs a potassium punch, and potassium is important for heart health, regulating blood pressure and other body systems”.
But coconut water is not “magical,” Giancoli told National Public Radio, “and there’s plenty of potassium in a healthy diet.”
New industry body Coconut Water Australia says coconut water is “the purest liquid second only to water itself…choc-full of electrolytes, calcium, potassium, magnesium: everything that is good for you for only around 60 calories per serve.”
However, consumer rights group Choice remains unconvinced by what it describes as “the latest health fad.” “While the marketing on the packages claims coconut water is a nutritional goldmine,” Choice found that dietary consultants believed very differently: “…the only real goldmine is for those selling the product.”
Dietician Tania Ferraretto told the watchdog that coconut water has been promoted as a source of minerals such as calcium, magnesium and phosphorous, “but it only contains small amounts of these and other nutrients.”
Instead, Ferraretto recommends plain water: “It’s the best drink to hydrate the body and it’s free, unlike coconut water, which can cost up to $4 a bottle.”