Consider reaching for coconut water next time you need to satisfy your thirst. The fashionable drink is high in natural vitamins and minerals that help with hydration and can be found in cocktails and other dishes like salad dressings. But, while some swear by the health advantages of coconut water, is this really the greatest option when you're thirsty? Maxine Smith, RDN, LD, a dietitian, tells all you need to know regarding coconut water and how to tell if it's right for you.
What is coconut water?
Coconut water is the transparent liquid inside coconuts, as opposed to coconut milk, which is a mixture of coconut water and grated coconut. Coconut water is low in calories and sugar and has a mildly sweet, nutty flavor. Electrolytes like potassium, sodium, and magnesium, on the other hand, aid to restore lost nutrients. That means it's a nice drink to have after a workout or during a little illness, although it might not be any better than water. Recent studies have also found that applying coconut water straight to your skin can help combat acne, however the evidence isn't conclusive.
What are the advantages of coconut water consumption?
Coconut water can be a healthy addition to your diet because it keeps you hydrated while being low in fat, calories, and cholesterol. Before you open the bottle of coconut water, be sure you understand how it may impact people who have high blood pressure or other medical concerns.
1. Aids in the hydration of the body
Coconut water is minimal in calories and carbs, making it equivalent to sports drinks that may contain added sugars and flavorings. Coconut water's attraction is mostly due to the electrolytes potassium, sodium, and magnesium. However, Smith warns that those studies used sodium-enriched coconut water, which may not be a good choice for many people and should only be used by individuals who exercise for an hour or more. “Long workout sessions can be beneficial,” Smith explains. “However, the electrolytes in coconut water are different. In these cases, a sports drink is a safer bet.”
2. High in potassium
The majority of people do not get enough potassium in their diet. The mineral aids in the removal of excess sodium from the body via urine. Coconut water may potentially aid in the reduction of blood pressure.
Coconut water appears to lower blood pressure in people with high blood pressure, according to preliminary studies. If you use blood pressure medication, however, you should avoid coconut water since it may cause your blood pressure to drop too low. It's advisable to talk to your doctor about it. Coconut water should also be avoided two weeks before any surgery because of its high potassium content, which can impact your blood pressure.
3. Low calorie intake
Other fruit juices may include a lot of sugar, calories, and carbohydrates. Coconut water, on the other hand, is calorie-free, making it a wonderful choice for individuals who enjoy sweet drinks.
4. Fat and cholesterol-free
Coconut water is 94 percent water and contains no fat or cholesterol. “You want to pick one that is tasteless and has no added sodium for enjoyable drinking,” Smith advises.
She also advises checking the expiry date, since the older coconut water becomes, the more nutrients it lost and the flavor may change.
5. Skin that is healthier
According to a preliminary 2017 report, coconut water's antibacterial qualities may help in the fight against acne. Coconut water may also assist your antioxidant system by neutralizing the impacts of free radicals, according to research.
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