Coconut Water vs Milk – Health Benefits, Nutriton Facts, Side Effects

Coconut Water

Coconut (scientific name – Cocos nucifera) belongs to the Palm family (Arecaceae). Grown in abundance in South East Asia, it is well known for its numerous health benefits and delicious taste.

Coconut water is a liquid in the fruit’s center which is tapped from green coconuts. It usually comes from young coconuts about 6–7 months of age, however, it is also found in mature fruits.

Nutrition Facts

It contains carbohydrates in the form of dietary fiber and sugar as well as amino acids, antioxidants, enzymes, vitamin C, iron, potassium, folate, phosphorus, thiamin, calcium, vitamin B6, magnesium, manganese, copper, selenium, sodium, and zinc.

Health Benefits

Boosts Hydration

Since it contains carbohydrates in the form of simple sugars and electrolytes (like -potassium, magnesium, and sodium), vital components which you may also find in commercial sports drinks, coconut water is highly effective at maintaining hydration.

It has been suggested that a regular consumption of this type of water before physical exercise improves athletic performance and endurance. In addition, maintaining electrolyte levels reduces stress and fatigue, and helps support muscle relaxation.

Moreover, the sodium count is only 25 mg, which is considerably lower when compared to the amount found in sports drinks.

Potassium

The coconut water found in one coconut has more potassium than a large banana. Potassium is a mineral which has an essential key role in maintaining the body’s muscle contractions, heartbeat, nerve impulses, and cholesterol.

In a 2014 study, about 77% of patients with high blood pressure drugs were able to reduce their doses by 50% just by increasing their dietary intake of potassium. Also, research established a positive connection between bone health and a diet high in potassium, especially among seniors.

Diabetes

Diabetes is a chronic disease which usually happens when the body cannot efficiently use the insulin it produces or when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin. Regular physical exercise can prevent a significant proportion of diabetes cases, as well as a healthy diet (low in fat and high in dietary fiber), avoiding tobacco use, sufficient sleep, maintaining a normal body weight, and practicing methods that reduce stress.

Some studies have established that the water from young coconuts can reduce blood glucose levels, plus, it prevents the occurrence of blood clots.

Healthy Digestion

It is a source of dietary fiber, which is the reason why it helps the digestive system. It is common knowledge that having a diet high in fiber is beneficial for the digestive system to function healthily. Moreover, dietary fiber may reduce the risk of diverticulitis, an inflammation of polyps in the colon by about 40%.

Side Effects

There are no scientifically proven side effects.

Coconut Milk

It comes from the white flesh of mature coconuts. This type of milk is an excellent option for anyone allergic to dairy milk.

Nutrition Facts

This milk contains – protein, dietary fiber, folate, vitamin C, magnesium, thiamin, vitamin B6, iron, copper, folate, potassium, phosphorus, zinc, selenium, omega 6 fatty acids, and manganese.

Health Benefits

Boosts The Immune System

It is a source of lauric acid, an inorganic compound that provides antibacterial and antiviral properties, plus, it can reduce LDL cholesterol levels. Moreover, the human body converts it into monolaurin, that fights the bacteria and viruses which cause influenza, herpes, or HIV.

Iron Anemia

This milk can give approximately 22 percent of the daily recommended intake of iron. With such a high level of this essential mineral, it can help to prevent anemia caused by an iron deficiency.

IBS Prevention

An irritable bowel syndrome is a group of signs and symptoms, especially abdominal pain without any evidence of underlying damage. Currently, it affects between 25 and 45 million people in the US.

There is no known cure for irritable bowel syndrome, however, there are several treatment options to eliminate or reduce symptoms. For instance, this type of milk nourishes the digestive lining due to its high content of minerals and healthy fats.

Antioxidant Properties

It contains a few antioxidant compounds that provide protection against free radical damage. Free radicals are molecules or atoms that have one unpaired electron in their outermost shell. Free radicals come from numerous different sources, like – sunlight, airborne emissions, chemical sources, chlorination, pollution, and tobacco smoke, that we are exposed to on a day to day basis.

Arthritis

It is a common health problem in the present American population, affecting approximately 4o million individuals and resulting in disability for about 20 million sufferers.

The most common types of arthritis include – rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, lupus, gout, and fibromyalgia. The essential fatty acids can help reduce the inflammation level in the body, that is linked with these painful conditions.

Side Effects

Canned coconut milk may be a source of carrageenan, bisphenol-A, and guar gum.

Coconut Water vs Milk – Which One Is Healthier?

Coconut milk has a better nutritional profile due to its higher content of calcium, manganese, copper, iron, phosphorus, protein, and potassium.