Coconuts aren’t just trendy, they’re also delicious, easy to eat, and good for you. There are a million different ways to incorporate coconut into your diet. So, if you’re like me and despise the taste of coconut water don’t worry, because if you just keep trying you’ll find a form of coconut that pleases your palate. It’s not one of those foods you should be eating daily because it does have its downsides, but once in a while it’s good to consume some coconut.
The coconut meat is the white stuff lining the inside of the coconut and it might seem like the throwaway part of the fruit, but it’s 100% edible. You can buy it pre-chopped in many grocery stores packed away in small, chip-sized pieces which are great for snacking. Although it had a bad reputation for a while, the meat actually helps supply your body with energy and may help reduce the risk or symptoms of neurological diseases. The meat does contain a lot of saturated fats, however, they’re medium chain fatty acids which are broken down more easily than the long chain fatty acids that make up most saturated fats.
Coconut milk and water are not the same. The milk is made from the meat and the water is what’s inside the coconut when you crack it open. The milk is often used as a base for cooking and is beneficial when it comes to hydration. It’s been known to help with diarrhea and also contains electrolytes that aid with dehydration. Those electrolytes together with the healthy fats help with digestion and preventing conditions such as IBS. Possibly the strangest benefit of the milk is that it has proven in experiments to prevent ulcers.
Coconut oil is all over the internet and as you’ve probably read, you can do a helluva lot more than just eat it. If you do choose the consume the oil, it’ll actually help your body in many ways. The oil can help shorten your cold, lose some weight, and wake you up in the morning. It can also help settle your stomach if you upset it with let’s say, I don’t know… late night pizza? You can use oil wherever you want. You can use it instead of butter to cook, you can use it to bake, or you can just straight up eat it.
It’s important to know that coconut water isn’t a replacement for other foods and it’s not the best drink in the world for you either, but it does have some benefits. The water that sits inside of the fruit naturally is low in fat and low in calories which makes it better than most sports drinks but not better than plain water. The one advantage it does have over water is that it’s great with hydration because it contains vital electrolytes such as potassium and sodium. If you’re really dehydrated, coconut water will help your body restore balance quickly.
Coconut sugar isn’t your answer for cutting back on carbs or calories, but it is a slightly more nutritious and sustainable sweetener. Two years ago The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization named it “the most sustainable sweetener in the world.” Additionally, it doesn’t cause your blood sugar to go up the way some other sugars do and has less fructose. The body turns fructose into fat very fast, so the lower the less fructose you consume, the better.