Coconut water has grown in popularity in recent years, gaining traction as an alternative to sugary sports drinks due to their highly nutritional content.
While not all coconut waters are created equal, fresh, young coconut water is great for numerous health purposes.
So much so that recent studies have affirmed the usefulness of coconut water as a nutritional supplement.
Here are just a few health benefits that coconut water offers:
1. Hangover Remedy
Because it’s so excellent for rehydration, coconut water makes a great hangover cure. This drink can help with nausea, and replenish the electrolytes you lose after a crazy night of partying and alcohol.
2. Sports Drink
Similarly, coconut water can help rehydrate you when you lose fluids due to heavy exercising.
“Coconut water was significantly sweeter, caused less nausea, fullness, and no stomach upset and was also easier to consume in a larger amount compared with CEB [carbohydrate-electrolyte beverage] and PW [plain water] ingestion,” one study explains (1).
“In conclusion, ingestion of fresh young coconut water, a natural refreshing beverage, could be used for whole body rehydration and exercise.”
3. Controlling Hypertension
Coconut water has been shown to help systolic blood pressure in hypertensive patients (2) and in animal models as well (3).
“The overall results suggest that tender coconut water treatment could prevent and reverse high blood pressure induced by high fructose diet, probably by inhibition of lipid peroxidation, upregulation of antioxidant status and improved insulin sensitivity,” one study stated.
4. Weight Loss And Cholesterol Management
Coconut water’s effects on lipid profiles have been studied in animal models as early as 2006, according to one study which found that tender coconut water, or TCW, could lower cholesterol rates and improve the lipid profiles of cholesterol-fed male rats (4). It can also help curb sugar cravings.
5. Digestive Aid
Coconut water contains dietary fiber, which aids digestion and helps prevent heartburn, or acid reflux. The bioactive enzymes contained in coconut water also helps ease constipation by acting as a gentle, natural laxative, and support the digestive system in eliminating waste.
Nutritious, non-carbonated and sterile at its source, coconut water is a great source of B-complex vitamins, such as niacin, thiamin, riboflavin, and folates, and is also rich in valuable minerals which boost its hydrating effects.
If you’re looking for something that has similar effects to a carbohydrate-electrolyte infused sports drink – but without all the sugar, corn syrup, and artificial flavoring – coconut water may be the drink for you! Look for it at local Asian markets, health food stores, or high end grocery stores.