Coconut Water: Health Hack or Health Scam?
For the past decade or so, there has been quite a buzz around coconut water and its potential health benefits. The tropical beverage has been coined as being a source of boosted energy, hydration, and improved heart health. Could this one drink really have that large of an effect on overall wellness? Read on to discover whether coconut water is a health hack or a health scam.
What is Coconut Water?
Also referred to as coconut juice, coconut water is a thin, clear liquid that is extracted from young, green coconuts. It contains natural sugars and electrolytes that make it an easily digestible and hydrating form of carbohydrates. Many enjoy coconut water in place of regular water and soda, and even enjoy putting it in their smoothies or protein shakes.
Health Benefits: Supports Heart Health
Although many of the health benefits of coconut water have not yet been proven, there are countless consumers that swear by its supposed benefits, such as an improvement in heart health.
According to healthline.com, there have been studies conducted that link the consumption of coconut water with lower cholesterol, as well as lower levels of liver fat. In fact, the improvement of the cholesterol and liver fat was as effective as a statin medication. However, the amount of coconut water that was being consumed to reach those lower levels was 91 ounces a day, which can be a large amount, depending on your recommended intake of liquids for your bodyweight and activity level. If you’re looking for ways to start a healthier journey overall, learn healthy lifestyle habits for beginners that can help you get started!
Health Benefits: Possible Prevention/Management of Diabetes
According to NDTV.com, coconut water has been proven to stabilize blood sugar levels. Generally, these studies are done in extended time frames, so the results are not as immediate as diabetes prescription medication. However, there is a definite effect on the overall levels. Additionally, hemoglobin A1C have also been shown to reduce when consuming coconut water, which can manage blood sugar levels long term. If you are someone with diabetes, learn more about the relationship between coconut water and diabetes to discover how you can enjoy the beverage.
Health Benefits: Increased Hydration
Coconut water is great when you need to boost your hydration, since it contains high levels of natural electrolytes. Even though coconut water is high in carbohydrates and sugar, its natural occurrence in fruit makes it easier for your body to process the drink. Coconut water is also a better alternative to sugary sports drinks, which commonly boast high levels of electrolytes that are added in by salt, sugar, and chemicals.
So, Health Hack or Health Scam?
Overall, there are many benefits to including coconut water in your diet. Although the actual science behind the tropical beverage isn’t completely proven, there have been several positive studies that have leaned towards coconut water being a great addition to your regular beverage rotation.