Mar
17

Coconut Water: Healthy & Hydrating!

Coconut Water in the Raw

Coconut Water in the Raw

I am a coconut lover—the taste, the aroma—it’s intoxicating to me and makes me think of summer, any time of the year!  Back in the days when I could eat anything and never gain an ounce, all my favorite foods seemed to have sweet and sticky coconut in them—Mounds, Almond Joys, Hostess Sno Balls, coconut cream pie, macaroons, Samoas, the list goes on—all full of sugar and fat, and not the good kind!  Recently we have all started seeing many new, healthful coconut products in every section of the supermarket:  coconut water, coconut milk, coconut cream, coconut oil, coconut yogurt, coconut ice cream, coconut snacks!  There’s also a plethora of coconut body products, all sweetly smelling of a day on a tropical island beach.  Now there are lots of great guilt-free ways to get my coconut fix!

My first foray into the exploration of this coconut craze is coconut water.  We need to drink water to quench our thirst and to hydrate our bodies.  So if drinking water is essential, could coconut water be just as good for us or even better?  Coconut water is the clear liquid that comes from the center of the young green coconut. What we do know about it is that it is a good substitute for sports drinks because it’s naturally rich in electrolytes, low in calories and sugar, fat-free and cholesterol free. There are many claims about the miraculous benefits of drinking coconut water and, so far, there is no scientific evidence to support that it helps prevent cancer, strokes or heart disease.  There are anecdotal reports of anti-aging in the skin, digestive benefits from its enzymes, treatment of stomach flu—my friend believes that drinking it is helping to alleviate her dry eyes!  Since we do need to drink plenty of water daily, why not try substituting coconut water for your water bottles, especially after working out, and see how you feel about it?

There are so many brands of coconut water out there and I sampled several.  For more detailed info about the products, click on the links embedded in the names….

 

Unflavored:

Naked 100% Coconut Water

Naked 100% Coconut Water

Naked 100% Coconut Water

11 oz. Container,  60 calories, 650 mg of potassium and 23 mg of magnesium

Very faint greenish, nutty flavor and is light in consistency, also comes in mango, peach and lychee flavors

 

Zico

Zico Pure Premium Coconut Water

Zico Pure Premium Coconut Water

14 oz. Bottle, 70 calories, 610 mg potassium, 10% RDA magnesium

Slightly sweet flavor and less nutty, heavier in consistency.

 

Amy & Brian Coconut Juice with Pulp

Amy & Brian All Natural Coconut Juice with Pulp

Amy & Brian All Natural Coconut Juice with Pulp

8 oz. servings, 60 calories, potassium not listed

Light and nutty, little pieces of pulp, fresh tasting

 

Flavored:

 

Vita Coca Pure Coconut Water

Vita Coca Pure Coconut Water with Peach & Mango

Vita Coco Pure Coconut Water with Peach and Mango

11 oz. Container, 80 calories, 630 mg potassium, 2% RDA magnesium, 90% RDA Vitamin C

Not overpowering in fruit flavors, tastes somewhat like a light nectar, several flavors

 

O.N.E. Coconut Water with a Splash of Pineapple

O.N.E. Coconut Water with a Splash of Pineapple

O.N.E Coconut Water with a Splash of Pineapple

8.5 oz container, 75 calories, 299 mg. Potassium, no mention of magnesium, 172% RDA Vitamin C

Great combination of coconut flavor with pineapple, slightly pina-colada in taste

 

Real Coco Aloe

Taste Nirvana Real Coconut Water

Taste Nirvana’s Real Coconut Water

9.5 oz container, 70 calories, 600 mg potassium, 9% RDA magnesium

Mixture of aloe and coconut with aloe pulp, an acquired taste and texture, benefit of  Aloe’s healing properties

 

Hansen's Coconut Water Twist Tropical Fruit

Hansen’s Coconut Water Twist Tropical Punch

Hansen’s Junior Juice Coconut Water Twist, Tropical Punch Flavor

6.75 oz juice box, 70 calories, 250 mg potassium, 4% RDA magnesium, 100% Vitamin C.  Great combo of the coconut flavor with tropical punch, good alternative for kids who are running miles on the soccer field and replenish with sports drinks

 

To please my own taste buds, coconut water tastes best when it’s very cold and has a natural tropical fruit flavoring.  Of course, along with this flavoring may come some additional calories and possibly less electrolytes.  I’m going to drink a bottle of coconut water after my workout for a couple of weeks and see how I feel.

 

Incorporating coconut water into your recipes as a substitute for water in ice pops, oatmeal, soup stock, stir-fry, rice, salad dressings, jello is a good way to get its nutritional properties. Coconut water is great in recipes where the coconut flavoring is the star, like in the following smoothies.

 

Colleen’s Kale-Colada

created by Colleen Holland, Associate Editor of VegNews

1 cup coconut water

1 kale leaf

1 tablespoon shredded coconut

1 frozen banana

1/2 cup frozen pineapple

Blend in a blender, serve immediately.

 

Blueberry Coconut Water Frosty

created by lunchboxbunch.com

11 ounces coconut water, chilled
1/2 cup ice
3/4 cup frozen blueberries
1 tsp lemon or lime juice
1 tsp agave syrup
dash of cayenne (optional)

tip: for an extra creamy – not as frosty coconut water frosty, add in 1/2 frozen banana. For more frosty, add in more ice…for a more coconut water-infused sip, use coconut water ice cubes instead of tap water ice cubes.

Blend. Pour. Serve!

 

If you have tried other coconut waters that you love, I would love for you to share that information in the comments!

xox Ellen

Leaning Into Veganism

 

Comments

  1. I’ve never tried the coconut waters with the hints of fruit flavoring in them. That peach-mango one looks like it might be my new favorite!!! The pina-colada coconut drinks are wetting my whistle too! I’m going to start drinking more coconut water after my workouts too to see how I feel.Good idea and great post!

  2. You had it right in the first place when you pictured a fresh green coconut and titled it Coconut in the raw. Coconut is like any other fruit. Technically, it is a drupe. when you think about it; we squeeze oranges for juice, we make fresh water mellon juice, grapefruit juice, grapes, and more. All are squeezed or pressed fresh for their juices. we do the same with coconuts but without the squeeze. Just open the coconut and drink fresh, raw, live coconut water. This is the best. Better than anything that is processed………. For sure. Do you disagree?

    Myself and others are building a fresh coconut food, coconut water company. See Noelani. See you on the beach but do not sleep under da coconut tree.

    Ed Hartz, aka “Coconut Ed”

    • Dear Coconut Ed,
      The fresher, the better! I love the idea of cracking open a young, green coconut freshly picked and putting a straw in it! Your website is very informative and appealing. Coconuts are truly a versatile fruit! I look forward to seeing your product in stores soon!

      • Dear Ellen: Thank you for the comment. For the efficacy about fresh coconut water, unprocessed, really raw, right from the tree just do some research. Dr Bruce Fife’s books on coconut, especially coconut water are great sources of information about fresh coconut and coconut water. This is not the kind found on store shelves or in plastic bottles with labels that discuss “their Rawness.” Noelani Cococnut Company sells fresh husk on coconuts, a fresh dehisced coconut in the original shell – never touched by human hands or machinery, and we offer fresh coconut water in glass bottles thru a home delivery service and buyers club in Fairfield County, Connecticut, parts of Manhattan and Westchester County. Soon in Boston too. Where are you located? Love to get you some.

        Ed

  3. Karen Katz says:

    Thanks for the post! I really need to get in on this craze! I am going to put in my water bottle, like you suggested!

    This is a good reminder!

    xox

    Karen

  4. Great review, but sounds like it’s time you tried Harmless Harvest 100% Raw Coconut Water!

  5. There is nothing like the fresh coconut and fresh coconut water. And not from a can or bottle or any other processed beverage. Just simply, the coconut. Fresh. Noelani has it and they do not. ~ Coconut Ed

    http://www.NoelaniBeverage.com

    • You are so right! I love a young Thai coconut the best!

      • Just remember this. And know the truth. There is nothing that can beat the taste or the nutrient integrity of a fresh raw coconut with coconut water inside. Tap into the real deal. Not one commercial brand can match the nutrition of the real coconut. That means that there is no coconut water in a bottle made for shelf life and that has been processed that is as good as coconut water that has not been processed. Noelani Coconut Water is 100% Raw. Commercial brands are not. Like millions of other people who enjoy the health benefits of fresh coconut and coconut water all over the world from street vendors whose carts or stands are filled with live fresh coconut. Now you can enjoy fresh coconut water if you have the coconut with husk on and tap into. This does not include the Thai coconuts you are all talking about with the white husk. There is no life to this coconut compared to a coconut with husk on, young and green or hello husk. ~ Coconut Ed. Thank you

        • We totally agree with you, Ed. Nothing compares to the real stuff! Thanks for the informative comment. We appreciate it greatly!

          • Thank you for your reply also. All one has to do is live on fresh coconut water for awhile to know the difference between commercial processed brands (including those that say their coconut water is processed with HPP) and real raw-unprocessed coconut water. Our North American culture is a Babe in the Woods when it comes to knowing the real thing. Fresh coconut and coconut water from the tree.

            The coconut scientists and those that study plant physiology know the efficacy of pure-fresh-unprocesssed coconut water. There is no commercial brand that can use their coconut water out of the container for use as an IV as they did with fresh young coconuts during WWII. it is also interesting to note that if you wind upon a hospital in some Caribbean countries or in India, that the Hospital staff hydrate their in patients often with fresh coconut water in the husk of a young green coconut. Sometimes they are yellow also.

            Commercial coconut water is not truly sustainable.
            we started a fresh coconut water company. 100% Raw coconut water. Noelani Coconut Company and Noelani Coconut Water. If you read the BLOG set up at Noelani Beverage.com you will see and earn many good things about coconut, coconut culture, gastronomy, sustainability, and food democracy.

            If the planet is to be resorted and be healthy once again, we must farm sustainably. We must manage companies and food and beverage products that are not processed to the point where there is no value or little value to the food or beverage. This is not to say that every processed food or beverage is bad, but we need more items that are less processed or not processed at all.

            Thank you.
            “Coconut Ed”

          • Thanks for this interesting information!I had no idea that fresh coconut water was used as an IV during WW II! We are all for a healthy planet and unprocessed products. Thanks again, Ed for the comment!

  6. Hello Debby:

    If you like I will send you some fresh-live-unprocessed coconut water. I want you to see the difference between truly raw and commercial processed brands. We are in ways thankful that they (the commercial processed brands) helped pave the way to the real thing. Commercial brands also helped bring about this hugh interest in coconut water with their commercials, media, and industrialized distribution system. The same one that our country has had for the past 100 years or son now. The same one that has helped put Farm fresh foods out of reach for generations.. Fortunately, the food democracy – sustainable – ecology minded – plant food – Slow Food – Gastronomic food movement is under full swing now and consumers have the power of knowledge and the power to change things for the good.

    Keep this in mind. We know naturally that fresh is best. The cosset you get to fresh, the better. In over to satisfy other needs in the market place today, we have sent major competitive brands to the lab for analysis of the nutrients and other food science chemistry questions to be answered. We also sent fresh unprocessed coconut water to the lab. We did the analysis on both. And without a doubt, the commercial brands (there must be 100 brands now worldwide and more) DO NOT HAVE THE NUTRIENT DENSITY AND HEALTH BENEFITS THAT COCONUT WATER HAS WHEN IT IS NOT PROCESSED THE WAY THE COMMERCIAL BRANDS HAVE.

    So, we hope to hear from you soon. Please send me an email to : Noelani1@earthlink.net and we will send you the real deal. The better deal. The best coconut water for your body and much better than any sports drink on the market.

    Thank you.
    “Coconut Ed”

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  1. [...] recipe, I might opt to substitute coconut cream from a can instead of the coconut meat, and buy pre-packaged coconut water instead of fighting for the juice and meat from a real coconut. However, I do like the healthy [...]

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