What can coconut water do to your body?

By Huong Duong   June 25, 2024 | 05:00 pm PT
According to health news platforms Eat Well and Healthline, regularly drinking coconut water helps replenish electrolytes, lower blood pressure, and improve digestion.

Replenish electrolytes

Often referred to as a "nature’s sports drink," coconut water boasts a notable concentration of electrolytes such as potassium, sodium, magnesium, and calcium. These minerals are crucial for muscle contraction, nerve transmission, and maintaining fluid balance in the body.

Dietitian Hannah Van Ark highlights that coconut water’s rich electrolyte profile makes it an ideal rehydration option, particularly following fluid and electrolyte losses from illnesses like vomiting or diarrhea, or from sweating during exercise. Its osmotic properties, which are similar to human plasma, make it a prime choice for restoring electrolytes lost during dehydration.

Lower blood pressure

Drinking coconut water can have a beneficial impact on your blood pressure due to its high potassium content. One cup of coconut water contains 404 mg of potassium, which helps maintain optimal blood pressure levels by dilating blood vessels and counteracting sodium’s effects.

Support bone health

Potassium-rich foods and drinks, including coconut water, play a significant role in enhancing bone strength and density, thereby aiding in the prevention of osteoporosis—a condition marked by weak bones.

This is because potassium not only maintains electrolyte balance and cardiovascular health but also helps regulate the body’s acid-base balance. An acidic body environment prompts the release of calcium from bones to neutralize excess acid, weakening them over time. Potassium can help restore this balance and prevent calcium loss.

A fresh coconut. Illustration photo by Pexels

A fresh coconut. Illustration photo by Pexels

Improve digestive health

Coconut water’s hydrating properties can enhance gut health. It possesses anti-inflammatory and antibacterial qualities that may benefit the gut microbiome.

Thus, coconut water can alleviate irritation in the intestinal linings and provide essential nutrients, reducing pain from digestive disorders.

Reduce cellular damage

Free radicals—harmful molecules generated by normal metabolic processes, exposure to toxins, and external pollutants—pose daily threats to cells. Overwhelmed by excessive free radicals, the body may experience oxidative stress, which damages cells and heightens the risk of chronic diseases. Antioxidants in coconut water, such as vitamin C, cytokinin, and phenolic compounds, help mitigate this damage.

However, Van Ark notes that these antioxidant effects have been primarily studied in animals, and further human research is required to verify these findings.

Help manage blood sugar levels

Coconut water may also aid in regulating blood sugar levels. Animal studies suggest that it can help manage diabetes by lowering blood sugar, enhancing insulin sensitivity, and reducing oxidative stress, largely due to its high antioxidant and magnesium content and the presence of L-arginine. Nonetheless, it is crucial to recognize that more comprehensive human studies are necessary to confirm these benefits.

Additionally, since some coconut water products include added sugar, which can lead to sudden blood sugar spikes, it is recommended to choose unsweetened coconut water.

go to top