Coconut is a fruit that grows well in tropical regions and often classified as a nut. A coconut palm tree can yield about 20-150 mature nuts for up to 13 times in a year; it has a thick husk of rough fibres; a woody-hard shell which encloses the white colored coconut meat which further holds its sweet and nutritious water in place. Coconut is a completely useful fruit in the sense that every part of the fruit is totally useful- the water, milk, flesh, sugar and oil. Coconut products are really beneficial for both domestic and industrial purposes. Did I forget to mention that its oil is the latest beauty secret?
1. Energy Giving:
Coconuts basically have a very high fat content, therefore it is a good energy giving source. In any case of health awareness is necessary as to balance the frequency of consumption. it contains saturated fats which generally
2. Fat/Calorie Content:
With the high calorie content, it makes one feel less hungry. The saturated fats in coconuts contains Medium-chain Triglycerides (MCTs) which burns into energy a lot quicker than in other fat products like dairy and fatty meat. For this fact, coconut fans see no harm in an increased consumption rate. However it is important to know that saturated fats generally raise one’s Low-density Lipoprotein (LDL) and could be a potential cause of cardiovascular diseases.
3. Dietary Fibre Content:
It is interesting to also know that the coconut also has a good amount of dietary fibre which helps to improve digestion and soothes inflammatory conditions and bowel disorders. The dietary fibre also helps in the absorption of other nutrients – vitamins, minerals, and amino acids alike.
4. Vitamins and Minerals:
Coconuts are highly nutritious- they contain Vitamins E & K and minerals such as iron – helps in the production of hemoglobin and red blood cells; helps brain & muscle function; and gets rid of fatigue.
5. Weight Loss:
It is still debatable that the medium-chain fatty acids in coconuts seem not to be stored in the body’s adipose tissue unlike other fats (long-chain fatty acids), thus could be good for weight loss and heart health. Scientific researches have been undertaken to clarify this claim, and until there’s a proof, nothing is 100% for certain. Bearing that in mind, sticking tighter to other low-calorie foods, nuts, fruits and vegetables is a better option for weight loss.
6. Coconut Oils:
Coconut oils have been trending lately for both health and beauty inclined reasons –
- Beauty treatments- used as skin moisturizers; for facials and massages in spas and for making home-made toothpaste and body scrubs as well.
- Used for scalp/dandruff treatment and as a natural conditioner for the ‘Afrocentric’ woman on natural hair.
- Eases Arthritis pain
- Improves brain function
- Relieves from constipation and stress
Other arguable qualities include the improvement of insulin for diabetics; prevents Alzheimer; supports thyroid function (prevents goitre). Coconut oil has suddenly become an all-purpose ingredient for well-being but it is advised that medical attention be sought especially for certain health conditions before consumption; MODERATION is always key.
7. Coconut Water:
While the fruit as a whole contains a significant amount of fat, coconut water in itself contains a very low amount of fat; thus used in supporting weight loss efforts. It is also used in skin/hair care products; improves digestion; for re-hydration therapies; and reduces blood pressure. Coconut water is super-rich in potassium and very nutritious. Health experts recommend that the regular intake of this drink goes better with an active lifestyle.
8. Coconut Milk
Coconut milk is a delicious and lactose free drink which can serve as a natural cure for sun burns and also widely used in cooking. Though it has a lesser calcium content than dairy milk, coconut milk contains phosphorus which equally strengthen bones. It is believed that the medium-chain saturated fatty acids in coconut milk may also improve heart health. It contains the lauric acid which on ingestion forms the monolaurin- an antiviral and antibacterial compound which fights disease causing organisms.
Medics also warn that except the industrialized coconut milk is certified to be free of Biphenol-A (BPA), the product could be a potential cause of infertility, premature puberty and breast cancer.
9. Heart Health:
Since the MCTs found in coconuts are easily metabolized, they logically reduce the cholesterol levels. In other words they help increase High-density Lipoprotein- HDL (good cholesterol levels) in the blood.
Coconut is an all round rich food that when eaten whole in the right frequency, nourishes the body and as a fruit boosts the body’s immune system’s fight against a host of infections and diseases.