When it comes to superfoods, coconuts are the cream of the crop. From the water, to the flesh, to the oil, these amazing fruits are bursting with nourishing health benefits.
Crack open a young coconut, and you’ll find sweet, delicious, and refreshing coconut water. It’s not only a yummy drink, it’s also a powerhouse of nutrition. First of all, it has a very high mineral content. These minerals include calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, zinc, and a lot of potassium.
Because of its high potassium and electrolyte content, and the other important minerals it contains, coconut water can make a great hydrating sports drink — and it’s completely natural, unlike those artificial sports drinks you’ll find on store shelves.
Along with minerals, coconut water contains high concentrations of B-vitamins, as well as bioactive enzymes. These bioactive enzymes, including diastase, acid phosphatase, and catalase, help to promote healthy digestion and metabolic function.
Coconut flesh, the “meat” inside a more mature coconut, can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. The flesh can be pressed into coconut “butter,” or puree, which contains a wealth of nutrients, as well as fiber, which is often strained out of other coconut forms. This butter has a sweet, coconut taste, and is great in desserts or with fruit.
Coconut milk and dried coconut are are also made from coconut flesh. These are both great in recipes of all kinds, from soups to sauces, curries to desserts. Coconut milk is a great replacement for dairy milk if you are allergic to, or choose not to consume, dairy. You’ll be getting B-vitamins, minerals, and healthy saturated fats, to boot.
When mature coconut flesh is pressed, the result is nutritious coconut oil. One great way to supercharge your recipes (and avoid consuming unhealthy oils) is to replace all of the cooking oils in your home with coconut oil. While it contains about 90 percent fat, this is healthy, natural, saturated fat, which nourishes the body and promotes the optimal function of all systems.
Just a few of the benefits of using coconut oil regularly include boosting metabolism, promoting thyroid health, and protecting the health of your brain. These benefits are largely thanks to the medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) that coconut oil contains, which are metabolized into ketones by the body. These ketones provide energy for your brain.
Why choose just one way to enjoy coconut? The health benefits abound, and its uses are so varied, you’ll want to keep some in your home at all times!
– Dr. Joshua Levitt