Coconuts have remarkably become a multipurpose food commodity in the market today. Every part of the fruit is indeed useful: from our everyday cooking to our health and beauty routines. Thus, it has been classified as “one of nature’s greatest gifts to man”.
Also known as the “fruit of the coconut palm”, coconuts are a powerful one-seeded stone drupe and it can be all three: a fruit, a nut, and a seed. At present, coconuts germinate in tropical countries such as the Hawaiian Islands, the Caribbean and some portions of South America and Africa.
The fruit is exceptionally nutritious, rich in fiber, and is loaded with vitamins and minerals that the body needs to keep going. Surely, coconuts pack a good punch.
What is it about this tropical food that remains to intrigue and mystify the masses all at once? Let’s discover more of the numerous health benefits of coconut and what they have to offer.
There are two types identified from the palm species Cocos nucifera:
Unlike other fruits that are high in carbohydrates, coconuts contain healthy fatty acids which are good for the body. Several scholarly articles indicate that coconuts are proven to be helpful in maintaining a healthy and toxic-free immune system.
Here are some of the benefits you can gain out of it:
Coconut is widely considered as a great source of healthy fat. The meat in it has protein and fiber, as well as other vital minerals such as:
The meat in a coconut has ample quantity of median chain fatty acids, a kind of saturated fat that is considered lighter for the human body to assimilate compared to other fats. These fats have been determined to improve the endurance of some who have been using it regularly.
A study has shown that the meat found in coconuts has rich antimicrobial properties. These can be beneficial in fighting infections associated with root canals and other dental issues. It can help in eliminating different bacteria found in your mouth while keeping your gums and teeth clean and free from infection or cavities.
Coconut meat has phenolic compounds, which are antioxidants that might improve and protect cells from damages such as oxidation.
The fundamental phenolic compounds identified are as follows:
These antioxidants provide cell protection from damages, which may reduce diseases.
Historically, coconut oil can also be useful for your skin and hair. Instead of soaking your body with synthetic and commercialized products, coconut oil can be helpful in nurturing and taking good care of your skin, scalp, and hair.
Coconut oil has been widely used as food and medicine for many years.
Coconut is flexible in the kitchen setting and works perfectly in both raw and ready to cook meals. It’s a prominent choice for those on nut-free, gluten-free, paleo, or low-carb diets.
There are several studies and theories tackling the potential benefits of coconut but only have narrow scientific evidence to support their claims.
Among the other reported health benefits are the following:
Nonetheless, it is still best to consult your doctor first before using coconuts.
Because coconuts are naturally high in fat, it means they are also high in calories. Thus, they might demonstrate weight gain, depending on your intake and needs. Moreover, consuming coconut in moderateness is fine, but it is best to contact your healthcare provider about it first if you are at risk of developing heart problems.
In addition, there are people allergic to coconuts, though this is rare. If you have this kind of allergy, you should avoid using and eating all coconut-produced products.