If you crack open a coconut, the clear juice that runs out is coconut water (not to be confused with coconut milk) and it’s the latest rage in sports drinks. It’s a superfood because it miraculously has the same electrolyte balance as human blood.
A proper balance of electrolytes is necessary for regulating blood pressure and for muscle coordination, heart and nerve function and concentration, all important for midlife women.
This makes it a better choice for rehydrating after a strenuous workout in hot weather or during an illness involving vomiting or diarrhea.
It is so naturally aligned with our bodies’ composition that during World War II in the Pacific coconut water was used as intravenous hydration and for emergency plasma transfusions. Because it rebalances electrolytes it is also helpful for hangover relief the morning after. (So good to know!)
Coconut water contains all of the essential electrolytes including magnesium, sodium, phosphorous and calcium, and is higher in potassium than most sports drinks, and even higher than bananas.
It has about 15 grams of natural sugar per serving but no processed sugars, unlike most sports drinks that have as much as 14 grams of processed sugar including high fructose corn syrup.
Coconut water doesn’t really taste like coconuts but more like almonds. It has a mineral taste. Drink it plain or you can mix it with orange juice or your daily pomegranate juice, or use it in smoothies instead of water. Vendors are also producing flavored versions including tangerine, pineapple, acai and passion fruit, which might be a good way to begin experimenting.
Definitely chill it before drinking to improve the taste and it’s very refreshing.
You can find it at Whole Foods Markets and health food stores as well as some major grocery chains. You can also order it on-line from Amazon.com. Some good brands are Vita Coco and O.N.E.