Sunday, November 29, 2015

Consuming a Whole Coconut for Better Health

The various parts of the coconut have a number of culinary uses. In this article, we will show you how to crack open a whole coconut to extract its:
  • Coconut meat
    • This is the main part you want to consume for better health
    • A good way to consume coconut meat is adding it to your smoothies[1]
  • Coconut water
for your consumption.


How to Crack Open a Coconut


There are multiple ways of cracking open a coconut. You can see one of them here on Youtube. However, there is a better way of doing it if you have a good Chinese chef's knife as shown below.



Using the lower corner of the blade (i.e., highlighted circle), you can cut open the top part of the skull—which is the weaker part of it —as shown in the picture. As always, be cautious when you use the knife.

As we have said, the most nutritious part of coconut is its meat (i.e., the white, fleshy part). After cut open a hole on the top and pour out the coconut water, you can then use a table spoon to scoop out its meat from inside.

Health Benefits


As shown in [2-3], coconut—especially coconut oil—provide countless health benefits . In [4,6], we have also shown that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. So, you should buy a whole coconut and consume it as described in this article.

Similar to the approach of a reductionist in nutrition, we have highlighted the individual nutrition constituent below[5]
  • Coconut meat
    • Per 100 gram serving with 354 calories, raw coconut meat supplies a high amount of total fat (33 grams), especially saturated fat (89% of total fat) and carbohydrates (24 grams) (see below table). Micronutrients in significant content include the dietary minerals, manganese, iron, phosphorus and zinc (see below table).
  • Coconut water
    • Per 100 gram (100 ml) serving, coconut water contains 19 calories and no significant content of essential nutrients.
    • Mature fruits have significantly less liquid than young, immature coconuts


Nutritional value of coconut meat
per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy354 kcal (1,480 kJ)

15.23 g
Sugars6.23 g
Dietary fiber9.0 g

33.49 g
Saturated29.698 g
Monounsaturated1.425 g
Polyunsaturated0.366 g

3.33 g
Tryptophan0.039 g
Threonine0.121 g
Isoleucine0.131 g
Leucine0.247 g
Lysine0.147 g
Methionine0.062 g
Cystine0.066 g
Phenylalanine0.169 g
Tyrosine0.103 g
Valine0.202 g
Arginine0.546 g
Histidine0.077 g
Alanine0.170 g
Aspartic acid0.325 g
Glutamic acid0.761 g
Glycine0.158 g
Proline0.138 g
Serine0.172 g

Vitamins
Thiamine (B1)
(6%)
0.066 mg
Riboflavin (B2)
(2%)
0.020 mg
Niacin (B3)
(4%)
0.540 mg
(6%)
0.300 mg
Vitamin B6
(4%)
0.054 mg
Folate (B9)
(7%)
26 μg
Vitamin C
(4%)
3.3 mg
Vitamin E
(2%)
0.24 mg
Vitamin K
(0%)
0.2 μg

Minerals
Calcium
(1%)
14 mg
Iron
(19%)
2.43 mg
Magnesium
(9%)
32 mg
Manganese
(71%)
1.500 mg
Phosphorus
(16%)
113 mg
Potassium
(8%)
356 mg
Sodium
(1%)
20 mg
Zinc
(12%)
1.10 mg

Other constituents
Water46.99 g

Photo Credit

References

  1. Smoothie Recipes for Better Health
  2. Countless Uses for Coconut Oil – The Simple, the Strange, and the Downright Odd
  3. Oil Pulling for Your Oral Health—Why and How?
  4. The Whole Is Greater Than the Sum of Its Parts (Travel and Health)
  5. Coconut (Wikipedia)
  6. THE SECRET INGREDIENT IN YOUR ORANGE JUICE
  7. 5 Survival Foods to Consider for Your Emergency Supplies
    • Coconuts with the thick husk intact can be stored for up to six months if kept cold; husked coconuts will keep up to 2 months. Once the hard shell of a coconut is cut open, coconut meat deteriorates rather quickly at room temperature, so needs to be consumed as quickly as possible.
  8. Top 10 Ways Your Body Benefits From Coconut Water
  9. Cocos nucifera (L.) (Arecaceae): A phytochemical and pharmacological review
    • Coconut water seems to have protective effects, e.g., on the kidney and heart, and antioxidant activity, as well as a hypoglycemic effect.

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