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Coconut milk: surprising benefits and properties

Coconut milk is a natural drink full of nutritional benefits and preventive and healing properties. We reveal its most important virtues and qualities.

Who has not eaten coconut before? It basically consists of the fruit of the coconut tree, which is known by the name of Cocos nucifera and belongs to the palm family (Aracaceae). It is commonly grown in South Asia, Polynesia, and Malaysia. Regarding its consumption, in Sanskrit the coconut tree is known as “kalpa vriksha” precisely because all its parts can be used. In fact, translated means “the tree that gives everything you need to live.”

Its curious name was chosen by Spanish and Portuguese explorers who came to America, and who observed the beards and eyes that appear on the nut shell when it dries, as it reminded them of the popular character that scares children.

It is a delicious and tremendously nutritious fruit, from which all its meat and its fleshy layer can be used precisely for the preparation of three popular and well-known recipes:  coconut oil (very interesting when applied on the skin), water of coconut and coconut milk.

However, we should not confuse coconut milk with coconut water. The first consists of the liquid that we find inside the ripe coconuts, the pulp already formed and fat accumulated;  while coconut water is found inside immature coconuts. Furthermore, we do have to distinguish coconut milk from coconut oil itself.

What is coconut milk?

Coconut milk consists of crushing ripe coconut meat, which accumulates inside an oily and tremendously aromatic pulp of white color, which can also be consumed whole (or solid).

This delicious liquid can be consumed fresh from the same fresh coconut used as a container, or purchased as a packaged drink in many supermarkets, herbalists and specialized stores.

Most important benefits of coconut milk

Coconut milk is a drink very rich in benefits and properties, not only nutritional or nutritious, but also curative and preventive.

Incredible nutritional wealth

Coconut milk is a balanced drink with a high content of essential nutrients, among which we can mention:

  • Carbohydrates: 100 grams of coconut milk provide 5 grams of carbohydrates.
  • Proteins: 100 grams provide 2.30 gr. protein, a content higher than that of other fruits.
  • Fats: it is a drink that is especially rich in saturated fat, hence its consumption should always be moderate. 100 grams of coconut milk provide almost 24 gr. of fat, of which 21 gr. they are from saturated fat.

Very rich in vitamins and minerals

In addition to carbohydrates, proteins and fats, coconut milk is an interesting drink in terms of its content in other essential nutrients, such as vitamins and minerals:

  • Vitamins: its contribution in vitamins of group B stands out especially, which exert important nutritional and energetic functions of our nervous system. Among these vitamins we can mention B1, B2, B3, B5 and B6. It also provides vitamin C.
  • Minerals: it is extremely rich in minerals and trace elements, among which we can mention potassium, phosphorus, selenium and chromium.

Its sugar content is low

Due to its sweet taste, we tend to think that both coconut water and coconut milk have a very high sugar content. However, it does not contain glucose or fructose, despite its sweet taste. In fact, it only has 2% sugar.

Does not contain lactose

As you surely know, more and more people suffer from lactose intolerance, an intolerance to milk sugar that prevents proper and correct digestion, so the consumption of dairy products rich in this compound tends to cause digestive and stomach problems.

Coconut milk is a good substitute for cow’s milk, mainly because it does not contain any lactose. For this reason, it has become an excellent option for vegans, since it is not only useful for making smoothies, but it can also be used as an alternative to bake delicious cakes and breads.

Protects the body from infections and viruses

Coconut milk is rich in lauric acid, a medium-chain saturated fatty acid that becomes a compound known as monolaurin, which stands out for being an antibacterial and antiviral, acting as a protector of our body against infections and viruses.

It does not get as far as you think

It is often thought that coconut milk and coconut in general are very fattening, mainly due to its high content of saturated fat. However, being richer in medium-chain saturated fatty acids, its fats are more rapidly metabolized as energy in our liver, so they are less likely to be stored.

In fact, they tend to be rapidly metabolized in our body, converted into energy and therefore never converted into body fat (as, for example, unsaturated vegetable fats in oilseeds would).

Always its consumption should be moderate

Precisely because of its saturated fat content, its consumption should be moderate and never daily, although there is no doubt that it becomes a very nutritious natural option.

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HealthyWire Staff
HealthyWire Staffhttps://healthywire.com/
This blog also features articles on natural living, fitness, healthy children, inspiration, and nutritious food and recipes. HealthyWire assists you in building a naturally healthy, whole-family environment. The site features articles on a variety of topics, including reduction of weight, men’s and women’s health, yoga, healthcare, fitness & exercise, diseases & prevention, healthy living and wellbeing, lifestyle, and much more.

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