Beware! Not All Coconut Water is Healthy
Be mindful when next choosing your coconut water
Coconut water is known to the world as one of the healthiest drinks and it packs quite lots of nutritional benefits that can help protect the body.
Athletes turn to coconut water instead of sports drinks because it can replenish diminished potassium and magnesium levels, rehydrating the nutrients needed by the body in order to function well. Coconut water is a natural thirst quencher, it can also balance the blood sugar levels and prevent inflammation.
Other benefits include:
- Lowering and normalising of high blood pressure
- Prevent heart attacks and healing cancer
- Anti-ageing properties (winning!)
The plant hormone found in it is called “trans-zeatin” can effectively counter the effects and is used as treatment for dementia and Alzheimer’s disease especially in older persons.
If you want to look and feel younger, drink this amazing natural juice of the coconut because it has anti-ageing properties which many food producers have taken advantage of as part of their food ingredients. The only thing you need to be wary about is that they’re not all created equally and many companies take shortcuts and don’t practice safe processes and this can ruin the natural properties of the end product and even make it unsafe for consumption.
Toxic Coconut Water
Pretty packaging and expensive advertising budgets and also the fact that coconut water is on trend right now can make us feel convinced that what we are drinking is the real deal but think again…
As mentioned above, not all coconut water is created equally and in fact there are many brands that really cut corners, have unsafe practices thus making an inferior and often unhealthy product (see brands deeper into the article).
Several food manufacturers apply harmful practices in the packaging of coconut water that has been ruined by added sugar and also chemicals (making the water impure and zero in on nutrients).
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Young green coconut produce nutrient dense water, however when the one seeded drupe matures nutrients start to seep inside the coconut meat making it lose its nutritional value and drinking it becomes useless. Consider using mature coconuts only when you want to make coconut milk, other than that discard it if possible.
2. When coconut water is heated, reduced to a syrup and added with water, it loses its nutritional elements (again making it useless). Manufacturers consider buying such because it is cheaper while they can demand more for their product when selling it.
3. Many manufacturers would apply extreme heat to kill bacteria found in coconut water to extend shelf life. Coconut water may perish naturally and it helps manufacturers take advantage of the heating process so they can still benefit from coconut water even when it is past its expiration.
Extremely high heat can kill bacteria, destroy nutrients and alter the flavour of coconut water. Be informed that a coconut water concentrate also means that it is heated twice! In Australia, it is law to pasteurise products such as coconut water and there is actually a safer method of pasteurisation known as ‘flash pasteurisation’ (quick pasteurisation basically). Flash pasteurisation obviously destroys some key nutrients but many still remain.
4. Preservatives and natural flavours are added to an already sweet and refreshing young coconut water. They do this especially for mature coconut water that has an acidic taste.
5. Non-organic coconuts are preserved and transported to the countries like Australia using carcinogens (cancer-causing substances) such as formaldehydes or sodium metabisulphite. These two chemicals are poisonous and may seep into the coconut meat and can mix with the water.
There are many brands I would not touch and for legal reasons I will not name, however there is one I do trust and use in all of our smoothies, keep on reading to find out…
The only coconut water I would drink and recommend and trust (besides the real thing of course!) is JT’s Coconut Essence and I’ll tell you why. Recently, I contacted JT’s Coconut Essence with a whole bunch of important questions and here is the Q&A:
Question: Both my husband and I have been drinking your coconut water and recommending it to others for many years now and we love it! However, as of recent times I’ve been reading a lot about packaged coconut water and as a consumer I need to know EXACTLY how your coconut water is produced.
Answer: I can understand your query but it’s generally the larger western markets (USA / Brazil / UK) / Germany) where coconut water is consumed in huge quantities that coconut water isn’t completely “natural” . The reason is the larger companies that are owned by Coke and Pepsi can’t get enough natural coconuts to satisfy their larger markets due to the enormous volumes consumed. It also depends on where that market is and where the coconuts are sourced hence they “blend” their products with Mature coconuts / water / add sugar or concentrates. A lot of cultures have different taste profiles and in some countries these blended products are preferred to the 100% natural product.
Question: On the website you guys say that nothing is added, that your coconut water is free from additives, sweeteners and preservatives, so can you please tell me if you ever reduce your coconut water to a syrup and add water? You guys never use a concentrate?
Answer: We are a small boutique coconut water company hence do not face the volume pressures of our larger competitors. We don’t have the requirement to adjust our natural coconut yield by using anything else in our coconut water. No preservatives, additives sweeteners or concentrates are added. Customs also randomly test our products about 10 times each year to ensure that these claims we make are correct.
Question: You say on the website that you only ever use young green coconuts, so does that mean that you never use mature ones?
Answer: That is correct – young green coconuts only. Mature coconuts change the taste profile and the nutritional benefits
Question: On the website you say that you ‘snap pasteurise’ for freshness and quality, but what is ‘Snap Pasteurisation’? please explain this as I could not find on the internet. What temperature do you guys heat the coconut water to?
Answer: Snap pasteurise / Flash pasteurise – By law we have to pasteurise the coconut water before it can be imported into the Australian market. This is the case with most countries as well. So what that entails is a “flash” super heating of the coconut water to 120 degrees for 100 seconds. Every companies policy on this will vary depending on what taste profile they want to achieve. Heat changes taste slightly depending on degrees and time taken.
Question: On the website you guys state that the coconut water is canned the same day that they coconuts are harvested, so does this mean your processing facility is in Thailand and none of the coconuts need importing/processing here in Australia?
Answer: Correct – Australia does not have the ability to grow coconuts on any commercial scale. It is also impossible to ship that volume of water without packaging it. Hence, everything is done in Thailand.
Question: I realise your coconut water is not organic so can you please tell me what pesticides/herbicides/fungicides are used in the growing process.
Answer: Pesticides are used to ensure the Coconut Rhinoceros Beetle does not infect a plantation. If it does it will decimate a plantation and the farmers won’t realise it until too late. Hence preventative spraying takes place for this pest. It’s no different to what our Aussie farmers do to protect their crops.
Question: Why does your coconut water in the can taste sweeter than the one in your tetra pack?
Answer: The water is the same in both products. It’s the packaging that changes the taste profile due to the material used. Personally I prefer the cans because they get colder faster than what the tetra does and for me I like it ice cold!
When it comes to choosing a high quality coconut water here in Australia I will mostly use JT’s Coconut Essence. I also love Pete Evans Raw C but it’s a little more expensive but well worth the price. It’s made with non-GMO coconuts, contains I have seen it in Woolies before and you can also get it online.
This is what Raw C claims
“We accept no compromise when it comes to your health which is why we’ve made it our mission to find the tastiest, all natural, single-source young green coconut water. We never add anything else. No concentrate. No sugar.”
I hope that helps you when you’re next choosing one for your smoothie.
Speaking of smoothies, did you know that it’s super important to include a healthy fat in your drink to get optimal benefits? I personally LOVE coconut oil! Click here to get the best organic, virgin coconut oil for your next smoothie that hasn’t been treated with toxic hexane.
Please Note: We are not affiliated with these companies so there is no bias here, we just really love their product and we are now happy to know that it’s safe to keep using in our daily smoothies.
We’d love to hear from you. Tell us what you put in your daily smoothie? Leave a comment on this blog, I promise to comment back ♥