Coconut has multiples benefits, they are delicious and are grown in the tropics. These tropical fruits have become one of the most consumed fruits around the world for its versatility and flavor, they are being used for multiple products, like beauty products and different recipes in the kitchen.
In the past, the coconuts had a bad reputation as being and artery clogging, cholesterol packed food that could provoke heart diseases, but know the things are different, the coconut is making a great comeback. This tropical fruit is high in fiber, very nutritious and rich in essential vitamins and minerals.
Is coconut a fruit?
Here we explain you what is a coconut, this is a fibrous one seed drupe, if we are speaking botanically, if you are wondering if is coconut a nut, they can define it as a fruit, nut or seed. The classification can be a hard work for an average person, but the botanists love the classification, they can be classified as a one-seed drupe, a drupe is a fruit with a very hard stony covering the seed, this word comes from drupa, wich means overripe olive. All the drupe fruits are covered with three layers, the exocarp (the outer layer), the mesocarp (the middle layer) and the endocarp (this layer is the hardest one and is the one which cover the coconut seeds).
The coconut we buy in the stores are not the same we can find in the beach growing on those coconut palm trees. The untouched coconut has 3 layers, but the one we can find in stores has just only one because the exocarp and mesocarp have been removed.
When you hear the word coconut, some people can be confused and there is why they ask if are coconut nuts because of the word «nut». A nut can be defined as a fruit with just one seed, for this reason a coconut can be defined as a nut too. Anyway, this tropical fruit is not a true nut.
Here we can find some interest facts of this exotic fruit:
- Every part of the coconut is used for something, for this reason they are also called the «Tree of Life», you can produce different products such as drinks, food, fiber, utensils, fuel, beauty products and even music instruments.
- During the World War 2 and Vietnam, when there were short-supply of intravenous , the doctors used coconut water in substitution.
- Botanically, the palm trees are not considered trees, because they don’t have branches, barks or secondary growth.
- It takes from 11 or 12 months for a coconut fruit to be mature.
Health benefits of coconut
Here we tell why is coconut good for you.
Young coconuts can have more health benefits than the mature one, the water you can find inside the young coconut is a high source of electrolytes, the function of the electrolyte is keeping your body hydrated, so the muscle and nerves can work properly. So is more healthier for you to drink the water of a young coconut than a commercial sport drink. The water is one of the greatest benefits of coconut we can find.
Their water is low in calories, carbohydrates and sugars, is delicious and refreshing. Additionally, is rich in ascorbic acid, vitamins B and full of proteins. the soft meat you can find inside can help you to restore the oxidative tissue damage and is a source of healthy fat, proteins, vitamins and minerals.
9 coconut benefits you can find:
- Can support the inmune system health: it’s antiviral, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and anti-parasite .
- Can improve the insulin secretion and symptoms related with the diabetes.
- It helps to improve the digestion and the absorption of nutrients, vitamins and minerals you eat.
- Reduce the risk of heart disease and can improve the good cholesterol.
- Contributes to weight loss.
- Can protect you against bladder infection and kidney disease.
- Can help to protect your body against cancer due to insulin reduction, can remove the free radicals that cause a premature aging.
- Provide a natural source of energy.
- Can help to keep your skin and hair healthy and make them look young for a long time.
What is coconut oil?
Coconut oil is the one is extracted from the edible and fleshy meat, this is actually the kernel of it. There are different methods to extract oil, this is why you can find different types of coconut oil in the stores.
This kind of oil is a medium-chain saturated fatty acid, this means that fatty acid chains are between 6-12 carbons in length. Almost all the other natural saturated and unsaturated fats we consume are long-chain fatty acid. This is why coconut oil is unique, because of its nutritional properties unlike any other fat we consume.
What is in coconut oil
One of the medium-chain fatty acid found in the coconut oil and lauric acid contains antimicrobial properties. For this reason this type of oil is capable to reduce the inflammation and improve the inmune function when consumed energy regularly, can also be an effective treatment against different types of acne and skin conditions when is applied topically.
Some people are confused if coconut oil is healthy for them because of its high content of saturated fats. But you can’t mistake hydrogenated coconut oil with pure cold-press extra virgin coconut oil. The pure coconut oil comes from mature coconuts, which have a harder flesh. The white flesh is collected, triturated and pressed at 90-100 degrees fahrenheit. Unprocessed and unrefined virgin coconut oil is not hydrogenated and can be consumed without any problem.
One of the best option of using coconut oil and enjoy the benefits is for cooking food, is one of the most stable oil you can find in market for cooking with high heat. Can be used as a spread, for baking, or vegan desserts, this can give to your foods a delicious additional flavor.