COCONUT HEALTH BENEFITS AND MINERALS

Posted in VEGETABLES HEALTH BENEFITS AND MINERALS

Health Benefits

1.  Coconut is a very versatile and indispensable food item for most people under the tropical belt. It is a complete food rich in calories, vitamins, and minerals. A medium-size nut carrying 400 g edible meat and some 30-150 ml of water may provide almost all the daily-required essential minerals, vitamins, and energy of an average-sized individual.

2.  100 g kernel consists of 354 calories. Much of this comes from the fats and protein. Although, its meat is disproportionately high in saturated fats on comparison to other common edible nuts, coconut has many bioactive compounds that are essential for better health.

3.  The important saturated fatty acid in the coconut is lauric acid (1:12 carbon fatty acid). Lauric acid increases good-HDL cholesterol levels in the blood. HDL is a high-density lipoprotein, which has beneficial effects on the coronary arteries by preventing vessel blockade (atherosclerosis). Physicians recommend high HDL to total cholesterol levels in the blood for the same reason.

4.  Coconut water is a very refreshing drink to beat tropical summer thirst. The juice is packed with simple sugar, electrolytes, minerals, and bioactive compounds such as cytokinin, and enzymes such as acid phosphatase, catalase, dehydrogenase, peroxidase, polymerases, etc. Altogether, these enzymes aid in digestion and metabolism.

5.  Coconut oil extracted from dry kernel (copra) is an excellent emollient agent. It is used in cooking, applied over scalp as hair nourishment, employed in pharmacy and in medicines.

6.  Research studies suggest that cytokinins (e.g., kinetin and trans-zeatin) in coconut water showed significant anti-ageing, anti-carcinogenic, and anti-thrombotic effects.

7.  The kernel is an excellent source of minerals such as copper, calcium, iron, manganese, magnesium, and zinc.

8.  It is also a very good source of B-complex vitamins such as folates, riboflavin, niacin, thiamin, and pyridoxine. These vitamins are essential in the sense that body requires them from external sources to replenish.

9.  Coconut meat and water contain a very good amount of potassium. 100 g of fresh meat contains 356 mg% or 7.5% of daily required levels of potassium.

Minerals

PRINCIPLE

NUTRIENT VALUE

PERCENTAGE OF RDA

Energy

354 Kcal

18%

Carbohydrates

15.23 g

12%

Protein

3.3 g

6%

Total Fat

33.49 g

167%

Cholesterol

0 mg

0%

Dietary Fiber

9 g

24%

VITAMINS

Folates

26 µg

6.5%

Niacin

0.540 mg

3%

Pantothenic acid

0.300 mg

6%

Pyridoxine

0.054 mg

4%

Riboflavin

0.020 mg

1.5%

Thiamin

0.066 mg

5.5%

Vitamin C

3.3 mg

5.5%

Vitamin A

0 IU

0%

Vitamin E

0.24 mg

2%

Vitamin K

0.2 µg

<1%

ELECTROLYTES

Sodium

20 mg

1%

Potassium

356 mg

7.5%

MINERALS

Calcium

14 mg

1.4%

Copper

0.435 mg

48%

Iron

2.43 mg

30%

Magnesium

32 mg

8%

Manganese

1.500 mg

65%

Phosphorus

113 mg

16%

Selenium

10.1 µg

18%

Zinc

1.10 mg

10%

PHYTO-NUTRIENTS

Carotene, beta

0 µg

--

Phytosterols

47 mg

--

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