Coconut water – It’s summertime and one can glimpse the tender coconut at every corner of the city. Coconut water has many advantages as well as disadvantages! This wonderful drink should be consumed with some precautions to achieve it’s best possible health benefits. Ayurveda has described this beautiful drink as nature’s wonder but at the same time it has also emphasized the suitable conditions for the consumption of coconut water.
1. What are the benefits of coconut water?
Answer: Coconut water is nature’s wonderful gift for humankind. It is loaded with minerals and hydrates our system very fast. The coconut tree grows on the soils which are near the seashore and that’s why it is most suitable for individuals staying in those geographical regions. The fresh coconut water and the tender coconut gives a feeling of wholeness and supply instant energy to the body.
2. What is Ayurveda’s approach to coconut water?
Answer: As per the science of Ayurveda, the post-digestive effect of coconut water is heavy and cooling. This can make Kapha Dosha imbalanced and also slow down digestion while reducing the intensity of digestive fire (Agni). That’s the reason, coconut water should be consumed with some precautions.
3. Who should avoid drinking coconut water?
Answer: Individuals with Kapha type bodies (prakruti) or having disorders related to vitiated Kapha dosha should avoid drinking coconut water regularly. Please check the description below.
- Individuals with the issue of Incontinence: coconut water is a diuretic and you may end up visiting washrooms more frequently. People with incontinence issues (especially, senior citizens) can be in trouble after overdrinking the coconut water. Drink it in moderation as then it will only provide hydration and energy.
- People with allergies: coconut water may trigger an allergic reaction if you already have any kind of fruit or nuts allergies. Coconut, being a nut may aggravate allergic reaction in the person that would lead to illness and may turn serious in some cases.
- Diabetics: Diabetes is known as Madhumeha in the science of Ayurveda and is known to be affected by vitiated Kapha dosha. As we have seen before that coconut water can create an imbalance in Kapha, hence diabetic patients can drink it in moderation. Coconut water is high in calories and carbohydrates. Regular consumption can have harmful effects on sugar metabolism.
- Individuals with upper and lower respiratory tract disorders like bronchial asthma, COPD, frequent attacks of coughs should strictly avoid drinking coconut water. A respiratory tract is a place of Kapha dosha. All kinds of cooling foods should be avoided to maintain the health of the respiratory tract.
- Avoid drinking coconut water in the early hours of the morning to maintain the strength of digestive fire.
- Hypertensive patients who are on medication: coconut water may take their blood pressure levels to an extreme low which can be fatal.
4. What is the right time to consume coconut water?
Answer: The best time to drink tender coconut water is the time when Pitta Dosha dominates the system ie between 11 am to 1 pm. Ayurveda believes that all three doshas are circulating in our system in the pattern of Vaayu-Pitta-Kapha in the daytime as well as nighttime. Only one dosha dominates at a time while others are dormant (less active). Coconut water taken in Kapha or Vaayu time can cause disorders of Kapha and Ama (sticky, undigested substance produced by the gut due to wrong diet and lifestyle habits). This can give rise to many disorders.
* Season wise, coconut water can be consumed in hot summers, specifically in April, May and October (October heat).
* Elderly individuals who are not able to consume enough solid food or are bedridden can drink coconut water regularly.
5. Which are the suitable conditions for coconut water?
Answer: Coconut water is suitable for high pitta conditions like Eczema, Psoriasis, Hyperacidity, migraine (due to vitiated pitta). Please consult your Ayurveda physician to understand your doshic condition before you go ahead with the consumption of coconut water.
The minerals found in coconut water like potassium and sodium act as electrolytes and it will balance the water level in your system during summer and dehydration. This makes coconut water a wonderful remedy for multiple medical conditions.
- Tackles urinary disorder by helping to get rid of toxins in the urinary tract and keeping the system healthy.
- Hot flushes – consuming coconut water can take care of the burning sensation in the digestive tract as well as hot sensation in extremities, eyes, ears or the mouth.
- For Cholera – mix two glasses of coconut water with three or four teaspoons of lime juice and consume it slowly. The potassium content of it brings back the electrolyte balance and faster recovery.
- Anti-ageing property – coconut water has excellent anti-ageing agents, it hydrates your skin, making it firm and radiant.
- Controls cholesterol – latest medical research reports that consuming coconut water can reduce triglycerides and bad cholesterol.
- Treats diarrhoea and fatigue. Coconut water also imparts strength as well as libido.
A meritorious alumna of the prestigious RA Poddar Ayurvedic College with profound spiritual understanding. She is trained in Nadi vidya by a strict guru-shishya lineage and has clinical experience with more than 15 years. An excellent orator who has been invited to various national and international platforms that empower audiences with the knowledge of Āyurveda. Dr. Rushalli Nair is the first-ever lady Vaidya who has been invited to Swaminarayan temple to offer her services to Sadhvis and devotees.