Lately, everyone has been going crazy after coconut water and its claimed benefits of being a better post-workout recovery drink than water. A magic elixir as some people call it for its hydrating effects, is it worth the hype? What is so special about coconut water hydration that it is burning the market shelves? This article tells about whether coconut water is better for hydration than normal water.
Is coconut water more hydrating than plain water?
Current marketing trends have been promoting the use of coconut water so much so that it is claimed to have a more hydrating effect than water. But is it true?
The answer is ‘no’! There is no scientific evidence to prove that coconut water is more hydrating than plain water.
Many studies have compared the effects of water and coconut water, however, no significant difference has been found between the effects of the three of them. For heavy recreational activities, sports drinks or coconut water is preferred due to the high sodium content that helps in increasing the absorption of water.
Coconut water is a powerhouse of many micronutrients inclusive of B vitamins, potassium, Folic acid, trace amounts of vitamin C as well as sodium. It also has small amounts of carbohydrates and proteins.
Coconut water contains less sugar compared to sports drinks. For a normal athlete, post-workout, the body needs more simple carbohydrates and electrolytes. These are not found in adequate amounts in coconut water.
Instead, to replenish these nutrients, post-workout meals are suggested. Without supplementary carbohydrate or electrolyte supplements, coconut water is not suited for longer or endurance activity.
Benefits of Coconut Water
1. Aids in reducing blood pressure
Coconut water may help in reducing blood pressure. Studies have shown that coconut water consumption is linked to reduced systolic blood pressure in hypertensive patients.  Coconut water consists of about 600 mg of potassium per 250 ml of a serving. Potassium helps in the reduction of blood pressure.  Coconut water prevents thrombosis. Thrombosis refers to the formation of blood clots that can hinder proper blood circulation.
2. May improve heart health
Drinking coconut water may reduce the risk of developing heart disease. Because the potassium in coconut water helps to counteract the blood pressure-raising effects of sodium, it may assist to avoid heart disease. It also helps in reducing liver fat and lowering blood cholesterol.
3. It May help prevent kidney stones
Fluid intake helps in preventing kidney stones that are caused due to the formation of oxalate and calcium crystals. Coconut water consumption helps in the prevention of the formation of oxalate and calcium crystals and clearing the urinary tract. Coconut water is loaded with antioxidants that help in retaining healthy filtration of the kidneys.
4. It May be beneficial in reducing blood sugar levels
Coconut water has been shown to reduce blood sugar levels.  Coconut water lowers the levels of HbA1c, which assists in controlling blood sugar levels. It’s also high in magnesium, which can help people with type 2 diabetes and prediabetes improve insulin sensitivity and lower blood sugar levels.
5. Rich in electrolytes
Coconut water is high in potassium, sodium, and magnesium, among other electrolytes. Coconut water contains electrolytes that can assist manage fluid balance, avoid dehydration, and even maintain appropriate muscular function. Of course, you’ll need to replenish your carbohydrate and protein stores after your workout.
Coconut water has a little sweetness and a nutty flavour. It’s also low in calories and carbohydrates. When the water comes straight from the coconut, it is the healthiest.
To drink, simply insert a straw into the soft section of a green coconut. You can also go for packaged coconut water, but make sure you read the nutritional labels to check the presence of additives.
Keep the coconut in the fridge and have it within two to three weeks of purchasing it. Coconut water, like plain water and sports beverages, is fine for recreational athletes. Most people don’t exercise vigorously enough to necessitate sports drinks or coconut water, so plain water will suffice.
When you’re craving anything other than water, reach for coconut water instead of sugary drinks and sodas and enjoy this delicious drink!