Saturday, February 4, 2012

For All You Athletes Out There

I started drinking coconut water about a year or two ago. All of a sudden it is everywhere. I find it especially thirst quenching after a big night out, or a really long workout. Here are the health benefits in a nutshell:
"Coconut water is a powerhouse of natural electrolytes, vitamins, minerals, trace elements, amino acids, enzymes, antioxidants and phytonutrients, and is low in sugar, but pleasantly sweet. It’s great for post-exercise re-hydration, but also has anti-inflammatory properties, protects your heart and urinary tract, is a digestive tonic, improves your skin and eyes, supports good immune function, and can even help balance your blood glucose and insulin levels." 
"Coconut water is the richest dietary source of cytokinins, plant hormones that have anti-cancer, anti-aging, and anti-thrombolytic benefits in humans. Because coconut water is isotonic and sterile (upon coming out of the coconut), it is very similar to blood plasma and has been used intravenously in emergency situations for more than 60 years." (Original Source)
While I do agree with the nutritional benefits of drinking plain coconut water, the stuff with mixed fruit and fruit juice is just a bunch of sugar. I just stick with the original plain kind now, but it just tastes a little off when you drink it by itself.

What I started doing, instead of drinking the pineapple flavored kind (I am obsessed with pineapple), is using plain coconut water in my morning smoothies. Instead of using a lot of water, I use half coconut water and half water. I have found that this has really helped me as I have increased my workouts over the past few weeks.

SIDE NOTE: You can even use coconut water in drinks! This pic was taken at a beach side bar in Rincon, PR last year. The bartenders chopped the coconut up right in front of you with a machete (something that apparently is common to have and walk around with in Puerto Rico), used some of the coconut water, some other goodness that I can't really remember (probably rum) and cinnamon. Not really a "healthy" drink, but it sure was delish!

Coconuts have been very underrated here in the US, but times, they are a changin'!

Try using coconut water instead of Gatorade, Vitamin Water, and electrolyte waters. Who the hell knows what is in them (really...can you understand the ingredients?) OR if our bodies actually use the synthetic s-h-i-t they put in there anyway. My guess is all these companies pushing vitamins are bringing knives to a gun fight. Mother Nature being the one holding the gun. 

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