Tender coconuts are little packages of miracle from mother nature. Instantly refreshing, hydrating and yummy beyond words, tender coconut water is the perfect drink to sip on an exhausting day. How safe is this finest beverage during pregnancy? And which myths related to tender coconut water are true? Let’s find out!
Is coconut water safe during pregnancy?
Typically, the foods pregnant women are advised to avoid carry risks of infection with harmful bacteria. Soft cheeses and undercooked food like sushi or raw eggs are main concerns. If this is what you are concerned about, tender coconut water is perfectly safe as long it is hygienically handled. Make sure to use a clean straw and refrigerate any supply of tender coconut water that you buy and store for use during pregnancy.
If you are unable to find sources of fresh coconut water nearby, you can buy pasteurized commercially packed coconut water. Unpasteurized packaged coconut water is okay only if it has been sterilized in other ways to get rid of microbes.
Benefits of coconut water during pregnancy
Here are 8 major benefits of the nutrient rich coconut water for you during pregnancy.
Tender coconut water, as the name suggests, is 95 % pure water! It is a great healthy option to pick when you are feeling particularly parched when carrying your little one. However, don’t reduce your water intake – drink copious amounts of water and top up with the goodness of coconut water to ace the hydrating game during pregnancy!
- Morning Sickness
Hurling every meal into the toilet bowl every few hours is no fun. With nausea and vomiting from the morning sickness, you lose valuable electrolytes from your body. Tender coconut water is filled to the brim with natural electrolytes and can help your system stabilize and recover lost electrolytes like Magnesium, Sodium and Potassium.
Lauric acid and its active component, Monolaurin are promising anti-microbial agents. After mother’s breast milk, our tropical nut has the highest amounts of lauric acid, which can help you fight virus, fungi and bacteria, keeping your immunity in tip top shape. Human breastmilk is about 20% lauric acid, so you can also enjoy your coconut water with relish during breast feeding to strengthen your little one’s immunity.
- Soothe acid reflux
As your baby bump grows, so does pregnancy related heartburn. The belly pushing on the stomach mixed with the rising progesterone relaxing stomach valves, causes gastric juice to leak into your oesophagus, causing the dreaded heart burn and sour burps. Many pregnant women use coconut water to soothe their acid reflux and get some relief.
- Foetal Growth
We all know how important vitamins and minerals are for fast growing babies in the womb, which is why we take prenatal vitamins. Coconut water can also help you in this endeavour by giving to you a rich mix of essential minerals and vitamins. Calcium in coconut water helps in building strong bones, and magnesium reduces the risk of preeclampsia and low birth weight. Although this delicious drink is such nutrient filled, don’t substitute it for your daily vitamins or get distracted from other parts of your diet. Always try your best to eat a nutrient rich diet and include coconut water as a part of it, for you and your little one’s good health.
- Blood Pressure
A small study conducted in 2005 found that drinking coconut water every day for 2 weeks helped bring down high blood pressure and improved blood flow in 71% of participants. The potassium in coconut water is a known contributor that helps regulate blood pressure. Of course, never try to substitute coconut water for your BP medications – uncontrolled high BP can be a danger to pregnancy, have copious drinks of coconut water alongside your medications to help your heart.
- Energy Drink
If you are cleared by your doctor to resume your workouts during pregnancy, coconut water is a better energy drink, pre workout and post workout. You can finish your long walks and swimming sessions with a refreshing coconut water drink. And because it contains carbs and electrolytes, it relieves fatigue and tiredness after exercise by replenishing your body salts that were lost during sweating.
Coconut water is a great Urinary Tract Infection preventing agent. Frequent doses of coconut water can add to your fluid intake. It also has infection fighting properties that will keep UTIs at bay.
While there is not much peer reviewed evidence, pregnant women have long claimed that coconut water during pregnancy helps relieve constipation, improve digestion and reduce vomiting. Also, by relieving heartburn and easing away your fatigue and joint pains, coconut water can indirectly contribute to a better sleep during pregnancy.
Myths related to coconut water
- Coconut water makes the baby fair/ hair longer: First, all babies are beautiful. Second, your baby’s colour depends on the chain of genes you both have passed on to your little one and no amount of coconut water can alter your genes.
- Does it help with labour? There is no anecdotal evidence pointing to coconut water easing your labour pain, but staying healthy and having a sip of coconut water in labour can be helpful in keeping your energy up.
- Coconut water helps reduce stretch marks: Some swear that drinking coconut water and applying coconut oil helped reduce stretch marks during pregnancy. There is no strong evidence to support this claim, but trying it can’t hurt much – you will definitely reap lots of other benefits and gift your skin a healthy glow and elasticity with all that hydration.
Precautions to exercise when taking coconut water during pregnancy
It is important not to get too excited seeing all these health benefits that you choose to give up other sources of good nutrition. No single food is a super food that can cater to all of your nutritional requirements. So, pick a smart choice of healthy food to keep you healthy and strong in your pregnancy and devote a tiny place in it for a cup or two of coconut water. You can always reach out to your doctor if you have any concerns. If you are:
- Diagnosed with gestational diabetes or other diabetes
- Low or high blood pressure
- Kidney or heart function issues,
Frequent coconut water might do you harm. It is very important to speak with your care provider before making dietary choices.
Nutritional Value of 100 g of Coconut Water
|Vitamin C||2.4 mg|
Our regular life choices of aerated, artificially flavoured, empty caloried, zero nutrition drinks are probably not the best choice when we are pregnant. Also, most of us love our cuppa of tea or coffee or a cold cola to keep us running through the day. Tender coconut water can totally help us in our efforts to replace some of these not so healthy choices. It is preservative free, colorants free, artificial flavouring free and gives you a host of exciting health benefits. So, say no that margarita and mojito and stick a tiny umbrella into your coconut instead and sip away!