Indians are well known for consuming dry coconut because of its health advantages. And with good cause. In an interview with IndianExpress.com, dietician Ekta Singhwal of the Ujala Cygnus Group of Hospitals stated that this dried fruit is high in minerals including iron, manganese, copper, and minor levels of vitamin B.
Singhwal does, however, issue a warning: it is not a panacea. Let’s examine the advantages of dry coconut for your health and any safety measures you should know about before consuming it.
The following nutrients are found in a 100-gram serving of dry coconut, according to Singhwal.
Approximately 354 kcal of calories
- 24 grammes of carbohydrates
- Nine grammes of dietary fibre
- 6.2 grammes of sugars
- 3.3 grammes of protein
- 33.5 grammes of fat
Vitamins: Includes trace levels of niacin, riboflavin, folate, and B vitamins, including B6.
Minerals: Plentiful in minerals, including copper, iron, manganese, phosphorus, and selenium
The health advantages of dry coconut
Singhwal went into detail about the dry coconut’s numerous health advantages.
- Heart Health: Lauric acid, which is found in dry coconuts, may improve heart health by raising levels of beneficial HDL cholesterol.
– Weight Management: Although dried coconut is high in calories, its fibre content helps make you feel fuller, which may help with weight management.
- Digestive Health: Dry coconut’s dietary fibre promotes a healthy digestive system and may fend off constipation.
- Energy Source: The body may quickly obtain energy from the medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) in coconuts.
- Mineral Support: Packed with minerals that are vital for the health of bones and the activity of enzymes, such as copper and manganese.
Can those with diabetes eat it?
For diabetics, dried coconuts are safe as long as no additional sugar is present. A 2-inch square of fresh coconut is equivalent to about 28–30 grammes of dried coconut. Although low in sugar, Singhwal cautioned people with diabetes to watch meal sizes to prevent any negative effects on blood sugar levels.
Are expectant mothers safe to use it?
Due to their high fibre content, dry coconuts can help avoid constipation, which can be problematic for expectant mothers. Its potassium and mineral content also contributes to the baby’s growth.
Things to use caution with
Before consuming these dried fruits, Singhwal cautioned that there are a few things to be aware of.
- Calorie Density: Portion control is crucial, especially for individuals limiting their calorie intake, as dry coconut has a high calorie content.
- Saturated Fat: Moderation is crucial when it comes to saturated fats, since excessive consumption may lead to elevated cholesterol levels, even though some of the fats in coconuts are MCTs.
- Allergies: People who are allergic to nuts should exercise caution because, under certain circumstances, coconuts are categorised as tree nuts.
Facts & Myths
The following beliefs regarding coconut consumption were refuted by Singhwal.
Myth 1: For some diseases, coconut can take the place of medication.
Fact: Although coconut can be included in a healthy diet, it should not be used in place of medical care.
Myth 2: There is a magic bullet for all health problems with coconut oil.
Fact: Although coconut oil offers certain health advantages, it is not a panacea and its intake needs to be moderated in conjunction with a healthy diet.