advertisement



Q & A Library


Print this page | Sign up for free e-bulletins
 | Bookmark This Page

Q
Cool Down With Coconut Water?

Coconut water is supposed to be a "natural" sports drink. Is there any advantage to it?

A
Answer (Published 7/24/2012)

Coconut water is all the rage these days. For the record, real coconut water is the clear juice stored inside young, green coconuts. It has long been a popular drink in the tropics. I understand that the U.S. market has grown from near zero five years ago to $50 million today, which suggests that some very clever marketing has been at work. In addition to being promoted as a sports drink, coconut water has been touted as a hangover recovery, an immune system booster and natural protection against cancer. I've seen no convincing research supporting any of these claims.

Related Weil Products
Dr. Weil on Healthy Aging for Fitness - It's never too late to get fit! Promote a healthy weight, increase your energy, encourage better rest and feel great with a regular exercise program designed for your needs and capabilities. The Dr. Weil on Healthy Aging online plan has all you need - sign up today and get 14 days free!

The defensible selling points for coconut water are that it is cholesterol-free, low in calories, and rich in potassium, providing 569 mg in a typical serving, almost twice the amount in a banana. Ads say that you lose potassium when you exercise strenuously and must replace it. In fact, you lose more sodium than potassium while sweating your way through a vigorous workout, and you can replace both of those minerals by eating some fruits or vegetables after your workout. I don't believe that there's a proven need for any kind of sports drinks after working out, but I do recommend drinking lots of water when you exercise strenuously - more than you think you need.

I don't see any great advantage to coconut water other than the fact that it is natural (although I've read that sugar is added to some brands) and doesn't have the additives found in some sports drinks. However, it is expensive - $2 to $3 for 11 ounces. And it is also an acquired taste. Obviously, coconut water wouldn't be selling as well as it is if some people didn't love it, although some individuals may be drinking it solely because they think it is good for them. Some describe the taste as metallic. When I'm in the tropics, I enjoy drinking the water from whole coconuts. To me, the packaged stuff sold here does not taste nearly as fresh or delicious.

Andrew Weil, M.D.

Creative Commons License Some Rights Reserved Creative Commons Copyright Notice
A portion of the original material created by Weil Lifestyle, LLC on DrWeil.com (specifically, all question and answer-type articles in the Dr. Weil Q&A Library) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

The Weil Vitamin Advisor
Get your FREE personalized vitamin recommendation & supplement plan today!

Dr. Weil on Healthy Aging
Your Online Guide to the Anti-Inflammatory Diet. Start eating for your health - begin your free trial now.

Dr. Weil's Spontaneous Happiness
Achieve emotional well-being
in just eight weeks!
Start your 10-day free trial now!

Vitamin Library
Supplement your knowledge with Dr. Weil's essential vitamin facts. Learn why they are necessary and more.

Dr. Weil's Optimum Health Plan
Your 8-week plan to wellness.
Begin your journey today!
 

Dr. Weil's Head-to-Toe
Wellness Guide

Your guide to natural health.
Use the Wellness Guide today!

Dr. Weil's Anti-Inflammatory Diet Food Pyramid
Our interactive tool can help improve overall health through diet.

Condition Care Guide
Learn about health conditions from acne to vertigo, and Dr. Weil's view of the best treatment options for each.

Healthy Recipes
Discover a treasure trove of healthy, healing foods and creative, delicious ways to prepare them.

Q&A Library
Over 2,000 questions from you
and their corresponding answers
from Dr. Weil.

 
Copyright © 2014 Weil Lifestyle, LLC
Information on this web site is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional. You should not use the information on this web site for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication or other treatment.

Ad Choice
Advertising Notice

This Site and third parties who place advertisements on this Site may collect and use information about your visits to this Site and other websites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services of interest to you. If you would like to obtain more information about these advertising practices and to make choices about online behavioral advertising, please click here