Hailed as the gym-goer”s easy and pure answer to hydration, coconut water has been touted by athletes as accomplished as tennis champ John Isner to stars as big as Madonna.
Still, is it worth the hype? Here”s some info to help you decide if you should start filling your thermos with this alternative to H20.
Straight from the Source
Called “Mother Nature”s sports drink” by enthusiasts, coconut water is harvested directly from the center of the tasty tropical fruit when it”s still young and green (unlike coconut milk, which is taken from the older, hairy varieties). The resulting juice is chock full of minerals, fiber, and electrolytes and lacks the artificial colors, preservatives, and sugar often found in many hydrating beverages (Gatorade, we”re looking at you).
Still, Liz Applegate, director of sports nutrition at University of California Davis, isn”t especially sold. “There”s nothing magical about coconut water,” she told the Los Angeles Times. She added that the drink is especially low in carbohydrates and sodium — two minerals necessary for a quick recovery from an intense workout.
More Sweetness, Less Guilt
Unlike regular water, coconut water is often described as a blend of both candy-like and nutty flavors, leading it to please many different palates. Additionally, several companies sell a variation on the beta version of the beverage, with fruits such as pineapples and oranges infused into the concoctions.
That’s not to say everyone adores the novel flavor. In fact, Dallas Observer food writer Scott Reitz, in a piece titled “Coconut Water Tastes Like Bed, Bath & Beyond,” likened the taste to the way shampoo smells.
Of course, there’s another notable perk that”s likely behind all the buzz: coconut water is low in calories. At only 45-60 calories and 0 grams of fat per each 8-ounce serving, it may be easy to see why the refreshment has been spotted in the hands of so many celebs.