In recent years coconut water has left the palm-treed shores of tropical islands where tourists on lounge chairs stick straws straight into the fruit, and exploded onto supermarket shelves - helped along by beverage giants such as Coca-Cola and PepsiCo.
Marketed as a natural health drink, brands spout various health claims promoting coconut water. So before we drank the Kool-Aid, we thought we'd check in with the experts whether the nutritional claims stack up. Is coconut water part of a healthy diet or we should just stick to good old water from the tap?
We asked five experts if coconut water is good for you.
Four out of five experts said no
Here are their detailed responses:
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Clare Collins is affiliated with the Priority Research Centre for Physical Activity and Nutrition, the University of Newcastle, NSW. She is an NHMRC Senior Research and Gladys M Brawn Research Fellow. She has received research grants from NHMRC, ARC, Hunter Medical Research Institute, Meat and Livestock Australia, Diabetes Australia, Heart Foundation, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, nib foundation, Rijk Zwaan Australia and Greater Charitable Foundation. She has consulted to SHINE Australia, Novo Nordisk, Quality Bakers, the Sax Institute and the ABC. She was a team member conducting systematic reviews to inform the Australian Dietary Guidelines update and the Heart Foundation evidence reviews on meat and dietary patterns. Emma Beckett is a member of the Nutrition Society of Australia, Australian Institute for Food Science and Technology. Her research is funded by the NHMRC and AMP Foundation. She has previously consulted for Kellogg's. Rebecca Reynolds is a registered nutritionist and the owner of The Real Bok Choy, a nutrition and lifestyle consultancy.
Authors: Alexandra Hansen - Chief of Staff, The Conversation | Alessandro R Demaio - Australian Medical Doctor; Fellow in Global Health & NCDs, University of Copenhagen | Clare Collins - Professor in Nutrition and Dietetics, University of Newcastle | Emma Beckett - Lecturer (Food Science and Human Nutrition), School of Environmental and Life Sciences, University of Newcastle | Rebecca Charlotte Reynolds - Lecturer in Nutrition, UNSW | Rosemary Stanton - Visiting Fellow, School of Medical Sciences, UNSW