Does Coconut Water Count as Fluid?

Long maligned by nutrition professionals for its high saturated fat content, coconut has grown tremendously trendy in the past few years. It’s particularly popular as an ingredient in beverages, where it outpaces oats and almonds combined, according to a FoodNavigator report.

Coconut water, the clear liquid found inside a fresh green coconut, has been marketed as a thirst-quenching beverage because of its high concentration of natural electrolytes such as potassium and magnesium, according to the Mayo Clinic. Coconut water has the consistency of water, is low in calories, and has just a hint of coconut flavor. When blended with coconut flesh, it makes a much richer and more calorie-dense product: coconut milk.

While coconut water has long been sipped in tropical locales, it began gaining popularity in the United States as a natural alternative to sports drinks, embraced by athletes for its hydrating properties.

Good hydration plays a key role in overall health for everyone, regardless of your level of athleticism. It helps regulate body temperature, sleep, brain function, and even mood, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine advise that women get 2.7 liters (L) of fluid per day and men get about 3.7 L per day. About 20 percent of those amounts comes from the food you eat, which means women should aim to drink about 2.2 L (nine 8-ounce [oz] cups) of water per day, and men should aim for 3.0 L (13 8-oz cups). Of course, a number of factors affect fluid needs, including activity, stage of life, and diet. For a more personalized recommendation, use a hydration calculator.

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