Foundation for Diet and Health

The best perspective for your health

The best perspective for your health

The best perspective for your health

The best perspective for your health

Coconut water

Coconut water is a good thirst quencher. It is 95% water and 4% carbohydrates and is low in calories and fat. The coconut water from young coconuts is best.
80/16/04  LA:ALA

Coconut water was traditionally sold in the tropics in the form of green, smooth coconuts. The young green coconuts can be opened with a machete, and then you can drink the coconut water with a straw. If the coconut isnʼt fresh, the coconut water may taste sour. In Europe and the United States, you can now buy coconut water in Tetra Paks or cans.

General information:

From Wikipedia: “Coconut water is the clear liquid inside young green coconuts (fruits of the coconut palm). In early development, it serves as a suspension for the endosperm of the coconut during the nuclear phase of development. As growth continues, the endosperm matures into its cellular phase and deposits into the rind of the coconut meat.”


“Fresh coconuts are typically harvested from the tree while they are green. A hole may be bored into the coconut to provide access to the liquid and meat. In young coconuts, the liquid and air may be under some pressure and may spray slightly when the inner husk is first penetrated. Coconuts which have fallen to the ground are susceptible to rot and damage from insects or animals.”

Nutritional value:

“Providing 19 calories in a 100 ml amount, coconut water is 95% water and 4% carbohydrates, with protein and total fat content under 1% each. Coconut water contains no vitamins or dietary minerals in significant content.”

Culinary uses:

“Coconut water has long been a popular drink in the tropical countries where it is available fresh, canned, or bottled.

Coconuts for drinking are served fresh, chilled or packaged in many places. They are often sold by street vendors who cut them open with machetes or similar implements in front of customers. Processed coconut water for retail can be found in ordinary cans, Tetra Paks, or plastic bottles, sometimes with coconut pulp or coconut jelly included.

Coconut water can be fermented to produce coconut vinegar. It is also used to make nata de coco, a jelly-like food.”

Other uses:

“On islands without water sources, three to six coconuts are needed per person to meet their fluid requirements. Drinking coconut water in place of water is common on islands such as the Maluku and Caroline Islands. Either the coconut water is drunk raw or fermented to make coconut wine. The fermented juice has a bitter taste. Fermented coconut water is also used to distill spirits. You can estimate how long a coconut has been stored by the amount of water it contains. When coconuts are fresh, they contain more coconut water.*”

Medical uses:

“Coconut water has been used rarely as an intravenous rehydration fluid when medical saline was unavailable. The story of coconut water being similar to human blood plasma originated during World War II when British and Japanese patients were given coconut water intravenously in an emergency because saline was unavailable. Since then, this rehydration technique has been used only for short-term emergency situations in remote locations where plasma is not available.

Although substituting coconut water for saline is not recommended by physicians today, it was a common practice during the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia from 1975 to 1979. The Documentation Center of Cambodia cited the practice of allowing untrained nurses to administer green coconut water during the Pol Pot regime as a crime against humanity.”

“Coconut water has been used in the folk medicine practices of Jamaica for such uses as the treatment of diarrhea.”

Interesting facts:

The coconut water from the brown coconuts that are sold for the coconut meat in supermarkets often tastes sour and spoiled. It does not have a taste comparable to that of the coconut water from young coconuts.

Note (italics): * = Translation from a German Wikipedia entry

Nutritional Information per 100g 2000 kCal
Energy 19 kcal1.0%
Fat/Lipids 0.2 g0.3%
Saturated Fats 0.18 g0.9%
Carbohydrates (inc.dietary fiber) 3.7 g1.4%
Sugars 2.6 g2.9%
Fiber 1.1 g4.4%
Protein (albumin) 0.72 g1.4%
Cooking Salt (Na:105.0 mg)267 mg11.1%
Recommended daily allowance according to the GDA.
Protein (albumin)
Cooking Salt

Essential Nutrients per 100g with %-share Daily Requirement at 2000 kCal
ElemPotassium, K 250 mg13.0%
Sodium, Na 105 mg13.0%
ElemMagnesium, Mg 25 mg7.0%
MinManganese, Mn 0.14 mg7.0%
MinCopper, Cu 0.04 mg4.0%
VitRiboflavin (vitamin B2) 0.06 mg4.0%
ElemCalcium, Ca 24 mg3.0%
ElemPhosphorus, P 20 mg3.0%
VitVitamin C (ascorbic acid) 2.4 mg3.0%
VitThiamine (vitamin B1) 0.03 mg3.0%

The majority of the nutritional information comes from the USDA (US Department of Agriculture). This means that the information for natural products is often incomplete or only given within broader categories, whereas in most cases products made from these have more complete information displayed.

If we take flaxseed, for example, the important essential amino acid ALA (omega-3) is only included in an overarching category whereas for flaxseed oil ALA is listed specifically. In time, we will be able to change this, but it will require a lot of work. An “i” appears behind ingredients that have been adjusted and an explanation appears when you hover over this symbol.

For Erb Muesli, the original calculations resulted in 48 % of the daily requirement of ALA — but with the correction, we see that the muesli actually covers >100 % of the necessary recommendation for the omega-3 fatty acid ALA. Our goal is to eventually be able to compare the nutritional value of our recipes with those that are used in conventional western lifestyles.

Essential fatty acids, (SC-PUFA) 2000 kCal
Alpha-Linolenic acid; ALA; 18:3 omega-3 0 g< 0.1%
Linoleic acid; LA; 18:2 omega-6 0 g< 0.1%

Essential amino acids 2000 kCal
Tryptophan (Trp, W) 0.01 g3.0%
Threonine (Thr, T) 0.03 g3.0%
Valine (Val, V) 0.04 g3.0%
Isoleucine (Ile, I) 0.03 g2.0%
Leucine (Leu, L) 0.05 g2.0%
Lysine (Lys, K) 0.03 g2.0%
Phenylalanine (Phe, F) 0.04 g2.0%
Methionine (Met, M) 0.01 g1.0%

Vitamins 2000 kCal
Riboflavin (vitamin B2) 0.06 mg4.0%
Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) 2.4 mg3.0%
Thiamine (vitamin B1) 0.03 mg3.0%
Folate, as the active form of folic acid (née vitamin B9 and B11) 3 µg2.0%
Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) 0.03 mg2.0%
Niacin (née vitamin B3) 0.08 mg1.0%
Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5) 0.04 mg1.0%
Vitamin D 0 µg< 0.1%
Vitamin A, as RAE 0 µg< 0.1%

Essential macroelements (macronutrients) 2000 kCal
Potassium, K 250 mg13.0%
Sodium, Na 105 mg13.0%
Magnesium, Mg 25 mg7.0%
Calcium, Ca 24 mg3.0%
Phosphorus, P 20 mg3.0%

Essential trace elements (micronutrients) 2000 kCal
Manganese, Mn 0.14 mg7.0%
Copper, Cu 0.04 mg4.0%
Iron, Fe 0.29 mg2.0%
Selenium, Se 1 µg2.0%
Zinc, Zn 0.1 mg1.0%