Coconut water

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Coconut water as a drink

The liquid content of coconuts is called coconut water , also known as coconut water or coconut juice . This applies to both young coconuts up to 6 months and ripe coconuts (10 to 13 months). In the growing countries, the coconut water from the young fruits is an important substitute for drinking water and is often offered as street food .

The coconut water becomes less with increasing ripeness, but it is not completely consumed until germination. After the harvest, the amount of coconut water contained can be used to estimate how long a nut has been stored. The fresher the nut, the more coconut water it contains.

The yellow-skinned "King Coconut" ( Cocos nucifera 'King', also called "Thambili" in Sri Lanka ) contains more coconut water and less pulp than green-skinned coconuts because it was grown as a drinking coconut.

Classification as fruit juice

The coconut is not a nut, but a solitary stone fruit. "Coconut water" was wrongly not classified as a fruit juice for a long time due to the designation as "water" (also in other languages, e.g. English coconut water ) , although the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in the Codex Alimentarius coconuts or coconuts Coconut water led under fruit juices. This changed in 2003 in the USA through a determination by the US authorities. In Europe, the definition at European level was first made by the European Fruit Juice Association (AIJN) in 2016 and 2017. This position was confirmed in 2017 by the ALS for Germany. Since then, the terms coconut water , coconut water and coconut juice can be used synonymously. This has advantages for the consumer, since fruit juices and similar products are subject to the stricter requirements of the German fruit juice and soft drinks regulation (and the corresponding regulations of the EU countries). The addition of sugar, for example, is therefore not permitted.


Coconut water is very low in calories (10 to 19 kcal per 100 ml) and low in sugar (1.8 to 2.61 g per 100 ml). This is a specialty among the fruit juices (for comparison orange juice: 42 kcal per 100 ml and 8.52 g sugar per 100 ml). In addition, it has significant amounts of calcium, magnesium and potassium that far exceed those of mineral water: 250 mg magnesium, 2500 mg potassium and 240 mg calcium, per liter. The salt content reaches 1050 mg per liter and thus remains in the moderate range.



Traditionally, only coconut water made from young coconuts is drunk in Asia and South America. This is germ-free as long as the nut remains closed and does not contain any fat in young nuts. It does not taste like the typical well-known coconut aroma, it is light in taste - not a heavy juice - and contains many minerals. This makes it the ideal traditional thirst quencher in the tropics and balances out the lost minerals.

Only coconut water from young nuts usually turns pink or even pink after prolonged contact with air. This change in color is called pinking . It is not a sign of poor quality, but an enzymatic process that neither changes nor adversely affects taste or smell.

On islands without springs, three to six coconuts per person per day are needed to cover the fluid requirement. It is common to supply the fluid requirements with coconut water, for example on the Moluccas and Carolines . It is either drunk raw or fermented into coconut wine. The fermented juice has a bitter taste. A brandy is also distilled from the fermented coconut water.


Under emergency conditions, the sterile and mineral-containing coconut water was used intravenously as an infusion solution for the treatment of volume deficiency shock . In some countries, coconut water is traditionally used to balance diarrhea. Because of the low salt and glucose content, coconut water is not an alternative to the oral rehydration solution recommended by the WHO .


There are numerous studies on the health benefits of coconut water as a food and for use in medicine:

  • Coconut water as a drink for athletes
  • Direct infusion solution from the young nut into the bloodstream in clinical practice
  • Oral reedyration with coconut water as an alternative to conventional (infusion) solutions
  • Antibacterial effects of coconut water
  • Amalgam discharge with coconut water

Differentiation from coconut milk

While coconut milk is obtained from the pulp of the coconut, coconut water consists of the liquid content of the nut.

Coconut milk also has different nutrients, for example it has a higher fat content and is richer in calories.

Individual evidence

  1. a b AIJN (. Europ Juice Association): 6.27 Reference Guideline for "Coconut Juice" All which is Typically called "Coconut Water" . In: AIJN (Ed.): COP (Code of Practice) . February 2017 edition. No. 6.27 . AIJN, Brussels February 2017.
  2. King Coconut (Thambili) ( Memento of the original from July 1, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  3. FAO / WHO Food Standards Program: CODEX GENERAL STANDARD FOR FRUIT JUICES AND NECTARS . In: FAO / WHO Food Standards Program (ed.): Codex Alimentarius . CODEX STAN 247-2005. Rome.
  4. FDA / Center for Food Safety & Applied Nutrition: The Juice HACCP Regulation . In: US Food and Drug Administration, Department of Health and Human Services. (Ed.): Guidance for Industry . September 4, 2003 edition. CFSAN / Office of Plant and Dairy Foods and Beverages, September 4, 2003.
  5. AIJN: AIJN Position Regarding Coconut Water . Ed .: AIJN. April 2016 edition. Brussels.
  6. Working group of food chemical experts of the federal states and the Federal Office for Consumer Protection and Food Safety (ALS): Coconut water . Opinion No. 2017/5 , March 29, 2017.
  7. Federal Office of Justice: Ordinance on fruit juice, some similar products, fruit nectar and soft drinks containing caffeine (Fruit Juice and Refreshment Drinks Ordinance - FrSaftErfrischGetrV). In: . Federal Office of Justice, May 24, 2004, accessed on February 1, 2019 .
  8. Federal Office of Justice: Ordinance on fruit juice, some similar products, fruit nectar and soft drinks containing caffeine (Fruit Juice and Refreshment Drinks Ordinance - FrSaftErfrischGetrV). In: . Federal Office of Justice, May 24, 2004, p. Annex 1 Serial No. 1. a) in conjunction with Annex 3 , accessed on February 1, 2019 .
  9. a b USDA United States Department of Agriculture: Basic Report 12119, Nuts, coconut water (liquid from coconuts) . In: USDA United States Department of Agriculture (Ed.): National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference . release May 28, 2016.
  10. Prades, Dornier, Diop, Pain: Coconut water uses, composition and properties: a review . In: Fruits Journal (ed.): Fruits . vol 67. Cirad / EDP Sciences, 2012, p. 87-107 .
  11. Souci, specialist, herb: food table for practice . Ed .: German Research Institute for Food Chemistry, Freising. 5th edition. Scientific publishing company Stuttgart, Stuttgart 2011, ISBN 978-3-8047-2679-6 , p. 414 .
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  13. Darilyn Campbell-Falck, Tamara Thomas, Troy M. Falck, Narco Tutuo, Kathleen Clem: The intravenous use of coconut water. In: The American Journal of Emergency Medicine. Vol. 18, No. 1, 2000, ISSN  0735-6757 , pp. 108-11, PMID 10674546 , doi: 10.1016 / S0735-6757 (00) 90062-7 .
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  15. J. Yartey, EK Harisson, LA Brakohiapa, FK Nkrumah: Carbohydrate and electrolyte content of some home-available fluids used for oral rehydration in Ghana. In: Journal of Tropical Pediatrics. Vol. 39, No. 4, 1993, pp. 234-237, PMID 8411318 , doi: 10.1093 / tropej / 39.4.234 .
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  17. ^ Food an Agriculture Organization of the United Nations: COCONUT WATER is it . Ed .: FAO. 2000.
  18. DDr. Antonio Martins, Mag. Henrich Chomist: Effect of Tender Coconut Water as Rehydration Drink on Cardiopulmonary Fitness for Joggers. Ed .: Presentation on Young Coconut Water at the 7th IOC Olympic World Congress on Sport Sciences. Institute for Sports Medicine-Donaustadt, Austria, October 2003.
  19. ^ I Ismail, R Singh, RG Sirisinghe: Rehydration with sodium-enriched coconut water after exercise-induced dehydration. In: GreenMedInfo (Ed.): Southeast Asian J Trop Med Public Health . tape 38 (4): 769-85 , July 2007.
  20. Mohamed Saat, Rabindarjeet Singh, Roland Gamini Sirisinghe, Mohd Nawawi: Rehydration after exercise with fresh young coconut water, carbohydrate-electrolyte beverage and plain water. Ed .: J Physiol Anthropol Appl Human Sci. No. 21 (2): 93-104. , March 2002.
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  22. Mohamed Saat et al .: Rehydration after Exercise with Fresh Young Coconut Water, Carbohydrate-Electrolyte Beverages and Plain Water . Ed .: Journal of Physiological Anthropology. January 9, 2002.
  23. Quazi M. Iqbal: Direct Infusion of Coconut Water . Ed .: Medical Journal Malaysia. Vol. XXX No. 3. Edition. March 1976, p. 221 ff .
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  25. Carvajal: Agua de coco: Una solución alternativa en la terapia de rehidratación oral . In: Sociedad Mexicana de Pediatría, AC (Ed.): Revista Mexicana de Pediatría . Volume 70, number 3, May 2003.
  26. T. Kuberski: Appropriate technology: Coconut water for the oral rehydration of childhood diarrhoeas . In: Epidemiology and Field Studies Branch, 1440 East Indian School Road, Phoenix, Arizona 85014, USA (Ed.): NEW ZEALAND MEDICAL JOURNAL . May 28, 1980.
  27. ^ B. Linehan and others: Coconut Water as a Rehydration fluid . Ed .: NEW ZEALAND MEDICAL JOURNAL. August 8, 1979.
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  29. Santi M Mandal, Satyahari Dey, Mahitosh Mandal, Siddik Sarkar, Simone Maria-Neto, Octavio L Franco: Identification and structural insights of three novel antimicrobial peptides isolated from green coconut water. Ed .: Peptides. No. 30 (4): 633-7 , December 6, 2008.
  30. Dr. H. Friedrich: Amalgam discharge with coconut water . Ed .: Conference on human toxicology of amalgam of the Freiburg Environmental Academy. Freiburg November 22, 1997.
  31. Cooking with coconut. In: July 24, 2017. Retrieved August 26, 2019 .