7 Coconut Benefits for your Health (& Recipes)

Coconut benefits are derived from this fruit's low glycemic index and high fiber content, which help to manage hunger and facilitate optimal bowel function. This fruit can therefore promote weight loss and combat constipation.

In addition, coconut also has excellent amounts of potassium, a mineral that helps eliminate excess sodium through the urine. This help can be beneficial for helping to manage blood pressure. 

Coconut is a very versatile fruit, and its pulp can be eaten fresh or used in recipes for cake, custards, or made into flour, milk and  oil. The flowers of this fruit are used to produce coconut sugar and the coconut water inside the shell can be consumed fresh or added to juices or smoothies.

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Health benefits

The main health benefits of coconut are:

1. Promoting weight loss

Coconut helps with weight loss because it is rich in fiber and fats that increase the feeling of satiety. This can reduce hunger and overeating throughout the day.

In addition, the type of fat present in coconut, specifically the medium-chain triglycerides, can trigger moderate weight loss, however more studies are needed to prove this benefit.

2. Fighting constipation

Coconut is rich in insoluble fiber, a type of fiber that stimulates natural bowel movements and adds bulk to the stool. This facilitates evacuation and can treat or prevent constipation. Check-out other high-fiber foods you can incorporate into your diet.

3. Controlling diabetes

Coconut is a fruit with a low glycemic index, which slows down the absorption of carbohydrates from food. Coconut therefore helps to keep blood sugar levels normal and is recommended to help manage diabetes.

4. Preventing premature aging

Because it is rich in compounds with antioxidant action (such as selenium and gallic, caffeic and coumarinic acids), coconut can help to fight excess free radicals in the body. This can prevent sagging skin and the appearance of wrinkles to prevent premature aging.

5. Regulating blood pressure

Coconut has excellent amounts of potassium, a mineral that triggers the elimination of excess sodium from the body. This helps to regulate blood pressure and prevent high blood pressure.

6. Strengthening the immune system

Coconut contains selenium, gallic acid, caffeic acid and coumarin, which are compounds with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These work by strengthening the immune system and protecting the body against infections caused by fungi, viruses and bacteria.

In addition, coconut also contains medium-chain triglycerides, a type of fat with antimicrobial, antifungal and antiviral properties. These can also strengthen the immune system, however, more studies are needed to prove this benefit.

7. Hydrating the body

Coconut is rich in minerals such as potassium, copper and manganese, making it a great option for replenishing minerals that are loss through vomiting, diarrhea or exercise.

Is coconut fattening?

When consumed in moderate quantities, coconut can help to keep you full between meals. This effect can reduce your overall food intake and promote weight loss.

However, excessive consumption of coconut can lead to weight gain, as this fruit is high in fat and calories. In addition, when incorporated into other high-calorie recipes, such as puddings, cakes and ice cream, for example, coconut can also lead to unintended weight gain.

Nutritional information table

The following table outlines the nutritional information for 100 g of fresh, ripe coconut, dehydrated coconut, and coconut water. 


100 g of fresh, ripe coconut

100 g of dehydrated coconut

100 g of coconut water


406 calories

660 calories

22 calories


3.7 g

6.9 g

0.7 g


42 g

64.5 g

0.2 g


10.4 g

23.6 g

5.3 g


5.4 g

16.3 g

0.1 g


354 mg

543 mg

162 mg


6 mg

26 mg

19 mg


118 mg

206 mg

4 mg


10.1 mcg

18,5 mcg

1 mcg


1.5 mg

2.7 mg

0.1 mcg


0.45 mg

0.8 mg


To obtain all of the above benefits of coconut's benefits, this fruit should be incorporated into a health diet with regular exercise. 

How to eat

Because coconuts are high in fat and calories, you should not exceed a daily intake of 2 tablespoons of grated dried coconut or 30 g of coconut pulp.

The pulp of the coconut can be eaten green or ripe in its fresh form, or added to recipes such as cake, custard, coconut milk, coconut flour, coconut sugar and coconut oil.

In addition, the flowers of the coconut are also used to produce coconut sugar, while coconut water can be consumed fresh or added to juices or smoothies. Learn more about how to consume coconut water and its health benefits.

Coconut recipes

Check-out some healthy coconut recipes below: 

1. Coconut milk


  • 1 dried coconut
  • 2 cups of hot water


Peel the coconut and grate the pulp using a a grater or processor. Place the grated coconut pulp in the hot water, and mix in a blender for 5 minutes. Then strain through a clean, dry cloth and store in clean, lidded jars.

Coconut milk can be stored in the fridge for 3 to 5 days or it can be frozen. It can be urilized in preparations such as pudding, cake, puree and fish strews. Coconut pulp can also be stored in the fridge and eaten fresh or used in other recipes.

2. Coconut cake


  • 3 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons of coconut flour
  • 3 tablespoons freshly grated coconut
  • 2 tablespoons of sweetener 
  • 200 ml coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut oil


Preheat the oven to 180ºC (350 ºF) and grease a baking dish with coconut oil. Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites and set the egg whites aside. Place all the ingredients except the yeast and egg whites in a bowl and stir thoroughly with a spoon or spatula.

Beat the egg whites. Carefully fold the egg whites into the cake batter, stirring with a spoon. Transfer the mixture to the greased tin and bake in the oven for 30 minutes. Allow to cool and serve.

3. Pudding


  • 1 liter of skim milk or plant-based milk
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 4 tablespoons of sweetener 
  • 200 ml coconut milk
  • 3 tablespoons of unsweetened shredded coconut


In a saucepan, dissolve the cornstarch in the milk. Add the sweetener and coconut milk to the pan and bring to the boil over a medium heat, stirring constantly. Lower the heat, add the grated coconut and cook for another 5 minutes, stirring constantly.

Turn off the heat and transfer the mixture to a pudding dish moistened with water. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 3 hours. Unmold and serve.