HERBAL HEALTH | By Michaela Tsangari | 26 March 2019 15:32
Who's Going NUTS for Coconuts?
We have, and hopefully after reading this, you will too!
Their multifarious health benefits and broad ranging food applications have been bolstered by endorsements from the elite of the sporting world and some of Insta’s most glamorous celebrities, so it is no surprise that Coconut Milk and Coconut Water products have garnered much media attention recently.
The hype over these materials is not unwarranted, however. Fans of the coconut date back through centuries and across the globe. In Sanskrit, coconuts are called ‘kalpa vriksha’ - which means ‘tree which gives all that is necessary for living’. In the communities where coconuts grow, every part of the plant is used – as architecture, means of transport, medicine, nutrition and even intoxicant! It also has the distinction of being the only naturally occurring product which can be substituted for human blood plasma - and as such has been used as emergency IV hydration due to its electrolyte content and the sterile nature of the liquid.
In the UK, the current craze for all things ‘Coco’ is supported by sound nutritional data. Coconut Water has been proven to be a great alternative to many branded sports drinks. With a low carbohydrate content when compared to other post exercise hydration sources and the abundance of naturally occurring electrolytes these products are a definite winner. Additionally, the high potassium content of Coconut Water has led researchers to investigate the potential benefits for reducing cardiovascular disease risk. Potassium counteracts the effect of sodium in the body, helping lower blood pressure.
In research which compared the blood pressure of subjects who were variously given water or coconut water over a two-week period, those who consumed coconut water recorded a significant reduction in both their systolic and diastolic pressure readings. Coconut Milk Powders also have notable benefits, as they provide a bounty of key medium chain saturated fatty acids (MCFAs). Lauric acid is a star amongst these MCFAs, as it is converted in the body into monolaurin. This antiviral, antifungal and antibacterial compound destroys a wide variety of disease-causing organisms and has the potential to help protect the body from infections and viruses.
Coconut or CocoNOT?!
What has not been so well publicised in relation to Coconut Milk and Water Powders in the UK is the potential for the presence of ingredients which would be more at home in a farmyard or laboratory than in the tropical climes where the raw materials originate. Some of these – often undisclosed – components can present a significant risk to allergen sufferers and are also an issue for those consumers who chose a Vegan diet.
We believe that a significant proportion of the Coconut Milk and Water Powders currently on the UK market could include Sodium Caseinate. This is a dairy derived protein taken from cow’s milk and used to give some producers’ Coconut Powder products a richer taste and to make the product look more like milk powder. Obviously, the inclusion of this allergenic animal product requires clear identification and labelling – however, an NGE investigation has determined that manufacturers are not always compliant in this regard. Our independent analysis identified several Coconut Powder products available in the UK which contained traces – and in some concerning instances, substantial percentages – of milk proteins.
For clarity, all of Nutraceuticals Group Europe's Coconut Water products are identified as Vegan or have the presence of milk allergens highlighted. To allow easy identification of allergens, this information is included within the product name and throughout all our documentation.
The risk inherent in Coconut Milk and Water products that include Sodium Caseinate has been borne out in other regions of the world. Australia's Department of Agriculture instigated an emergency testing program of Coconut Water products. This was as a result of the collapse of a nine-year-old child with a dairy allergy after consuming Coconut Water with undisclosed dairy content. Additionally, the FDA has issued consumer warnings and recalls related to the detection of undeclared milk products in Coconut Milk Powders sold in the USA.
The clear notification of the inclusion of animal products is also a significant concern for the Vegan community. In a market that has an insatiable appetite for Vegan options, confidence that products consumed are as good for your conscience as they are for your body is essential.
This is particularly true of products that support an active, sport focused lifestyle, so NGE understand that providing Coconut Powder products that guarantee all the inherent performance and health benefits and no compromise of principles is key.
The Nutraceuticals Clean Coconut Solution
To ensure the superior quality and purity of the Coconut Water Powder and Coconut Milk Powder products that we provide, NGE has teamed up with an innovator in the world of growing, handling and processing Coconut materials. In order to obtain the coconut water and preserve the vital nutrient content, this manufacturer has engaged a proprietary evaporation technology. Through the utilisation of these novel techniques, the manufacturer is able to create Coconut Powder products which are free from dairy proteins. Their Coconut Water Powder is pure with no additional ingredients and as a result is very clean in taste with high levels of potassium. The priority for their Coconut Milk Powder was the usability of the finished product. The unique processing has yielded a material which is free from milk allergens, but still provides great mouthfeel, stability and dilution.
The high standards applied by this manufacturer are not limited to the materials that they produce. Their ethical and eco focus is also commendable. Integral to the company is the promotion of sustainable and mutually rewarding trade with farmers and that their families, to ensure that generations of their communities share in the worldwide growth of the coconut industry.
The ties to the land that they have as growers and manufacturers, has meant that this organisation is deeply committed to environmental conservation. This has resulted in their decision to transport Coconut Water and Coconut Milk in powdered form rather than as a liquid, so drastically reducing the volume of the material shipped and thus the shipping space required. The compact and reduced in shipped volume means that their carbon footprint is also squashed.
Sweet as a Coconut
So, if you want to make sure that there are no cows in your coconut…. Nutraceuticals Group Europe are the confident choice to ensure the purity and integrity of your Coconut Water Powder and Coconut Milk Powder products. Our high-quality manufacturer, analysis and clear labelling will provide all the reassurance that you need to avoid allergenic or adulterated products.
We would love to discuss how you could include our exceptional Coconut Water Powder and Coconut Milk Powder ingredients in your productions.
NIGEHER042140 Coconut Milk Powder (Cocos nucifera) Vegan
NIGEHER042146 Coconut Water Powder 6% Potassium (Cocos nucifera) Vegan
NIGEHER042147 Coconut Water Powder 2.7% Potassium (Cocos nucifera) Vegan
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