Vegans have been keeping a secret for a while, but we're here to spill the beans: Coconut milk is a tastier and healthier substitute for your daily glass of dairy.
Coconut milk, derived from the white flesh of a mature coconut fruit, is creamier and sweeter than cow milk, and loaded with some nutrients you will be hard-pressed to find anywhere else.
Count medium-chain triglycerides among those. Unlike longer-chain fats, MCTs zip right from your digestive tract to your liver, and so are less likely to be stored as fat. These MCTs may also help diminish your appetite, and even boost calorie expenditure and fat burning. MCTs even fight infection. Studies have shown how it can reduce the levels of viruses and bacteria in your body – especially those that gather in your mouth.
Compare the nutrient line-up in one cup of coconut milk with your favorite dairy product:
- Calories: 552
- Fat: 57 grams
- Protein: 5 grams
- Carbohydrates: 13 grams
- Fiber: 5 grams
- Vitamin C: 11 percent of the RDI
- Folate: 10 percent of the RDI
- Iron: 22 percent of the RDI
- Magnesium: 22 percent of the RDI
- Potassium: 18 percent of the RDI
- Copper: 32 percent of the RDI
- Manganese: 110 percent of the RDI
- Selenium: 21 percent of the RDI
Coconut milk has n shortage of medicinal effects, either. Animal trials have shown that coconut extract and coconut oil reduce inflammation and swelling, and also provide analgesic benefits. Even ulcers bow to the mighty coconut: one study showed a reduction of stomach ulcers in rats by 54 percent, all caused by coconut milk's MCTs.
So unless you have a coconut allergy (considerably more rare than, say, peanut or dairy), you've no good excuse not to try coconut milk!