Known as the Swiss Army Knife of the plant world, the humble coconut provides high-calorie food, portable water, fibres that can be made into rope and a hard shell that can be turned into charcoal. Initially originating from the islands of the Indian Ocean (such as Madagascar), the ever-hardy coconuts have since travelled tropical climates across the globe, jumping on the back of the great era of exploration during the 16th century.
They’re the perfect all-around food for surviving on a desert island, but also ideal for maintaining a healthy lifestyle in the real world. Easily on par with the likes of Ginger, coconuts are very much a superfood with the list of health benefits being apparently endless. There are over 1,500 studies that claim them to be one of the healthiest foods on the planet, with varying health qualities coming from every part of the fruit.
“Not only does coconut milk taste great and have a smooth and silky texture in the mouth, it is absolutely loaded with B vitamins, minerals, medium chain fatty acids and fibre. B vitamins have a direct impact on everything from your heart, mood and weight. Coconut milk can help with digestion as it’s lactose-free and the B vitamins help the body use protein, fats and carbohydrates efficiently as fuel which occurs in the digestive tract.” – said Barbara Cox, Head of Nutrition at Mr Lee’s Pure Foods.
Some of the other potential uses are quite incredible, starting with their proposed ability to reduce the effects of Alzheimer’s Disease. The real secret that lies within coconuts is their high content of something called ‘MCFAs’, standing for Medium-Chain Fatty Acids. Most of the fats we consume take longer to digest, but MCFAs found in coconuts provide an ideal source of energy because they only have to go through a three-step process to be turned into fuel whereas other fats that have to go through a 26-step process.
Their easy digestion creates energy that is easily accessible to the brain, supplying it with energy without the need of insulin to process the glucose into energy. Those with Alzheimer’s have an inability to create their own insulin, and so energy from coconuts create an alternate source of energy to help repair the function of the brain. As well as an outstanding treatment for the aforementioned, this also makes the fruit brilliant at increasing productivity and awareness by bettering brain function- eating coconut can be far more effective than a cup of coffee!
Another health benefit is it’s uncanny ability to reduce inflammation, which ties in perfectly to it being a great solution to help heal the stomachs of those who have been affected by Coeliac Disease. In an India-based study, the high levels of antioxidants in coconut milk reduced inflammation and treated inflammation more effectively than any of the leading medications, including Ibuprofen.
The list of health benefits goes on. The humble, hardy coconut is great for both surviving, and thriving. Perfect to befriend on a lonely desert island, and ideal to consume within a healthy diet to help you get through the day. We have two flavours of our noodles that are packed full of coconut, our Coconut Chicken Laksa (the clue is in the name!) and our Warrior Fighting Shrimp. Both are available for purchase right here on our website, and Coconut Chicken Laksa is also available across both South Western Railways and East Midlands Trains.