Coconut is a nutritious fruit of the coconut tree and belongs to the cocos Nucifera palm genus. There are many varieties of coconut grown in different parts of the world. Indonesia, the Philippines, India, Brazil, and Sri Lanka are the major producers of coconut. Coconuts provide many health and beauty benefits as they are loaded with essential nutrients like vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients, lauric acid, and dietary fibers, etc. However, there are also some side effects of eating too many coconuts.
Side Effects Of Eating Too Many Coconuts
Some major side effects of eating too many coconuts are as follows.
(1) Coconut And Blood Sugar
With a low glycemic index of 42, coconut slows down the sugar release into the bloodstream. This prevents a sudden spike in blood sugar levels and helps in managing diabetes.
Dietary fibers in coconut reduce sugar absorption by the bloodstream and regulate blood sugar levels.
Prefer eating unsweetened coconuts as they are low in sugar ( 2.1 grams per ounce) in comparison to sweetened coconuts ( 10.4 grams per ounce).
Avoid eating too many coconuts as they may drop blood sugar below normal level and cause symptoms like shakiness, dizziness, excessive sweating, excessive hunger, fast heartbeat, confusion, and irritability or moodiness.
If you are on diabetic medication, consult with your doctor before adding coconuts to your diet to ensure there’s no food-drug intolerance risk.
(2) Coconut And High Blood Pressure
Eating 100 grams of coconut provides 356 mg of potassium.
Potassium is a natural vasodilator that relaxes blood vessels, improves blood circulation, and provides relief from hypertension or high blood pressure.
Hypertension is a leading cause of several cardiovascular problems and affects millions around the world.
Eat coconut in moderation as otherwise, over-accumulation of potassium in the body may drop blood pressure below the normal level and cause symptoms like heart palpitations, shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea, or vomiting, etc.
If you are on blood pressure medication, eat coconut after consulting with a doctor to ensure there’s no food-drug intolerance risk.
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(3) High In Saturated Fats
The medium-chain triglycerides in coconut help in cholesterol management as it reduces bad LDL cholesterol level and increases the level of good HDL cholesterol in our body.
Dietary fibers in coconut reduce LDL cholesterol and minimize the risk of atherosclerosis, a leading cause of cardiovascular problems.
However, overeating coconuts is a bad idea as they are high in saturated fats, and may increase the risk of cardiovascular problems like heart attack, heart stroke, and coronary artery disease, etc.
The American Heart Association suggests limiting saturated fats to 5-6 percent of total daily calories. For a person with 2000 calories per day of the diet, it would be about 100-120 calories or around 11 to 13 grams. Eating 100 grams of coconut provides around 30 grams of saturated fat which is twice more than that required by our body.
(4) Potential Weight Gain
When consumed in moderation, coconut promotes weight loss as the dietary fibers in it provide stomach satiety, reduces food craving, and controls overeating.
Medium-chain triglycerides in coconut increase the release of leptin and peptide YY hormone. These hormones reduce food cravings and help with weight loss.
However, overeating coconut may lead to weight gain because of its high calorific value of 354 calories per 100 grams.
(5) Too much Fiber Is Bad For Our Stomach
Coconut is good for digestive health as laxative properties of dietary fibers in it improves bowel movement, and relieves constipation and other digestive problems like abdominal pain, gas, bloating, and flatulence, etc.
However, in excessive quantity dietary fibers overactive bowel movement and causes problems like diarrhea, constipation, malabsorption, indigestion, intestinal gas, and intestinal bloating, etc.
Eat coconut in moderation to avoid the risk.
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(6) Interaction With Medication
Coconut may interact with certain medications.
If you are on any medication for any preexisting health condition or disease, consult with your doctor before adding coconut to your diet to avoid food-drug intolerance risk.
(7) May Cause Allergic Reactions
Coconut is a safe food for the majority, however, in some individuals, it may cause allergic reactions such as
- Skin reactions- Skin rashes, hives, irritation, or itching
- Gastrointestinal problems- Nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, or diarrhea
- Airway symptoms- wheezing, coughing, or runny nose.
- Swelling- In lips, tips, or face.
Avoid coconuts if you are allergic to them, or if you have a tree nut allergy.
Individuals who are allergic to walnuts, almonds, pistachios, and cashews are at a higher risk of being allergic to coconuts.
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Frequently Asked Questions
(1) Are coconuts nuts?
Botanically speaking, coconut is a fibrous one-seeded drupe, also known as a dry drupe. However, by loose definition, it can be either fruit, seed, or nut.
(2) Are coconuts good for you?
Yes, coconuts are good for us as they provide many health and beauty benefits such as
- Health Benefits– Improve cardiovascular health, strengthen immunity, regulates blood pressure, promote weight loss, regulates blood sugar, and so on.
- Beauty Benefits– Provide Anti-aging benefits, strengthen hair and scalp, promotes hair growth, and reduces hair fall, etc.
(3) Can coconut oil be used as lube?
Yes, it can be used as lube because of its moisturizing properties
(4) Can coconut oil go bad?
That depends on the type of coconut oil, and how well is stored.
Refined coconut oil may last up to 18 months, and virgin coconut oil may last up to 5 years.
(5) Can coconut oil whiten teeth?
There is not much evidence that suggests that coconut oil can whiten teeth. However, it can be used as an ingredient for making home toothpaste.
Lauric acid in coconut oil kills harmful bacteria such as Streptococcus mutans in the mouth and prevents tooth decay and gum diseases.
Using coconut oil for oil pulling also helps in maintaining oral hygiene.
(6) Can coconut milk go bad?
The sour smell of coconut milk is usually an indication of coconut milk gone bad.
An unopened can of coconut milk usually has a shelf life of two to five years. However, once opened it will only last about a week.
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(7) Can coconut oil grow hair?
Coconut oil promotes hair growth as vitamins and fatty acids nourish our hair follicles and scalp.
(8) Can coconut milk be frozen?
Yes, coconut milk can be frozen. Freezing may improve the shelf life of coconut milk.
(9) can coconut water cause diarrhea?
Drinking coconut water mild dehydration caused by diarrhea. However, drinking too much may cause diarrhea because of its laxative effect.
(10) Do coconut have seed?
Coconut is a mysterious fibrous one-seeded drupe. It has one seed.
(11) Do coconuts grow on palm trees?
Coconuts grow on coconut trees, and coconut trees are members of palm trees.
(12) How coconut milk is made?
Coconut milk is made by mixing the shredded coconut pulp with a small amount of hot water to suspend the fat present in the grated pulp.
This article provides general information about the topic and is not be taken as medical advice or as an alternative to medical advice, treatment, and/or diagnosis. Always consult with your doctor before trying out any of the remedies/recipes suggested in the blog post.
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Bharat Sharma is a Delhi-based writer who loves reading and writing research-based topics revolving around health, fitness, and nutrition. His love for writing started during his teenage and continues till date. After his graduation, he worked for GE Money, and IBM, but later found his true love i.e. blogging.