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6/22/13 12:00 P

Here is my 2 cents on the coconut drink:
this is basically sugar and fat water; which has been fortified with nutrients to make it look nutritionally better.

water is the first ingredient, then coconut cream (which is just oil/fat---all saturated fat too), and then cane juice (which is a fancy word for sugar).

No protein in this drink. Milk would give you 8 grams.
And then this fat-sugary water drink has added nutrients such as calcium, vitamin D, etc.

I say...leave it on the shelf.


Edited by: DIETITIANBECKY at: 6/22/2013 (12:02)
6/22/13 11:04 A

almond milk is nice... I don't use coconut milk I use coconut oil to cook with...

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6/22/13 7:39 A

It's unclear to me what you mean by "coconut milk" as there is the traditional coconut milk mentioned by Anarie and Becky, then there is coconut drink, made with coconut cream, which is marketed as a milk substitute
Perhaps Becky can give us her thoughts on this product.

Edited by: GDBEAR65 at: 6/22/2013 (11:42)
6/21/13 8:44 P

This link will take you to the SP article on coconut oil; but it also contains some info on the coconut milk, coconut water, coconut meat as well.

I think of these as a condiment;rather than my staples. I use them in recipes where I want the delicious coconut flavor or texture in cooking.


Edited by: DIETITIANBECKY at: 6/21/2013 (20:45)
ANARIE Posts: 13,185
6/21/13 8:28 P

That's another thing-- the definition of coconut milk. The stuff in the can is super-high in calories as Becky said, and that's actually what coconut milk is. There are also products that are sold in a carton that looks like a milk carton; they're technically coconut *beverages* rather than milk-- they're basically coconut milk watered down, often with some sugar added. They're much lower in calories, but still not a particularly good replacement for real milk. They're mostly fat and carbs, with very little protein, and they only have calcium if it's added.

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6/21/13 7:46 P

Thanks! I was confused when I'd see statements to switch to coconut milk because I knew it had saturated fat. According to what Becky said, it is even worse than I thought. Probably something I should avoid. emoticon

6/21/13 7:19 P

You are correct---coconut milk is not a healthy substitute. In fact:
Coconut milk, which contains the meat and liquid of coconuts and often comes canned, is rich in calories and fat. A 1/2-cup serving contains 223 calories and 24 grams of fat, 21 of which are saturated—well over one's typical upper limit for saturated fat.

SP Registered Dietitian

Edited by: DIETITIANBECKY at: 6/21/2013 (20:42)
ANARIE Posts: 13,185
6/21/13 6:56 P

A few years ago, some researchers noticed that people who live in places that use lots of coconut do not have the high rates of heart disease that you would expect from people eating tons of saturated fat. Because of that, coconut product manufacturers jumped out and said, "See? The fat in coconut is GOOD for you!"

The researchers actually said no such thing. They said it might be a good idea to do more research. People who live where coconut is a traditional part of the diet also live in places where coconuts grow. Where do coconuts grow? Tropical paradises. There's no way to know whether the difference is because coconuts aren't so bad, or because living in a beautiful tropical place is good for your heart.

They have continued the research and found that the saturated fat in coconut is *different* from the saturated fat in animal products, and it's looking more and more as if coconut fat is not as bad as we always thought it was. But "not as bad as we thought" is a long way away from "good for you."

If you were going to switch from full-fat dairy milk to coconut milk, that would probably be at least an even switch and *possibly* better. If you want to try recipes from time to time that use coconut milk because it tastes good, go for it. But replacing your skim dairy milk with coconut milk is not likely to be a good idea for your health.

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6/21/13 6:22 P

It depends on your overall diet. I use a lot of coconut milk at times, but we don't do milk at all and very little dairy overall.

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6/21/13 5:13 P

I've read in several places to use coconut milk in place of other types of milk. But doesn't coconut milk have a lot of saturated fat? How is that better than, say, skimmed cow's milk?

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