Coconut Milk: Benefits, Nutrition and Uses
Coconut milk is extracted from the white flesh of the fruit of the coconut tree. Unlike coconut water, milk is not found naturally and must be extracted.
Coconut flesh is mixed with water to extract the milk. Coconut milk is very popular among keto milk alternatives. It has a creamy texture and contains healthy fats, known as medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) known as capric acid and caprylic acid. Coconuts are rich in healthy saturated fat too.
Coconut Milk Nutritional Facts
Hundred grams of milk freshly extracted from coconuts contain:
- Calories: 30 kcal
- Fat: 3.2 grams
- Sodium: 2 mg
- Carbohydrates: 0.4 grams
- Fiber: 0 grams
- Sugars: 0 grams
- Protein: 0.3 grams
- Manganese: 0.12mg
- Copper: 0.03 mg
- Iron: 0.5 mg
- Magnesium: 6.9 mg
Coconut milk is also one of the best home remedies to get healthy hair.
How Is Coconut Milk Made?
Coconut flesh is grated and boiled in water. The mixture is then strained to remove the coconut flesh and produce thick milk.
Furthermore, the coconut remaining after the boiling process is simmered in water, and the straining process is then repeated to produce thin milk. Remember to use a fine mesh or cheesecloth for the straining process.
Did you know that coconut oil can make your hair long and strong?
Potential health benefits associated with milk extracted from coconuts include:
- Weight loss: Milk extracted from coconut is a low-carb choice to lose weight. Medium-chain triglycerides can boost metabolism and indirectly promote fat loss.
- Cholesterol level: A study published in the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism concluded that the consumption of coconut milk porridge significantly reduced the levels of bad LDL cholesterol. It was also observed that the level of good HDL cholesterol also increased
- Heart health: The healthy fats present in coconuts do not get oxidized and thus do not cause inflammation in the body. That can be beneficial to heart health.
- Might reduce inflammation: Coconut extract and coconut oil can significantly reduce the level of inflammation. That can help prevent chronic diseases.
- Might reduce ulcers: In one study, milk extracted from coconuts was found to be extremely beneficial in the recovery from a stomach ulcer.
- Fights viruses and bacteria: Lauric acid present in coconuts can fight off pathogens, including viruses and bacteria. Milk extracted from coconuts can help fight off infections.
You can also check whether coconut oil is good for your skin or not.
Coconut Milk Recipes
Here're a few interesting recipes that can be prepared using milk extracted from coconuts:
Coconut Milk Porridge
This recipe can be amazing to include in your breakfast. It's a vegan recipe that's nutritious and tasty.
- 1 cup oats
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp vanilla
- In a medium-sized saucepan, boil the oats with water.
- Turn down the heat, and simmer for five to ten minutes, and reduce the water.
- Turn off the heat, and add the cinnamon, vanilla, and the milk.
- Put under low heat again. Stir for a smooth and creamy consistency.
- Top with berries and nuts for an amazing snack.
Thai Coconut Soup
This recipe is popular in Thai cuisine and can be easily made at home. Take a look at the recipe:
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 2 tbsps grated ginger
- 1-2 tsp Thai red curry paste
- 1 stalk lemon grass
- 3-4 cups of chicken broth
- 2 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 tbsp sugar, optional
- 3 cans of coconut milk
- 2 cups of sliced mushrooms
- 2 cups of shrimp, chopped
- 2 tbsp of fresh lime juice
- salt to taste
- Heat coconut oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add ginger, curry paste, and lemongrass. Cook for a minute.
- Gradually add the chicken broth, followed by fish sauce and brown sugar. Reduce the heat.
- Add the milk and mushrooms, and stir till the mushrooms are soft.
- Add the shrimp, and cook for about five minutes. Add the lemon juice.
- Serve and garnish with cilantro.
Learn more about the nutritional facts and health benefits of coconut oil here.
Coconut milk can be extremely beneficial to health due to the presence of medium-chain triglycerides. It's advisable to extract milk from coconuts at home instead of buying canned ones. Instant coconut powder available in the market may contain food additives. You can store coconut milk in the refrigerator for a few days.