Long gone are the days when coconut water was considered niche. Not only are there countless varieties, but inspired by its success, a slew of other plant waters are now flooding supermarket aisles. With the recent news that coconut water may not be as healthy as first thought, we turned to nutritionist Peggy Kotsopoulos — the host of Peggy K’s Kitchen Cures on Veria Network, author of Must Have Been Something I Ate and Kitchen Cures and nutrition correspondent for several TV shows — to find out about the pros and cons of various waters.
- It’s nature’s vitamin water! It’s rich in vitamins and minerals, especially energy-boosting B vitamins, and also serves an excellent source of calcium, supporting bone health.
- It’s extremely low in calories and sugar, aiding in weight management.
- It’s sustainable.
- It’s rich in oligosaccharides — a prebiotic fiber used as fuel for many beneficial bacteria in the gut, helping to improve intestinal health.
- It’s natural — it’s made with a single ingredient.
- Unlike coconut water, it’s not a great source of electrolytes, in particular potassium, which provides cellular energy and helps with hydration.
- Has cleansing and detoxifying properties — particularly for the liver and kidney.
- Helps get rid of water retention due to diuretic properties.
- Stimulates the digestive system acting as a digestive aid/tonic.
- Known to be good for strengthening hair.
- Great beauty tonic as it’s rich in antioxidants vitamin C and vitamin A. Vitamin C helps to firm and tone skin, and prevent wrinkle-causing free-radical damage. Vitamin A revitalizes skin by increasing cell turnover, fights acne and inflammation. Plus, the rich lycopene content helps to prevent UV damage.
- Contains more potassium than coconut water — a vital mineral and electrolyte required for cellular energy.
- Watermelon juice tends to be higher on the glycemic index, however, causing rapid spikes and dips in blood sugar levels affecting mood and weight management.
- Supports digestive health — aloe vera juice helps to increase the absorption of certain nutrients and macronutrients. It can also help with digestion of food and reduce heartburn.
- It’s great for your skin. It helps to hydrate tired skin, soothes skin irritations and reduce inflammation and puffiness.
- While it can help promote certain digestive benefits, there could also be some side effects. Aloe juice contains two compounds called emodin and aloin, both of which can have laxative properties.
- Low in calories and sugar, plus contains omega-3 fatty acids, all which help contribute to healthy weight management.
- It has powerful anti-inflammatory properties helping to reduce joint and muscle pain as well as the incidences of inflammatory diseases, such as inflammatory bowel disease and cardiovascular disease. Also helps to reduce cholesterol.
- Contains insulin, which helps to regulate blood sugar levels.
- Too much of it can cause diarrhea.
- It helps to stimulate bile production, and improves the breakdown and digestion of fats.
- It can help reduce the frequency and severity of heartburn.
- Helps to reduce water retention.
- Reduces nausea.
- Typically many sugars are added to provide sweetness and enhance taste.
- Helps improve digestive health and reduce constipation.
- Contains fiber, which helps to reduce cholesterol and improve cardiovascular health.
- Rich in B vitamins, which help to boost energy and reduce the effects of stress on the body.
- It’s pretty bland-tasting, so other ingredients must be added to improve flavor and taste.
- Rich in electrolytes to quickly provide efficient hydration.
- One of nature’s best sports drinks to provide fuel and hydration during workouts, so you can train harder and for longer durations.
- May contain too much sugar, whether in the form of natural sugars or added sugars.
- The flavored varieties definitely contain WAY too much sugar (often around half of daily recommended intake), which can contribute to weight gain. Opt for the natural variety and ensure there are no added sugars.