Coconut water is a popular beverage that many people drink for its health benefits, including hydration.
It’s also rich in various minerals and vitamins, so adding some coconut water to your diet can be very beneficial. But if you’re ever tried coconut water, you’ve definitely noticed how sweet it is.
While diluting it can definitely help, another process can make it less sweet but still healthy: fermentation.
But, as you may know, fermenting often makes the beverage alcoholic. So, is fermented coconut water alcoholic?
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Is fermented coconut water alcoholic?
Fermented coconut water is safe to drink, and is slightly alcoholic. Everything that’s fermented can be alcoholic, but it usually has a small percentage, anywhere from 0.1-0.7%.
Fermented coconut water has a slightly sour-sweet and fizzy flavor and taste, similar to that of champagne. The longer the liquid will be left to sit and brew, though, the stronger it’ll become.
What is fermented coconut water?
Fermented coconut water is the water gathered from green coconuts that have been fermented using a culture that’s aimed at adding yeast and beneficial bacteria to the end product.
The process is similar to that of fermenting cabbage (sauerkraut), yogurt (kefir), or tea (Kombucha).
Fermented products are healthy for your gut as they feed the ‘good’ bacteria found in your stomach and intestines.
Making fermented coconut water is a relatively easy process, but you should follow the instructions carefully not to give yourself indigestion or food poisoning.
The fermentation usually lasts anywhere between 18 to 48 hours and requires several ingredients, such as powdered probiotics. This can be purchased online, but make sure you get it from a reputable store.
Within this period of time, your fermented coconut water will be only slightly alcoholic. So, if you want to make something closer to wine, leave the liquid to ferment and brew for a week or two.
The longer you leave the coconut water to ferment, the less acidic it will be. This is because the bacteria in the culture you’ve added will eat the simple sugars, decreasing the sweet taste of the final product.
This also means that fermented coconut water is better for blood sugar levels regulation than regular coconut water.
Is fermented coconut water safe to drink?
Naturally-fermented coconut water is safe to drink even though you have to ferment it yourself since it’s not widely available in stores.
It’s also worth pointing out that it’s safest and most beneficial to ferment fresh coconut water extracted from coconut instead of store-bought coconut water.
This is because these tend to contain compounds and preservatives that can interfere with the fermentation process.
The natural fermentation process produces bacterial cultures that positively affect your health, especially your digestive system.
The compounds found in fermented coconut water can potentially prevent many digestive system issues. They also feed the ‘good’ gut bacteria in your stomach, improving conditions, such as acid reflux.
So, you might be less likely to have problems related to food acidity.
Unfortunately, some experts advise against drinking fermented coconut water (and other fermented beverages and foods, for that matter) when pregnant.
This is because research isn’t in agreement on the effects of fermented foods during pregnancy.
So, to be on the safe side, it’s best to stick to natural coconuts and fresh coconut water or milk.
What are the benefits of fermented coconut water?
Fermented coconut water is loaded with beneficial gut bacteria and healthy bacteria cultures.
These help feed the ‘good’ gut bacteria already living in your stomach as well as replenish them after several health issues, such as vomiting, antibiotic treatment, and dehydration.
As a result, drinking fermented coconut water is very healing for your digestive system.
Drinking fermented drinks, such as fermented coconut water may also aid in digestion and flatten your stomach. This is because poor digestion and nutrition often lead to bloating, especially when the food isn’t digested properly.
In this case, drinking fermented coconut water can soothe your intestines, improve your digestion, and remove trapped gas from your stomach.
Thanks to the fermentation process, this type of coconut water contains more minerals and vitamins.
What’s more, the vitamins that were already present in coconut water, such as potassium, phosphorus, and magnesium, are easier for your body to absorb.
The fermentation process also makes them more bioavailable, thus more likely to help you reach your dietary requirements for these essential minerals.
The coconut water that has been fermented anywhere from one to two weeks is the best for your health, as its alcohol content is very low.
Even though fermented drinks are safe and beneficial for your health, any type of alcohol can have a negative impact on your health, especially if drank in large quantities and frequently.
As a result, it might be best to stick to mildly fermented coconut water to get the most health benefits.
Can you use store-bought coconut water to make fermented coconut water?
While the best option is to get the coconut water from coconuts, it’s normal that not everyone has the time or energy to do that.
Luckily, you can safely and effectively use store-bought coconut water and ferment it yourself. There are a couple of things you should keep in mind, though, and these include:
- The coconut water is from fresh juice, not from concentrate
- The coconut water has no artificial sweeteners, flavor, or preservatives
- The coconut water organic
- The coconut water is from young green coconuts from Thailand
Following these rules will ensure a good taste of the finished product and that it’s made in the safest way possible.
If the coconut water you buy follows the above-mentioned guidelines, it will also have most of its nutrients intact, providing you with even more health benefits than just the probiotics.
Fermenting coconut water is a relatively new endeavor, but it’s easy. While the final product will be slightly alcoholic, it won’t contain nearly enough to give you any negative health issues.
If you like, though, you can prolong the fermentation process and get more alcoholic fermented coconut water. In the end, it’s all up to your preferences.
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