Coconuts are high in fat and so in calories but they are also high in fibre and low in carbohydrates. This combination prevents one from consuming too much coconut as the fibre and fat soon create a feeling of satiety. The combination of high fibre and low carbohydrates may also help control blood sugar levels. Moreover, the fat in coconuts is in the form of medium-chain triglycerides which the body metabolizes differently as compared to saturated fats by absorbing them directly from the small intestine and rapidly using them for energy. This may promote body fat loss when eaten in place of long-chain saturated fats from animal foods.
Coconuts are also rich nutritionally being especially high in manganese, which is essential for bone health and the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins, and cholesterol. They’re also rich in copper and iron, which help form red blood cells, and also selenium which is an important antioxidant that fights free radicals. Coconuts may help block the growth of certain bacteria because of the antibacterial effect they have.
Coconuts also contain several phenolic compounds, which are antioxidants helping to neutralize the free radicals, which contribute to chronic diseases. According to one study, some of these antioxidants may help protect against DNA damage and cell damage and death caused by chemotherapy.