8 Disadvantages Of Coconut Water You Should Be Aware Of

Watch out for the ill effects this tropical drink can have if consumed in excess.

Reviewed by Dr. Pallavi Srivastava, PG Diploma in Sports Science & Fitness Nutrition
By Ravi Teja Tadimalla, Professional Certificate In Food, Nutrition & Health

Coconut water is known as the ‘Magic Drink’ or ‘Nature’s Drink’ due to its countless health benefits. However, a few disadvantages of coconut water might make you reconsider consuming it.

Overconsumption of coconut water may lower your blood pressure, cause an electrolyte imbalance, or act as a laxative. Consequently, it is important to be aware of all the effects of overindulging in this beverage.

This article examines the side effects of coconut water. Take a look below.

Disadvantages of Drinking Too Much Coconut Water:

Close up of a piece of dry coconut and a bottle of coconut water


1. It Is Not The Ideal Drink For Athletes

In case you prefer coconut water for rehydration immediately post work out, then you rather drink plain water. Because the amount of sodium plain water contains is unarguably more than that present in coconut water. And hey, it is sodium that aids rehydration, right?

Also, when compared with certain sports energy drinks, coconut water is way low in carbohydrate content but ten times high in potassium content. Coconut water just contains one-tenth the sodium when compared with other sports drinks (1).

2. Not Good For People Vulnerable To Allergies

Woman experiencing allergic reaction after drinking coconut water


Some of us do have allergies. We might be allergic to certain food items and ingredients and hence, we refrain from consuming them. Similarly, coconut water might cause allergic reactions in certain people who are allergic to it.

Coconut is basically a tree nut. Hence certain people who consume coconut water might be prone to tree nut allergies as well as other forms of allergy. The understatement is coconut water should be kept away from people who are prone to allergies (2).

3. Possesses Diuretic Properties

This is another disadvantage when you consume too much of coconut water. Coconut water has diuretic properties (3).  This means too much of its consumption might require you to take a break and visit the loo a number of times. Although a mild amount of coconut water has hydrating properties, too much of its consumption can be unhealthy.

4. Might Cause Electrolyte Imbalance

Woman feeling dizzy due to electrolyte imabalance after drinking excessive coconut water


The high potassium content of coconut water is one reason it is a wonder drink. But then, the very same reason can make coconut water fatal if consumed in excess.

In a specific case, a man had spent an entire day playing tennis in 90 degree Fahrenheit weather. He happened to consume a whopping 88 ounces of coconut water, which resulted in a condition called hyperkalemia, eventually leading to a serious condition (4).

Hyperkalemia causes weakness and lightheadedness, and within minutes the victim might lose his consciousness.

5. Might Act As A Laxative

Too much of coconut water consumption can be dangerous. Drinking too much of it can have laxative effects on your digestive system (3). Since coconut water is a natural laxative, it might not be suitable for some people who have problems with their bowel movements. Hence, care should be taken before consuming a large amount of coconut water.

6. May Increase Blood Sugar Levels In Some

Woman taking a blood sugar test


Coconut water may not fall under sugary drinks but still it does contain carbohydrates and calories. People with high blood sugar should not drink more than 1 glass a day. However, more research is warranted in this regard.

Also, consuming the immature green coconut is better for those with diabetes than the matured one.

7. May Lower Your Blood Pressure Too Much

Coconut water might lower your blood pressure (5). In case you are already taking medications for high blood pressure, it might cause your blood pressure to drop further down. Hence, remember to consult your healthcare provider in such a situation.

[ Read: Pineapple Juice For Weight Loss ]

8. Should Be Consumed Right After Cutting It Open

Freshly cut coconut with straw


Coconut water is to be consumed fresh (6). It should ideally be consumed right after cutting it open. If it is left open for some time, it may lose some of its beneficial nutrients. Coconut water is a wonder drink, yes. It might have many benefits which are virtually absent in other drinks. And talking in terms of health, it probably is the most preferred drink.

Stylecraze Trivia
One coconut contains about 300ml of water. However, this may vary depending on the stage of maturity of the nut and its variety.

But that doesn’t mean you can become a sole survivor of coconut water, does it?

[ Read: Moringa Oleifera Seeds ]

Infographic: When To Avoid Coconut Water?

Coconut water is a refreshing drink. But there are some instances when it’s best to avoid drinking it. Coconut water might not go well with certain health issues, especially when it comes to your kidneys and heart.

Check out the below infographic to know when to avoid coconut water.

when to avoid coconut water [infographic]

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Stylecraze Trivia
It is often preferable to drink the liquid inside young coconuts over the liquid inside ripened coconuts. Young green coconut water is also called buko juice in Philippine English.

Coconut water is a refreshing, hydrating drink. However, if consumed in excess, it can lead to many adverse effects. These include electrolyte imbalances to elevated blood sugar levels. Its diuretic and laxative effects may also cause abdominal discomfort or urination difficulties. Coconut is closely related to tree nuts. Hence, it may cause allergic reactions in individuals sensitive to them. Such individuals must exercise caution and avoid drinking coconut water.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is drinking coconut water every day bad for you?

No, drinking coconut water every day in moderation is beneficial for your health.

How much coconut water per day is safe?

It is best to drink no more than 2-3 glasses of coconut water every day. Drinking above this limit can cause adverse effects.

What does coconut water taste like?

Natural coconut water has a mildly sweet taste with a hint of nuttiness.

How much potassium is in coconut water?

100 g of coconut water contains about 165 mg of potassium (7).

How many calories are in coconut water?

100 g of coconut water contains about 18 calories (7).

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Ravi Teja Tadimalla is an editor and a published author. He has been in the digital media field for over... more

Dr. Pallavi Srivastava

(PG Diploma in Sports Science & Fitness Nutrition)
Pallavi Srivastava is a Clinical Nutritionist with over 13 years of experience and the founder of Q-Slim Fitness Studio. She... more