18-08-2020 by Freddie del Curatolo
This unfortunate period in which the pandemic for the past six months seems to have changed the world's outlook, filling the present with fear and controversy and undermining the future, on the coast of Kenya lives, as we have written in recent days, its paradoxes. Since last March everyone here has been well, or at least not worse than before the "war" triggered by the virus. Health is one of the aspects that are of least concern to those living on the shores of the Indian Ocean or in the immediate hinterland.
If the lack of tourism, which depends little on this country as much as on the rules of the United Europe (major exporter of travelers) and on the grains of the United States, which remains the first country for tourist visas in the whole country, is making itself felt, putting into crisis what, especially in Kilifi County, is the first revenue of the region, in August other deprivations were added, before which the tightening of public consumption of alcohol.
In addition to soft drinks (which in some ways hurt more than beer when consumed in a non-compulsive manner) and fruit juices (all of which are sweetened, however, and not very well matched with many foods), there isn't much left to drink to better times or socialize under a palm tree.
So a very cheap, very healthy and non-invasive drink is making a comeback, like a passion juice or a coke.
Let's talk about coconut, with its hybrid and beneficial water.
Many places, especially those on the beach, and many hotels have resumed serving the fresh coconut as an aperitif or even as an accompaniment to lunch, as they did thirty, forty years ago when the first holidays organized in Kenya were synonymous with exoticism and you did not expect to find the Prosecco di Valdobbiadene to accompany the oysters brought by the Swahili fisherman or the Sagrantino di Montefalco to wet the nyama choma.
Coconut water is also a particularly thirst-quenching drink rich in mineral salts that strengthens the immune system and together with the sun is a natural protection for the defences that can lead to contracting Covid-19 more easily, although in Malindi and the surrounding area there seems to be no need for it (it seems ... but the numbers and occupation in hospitals speak for themselves).
But there is also another aspect that the commercialization of the coconut (which is a real business not only for pulp and milk, but for the fibers used to make fabrics and rope) can encourage, that of not sacrificing their growth to produce the "mnazi", historical liquor used on the coast by giriama in particular and very often causes, with its abuse, states of excessive drunkenness, liver disease and even domestic violence and rape.
Palm trees need five years of growth to be able to provide all their products at their best and in that period they should not be used to extract palm wine, as the production of coconuts would suffer. However, since the mnazi is part of the culture of the coast, already in the past, when the law was implemented not to commercialize the "mnazi" but only for home and artisan use, the Government reassured the local population. Palm wine can be extracted at the end of the harvest season.
Coconuts or "drupes" usually grow in five or six bunches, each containing about a dozen fruits.
Coconut water can be considered as a real natural supplement. It contains minerals such as magnesium, potassium and calcium. The mineral salts act in synergy to keep the body hydrated during physical activity. It can therefore be considered as a natural alternative to sports drinks and energy drinks rich in colorants and preservatives. It is useful for those who practice sport because it prevents muscle cramps. It is considered as a real panacea if taken in the amount of 40-50 millilitres per day. In general, it helps to improve energy levels, stimulating the production of hormones by the thyroid gland and stimulating the metabolism. This drink made from coconut contains numerous bioactive enzymes that our body uses for the digestion of food. Drinking coconut water is a useful natural remedy for those who suffer from digestive problems and abdominal pain caused by poor digestion. Coconut water must be taken regularly to achieve the desired effects.
Coconut has the ability to regulate blood sugar, lower cholesterol and help the body maintain proper hydration, especially if coconut water is consumed in addition to coconut pulp.
In short, waiting for the return of a "healthy tusker baridi" every now and then and a glass of imported wine, we take the opportunity to rediscover an almost free wonder of this land and keep fit.
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