It took us 4+ lactation consultants, 2 midwives, an ENT, 2 frenectomies, a dysphagia specialist, a Modified Barium Swallow Study, physical therapy, double-pumping with a hospital grade pump (every 2-3 hours, around the clock), donor breastmilk, a list of lactogenic herbs, nipple blisters, mastitis, and 7 weeks to establish breastfeeding.
During our 7-week circus, I ran out of milk…several times. It was heartbreaking. Nevertheless, I had many hours in which I was hooked up to pump, and thus I spent many hours researching options for our newborn’s nutrition. One of my delightful discoveries was the option of coconut juice/water/milk/oil for infant nutrition. Apparently coconut is one of the least likely foods to elicit an allergy, and it is the first food fed to Thai babies. In addition to being safe for infants, it is composed of the main fatty acid found in breast milk –lauric acid.
To assist you in navigating the benefits of the various renderings of the coconut, some basic descriptions may be helpful.
Coconut Juice – This is the liquid from a young, green coconut, before it matures to the brown coconut. This may be presented in stores as “coconut water”, but the juice is more flavorful than the coconut water from a mature, brown coconut.
Coconut Water – This is the liquid from a mature, brown coconut. It is not as sweet as coconut juice from the green, immature coconut.
Coconut Milk – This white liquid is often used in cooking, and can be made from coconut “meat”. (The process of making coconut milk is in a link below.)
Coconut Oil – This is solid, translucent white oil at room temperature. There are many, many applications for this miracle oil.
Here are some of the resources I found in my research. I hope they are helpful for you!
Coconut ‘meat’ provides B vitamins, protein, zinc, phosphorus and iron. Experts used to believe that coconut is too high in unhealthy fats to be considered a useful addition to the diet – but more recent research has suggested that the fat in coconut is actually very good for us!
This is because it is high in lauric acid, which also happens to be the main fatty acid found in breast milk. Lauric acid is what makes breast milk so digestible and is believed to protect the body from infection and boost the immune system.