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Why I Choose Harmless Harvest as a Holistic Nutritionist - Guest Blogger Mercedes Quinn, @superfoodsaydeez

As a holistic nutritionist, my approach to nutrition takes into consideration the mind, body, soul and the interconnectedness of all aspects of life to one’s health and well-being.

To me, that means peace of mind from making a purchase decision that is in line with my values and is just as important to my health and well-being as the quality of nutrients in the products I’ve purchased.

No matter how you look at nutrition, hydration is important. There are times when we can benefit from more than plain water, and there are even times when more than plain water is vital. For those times, I recommend coconut water because it is a natural source of electrolytes like potassium, magnesium and calcium-- all essential to restoring your equilibrium. Check out my article on “The Truth About Water Toxicity” to learn more about when it might be time to switch to something with electrolytes: https://superfoodsaydeez.com/2017/01/30/the-truth-about-water-toxicity/

Not all coconut water is created equal. In fact, many coconut waters available in the market today are low quality products containing little to no health benefits, and sometimes even contain ingredients that are more harmful than good. Though all boast health benefits, not all deliver them, and some might even cause harm.

We vote every day with our dollars. Common issues in the coconut industry are labor conditions, environmental impact of harvesting coconuts and monkey-slave labor. Transparency is the only way to ensure peace of mind of our purchasing decisions.

The very best source of coconut water is an actual coconut, and not just any coconut, but a young, organic coconut harvested sustainably. That's not always practical or possible. So, you want to look for a bottled coconut water that is as close to the real thing as possible.

Harmless Harvest is the ONLY brand of coconut water I’ll drink, and the only brand I recommend to others.

Here are the top ten reasons why I choose Harmless Harvest:

1. Contains one ingredient

2. Water from young coconuts

3. Never boiled

4. Not from concentrate

5. Perishable

6. (Naturally) pink!

7. USDA Organic
8. 100% Fair For Life Certified
9. Dedicated to sustainability

10. Fair price

1. Contains one ingredient

Coconut water should only contain one ingredient. Stay away from any coconut water with more than one ingredient. Added sugars, “natural flavors”, and gums are bad news. And ingredients such as water, vitamin C, and ascorbic acid can point to issues in processing mentioned below. Harmless Harvest contains no extra ingredients.

2. Water from young coconuts

The best coconut water comes from young coconuts. The water in young coconuts contains the most nutrients, and the older a coconut gets, the more the nutrients its water loses as its nutrients seep out into the rest of the coconut, making the coconut water of an old coconut less nutrient-dense than the coconut water of a young coconut. If a coconut water doesn’t specify that their coconut water is from young coconuts, you can probably assume that it is not. Harmless Harvest coconut water is the pure water of young, organic coconuts.

3. Never Boiled

Essential nutrients in coconut water are damaged through common processes of heating such as pasteurization. Harmless Harvest Coconut Water is never boiled. In 2011, Harmless Harvest launched the first non-thermally pasteurized coconut water in the US. In 2016, Harmless Harvest pioneered a new process and become the first coconut water to use a multi-step micro-filtration process, that maintains nutrients while delivering unparalleled quality and safety.

4. Not from concentrate

Anything “from concentrate” has been processed into a syrup. During this process, many nutrients are lost and the final product contains very little health benefits. Shocking fact from Harmless Harvest FAQ page: Companies can legally claim their product is 100% pure and natural when using juice that was reconstituted from concentrate, so this is something to look out for. If a coconut water contains “water” on its ingredient list, you can probably assumed that coconut water came from concentrate. Harmless Harvest is not from concentrate. [Link to Harmless Harvest FAQ page: http://www.harmlessharvest.com/faq/ ]

5. Perishable

While on the surface, this may seem like an inconvenience. Upon further inspection, you’ll realize you wouldn’t want coconut water any other way. In order for coconut water to have a shelf life, either something unnatural needs to be added to the coconut water, or the coconut water itself must undergo a process. Both of which lead to lower nutrient content and/or the presence of impure ingredients in the coconut water. Harmless Harvest needs to be refrigerated and must be maintained in refrigerated conditions at all times, because it contains absolutely no preservatives or additives. Its perishability is a testament to its purity.

6. (Naturally) pink!

Coconut water can turn a natural pink color from the presence of varying levels of antioxidants, such as polyphenols, that turn pink when they interact with light. Some companies hide this natural color variation by adding vitamin C or Ascorbic Acid, but Harmless Harvest embraces the natural pink color.  

7. USDA Organic

Consuming organic produce can lower your risk of exposure to harmful pesticides in the foods you eat. BUYING organic produce can do so much more from an environmental and sustainability standpoint. When you buy organic, you are supporting companies who grow organic, harvest organic soil, and hence, lower the risk of cross contaminating other soils with pesticides by refusing to use them at all. This is one reason to buy organic whenever possible, even beyond the Dirty Dozen. [Link to EWG’s Dirty Dozen: https://www.ewg.org/foodnews/summary.php ]

8. 100% Fair For Life Certified

Harmless Harvest is America’s first Fair for Life Coconut Water. This certification ensures Harmless Harvest is committed to paying fair prices and supporting the well-being of local communities, so you can have peace of mind when purchasing Harmless Harvest. Harmless Harvest provides fair wages and working conditions to its workers, refuses to do business with any entity that has cut corners at the expense of its workers or the environment, and is dedicated to giving back to the community where their coconuts are harvested. They give back to the communities where their coconuts are harvested by planting trees, cultivating organic farming practices, and providing communities with stable employment and steady incomes.

9. Dedicated to Sustainability

Harmless Harvest’s ecosystem-based business model speaks to their dedication to sustainability. It means the well-being of everyone involved is taken into consideration with every decision, and the decisions made are those that benefit every entity involved. Harmless Harvest recently switched to recyclable plastic PET bottles made of on average 24% less plastic than their old bottles. Their use of plastic bottles has been my only qualm. But it is clear that Harmless Harvest has thought this decision through and made the decision that would create the least amount of harm. They hope one day to reduce the amount of new plastic they introduce by using 100% post-consumer recycled plastic PET bottles.

10. Fair price tag

While a higher price tag does not always guarantee a higher quality product, in the case of coconut water, the reverse IS true: a lower price tag does guarantee a lower quality product. Cheap coconut water is a red flag. If the quality of the coconut water itself is not compromised, then something shady went down in the harvesting process. Without realizing it, by purchasing cheap coconut water, you’re either paying for a product with little to no health benefits and potentially even harmful ingredients, OR you are likely supporting slave trade, unfair working conditions, unsustainable harvesting practices or the use of monkey slave labor.

Choosing a coconut water can be overwhelming, as the market has become more competitive and cluttered, and awareness of the environmental impacts of harvesting are brought to light. But it can be an easy choice you can feel good about, if you reach for Harmless Harvest every time. :)


IG: @superfoodsaydeez / superfoodsaydeez.com

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