Was Coconut Water Really Used for Blood Transfusions? (Plus a Coconut Experiment) : The Renegade Health Show Episode #723

Thursday Dec 16 | BY |
| Comments (41)

In this episode, Elaine Wilkes and I discuss coconuts, fungicides, and health myths…

If you ever eat coconuts, you’ll want to listen to this one.

Elaine also shares information about a unique type of brainstorming some companies are doing to help their teams come up with new ideas.

Take a look…

Your question of the day: What other health myths do you know that aren’t true?

Click here, scroll down to the bottom of the page and leave your comments now!

To read more about Elaine Wilkes, please click here: http://www.elainewilkes.com/

Live Awesome!

Kevin Gianni

Kevin Gianni is a health author, activist and blogger. He started seriously researching personal and preventative natural health therapies in 2002 when he was struck with the reality that cancer ran deep in his family and if he didn’t change the way he was living — he might go down that same path. Since then, he’s written and edited 6 books on the subject of natural health, diet and fitness. During this time, he’s constantly been humbled by what experts claim they know and what actually is true. This has led him to experiment with many diets and protocols — including vegan, raw food, fasting, medical treatments and more — to find out what is myth and what really works in the real world.

Kevin has also traveled around the world searching for the best protocols, foods, medicines and clinics around and bringing them to the readers of his blog RenegadeHealth.com — which is one of the most widely read natural health blogs in the world with hundreds of thousands of visitors a month from over 150 countries around the world.


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  1. Mary Artemis says:

    Great Goddess energy and wisdom of God! So, then, what about them coconuts?? Do we keep eatin’ them?
    Mary from Stamford

  2. Don says:

    If you’re worried about fungicide in your coconut why not just send some coconut water to a lab? Why go through this whole process of adding red food coloring to the outside of a coconut to see if it leaches in. Especially when often times coconuts end up being red inside anyway. Was it really the food coloring or was the coconut just starting to go bad?

  3. Mapuana says:

    I’m a 56 yr. old Hawaiian born and raised here in the islands and have never ever seen anyone replace dyed coconuts for dyed eggs at Easter. How would the kids stick those in their baskets and how would you hide the huge coconuts in the grass for the kids to find? Sheesh, I wonder where Elaine got her information from!

  4. taylor says:

    seems like a good idea for someone with the ability to do so to
    test to see if these chemicals are in fact leaching into the meat or coconut water so that there is actually factual information about this..
    for sure as someone who has lived on fresh young coconuts for years in HI….I cannot eat these Thai ones they taste dead and no doubt has not seen a tree for who knows how many months.

  5. taylor says:

    ditto on the coconut easter eggs…never seen or heard of such a thing…

  6. Thank you for the interview. Good info on coconuts. Yes, it is sodium metabisulphite (E223), used in products like this one: http://www.tastenirvana.com/roasted.html

    Elaine Wilkes said in the interview, “If you go to a Zen Master, and you ask them a problem, they will go into nature to find your answer. They feel that if they live in the city they will lose all their power.”

    Well, despite her scholarship on nutrition, obviously she knows very little about Zen and Zen Masters and Buddhism, . Many, many Zen Masters live in cities, and many monks and nuns in the Buddhist tradition live and serve in the cities – and you can be assured, they do not need to go to “nature” to “find your answer” and not “lose all their power.” (Zen is not an earth-based, tribal form of spirituality touting magical powers of shamans, which pre-dated the arrival of Buddhism, and then Zen).

    While the chaos of a city can be ungrounding (and “nature” can help one clear many fetters to mindfulness, concentration, and insight), practioners – including Zen Masters – discover, cultivate, and express the awakened Big Mind – satori – samadhi – in major cities every day.

    So enjoy your practice, citydwellers, and don’t think that by living in the city you will never discover your original face, Big Mind, and Big Heart – or that if your teacher or sangha of practioners lives in the city that insight and ability will elude you! The awakened mind is the ground – and goal – of your being!

    With peaceful steps,

    David Rainoshek, MA

  7. Nomi Shannon says:

    It looks like she’s talking about mature coconuts not young Thai coconuts with the thick white coir protecting it.?? At least in the photo I didn’t see the thick white outside. I am HOPING she put the dye all over the brown husk and that we are more protected with the thick white coir on as the young thai coconuts come into this country.

    There’s an account about John F. Kennedy Jr during World War II, he was injured, I think he was Captain not sure of a PT boat, PT 109.
    They used coconut water intravenously to keep him alive. This account is in his book about his World War II experiences. I imagine that coconut water right from the tree like that is sterile…

  8. Joseph DiMasi says:

    Agreed w/ Dan & Taylor!

    We’re all about blood test, and testing our nutrient of superfoods, etc…. It’s so surprising that no one has yet really done *TESTING* of the Thai coconuts. Food coloring is interesting and all, but as Elaine would say, “It’s not really a scientific test.”

    For example, a good carbon filter on your Tap water will pull out the chlorine… but NOT the fluoride! You need activated alumina for that. Different filters capture different chemicals. (BTW, the Aquasana filters that Kev recommends *use* coconut shell carbon, I believe, b/c of the efficacy of it per material density.

    Would be nice to bring this particular myth to an end. And, I’d know if I’d have to get therapy for having to give up my beloved coconut smoothies!! 😉

  9. Mary Kay says:

    Oh for crying out loud! We just HAVE to find out for sure!

    Mary Kay

  10. RJ says:

    This (coconuts and fungicide) has been talked about by you before, Kevin. I’m sure you have the connections to give us the truth. Just by reading the comment section first…I’m not bothering to listen to this woman’s views. I still love you and Annmarie, Kevin. But,this exchange is a waste of our time to listen to!

    Please bring us the truth. I’m curious as to why no one can give us a definite answer. It will be 2011…very soon. And we already have the ways and means committee out there SOMEWHERE. WTF?

  11. nick says:

    It looked like mature coconut to me too. How about some facts about who was it that saw who dipping coconuts in anti fungi? WHere can we send our coconuts to be tested for fungi or any other suspected chemicals or irradiation?

  12. Rhonda says:

    Hey Kevin,

    Perhaps when you and Annmarie go to Florida you can get some information on how the coconuts there are handled. Though I must say, I have never seen a Florida coconut that I am aware of. They always seem to come from Thailand and possibly Mexico. So another question to find out is, where do the Florida coconuts go?

    Thank you Kevin for checking these things out.


  13. Chris G says:

    Health Myth: Animal products being healthy…

  14. JB says:

    But wait, we have a source to get fungicide free coconuts, they will be avail in store via web next week.
    Lol. Just like any other thing that I have heard about here lately.

  15. Louise says:

    From the label of coconut water bottled by Charity Veganfest of Pepeekeo, HI: “Coconut water has the antioxidant, Anthrocyanidin,(sic) can be colorless, pink blue or purple, under different environmental conditions. Anthrocyanidin gives blueberry raspberry and all other fruits and vegetables its purple, plue, pink red, and brown color.” Of course, this facility is harvesting local cocos, so the antifungicide is not an issue, but I have read that Thai cocos are dipped in formaldehyde.

  16. paul says:

    Being from south florida, I have always eaten coconuts that I’ve found on the ground in my neighborhood… hope I’m not contaminated. However… there’s something strange here that nobody has mentioned yet. If the dye is getting in, why doesn’t the water LEAK OUT??? 😉
    Think it over and let us know.

  17. Norman says:

    It is my understanding that coconuts are the ONLY natural products that can be plugged straight into the vein through a IV set. This product is sterile, until opened. Hence the reference to “blood transfusion”.

  18. Nick says:

    Maybe the coconut blood transfusion rumour started by conflation with the old story of a sick dog’s blood being successfully transfused by sea water — as we can see here, albeit diluted & filtered: http://www.seashellsandsuch.com/articles/seawaterlikeblood.php It could also have been a confused with coconut water profile being relatively ideal for rehydration. Like in Monty Python’s Life of Brian http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=slbMe-aTY1A What gets lost in transmission let alone translation 🙂

  19. Jennie_Raw says:

    Sheesh, I never imagined so heat would be generated from a spiel on coconuts! Is this what the fireplace foreshadowed at the beginning of the video?

    I have heard similar things about blood transfusions with leafy greens I believe. The explanation was something to do with high similarities in the atomic structures … ??? (there’s a little bit of information lost in reciting this misinformation, if you can’t tell!) Source said that it was done in an emergency case, only for a short period of time to hold the ill person over until a real transfusion could take place.

  20. Vitamin B12 says:

    It is great that someone can solve a debate just by conducting a simple experiment. Too often people will argue over something instead of just finding the truth. It seems they much prefer to stick to their current beliefs (whether right or wrong) than find out the truth. I don’t know why so many people are scared of the truth.

    Getting back to nature should also mean eating local food, as that is more suited to your environment. Shipping coconuts from Thailand to the USA is not getting back to nature. Luckily I live in Thailand and can get fresh coconuts for under 50c each. They cost around $5-7 in London.

  21. maria says:

    I have heard this from my own cocnut supplier. I now buy my cocnuts online. I only ever get the ones with the green outside still on (The thai cocnuts take all the natural green skin off – however this protects the coconuts).
    I know some guys in Florida are selling them green online, and here in the UK you can go to coconutty . co . uk. He gets them in and posts them out weekly, usually in the early week. He only orders what he’s sold, so you can be sure you’re getting them fresh. You always have to wait till monday/tuesday – but you can plan for this, and its worth the wait to make sure you’re getting uncontaminated coconuts!
    At the monen’t I buy 12 coconuts a week, and store them outside – its so cold! Apparently you can also freeze them. Although this turns the breen brown, the water inside is fine.

    There is another big big difference beyween green coconuts and thai white coconuts: my green coconuts have no flesh – its still all water. You can tell how old a coconut is depending on how much of the water has turned to flesh

  22. Paul says:

    Kevin, below is some info I found on rawguru web site.
    What are some of the main differences between organic Thai coconuts and the standard non organic young coconut?

    There are two main differences, one is in the growing and the other is in the processing. First the cocos are grown without chemicals and second they are are processed without any chemical dips.

    Note: If the young coconut you are consuming is white it is dipped in chemicals!!! Not just once but many times. The workers wear protective clothing when they process the coconuts. They wear heavy aprons and heavy gloves. They use long poles with wire baskets on the end to remove the coconuts from the dips so they do not touch them.

    A natural coconut husk turns brown within minutes of husking so when the conventional processing takes place thecoconut is immediately dipped in their chemical(s) of choice as soon as the husk is removed, then the coconut is sent to the processing plant where it is polished or trimmed and dipped again in their chemical(s) of choice. The last dip (this makes 3 dips total) is when the coconut is ready for packing, it is dipped again then wrapped for transport. It is a sad process to watch and the workers themselves try to touch the cocos as little as possible, if at all.

  23. wendy green says:

    ok…they do not put fungicide on coconuts here in honduras. this i know for sure, we get them picked fresh…(for instance the coconuts from our trees). however, coconut water WILL turn pink when it’s “going off”….i have seen this happen in my frig. i eat cocos every single day…i consider them a very important part of my raw vegan diet! love you kevin and annmarie!

  24. Jia says:

    David Wolf claims to of tested Thai Young Coconuts and no chemicals residue was found inside. Would be good to see the documentation on this. But think about it you guys! do you want to support people who have to have a job as described above from RawGuru.com. And Earth suffers too every time we open a young coconut. Lets get off our addiction. You can buy higher quality coconut flakes from places like EarthCircleOrganics.com and other places and make your own coconut mylk. Take 1 cup coconut flakes and 3 cups or so water and blend in a high speed blender. Strain.

  25. Lana says:

    Kevin, I could have sworn that you just did a show within the last year or so that proved that there was NO fungicide or chemicals found on the Thai Coconut. Could’ve sworn…

  26. Connie says:

    Myth: the earth is 5 billions years old. No, it is only about 6,000 years old.

    I think it’s cool that this lady is curious enough to do experiments like putting dye on coconut shells. Unless she’s claiming to make a proper scientific study to “prove” something for the intellectual community, she’s perfectly free to do so–and should. In that respect she’s a good role model. How many such experiments have the rest of you done since you’ve been an adult?

  27. Steve says:


    It appears that coconut is beneficial for some people and not for others. I think it depends on several factors that can be easily figured out. One man’s food is anothers poison after all.

  28. Chris G says:

    Could you provide proof that the earth is only 6,000 years old please?

  29. David says:

    Great video Kevin! I have thought about how we are so much like the planet, the water, minerals and even how we have hair and the earth has grass… It’s insane! Thanks for the high value as always!

    Keep it up!

    David King

  30. Rsa says:

    Great episode KG, I personally found the information valuable in some way. nice haircut too

  31. Hi Kevin, this is good to know. I have heard this story before about the blood transfusion but I realy didn’t think it was tue either.
    But I hadn’t heard of the funguside on the Coconuts. Thats is also good to know. Thanks for that interview.
    I do have a question about Coconut milk. Is that produced from coconuts without that funguside? Now thats also a good question.

  32. Jasmine says:

    QUESTION: So where do organic coconuts come from and how do they prevent decomposition/pathogens? I suppose they could come from Hawaii, that would be a shorter trip to the U.S. at least.

  33. Alright, Kevin, you need to send some coconuts to the lab and get some scientific proof.

  34. Patsy says:

    I have heard they did replaced all or nearly all the blood in a dog with magnesium oil over a very short period of time.

  35. Lorien says:

    As far as I know there is no way to prove that the earth is any age. We humans are very arrogant. We think we can prove all sorts of things with our modern tecno stuff. Truth is we only think we know.

    I love that this gal has the moxie to do her own expermints. Same for you Kevin. And that you have the courage to tell folks what you discover knowing in advance that folks are going to nail you to the wall for not being a scientist. There are two sides to every coin. Science made c-sections possible so I am alive today with four wonderful children. Science also created everything around us that is destroying us.

    One of the biggest advantages of being human is our ability to think and choose for ourselves. I love what you do here Kevin. Even when I don’t agree with someone, I think about what they have said and ask myself if I am so stuck on what I already think is true that I’m discarding something that is helpful. How else will we grow?

  36. Janet says:

    Dear Paul (from above), there are many different types of coconuts – white and brown being the most popular. It is not true that all coconuts which are white are dipped in a chemical solution and it is also not true that brown coconuts are not dipped.

    Kevin – Just because dye might get in doesn’t mean that all chemicals migrate the same way into the inner part of the coconut from the outside. Different molecules have different sizes. I grew up in a family of chemists. Only a real test on the chemicals in question will prove anything. Otherwise it is like saying that a dog and a human have the same reaction to something. Anyone who has a dog knows that it is poison to them whereas to most humans it is delectable.

  37. Pat Godinez says:

    The first time I brought home a young Thai coconut in 2000, my mother remarked that American doctors used the young green ones during WW II to give transfusions to the injured soldiers, because they didn’t have any other medical supplies with which to treat the soldiers. I believe her, because she was in Manila during the war, and she said it without solicitation. Later on, I heard the raw community discussing it in articles and blogs.

  38. Sue says:

    Sodium metabisulfite. Home winemakers use it to keep down fungi/bacteria growth off grapes. Some people are allergic to the sulfites in commercial red wines. I believe a lot of dried fruit is sulfited; and some want only sun-dried fruits. These can become moldy under the right conditions.
    Yes, why can’t we TEST the water & coconut meat. I do not think that the fade of red entering the center is the real test at all. And yes, Brita water purifiers are filled with crushed cocount shells.
    Not worried.

  39. jackie says:

    I also remember Kevin saying in one of the episodes this year that it wasn’t true that coconuts were dipped in formeldehyde, and I therefore thought they were safe and resumed eating them. Now I don’t know what to believe! Definitely worth an investigation.

  40. JET says:

    Coconut water is almost identical to blood plasma and this makes it easy to use for blood transfusion. In cases of emergency coconut water has been used as an intravenous hydration fluid instead of the standard IV fluid. During World War II many wounded soldiers were saved in the Pacific because of emergency transfusion using coconut water as plasma.

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