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Electrolyte and glucose contents of ripe and unripe coconut liquid as source of oral rehydration solution

Keywords: Electrolyte , glucose , Coconut , Oral Rehydration Solution

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Summary: Electrolyte and glucose contents of 20 ripe and 20 unripe coconuts were analysed along with a commercially prepared oral rehydration solution using flame photometry for sodium, potassium and back titration method for bicarbonate estimation while glucose oxidase method was carried out for glucose estimation. The unripe coconut liquid had mean+ SEM of sodium (mmol/L) 40.08 + 3.21, potassium (mmol/l) 24.06 + 0.89, bicarbonate (mmol/l) 1.48 + 0.20 and glucose (mmol/l) 26.30 + 0.21 while the ripe coconut liquidhad sodium (mmol/l) 24.60+ 1.36, Potassium (mmol/l) 15.48 + 0.23, bicarbonate (mmol/l) 0.80 + 0.18 and glucose concentration (mmol/l) of 1.68 + 0.51 respectively. There was significant difference in the electrolyte content of the ripe and unripe coconut liquid (P< 0.05). The commercially prepared ORS had sodium (mmol/l) 90.00 + 0.1, Potassium (mmol/l) 20.00 + 0.1, bicarbonate (mmol/l) 29.00 + 0.1 and glucose concentration (mmol/l) of 111.00 + 0.1 respectively. The electrolyte and glucose contents of the ripe coconut was found not to meet minimum WHO standard of glucose concentration of 111mmol/l, sodium 90mmol/l, Potassium 20mmol/l and bicarbonate concentration of 30mmol/l for ORS. The Potassium concentration of the unripe coconut was higher than minimum WHO standard for ORS. However, the use of coconut liquid for rehydration cannot be recommended on the basis of its glucose and electrolyte composition. Industrial relevance: Coconut water is often used as an alternative solution for oral rehydration, particularly in regions where mothers' knowledge of oral rehydration is lacking. There has been no differentiation in the type of coconut water used for the purpose of replacing lost electrolytes; hence the electrolytes lost due to dehydration will not be replaced if the source of rehydration doesn’t contain the proper concentration of electrolytes. The study highlighted the deficiencies in the ripe and unripe coconut water as a rehydration source. Therefore a commercial source of rehydration is still the best source of oral rehydration since the coconut water is deficient in electrolytes to replace lost electrolytes. Keywords: Electrolyte; glucose; Coconut; Oral Rehydration Solution

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