Pineapple is perhaps one of the widest consumed tropical fruits in the world. Moreover, it tastes amazing and can be eaten as well as processed into juice. There are countless benefits of eating pineapple, some of them include improving body immune system, great source of healthy carbs, lowering risk of cancer, improving gut health, helping heal wounds and many more. Read on to know more about the varied health benefits of consuming pineapple.
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Interesting Things About Pineapple and Pineapple Juice
Pineapple is a spiny fruit with spiky edges on its leaves and has numerous health benefits. It is a real powerhouse of nature and comes with abundant vitamins and enzymes which can help in alleviating inflammation and illness.
Pineapple can be consumed in juice form and you’ll be surprised to know how good it is for your health. Here are some interesting facts about Pineapple that you might not know: –
- Pineapple juice is one of the best foods used for treating constipation. Pineapple juice is a natural laxative that can help you to have better bowel movements.
- Eating pineapple hurts your tongue because of the enzyme bromelain present in it.
- It takes a single pineapple almost 3 years to reach its maturation.
- The name “Pineapples” was given by some European explorers because of the fruit’s resemblance to pine cones.
- Pineapple is one of the materials used in men’s barong Tagalog and women’s baro’t Saya, a formal wear in the Philippines.
Benefits & Uses of Pineapple & Pineapple Juice
1. Improves Immunity
Pineapples contain enzyme bromelain that acts as a key defender against any external viruses affecting your body. Consuming Pineapple helps in improving immunity which also means lesser damage to organs due to inflammatory diseases.
2. Lowers Risk of Cancer
Bromelain is an active anti-inflammatory agent in pineapple that helps in preventing the spread of cancerous cells across the body. Research states that an increased intake of bright yellow foods can help in reducing the risk of cancer.
3. Improves Gut Health
Your gut is the primary indicator of your well-being. An efficient and healthy gut will show its effects on a person while a poor digestion can lead to several gastrointestinal disorders. Regular consumption of Pineapples can prevent bloating and other gastrointestinal problems such as constipation.
4. Improves Eye Health
Eating pineapples can help in healing your eyesight. People who have problem with their eyesight are advised to eat pineapples on daily basis which can slow down macular degeneration. Macular degeneration affects many elderly people. The beta-carotene in pineapple helps in preventing vision problem. Pineapple has the ability to prevent many eye related diseases.
5. Aids in Digestion
Eating fresh pineapple regularly protects against many health problems. Dried unsweetened pineapple is rich in fiber which promotes the passage of food through the digestive tract. Pineapple can be used in the treatment of constipation, diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome, blood clotting as well as high blood pressure.
6. Treats Arthritis
Pineapple can be used in reducing the inflammation of joints and muscles particularly those associated with arthritis. It contains a rare proteolytic enzyme known as bromelain, which helps in breaking down complex proteins. Bromelain supplements or pineapple enzymes are available over the counter, but it would be better if you take it under medical supervision.
7. Improves Blood Circulation
Pineapple provides the body with copper, another essential mineral that plays a vital role in a number of enzymatic reactions and compounds in the body. Moreover, copper is one of the most important elements for the formation of healthy red blood cells. High red blood cell count increases oxygenation to various organs in our body and makes them function at optimal levels. Apart from that, it maintains neural pathways to prevent disorders like dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
8. Treats Cough and Cold
Pineapple is rich in vitamin C; therefore, it helps in preventing and treating respiratory illnesses while eliminating phlegm and mucus from your body. Bromelain along with Vitamin C helps in the reduction of phlegm and mucus that builds up in the respiratory tracts and sinus cavities.
9. Skin Care
Vitamin C in pineapple is a super antioxidant which helps in toning the skin. Moreover, it clears acne and delays aging by reducing the appearance of wrinkles. Collagen formation is largely credited to vitamin C and it indirectly helps in keeping the skin tissues healthy.
10. Protects Heart Health
Pineapple contains potassium which has vasodilating properties that can help in preventing clots that can block the flow of blood. It also reduces the accumulation of plaque in the arteries and vessels. Moreover, Pineapple helps prevent atherosclerosis, heart attacks and strokes. Hence, it is important to consume pineapples for a healthy heart.
Also Read: Water Chestnut Uses | Benefits Of Coconut
Nutritional Value of Pineapple
|Principle||Nutrient Value||Percentage of RDA|
|Total Fat||0.12 g||Less than 1%|
|Dietary Fiber||1.40 g||4%|
|Vitamin A||58 IU||2%|
|Vitamin C||47.8 mg||80%|
|Vitamin E||0.02 mg||Less than 1%|
|Vitamin K||0.07 mg||0.50%|
|Selenium||0.1 mg||Less than 1%|
Pineapples have a rich nutritional profile comprising of vitamin C, vitamin B6, vitamin B1, folate, manganese, dietary fiber and copper.
Calories and Fat
Pineapples are rich in calories with one cup having about 82 calories. Each cup of pineapple contains 21.7 grams carbohydrates and it also contains 16.3 grams of sugar of which nearly 10 grams is sucrose. Pineapples also contain a combination of glucose and fructose. It is low in both fat and protein and provides less than 1 gram per cup.
Pineapples are high in water soluble vitamins. One cup of pineapple supplies 100% and 88% DRI of vitamin C for women and men respectively. Moreover, it provides 14% of the DRI for vitamin B6, 10% of the DRI for thiamin and over 5% of the DRI for niacin, pantothenic acid and folate. It offers low fat-soluble vitamins that provide less than 2% of DRI for vitamins D, E and K.
Pineapple contains significant amount of minerals like manganese, copper, calcium, iron, phosphorus, magnesium and zinc. One cup of pineapple contributes 85% and 67% of the RDA for women and men respectively. It also provides 20% RDA for copper and 9% RDA for potassium besides other minerals that are present in small amount.
Also Read: Apple Calories | Papaya Nutrition
Risks of Eating Pineapple
Eating unripe pineapple or drinking unripe pineapple juice is extremely dangerous for health. Reports from horticulture department at Purdue University state that unripe fruit is toxic to humans and can lead to severe diarrhea and vomiting. Eating pineapple in excess can also cause fiber balls that will form in the digestive tract.
Eating too much of pineapple can result in tenderness of the mouth, including the lips, tongue and cheeks. You may even experience a rash, hives or breathing difficulties, and if any such thing happens you must seek medical help immediately. You might have a pineapple allergy.
How to Consume Pineapple
Pineapple is named as the healthiest fruit in the world for numerous health benefits that it offers. Here are some of the recipes that will help you in finding out different ways in which you can consume this fruit.
1. Pineapple Salsa
Mix chopped Pineapple with bell peppers, onion, lemon juice and cilantro to make a fresh pineapple salsa. You can serve this preparation over grilled chicken, burgers, seafood or with tortilla chips.
2. The Tropical Salad
Mix pineapple chunks with mandarin oranges, bananas, mangoes, grapes, and kiwi to make a tropical salad. It is great as a dessert!
3. A Morning Eye-Opening Smoothie
Add Pineapple chunks in a blender with oranges, mangoes, and bananas with low-fat yoghurt, ice and milk as a breakfast smoothie.
Interesting Facts Related to Pineapple
Pineapple is native to Paraguay and Brazil, and some parts of the Caribbean and the exact evolution of pineapple as a popular global fruit is still unknown. It is believed that pineapple was first brought to Europe following the return of Christopher Columbus in 1493. Here are some other interesting facts related to Pineapple that you might not know:
- You can plant pineapple leaves to grow a new plant
- Pineapples contain the bromelain enzyme which help in breaking down proteins, so you can use them to tenderize meat
- Hawaii produces about one-third of all pineapples in the world
- Pineapples are a cluster of hundreds of fruitlets
- Pineapple takes almost 3 years to become ready to harvest
- Pineapple is the only edible fruit of its kind
- One pineapple plant can only produce one pineapple at a time
Pineapples are nature’s greatest gift to mankind as they have all the properties that help defend us against diseases and infections. So, start eating this sweet, nutrient dense fruit that is good for you. Discover how many calories it has and health benefits you might experience.