What Are The Health Benefits of Pineapple

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Did you know that Pineapples were carried by sailors in the last few centuries to avoid scurvy during their voyage.  Pineapples apparently contain lot of Vitamin C which helped the sailors avoid scurvy which was a common diseases among sailors those days.  The research in last century proved that 1 cup of pineapple contains around 130% of your daily Vitamin C requirement.

Pineapples originated from central america (Paraguay) and from there it spread to all over the world through Europeans.  In fact it was taken to Europe by none other than Christopher Columbus.  Now it is one of the most popular fruits all over the world.  The bright yellow, orange-yellow or reddish color of the fruit attracts and invites everybody.

pineapple photoUnlike many other crop Pineapple is drought resistant and grow in extremely dry condition.  Which means that it consumes very little water resources.

If you have not eaten pineapple in recent times let me remind you in the beginning of this article the health benefits you can get from pineapple.  I am sure after reading the list below you will find at least one reason to consume pineapples.

Health Benefits of Pineapples

Let us see what are the nutrition in Pineapple and how they benefits us in being healthier.  The nutrition mentioned below are for 1 cup of pineapple which is around 165 grams of pineapple.

  • Provides food fiber – Pineapple contains around 9% of daily value of our fiber needs.  As we already know, fiber is extremely important for us, especially considering the type of foods we take now a days.
  • Improved immune system – It is a well known fact that Vitamin C improves our immune system.  Since pineapple contains more than 100% of our Vitamin C needs it improves our immune system and protects us from many common health issues such as common cold and flu.
  • Weight loss – 1 cup of Pineapple only contains around 82 calories of energy.  On top it provides good amount of fiber which is almost equal to one dose of most fiber supplements such as benefiber or metamucil.  Hence it supresses hunger and cravings and protects against bad snacking.
  • Cancer prevention – Vitamin C is one of the important factors which helps fight cancer cells.  Pineapple also contains other anti oxidants which can fight cancer.
  • Asthma relief – One of the nutrients is beta-carotene, which is found in plant foods like pineapple, papaya, broccoli and carrots.  It has been found that people who consume beta carotene containing foods find relief in asthma.  Similarly pineapple has been found to be beneficial in other respiratory health issues also.
  • Better digestion – Pineapple contains Bromelain which is a enzyme used in meat tenderizers.  Eating Pineapple make it easier to digest food because of this enzyme as it can break down protein more easily.
  • Improved oral health
  • Reduced inflammation – Inflammation is caused due to many reasons including bad food and many environmental issues.  Inflammation can cause many health issues such as arthritis and gout.  In fact Asthma is also thought to be caused by inflammation.  Antioxidants and beta carotene in pineapple helps fight inflammation and reduces many health risks.
  • Good for heart health and bone health – Pineapple contains around 77% of daily value of manganese.  Manganese mineral is an important mineral which helps control pressure, improved metabolism, and bone health.  Manganese also helps in calcium absorption which is important for bone health and oral health.
  • Fights stomach parasites – Bromelain enzyme can digest protein.  Hence it also kills the stomach worms and parasites in your stomach.  If you are suffering from stomach worms you should contain pineapples.  Another fruit which you can consume for this is papaya.

How to prepare and consume Pineapples

sliced pineapple photoMost people like to eat fresh pineapple after removing the skin and slicing them. I am seen that if you sprinkle little bit of salt on the pineapples the taster better.  Most kids also seem to like the taste of pineapple and frequently pick more than one piece.  In fact pineapples seem to be one of the most popular fruits among kids.

Apart from slice the most popular form in which pineapples are consumed are as juice, being part of salads and pizzas, cakes and ice creams.  It is also use in one of the most popular tropical drink pina colada as well as many alcoholic and non alcoholic beverages.  Pineapple can also be added to kebabs, smoothies, and a whole range of salads.  It also used in the preparation of desserts, jams, and jellies and in many foods as flavoring agent.

Best Season to Consume Pineapples

Since pineapples are harvested from March to June that is the best season to consume this fruit.  The reason behind this is that fruits are best consumed when they are seasonal.  Pineapples do not ripen once it is harvested.  Hence that is all the more reason to consume it during the season.

Potential side effects of Pineapple

pineapple photoIf you are taking Beta blockers for your heart condition then you may want to avoid pine apples.  Beta blockers elevate potassium levels and pineapples also contain good amount of potassium.  More so if your kidney function is weak since kidneys cannot remove the extra potassium.

Pineapples also contain Bromelain which is also used as meat tenderizer.  Bromelain is the enzyme which digestion of foods easier when you eat pineapples.  You may notice tender lips, gums and tongue after eating pineapples and this is caused by Bromelain.  If you have sour or ulcers in mouth or digestive system then do not consume pineapples.

Bromelain may cause excessive uterine bleeding if consumed in large quantities during pregnancy.  In rare cases it can cause pregnancy termination.  Also high amount of Bromelain can lead to vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, headaches, and nausea.  But it is extremely unlikely that you will ever consume that much Bromelain from pineapples.

Photo by daveyll

Photo by mikeczyzewski

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