20 Amazing Health Benefits Of Pineapple Fruit, Juice & Leaves For Women & Men…Side Effects & Nutritional Facts
Pineapple is a nutritional fruit that benefits the body in several ways such as enhancing digestion, strengthening the body’s immunity, and preventing cancer, among others.
This nourishing fruit can be enjoyed in various ways including using it for salad, or making a juice from it. Whichever way you decide to savor the fruit, you are rest assured of reaping its nutritional benefits.
This article is about the amazing health benefits of pineapple fruit, juice and even the leaves, for men and women alike. We shall also (at the end) take a brief look at some common side effects of pineapples.
What is pineapple?
Ananas comosus, or its common name, pineapple, is a widely-cultivated fruit in tropical regions. According to some historical data, pineapples were first discovered in South America, where it got its name.
Pineapple fruit is covered by spikes and has a sweet and sour taste due to its acidic nature. The fruit is a member of the Bromeliaceae family of plants that also includes Spanish moss.
Contrary to what you may believe or think, a pineapple fruit is a combination of several fruits (berries) fused together.
Nutritional facts of pineapple
Pineapples are packed with minerals, vitamins, and powerful antioxidants that give the fruit its medicinal properties. Some of the chemical compounds present in pineapple fruit included vanillin, ferulic acid, gentisic acid, syringic acid, chlorogenic acid, tyramine, and sinapic acid.
According to data from the United States Food and Drug Administration, a 165-gram serving of raw pineapple fruit contains 82 calories with 120 mg of potassium, 15 grams of carbohydrates, 2 mg of sodium, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 1 gram of protein, and 11 grams of sugars. Vitamins A and C, B vitamins, copper, manganese, calcium, and iron are also present.
As a bromeliad, pineapple contains bromelain and beta-carotene. The fruit also has a low calories content, which makes it appropriate for people who want to lose weight.
Health benefits of eating pineapple
Whether you are eating it raw, drinking its juice, or adding it to your meal, pineapples provide the body with essential vitamins and minerals to maintain good health. Some of the common health benefits of eating pineapples (with some scientific backings) are:
- Improves vision
The presence of vitamin A in pineapple means that the eyes also benefit from eating the fruit. Age-related eye problems can be prevented due to the beta-carotene found in pineapple. Recent studies suggest that regular consumption of pineapples may help in slowing down macular degeneration associated with aging.
- Improves fertility
Men and women can benefit from eating pineapples as it helps to boost fertility. This is because pineapples are packed with antioxidants that promote conception in women and virility in men.
- Good source of energy
Pineapple contains carbohydrates, mostly in the form of sugars. Thus, snacking on fresh pineapples is a quick way of providing the body with energy.
- Anti-inflammatory food
Pineapple is an anti-inflammatory food, thanks to the numerous antioxidants found in the fruit. For instance, bromelain, which is a major component of bromeliads, has anti-inflammatory properties that can benefit people suffering from inflammatory conditions like arthritis.
- For diabetics
Diabetics can experience some improvements when they add pineapple to their diet. People with type-1 diabetes can benefit from eating pineapples. This is due to the ability of the fruit to help in lowering blood sugar levels. Further, type 2 diabetes patients are not left out as the fruit can help in improving the insulin levels in the body.
- Boosts the immune system
The body’s immunity can be strengthened by feeding it with antioxidant-rich foods like pineapple. Antioxidants such as flavonoids, present in pineapple help in combating the effects of free radicals in the body. Besides, pineapples are rich in vitamins and minerals that also boost the body’s immune system. Thus, the risk of several diseases can be effectively reduced by eating pineapple.
- For bone health
Calcium and manganese are essential minerals for strong bones. While calcium levels in pineapple are minute, manganese, on the other hand, is in significant amounts. Therefore, there is a proper development of bones.
- For oral health
Pineapple has acerbic properties that are beneficial to oral health. As a result, loose teeth or weak gums can be strengthened by eating pineapples. Apart from this, it is even suggested that the antioxidants in pineapple may help in the prevention of oral cancer.
- Aids digestion
Digestion problems such as constipation and diarrhea can be effectively prevented by eating fresh pineapples. The fiber content in pineapple helps to promote bowel movement to prevent constipation as well as in adding bulk to watery stool associated with diarrhea. Furthermore, the anti-inflammatory property of the fruit is beneficial in treating inflammation in the gut.
- Remedy for blood clot
Bromelain present in pineapple has anti-coagulating properties that help in reducing blood clotting. Thus, people who have a risk of thrombosis (blood clotting in the blood vessels) should consider adding pineapple to their daily diet.
- Good for the hair
Hair loss can be prevented by adding pineapple to your diet. The vitamins present in the fruit help in stimulating the flow of nutrients to the hair. Even more, pineapples contain enzymes that help in thickening the hair creating a fuller hair.
- Good for the skin
Pineapple is rich in vitamin C, a vitamin that is credited with glowing and youthful skin. Skin problems like acne, wrinkles, and burns, can be treated with pineapple.
- Maintains blood pressure
Pineapple contains potassium that has positive effects on blood pressure. The action of potassium on the blood vessels promotes the flow of blood through the body. For instance, when there is a sufficient amount of potassium in the body, the blood vessels are more relaxed and blood circulation is unhindered; thus, the risk of developing high blood pressure is reduced.
- For cardiovascular health
The presence of potassium in pineapple has far-reaching effects on the body, including positively affecting the heart. By reducing the risk of hypertension (high blood pressure), the risk of other related heart problems are also reduced. Even more, pineapple provides the body with copper and iron, which are essential for the formation of red blood cells in the body.
- For asthma treatment
The symptoms of asthma can be reduced by eating foods rich in vitamin C and beta-carotene. Asthma patients who eat pineapple regularly can reduce the inflammation associated with the condition.
- For respiratory problems
Respiratory problems like cough and cold can be treated by consuming pineapple. This is because the fruit contains vitamin C which helps to reduce mucus in the respiratory paths. Besides, bromelain also helps in preventing the accumulation of mucus.
- Promotes wound healing
Pineapple contains vitamin C as already mentioned. Vitamin C is a vital component in the formation of collagen, which is related to wound healing. Thus, eating more pineapples will help to hasten the healing of wounds.
- Cancer prevention
Pineapple is rich in antioxidants such as beta-carotene and bromelain that have been linked with reducing the risk of development of certain types of cancer. Moreover, pineapple contains manganese which has cancer-limiting capabilities.
- Good for the kidneys
Kidney stones can be prevented when there is little or no abnormal blood clotting in the body and there is proper digestion. Pineapple is beneficial in both ways, and thus, helps to maintain kidney health.
Common side effects of eating pineapple
While pineapples are packed with nutrients and essential vitamins that protect the body from diseases, there are possible side effects which you need to be aware of. Some of the side effects of eating pineapples are:
Pineapples are high in sugars, even though they are natural sugars, and can raise the blood sugar levels in the body. This can lead to hyperglycemia which is a condition where the blood sugar levels in the body are abnormally high.
- Tooth decay
Pineapples are highly acidic; thus, they can cause cavities in the teeth if the mouth is not properly cleaned after eating.
- Interference with medication
Eating fresh pineapples when you are on certain medications can cause adverse effects such as excessive blood thinning. Drugs such as tetracycline come with some side effects, hence, when you add pineapples to them, the effects can increase.
- Risk of miscarriage
Pregnant women are advised to avoid overconsumption of pineapple due to the risk of miscarriage. This risk is present because of bromelain that has been linked with menstruation.
There is a risk of intoxication when you consume canned pineapples. This is because additives like preservatives have been added to the canned pineapples. Based on studies, the majority of such preservatives are harmful to general health.
Other side effects of eating pineapples are: rashes, diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting.
Quick tip: You can tell whether a pineapple is sweet or not, by perceiving the bottom of the fruit. If there is no pleasant smell, then the pineapple is not sweet or was harvested before its time. If otherwise, then the fruit is ripe and will be sweet.
We have seen that pineapples offer more than just their delicious taste. Asthmatics, diabetics, and people with other health conditions can benefit from consuming pineapples.