MEET ANANA COMOSUS, THE PINEAPPLE FRUIT
A brief Introduction to the Pineapple Fruit (Ananas comosus)
If there is one fruit you should not do without it is definitely ‘pineapple’ because asides its nutritional benefits pineapple is one of the few fruits with a pleasant sweet smell. Just the smell from the fruit entices your taste buds and causes you to salivate, doubting it? Try buying one after reading this and put your nose to work, you’ll see.
Pineapple is a tropical fruit that is relished because of its unique aroma and sweet taste. It is an edible fruit with great economic significance from the botanical family of Bromeliaceae.
Pineapple is indigenous to the South American region where it has been widely cultivated for years, Christopher Columbus brought pineapple to Europe and it became known as an extravagant and exotic fruit, served only at the most lavish of banquets. Pineapple are however now more common and people are now more able to enjoy them in dried, solid and juice forms. Pineapple has been grown commercially in green houses and in many tropical plantations around the world since the 1820s. The pineapple fruit has high therapeutic and high nutritional values, some studies has shown that this fruit has the ability to reduce oxidative stress. t reflects an imbalance between the systemic manifestation of reactive oxygen species and a biological system’s ability to readily detoxify the reactive intermediates or to repair the resulting damage which can be useful in reducing many diseases.
Eye-opening benefits of eating the pineapple fruit
Nutritional value: Pineapples are low in calories but they have an incredibly impressive nutrient profile (NP).
One cup (i.e. 5.8 ounces or 165 grams) of pineapple chunks contains the following
Protein: 1 gram
Carbs: 21.6 grams
Fiber: 2.3 grams
Vitamin C: 131% of the RDI
Manganese: 76% of the RDI
Vitamin B6: 9% of the RDI
Copper: 9% of the RDI
Thiamin: 9% of the RDI
Folate: 7% of the RDI
Potassium: 5% of the RDI
Magnesium: 5% of the RDI
Niacin: 4% of the RDI
Pantothenic acid: 4% of the RDI
Phytochemicals: Pineapple fruits and its peels contains diverse phytochemicals among which are:Polyphenols including Gallic acid, Syringic acid, Ferulic acid, Sinapic acid, Caumaric acid, Chlonogenic acid, Epicatechin, Arbutin etc
Antioxidants are compounds found in food that can help fight inflammation and free radicals in the body”, Knott says. According to the NCCIH, “free radicals are molecules that can cause cellular damage and lead to health”.Pineapple is a great source of antioxidants, specifically phenolics, flavonoids, and vitamin C.
Anticancer: As a strong source of vitamin C (a strong antioxidant), pineapple helps to fight the formation of free radicals in the body which cause the formation of cancerous cells in the body.
Anti inflammatory: Pineapple contains high level of anti-inflammatory compound called bromalain. According to a study published in Biomedical Reports (2016), pineapple’s bromelain content is the reason for its anti-inflammatory properties.
Immunity booster: Pineapple contains high level of vitamin C which helps to boost the body immunity.
Diabetes: It has been found that diabetes patients with type 1 diabetes who take in high fiber content fruits like pineapple have lowered blood glucose levels and patients with type 2 diabetes may have increased insulin, lipids and blood sugar levels. A medium pineapple provide about 13 grams of fiber.
Digestion: Pineapples, because of their fiber and water content, help to prevent constipation and promote regularity and a healthy digestive tract. Pineapples are also rich in bromelain, an enzyme that helps the body digest proteins. Bromelain also reduces inflammatory immune cells, called cytokines that damage the digestive tract lining. The inedible stems are the most concentrated source of bromelain, which can be extracted and is readily available in supplement form.
Therapeutic Effect: Pineapple promotes healthy bones due to the presence of maganase.Bromelain found in pineapple is used as a digestive aid, for osteoarthritis, and to reduce soreness in aching muscles.Bromelain is also used to remove dead skin from burns, and orally used to reduce inflammation and swelling particularly of the nasal passages.Bromelain enhances the absorption of drugs, particularly antibiotics, bromelain can be used for the treatment of arthritis patients, pain relief for those suffering from Osteoarthritis and joint injuries.
Pineapple is also used in the treatment of other diseases like bronchitis, sinusitis and cardiovascular disorders since it inhibit blood platelet.
Pineapple can be used for the treatment of cold, it aids healing of injuries due to the presence of vitamin C in it. A cup of fresh pineapple can take the doctor away because pineapple has a wide range of therapeutic uses, which also includes reducing the risks of obesity, diabetes, heart diseases and overall mortality with increased consumption of this fruit. It also promotes a healthy complexion and hair growth and increased energy. According to Well-Being Secrets, pineapple can improve fertility in people trying to conceive. Free radicals damage reproductive organs so the high intake of fruits like pineapple with high antioxidant properties help to reduce presence of free radicals thus improving fertility in both male and females.
Toxicity: In as much as pineapple is a good fruit to consume because of its diverse health and therapeutic benefits, pineapple should be taken moderately as bromelain can digest proteins in humans which result in tongue injuries. Too much bromelain also cause diarrhea, slow blood clothing and heavy menstrual flow.
It can be concluded that Pineapple has a lot of preventive ability and therapeutic values and essential nutrient the body needs. Pineapple should be taken more when tinned, as juice or boiled. This will help make it much friendly to the tongue, an average amount should be consumed.
Coppens d’ Eeckenbrugge, G; leal, F. (2003). Chapter 2 Morphology, Anatomy and Taxonomy
Study published in June 2014 in Molecules
Standford Health Care, A study published in November 2018 in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Bromelain, the enzyme complex of Pineapple (Ananas comosus) and its Clinical application . Sj Taussing et all .J Ehhnopharmacol. Feb- Mar 1988.
8 Impressive Health Benefits of Pineapple Written by Ryan Raman, MS, RD on May 26, 2018