Called as the ‘fruit of the angels’ by Christopher Columbus, papaya is a sweet and musky fruit that has a butter-like consistency. Papaya trees produce the fruit year-round, with a peak in early summer and fall. Although they might have been considered as exotic before, now they can be found in markets all throughout the year.
Papayas’ flesh is a rich orange color containing yellow or pink hues. On the inside, there are black seeds surrounded by a gelatinous-like substance. People have been considering the papaya health benefits for quite some time now, with the seeds being edible and the fact that the fruit contains an enzyme named papain, something that helps in digesting proteins.
Papaya Health Benefits
As research suggests, papayas are rich in antioxidant nutrients like carotenes, vitamin C, and flavonoids, the B vitamins, folate, and pantothenic acid, and minerals, potassium, copper, magnesium, and fiber. Below you will find some of the papaya health benefits.
According to Mercola, the papaya fruit has more vitamin C than an orange. This vitamin is important in the prevention of cardiovascular disease, stroke, stomach cancer, breast cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and more, not to forget it also helps in supporting your immune system.
Papaya also has 31 percent of the RDA of vitamin A – this is important in regulating gene expression, prenatal and postnatal development as well as red blood cell production.
1. Lowers cholesterol
Due to the fact that this fruit is rich in fiber, vitamin C, and antioxidants that prevent the build-up of cholesterol in your arteries, this makes papaya good when it comes to lowering cholesterol. When there’s too much cholesterol build-up, it can lead to several heart diseases. According to Healthline, in one study, people took a fermented papaya supplement for 14 weeks and had a better ration of ‘bad’ LDL to ‘good’ HDL than people given placebo.
2. Boosts immunity system
According to MSN, a single papaya has more than 200% of your daily requirement of Vitamin C. This way, the fruit proves to be good for your immunity system.
3. Protects against arthritis
The anti-inflammatory properties in papayas, along with vitamin C, mean that this fruit is good for your bones. According to a study published in Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, people who consumed foods that are low in vitamin C were more likely to have arthritis.
4. Might improve digestion
As Healthline reports, the papain enzyme in papaya can make protein easier to digest. According to a study, people who took a formula that was papaya-based for 40 days had an improvement in constipation and bloating.
5. Skin damage protection
Papaya can also make your skin looked more toned according to Healthline. The vitamin C and lycopene in the papaya fruit protect the skin and might even help in reducing aging signs. In a study, older women who consumed a mixture of vitamin C, lycopene, and other antioxidants for 14 weeks had a visible reduction in depth of wrinkles.
6. Asthma prevention
According to research, people who consume a high amount of particular nutrients such as beta-carotene, have a lower risk of developing asthma. This nutrient is found in papaya, apricots, pumpkin, carrots, and more.
According to studies, as Medical News Today reports, people with type 1 diabetes who consume high-fiber diets have lower blood glucose levels. People with type 2 diabetes might have improved blood sugar, lipid, and insulin levels. One papaya gives about 3 grams of fiber, this being equivalent to just 17 grams of carbohydrates.
8. Skin healing
When papaya is mashed and used topically, it can be beneficial in promoting wound healing and preventing infection of burned areas. According to researchers, this is due to the proteolytic enzymes chymopapain and papain in papaya.
9. Helps with menstrual cramps
Several servings of papaya could help in regulating and making the menstrual period flow easier due to the enzyme called papain.
Papaya is also delicious and can be included in plenty of recipes, such as in breakfasts, smoothies, salads and so on. However, what should be kept in mind is that it is important for the papaya to be ripe. If it’s overly ripe or not ripe enough, the taste will differ from when it is perfectly ripe.
How do you know it’s perfectly ripe? Well, it should have a color of yellow to orange-red, it might even include some green spots.
Disclaimer: The contents of this article: text, graphics, images, and other materials contained are strictly for informational purposes only. The Content is NOT intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical diagnosis, advice, or treatment. Please ALWAYS seek the advice of a qualified health provider with all the questions that you have related to, or about, a medical condition.
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