Health Benefits of Pineapples

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The pineapple is the only edible bromeliad available today, and it offers many health benefits. It is a complex plant with dozens of individual flowerets that grow together to form the fruit. Each scale on a pineapple is evidence of a different flower.

Pineapples stop ripening the minute they are picked. No particular way of storing them will help ripen them further. Color is relatively unimportant in determining ripeness. Choose your pineapple by smell. It will be a good fruit if it smells fresh, tropical, and sweet; the more scales on the pineapple, the sweeter and juicier it will be.

After you cut off the top, you can plant it; it should grow like a sweet potato.

While we find pineapple enjoyable because of its lush, sweet, and exotic flavor, it may also be one of the most healthful choices. If we take a more detailed look at it, we will find that pineapple is valuable for easing indigestion, arthritis, and sinusitis. The juice has an anthelmintic effect; it helps eliminate intestinal worms.

Pineapple is high in manganese, a mineral critical to developing strong bones and connective tissue. A cup of fresh pineapple will give you nearly 75% of the recommended daily amount. It is conducive to older adults, whose bones tend to become brittle with age.

Bromelain, a proteolytic enzyme, is the key to pineapple’s value. Proteolytic means “breaks down protein,” which is why pineapple is a digestive aid, as it helps the body digest proteins more efficiently. Bromelain is also considered an effective anti- inflammatory.

Regular ingestion of at least one-half cup of fresh pineapple daily is purported to relieve painful joints common to osteoarthritis and produces mild pain relief. In Germany, bromelain is approved as a post- injury medication because it reduces inflammation and swelling.

Orange juice is popular for those suffering from a cold because it is high in Vitamin C. Fresh pineapple is not only high in this vitamin, but because of the bromelain, it can reduce mucous in the throat. Add pineapple to your diet if you have a cold with a productive cough. It is commonly used in Europe as a post-operative measure to cut mucous after particular sinus and throat operations.

Those who eat fresh pineapple daily report fewer sinus problems related to allergies. In and of itself, pineapple has a very low risk for allergies.

Pineapple is also known to discourage blood clot development, making it a valuable dietary addition for frequent fliers and others who may be at risk for blood clots.

An old folk remedy for morning sickness is fresh pineapple juice. It really works! Fresh juice and some nuts make a difference first thing in the morning. It’s also good for a healthier mouth – the fresh juice discourages plaque growth.

Courtesy of Vallarta Botanical Garden and here.

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