Punch up the power of your health with foods like pineapple and papaya! Sweet snacking!
Nothing says summer like a big bite into your favorite tropical fruit. And what is more tropical than pineapple and papaya? Just the smell of these delicious orange and yellow fruits are enough to get your taste buds jumping.
Lately, I have been finding myself craving sweet foods more than I used to. So instead of filling up my body with empty calories, I figured why not eat something that tastes great, but is also good for me?
We all know that know fruit is good for you because we have all been told a million times to “eat more fruit and veggies.” You may also have heard not to have too much fruit because it has high sugar content. Well, I am here to correct all of you that think cutting out fruit is the way to go.
The first thing you need to do is put sugar consumption into perspective. Almost all foods have carbohydrates in them; it is impossible to avoid this. And while sugar is bad in large quantities, it depends on the type of sugar and how much you’re consuming. Table sugar and high fructose corn syrup are bad for your body, as they have no nutritional benefits. Fruit, on the other hand, takes a while to digest and contains a relatively small amount of fructose, which is easily tolerable by humans. The amount of sugar you are getting while eating fruit is minimal and is evened out by all the health benefits that fruit is packed with.
(NOTE: When it comes to adding fruit to your diet, let Sunwarrior lead the way with our Smoothie eBook. It's free and gives you access to over 50 smoothie recipes. Find it here.)
Papaya is butter yellow and pear shaped when ripe, and is one of my favorite summer fruits. It is rich in papain, which works as a great digestive aid and can help ease menstrual cramps. Papaya is also rich in vitamins A, which protects eyes from degenerating, and it contains a sizeable portion of Vitamin C. The B vitamins found inside are important for the body and cannot be made by the body itself. That is why including fruits like this one are essential for optimal health. Papaya is low in calories, high in fiber and fat-free, which means that it is a great choice for a sunny afternoon.
Some great ways to eat papaya are to mix it in with other fruit, squeeze it and drink as fresh juice or smoothie base, to top off your salads, or as an addition to salsa. Papaya is also great to cut up and eat on its own
I will let you in on a little secret about this orange fruit: although you cannot eat the skin, if you save it and refrigerate it, it later will make a great face wash!
Pineapple is the one fruit I can count on to fill my sweet tooth craving all year round. The trick to keeping your pineapple as fresh and juicy as possible is to keep it at room temperature for 1–2 days before you cut it.
This fruit is a great source of antioxidants, meaning that pineapple is a great way to prevent cell damage and promote heart health. It is abundant in vitamin C, which means sufficient amounts of pineapple can help fight off a cold or cough. Some of the other benefits of this fruit are: strengthening your bones, keeping your gums healthy, and boosting your immune system just to name a few.
One enzyme unique to pineapple is called bromelain. Similar to papain, bromelain helps with the digestion of protein, reduce bloating and gas and improve other digestive problems. It also has anti-inflammatory qualities, reduces congestion, improves breathing and may work as a pain reliever.
Wondering how you can incorporate pineapple into your diet this summer other than eating it as is? Try grilling it on the BBQ and drizzling with a little maple syrup. This recipe always impresses my guests and is a great way to finish off a tasty meal.
There is an old myth that says that field workers of papaya and pineapple had smoother hands from handling these fruits. The explanation behind this was attributed to the papain and bromelain, which are known for their exfoliating properties. So make sure you eat these delicious fruits, and reap all the qualities they have to maximize your health and beauty.