Pineapple, the benefits of bromelain fruit

Pineapple is a sour fruit that is very popular all over the world for its flavor, aroma and, above all, for its nutritional properties. This tropical fruit is an excellent food that is very beneficial for our health.

 What is pineapple?

Pineapple ( Ananas comosus) is a tropical fruit also known by the name of pineapple, pineapple, naná, matzatli or American pineapple.

It is a fleshy fruit that is within the group of acidic fruits , such as lemon , although at times and depending on the maturation it may have a sweet taste .

They have an oval shape with a very hard skin with brown tones, protected with scales and decorated in the upper part with very striking green leaves in the shape of a crown .

The interior is very fleshy yellow or white. Some of these fruits can weigh up to 2 kg.

Origin of pineapple

Pineapple (Ananas comosus) is native to South America. Actually, it is not known for sure where the first crops were found. Thanks to some studies, we can locate its origin, almost in all probability, in regions of the countries of Brazil and Paraguay.

The pineapple is native to Brazil and Paraguay.

It seems that, from these regions mentioned, the cultivation of this food moved to Peru, Venezuela and other regions of the Amazon.

Due to the popularity it was acquiring, its cultivation spread rapidly throughout Latin America.  

Thanks to the discovery of the new world , and as has happened with other foods, today we can enjoy this wonderful fruit and its benefits in Europe.

It is said that it was Christopher Columbus himself who brought her to Spain from the Island of Guadalupe in Brazil. At first, this food was very scarce in Europe, which is why it was considered a real fruit and within the reach of few.

Why is it called pineapple?

The pineapple (Ananas comosus) , which is widely known as a tropical fruit, coincides in its name with the pine fruit.

In addition, this tropical fruit is known as pineapple due to its similarity to the fruit of the pine tree.

Therefore, the word pineapple comes from Latin, precisely from the word ” piena ” which in turn comes from the word ” pinus ” which corresponds to pine.

It is also known as pineapple or other variants of this term, since in the indigenous language of Brazil, Tupi , means ” delicious fruit ” or ” excellent fruit .”

Pineapple production

We have already talked about where it comes from and what is the origin of this fruit, but where is it currently grown?

In the middle of the 19th century, pineapple cultivation spread through Australia, South Africa and Hawaii , although currently the main producers are Costa Rica, Brazil and the Philippines.

In Spain we can find the cultivation of pineapple in regions of  Murcia or the Canary Islands .

How do you eat pineapple?

I never tire of repeating that the best way to eat fruits is naturally, raw and fresh , but in the case of this one in particular it can be consumed in different ways and in different recipes.

In addition to being raw, we can consume it as juice, juice or as ingredients in other drinks such as smoothies.

We can also find it canned, which is a good way to consume it out of season, although it is important not to abuse it because of the amount of sugar that these preserves contain.

It is a highly recommended option for breakfast , raw, as a smoothie or juice, combined with yogurt or as an ingredient in a fruit salad.

In addition, it is also used for recipes of different sweets. They combine very well with different dishes such as pizzas that became very popular in Hawaii , salads, stir-fries and an endless variety of recipes that this food contains.

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Pineapple season

Pineapple is a tropical fruit. However, some of the varieties of this fruit are produced in Spain. More specifically, on the east coast of Andalusia and Murcia.

In these regions, the ideal time to harvest the fruit is during winter. However, it depends on the year and the season they can be collected a little earlier.

During the rest of the months we can find fresh pineapple in our markets, but it is not of national origin. It is normally imported from Chile, among other South American countries.

You can check the calendar of the  fruit season  to be able to consume these foods at their most optimal moment. In addition, when they are in season they provide us with  more benefits for our health, they have a better aroma and are tastier , among other advantages.

Seasonal pineapple characteristics

Pineapple can be found in our markets practically throughout the year thanks to the variety of countries that grow it, but it is important to know that this fruit only matures satisfactorily on the plant.

Its nutritional properties are doubled in the last weeks of maturation in the plant where it acquires its sweet taste due to the amount of sugar.

This maturation, if it is done outside the plant, the process of adding sugar and nutritional properties is paralyzed. In this way, a food with less healthy properties and more acidic, therefore, of poorer quality, is obtained.

If the ripening process has been correct in the plant, the fruit obtains an optimal amount of carbohydrates. It is about 11% of the nutrients.

Pineapple properties

It is a fruit with a high water content that can reach up to 85%, making it a very low calorie food. Likewise, the nutrients that it provides us make these fruits have a high nutritional value. With all this, it is worth noting the contribution of antioxidants and other components such as plant enzymes.

These fruits are rich in vitamins and minerals, especially vitamin C and manganese. 

The consumption of pineapples is favorable for our health with various benefits related to digestion, the immune system and reduction of inflammation.

Pineapple vitamins

Fresh and raw pineapple is rich in vitamins in which we can highlight vitamin C as the most abundant. It is what contributes to the protection of cells against oxidative damage.

We can also find Vitamins A, B1 and folic acid, but to a lesser extent.

Pineapple minerals

It also contains a variety of minerals such as potassium, manganese, magnesium, and iron.

Iodine contributes to normal energy metabolism and the production of thyroid hormones for normal thyroid function.

Non-nutritive components

Among the non-nutritive components of pineapple, organic, citric and malic acids stand out, responsible for its acid taste.

Bromelain

This fruit has an enzyme known as bromelain or bromelain that has very beneficial properties for our health.

The most remarkable property of this enzyme or ferment with proteolytic action is the ability to digest the proteins in food, breaking down the protein molecules, leaving the amino acids that form them free, which can help us with the digestion process.

Nutritional information per 100 grams of raw pineapple:

Energetic value50 kcal
Protein0,5 g
Carbohydrates11,5 g
Fiber1,2 g
Water86,8 g
Football12 mg
Iron0,15 mg
Iodine30 μg
Magnesium14 mg
Zinc0,15 mg
Sodium2 mg
Potassium250 mg
Match11 mg
Thiamine0,07 mg
Riboflavin0,02 mg
Vitamin B60,09 mg
Niacin0,3 mg
Folates11 μg
C vitamin20 mg
Vitamin A13 μg
Vitamin E0,1 mg

Pineapple benefits

It is a sour fruit with a characteristic sweet taste and a delicious aroma. It is juicy and very easy to eat and it is also liked by the whole family.

Among its benefits we can distinguish the following:

1. A digestive fruit

This fruit is mainly indicated to help us with heavy digestions or for people who find it difficult to make a normal digestion.

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This digestive aid that this food has is thanks to bromelain. In addition, it intervenes with the production of gastric juices. An ally for our digestive system. [1]

In this way, bromelain breaks down protein molecules into smaller amino acids and peptides. Consequently, these nutrients are more easily absorbed in our small intestines.

Likewise, bromelain also helps us with the digestion of meat thanks to its ability to break down its proteins. [2]

For people who suffer from stomach ulcers or gastritis, the consumption of this fruit may be contraindicated, so consult a health professional or a dietitian.

2. Help for weight loss diets

This fruit is indicated to be incorporated into diets to lose weight, since it has a lot of water, is low in calories and is rich in vitamins and minerals.

The digestive function that benefits us in weight loss processes is also very remarkable.

3. Satiating action

As it contains a lot of water and fiber, it is a fruit that when consumed, makes us feel satiated and satisfied, which makes it a satisfying food .

4. Laxative effect

Thanks to its high fiber content, we can say that this food has laxative properties and is a good intestinal regulator . Fiber is also involved in lowering blood cholesterol levels and controlling blood glucose .

5. Purifying fruit

Pineapple contributes to the proper functioning of the liver, which makes it a cleansing fruit.

It can help us eliminate fluids and toxins from our body. Its consumption is recommended for people who suffer from fluid retention or want to reduce their body volume because of these fluids. It benefits the proper functioning of our renal system.

6. Natural antioxidant

It is a food rich in healthy antioxidant nutrients that help us reduce the oxidative process in our body.

Minerals such as potassium, iron, magnesium, zinc and iodine are very important in their antioxidant action that combats the cellular aging process.

In addition, pineapples are rich in antioxidant components known as flavonoids and phenolic acids. [3]

These antioxidants of different nature can have longer lasting effects on pineapple. In addition, they are favorable to reduce the risk of suffering from certain diseases.

7. Favorable for our natural defenses

Thanks to the fact that it is a fruit rich in vitamin C, it helps us to strengthen our defenses and is ideal for relieving colds and colds.

Manganese can also help us support the immune system, in addition to our bones.

In addition, it provides us with a set of vitamins, minerals and enzymes such as bromelain. Therefore, it is favorable for nourishing our immune system and suppressing inflammation. [4]

It seems that the anti-inflammatory properties of certain foods is directly related to the proper functioning of the immune system.

8. Natural muscle recuperator

It is true that intense exercise can damage muscle tissue and are affected for up to three days. There are studies [5] that explain how substances such as bromelain accelerate the recovery of muscle damage from intense exercise. It is produced by reducing inflammation of damaged muscle tissue.

Benefits of eating pineapple on an empty stomach

Eating pineapple on an empty stomach is one of the best ways to start the day. At this time is when our body is predisposed to assimilate all the properties and benefits for our health that this fantastic tropical fruit possesses.

conclusion

Certainly and to conclude, we are talking about a food whose consumption is very beneficial for our health . They are delicious, they are low in calories and they provide us with a variety of nutrients and antioxidants.

Consequently, pineapple is a fruit with very beneficial properties for our health and that we recommend including in the diet.

Ellie Lauderdale

My name is Ellie Lauderdale, MD and I am USA based professional Nutritionist .

I am a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and board certified specialist in sports dietetics who is trained in integrative medicine. I have worked with hundreds of clients, from those suffering with chronic disease to professional and olympian athletes. My goal is to help optimize you from the inside so that you can feel, perform, and look your best on the outside.

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