Rich in valuable nutrients, the papaya is an amazing fruit with strong antioxidant properties. The papaya is a tropical fruit that works to reduce inflammation, keep your skin looking healthy, and it helps to naturally fight back against heart disease. Consuming papaya can be beneficial if you need help improving digestion or strengthening the immune system.
What Are Papayas?
The papaya is a tropical fruit, which is found in most grocery stores throughout the year. Hawaiian papayas are smaller and yellow, while Mexican papayas are larger and a rich orange color. The flesh of the papaya is orange and buttery. Small black seeds are in the center of the fruit and while they are edible in moderation, they often get discarded. The fruit, the seeds, and parts of the tree all contain an enzyme that helps the body digest proteins.
Papain Is What You Need
Green papayas are traditionally used in Thai cuisine to make green papaya salad. The unripe fruit and leaves from the tree contain papain, which has been used as a meat tenderizer for years, helps the body digest meat. We aren’t encouraging meat consumption; we are just saying that papayas help to digest meat.
Free Radicals Beware
The powerful antioxidants in papayas help to banish free radicals from the body. Free radicals are created during the body’s metabolism and are needed for destroying bad bacteria. If you have too many of these in your system, your body is more prone to oxidative stress and disease. Adding papaya to your diet has been proven to not only lower oxidative stress, but also decrease the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
Reduces Macular Degeneration
This disease of the eye causes cells to degenerate and ultimately results in blurred vision and blindness, in more serious cases. If you have macular degeneration, start adding papaya to your diet because it contains beta-carotene, which helps to boost eye health. According to a recent study, consuming three or more servings of papaya every day helps to decrease the risk of macular degeneration.
Among the many great things about papaya, it can also help to relieve constipation and reduce motion sickness, primarily due to the folate and vitamins C & E. Fresh papaya juice contains lots of fiber, which helps to increase bowel movements and ease the passage of stool through the digestive tract.
Side Effects Of Papaya
The papaya is safe to consume, but there are some things to know in regards to the fruit. Papaya is considered a “hot” fruit and can be harmful during pregnancy. Raw and semi-ripe papayas contain latex, which can cause uterine contractions, which may lead to abortions in serious cases. It can also have a laxative effect if eaten too much. Try not to eat too many servings of papaya to keep your intestines and stomach happy.
Papaya is a versatile fruit and is best eaten when it is cold. You can add it to smoothies, juices, or blend it to make it a healthy dessert. Let us know how you like to eat papaya in the comments below.