Pineapples are the tropical fruits that look like tiny, spiky palm trees. You can eat them in salads, smoothies, cocktails and yes, even on pizza. They are rich in vitamins, enzymes, antioxidants and fibre, along with many other nutrition and health benefits.
High in nutrients
This low-in-calorie fruit contains natural fats, proteins, carbohydrates, fibres, vitamin C, manganese, vitamin B6, copper, thiamine, folate, potassium, magnesium, niacin, pantothenic acid, riboflavin and iron.
They also contain trace amounts of vitamins A and K, phosphorus, zinc and calcium.
Pineapples also contain a lot of healthy antioxidants that help your body combat oxidative stress.
Oxidative stress is when there are too many free radicals in the body that can cause damage linked to chronic inflammation, a weakened immune system and other harmful diseases.
The antioxidants in pineapples are bound, allowing them to survive harsher conditions in your body and produce longer-lasting effects.
The high amount of vitamin C in pineapples fights cell damage. This helps fight against heart disease and macular degeneration, which is a disease that affects your eyes as you age.
Pineapples also contain bromelain, a group of digestive enzymes which act like proteases. Proteases break down protein molecules into amino acids and small peptides. When they are broken down, your small intestine is able to absorb them more easily. This helps your small intestines function better.
The vitamins, minerals and enzymes in pineapple collectively boost your immunity and suppress inflammation.
These nutrients can lower the risk of both viral and bacterial infections by producing more disease-fighting white blood cells.
Speeds up recovery
The bromelain enzyme found in pineapples has certain anti-inflammatory properties that can help you recover faster from an injury.
It reduces inflammation, swelling, bruising and pain that occurs after sustaining an injury. The reduced inflammation can also help speed up the recovery of internal tissue damage.
Pineapples contain manganese, which helps develop strong bones and connective tissue. It can also help to prevent osteoporosis.
Remedies sinus infections and allergies
The vitamin C and bromelain in pineapples reduce mucus in your throat and nose. These can clear up sinus issues and seasonal allergies.
Pineapples also contain several B-vitamins. It not only helps your brain function better but allows your brain to deal with stress more efficiently.
Astringent agents in pineapples help tighten up gum tissues. It also helps to fix loose teeth and the retraction of your gums.
This is why it is so beneficial for sailors with scurvy.
Reduces blood pressure
Pineapples also contain potassium, a natural vasodilator that eases the tension of blood vessels. It also helps to improve blood circulation to various parts of your body.
When your blood vessels relax, your blood pressure reduces and the flow of blood is less restricted. This can help prevent strokes and atherosclerosis.
Pineapples are rich in vitamins, minerals and enzymes that promote circulatory, digestive, immune system, bone development and recovery processes. It also fights off diseases, stress sinuses and allergies. It is important to include pineapple in your regular diet as it is so high in nutrients and anti-oxidants.
To learn more about nutrition, have a look at our Specialised Nutrition Course.