Pineapple has numerous health benefits, that aren’t typically found in other foods. Many of these benefits come from the enzyme bromelain, which is being researched as a leading supplement for aiding in various health problems, including inflammation problems for arthritis and joint pain. Pineapple is also packed full of vitamins and minerals that can benefit everyone, from fighting colds to helping you feel energize. Pineapple is a great fruit to incorporate into your diet in moderation because it is full of health benefits!
1. Health Benefits of Pineapple
1. Pineapple is high in the antioxidant bromelain which fights inflammation!
What are Antioxidants?
Antioxidants are natural compounds that inhibit oxidation and can neutralize free radicals in our bodies.
How is Bromelain Anti-Inflammatory?
Antioxidants interfere with the inflammatory process of the body. Inflammation and oxidative stress occurs due to an imbalance in the body. Antioxidants produce a defense mechanism that prevents and slows the formation reactive oxygen species (which play a role in forming inflammation).
Bromelain is an antioxidant that is specifically used to treat inflammation. Bromelain, found in high amounts in the pineapple fruit core, is extracted and used as a supplement by athletes and those suffering from arthritis. You don’t need to take a supplement to get the benefits from bromelain, as pineapple itself is very high in this antioxidant! However, for maximum benefits, consider it as a supplement.
Bromelain has been shown to have anti inflammatory effects on various illnesses and ailments, including compromised immune systems, sinus infections, inflammatory bowel disease and more.
What else does Bromelain do?
Bromelain is also thought to decrease excessive blood coagulation, edema, and increase the potency of antibiotics. This has led to the belief that bromelain may be a good supplement for those undergoing surgery, burn recovery, or plastic surgery.
Pineapple contains a high amount of bromelain which has anti cancer properties. Bromelain is an effective anti cancer therapeutic agent, due to its anti inflammatory compounds as well as its ability to reduce tumor growth. To read more about pineapples anti cancer properties, click here.
EAT SMARTER TAKE AWAY: Pineapple is extremely high in the antioxidant Bromelain which is known for its anti inflammatory properties! Inflammation can lead to the onset of various illnesses and diseases, and bromelain helps fight it by limiting oxidation in the body!
2. Disadvantages of Pineapple
1. Pineapple may contain pesticide residues!
What are pesticides?
Pesticides consist of substances, usually a mixture of chemicals, that are used to kill bugs, weeds, funguses and other pests that may interfere with a crops health and growing process.
Why are pesticides bad?
Pesticides aren’t always necessarily bad, though sometimes they can be. The thought behind avoiding pesticides is formed from the idea that if a pesticide can kill or harm a pest, why can’t it harm us?
There have been many cases throughout human history where the effects of pesticides weren’t entirely understood until it was too late, and have already done damage to a population or species. The long term effects of many pesticides isn’t entirely understood.
Secondly, pesticide resistance is increasing. As insects and weeds adapt to the pesticides we use, we have to either use more pesticides or different harsher formulas.
Alternatives to toxic pesticides are available, and are becoming increasingly popular.
How can I avoid getting a pineapple with pesticide residues?
Pineapples were listed by the Environmental Working Group in 2014 as one of the top 12 crops that frequently have high amounts of pesticide residues.
To avoid buying produce with pesticide residues, try buying organic and local produce. Pineapples may be a difficult crop to buy locally, however, imported organic pineapple is typically available.
EAT SMARTER TAKE AWAY: Pineapple is a food that is commonly high in pesticide residues, which are thought to potentially have effects on health. Try to buy organic pineapple if you can!
3. Top 100 Pineapple Recipes
4. Pineapple Recipes in Video
Pineapple is a sweet tropical fruit that is great eaten alone or as an addition to other foods. This fruit provides a boost of nutrients, flavor and vibrant yellow color to dishes! Pineapple is delicious eaten alone chilled and sliced, but also great grilled and in a burger. Try some of these pineapple recipes to add some healthy, natural sweetness into your life!
5. About Pineapple
What is pineapple?
Pineapple is a tropical plant that produces collective fruits. Collective fruits are when fruiting bodies form into a cluster of fruiting flowers, where each flower produces a fruit. These fruits all mature into a single formation. Other collective fruits include figs and mulberries. These fused “fruitlets” on a pineapple can be identified by their “eyes”, which is the unique looking pattern that pineapples have.
Pineapple is an extremely popular fruit, ranking as the United States second favorite tropical fruit (behind bananas!).
The tropical pineapple plant is named after the spanish word “pina” because of its resemblance to a pinecone. The Hawaiian word for pineapple is “Hala Kahiki”.
What kinds of pineapple can you buy?
There are many cultivars of pineapples that are distributed throughout the world. A cultivar is a plant that has been produced by selective breeding. These are a few of the most popular cultivars of pineapple produced in the United States. Pineapples vary by cultivar, some are grown for their sweetness and some are grown for their aesthetics.
6. Pineapple vs. Coconut
While these tropical fruits have many health benefits in their own ways, they are distinctly different when it comes to nutrition. Pineapple is far lower in calories and fat than coconut, but distinctly higher in Vitamin C and various B vitamins. While coconut can be packed with calories and fats, it also contains higher levels of iron and magnesium than pineapple. Both foods have been proven beneficial when it comes to weight loss and have properties that benefit illnesses and inflammation. We think they come to a tie when it comes down to a nutritional battle, because they both stand out on their own. Enjoy both these tropical foods in moderation: Aloha!
7. History of Pineapple
A beautiful sweet, tropical fruit!
One of the most popular tropical fruits in the world, loaded with health benefits!
Pineapple is named after the Spanish word “pina”. It was named for its resemblance to a pinecone.
It has also been called “anana” or “excellent fruit”.
Origins of Pineapple
Pineapple is thought to originate in South America. It is thought to be from between southern Brazil and Paraguay. Little is known about its actual domestication. In order to transport pineapple it was typically glazed and sugar coated in order to be preserved.
1493 - Pineapple was first discovered by Europeans on the caribbean island called Guadalupe.
End of the 16th Century - Pineapple was introduced to Asia, Africa and the South Pacific colonies by the Spanish and Portuguese explorers.
1600’s - The Christian Church adopted the symbol of the pineapple. The symbol was fitted on church finials.
1675 - A painting was done of King Charles II of England, receiving a pineapple as a gift.
1700’s - In America during the 1700’s a pineapple could cost up to $8,000 in modern currency.
8. Q&A About Pineapple
How do you pronounce pineapple?
What does pineapple taste like?
Pineapple can be sweet or tart, depending the pineapple and when it is picked.
What is pineapple related to?
Pineapple belongs to the bromeliaceae family and is closely related to corn. In order, the next closest species would include banana, avocado, orange, papaya then juniper.
How many pineapples are produced in Hawaii each year?
Hawaii on its own produces 320,000 tons of pineapple per year. That’s the equivalent of 1600 blue whales!
How long does it take pineapples to grow?
It takes two years for a pineapple plant to grow and bear fruit. It takes around six months for a pineapple to mature from its flowering stage.
9. Nutritional Information
This is the nutritional information for 1 cup (165 g) of pineapple!
|Calorie 82.5||Calories from Fat 1.7|
|Total Fat 0.2g||0%|
|Saturated Fat 0g||0%|
|Polyunsaturated Fat 0.1g|
|Monounsaturated Fat 0.0g|
|Total Carbohydrate 21.6g||7%|
|Dietary Fiber 2.3g||9%|
|Folate 7%||Vitamin C 131%|
|Vitamin B6 9%||Thiamin 9%|
"FAO.org." Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 May 2016. http://www.fao.org/home/en/.