Papayas grow in tropical climates and are also known as papaws or pawpaws. Their sweet taste, vibrant color, and the wide variety of health benefits they provide make them a popular fruit.
The papaya is an incredibly healthy tropical fruit.
Here are 5 health benefits of pawpaw (papaya):
1. Aids Digestion
Papayas are commonly for an aid in digestion. The presence of pa-pain, a digestive super enzyme, improves digestion by breaking down proteins and also cleanses the digestive tract. This ensures a reduced conversion of protein into body fat.
If the protein in our diet is not digested properly, it may cause arthritis, constipation, diabetes, high blood pressure, and other related health conditions.
2. Protects Against Skin Damage
Papaya can also help your skin look more toned and youthful. Excessive free radical activity is believed to be responsible for much of the wrinkling, sagging and other skin damage that occurs with age.
The vitamin C and lycopene in papaya protect your skin and may help reduce these signs of aging.
In one study, lycopene supplementation for 10–12 weeks decreased skin redness after sun exposure, which is a sign of skin injury.
3. Aids Weight Loss
Papayas are also good for people who are trying to lose weight naturally. Having a bowl full of papaya as a mid-evening or mid-morning snack is good for health.
4. May Improve Heart Health
Adding more papaya to your diet may be beneficial for your heart. Studies show that lycopene- and vitamin C-rich fruits may help prevent heart disease.
In one study, people who took a fermented papaya supplement for 14 weeks had less inflammation and a better LDL:HDL ratio than people who were given a placebo.
5. Has Powerful Antioxidant Effects
Free radicals are reactive molecules created during your body’s metabolism. They do perform certain important functions, including helping to destroy harmful bacteria.
However, when you have too many of them, your body is said to be in a state of oxidative stress, which can lead to disease. Antioxidants, including the carotenoids found in papayas, can neutralize free radicals so that they are no longer able to cause harm.
Studies have found that fermented papaya can reduce oxidative stress in the elderly and people with prediabetes, mild hypothyroidism and liver disease.
Papayas are an excellent source of vitamin C, and one single medium fruit provides 224 percent of recommended daily intake.
One medium papaya has approximately:
- 120 calories
- 30 grams of carbohydrate – including 5 grams of fiber and 18 grams of sugar
- 2 grams of protein
Papayas are also a good source of:
- vitamin A
- pantothenic acid
They also have B vitamins, alpha and beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin, vitamin E, calcium, potassium, vitamin K, and lycopene, the powerful antioxidant most commonly associated with tomatoes.
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