It’s by far one of the most unique fruits out there – and we’re not just talking about its one-of-a-kind look.
Pineapples are also one of the world’s most nutritious fruits, bringing in nearly equal amounts of great taste and great health!
What It Has
That’s thanks, in no small part, to the pineapple’s venerable truckload of vitamins, minerals and nutrients.
Just a partial list of the wonder-compounds found in an average bite of pineapple includes:
Without a doubt one of the most important vitamins on the scene, vitamin C plays an outsized role in the human body.
From stronger teeth and bones to more well-lubricated joints, and thicker hair to more buoyant skin, vitamin C has a part in it all. That’s not even mentioning the way vitamin C interacts with our immune system, helping us ward off sickness and infections.
Within the dynamic of the human body, one could reasonably imagine manganese as the enzyme taskmaster.
And what does that mean?
Enzymes are the chemical compounds that help things get done in the body – essentially, whenever a chemical reaction takes place, it’s facilitated by an enzyme.
And manganese helps activate a number of these compounds, including a few that are particularly important for digestion and the maintenance of metabolism.
While this mineral may be more typically associated with pennies, copper can also pay dividends inside the human body.
Utilizing the same electrical conductivity it commands in the outside world, the mineral helps keep things running smoothly for the neurotransmitters tasked with sending and receiving millions of electrical impulses over the course of our lives. And it’s also good for our veins, helping maintain blood vessel walls over time.
Speaking of blood – folate also plays a pretty key role in the circulatory system.
The nutrient is particularly good for helping manufacture DNA and red blood cells – though it also helps on a broader scale with tissue growth and overall cell function, which is why a diet rich in folate is often recommended for pregnant women.
Also known as vitamin B5, pantothenic acid follows in the grand B-vitamin tradition of helping the body convert carbohydrates into fuel, while also keeping an eye on the way fats and proteins are used and stored.
But B5 also has an outsized rule in blood health, helping in the creation of additional blood cells.
What It Does
Thanks to these vitamins, minerals and nutrients (plus many more that simply didn’t make the list), pineapples are rightly known as a powerhouse of health benefits.
And those benefits manifest in a number of ways, including the fruit’s ability to help us:
Ward Off Sickness
The healthy amount of vitamin C packed into every pineapple has a lot to do with this particular claim. But pineapples have so much more going for them than one particularly powerful vitamin.
In fact, the scrumptious fruits are loaded with both antioxidants—which help keep us healthy by removing dead and damaged cells—and plant compounds called flavonoids, which officially provide the sweet scent to pineapples (and a number of other fruits), but act in the body as extra doses of antioxidants.
Ease Up Digestion
With pineapple’s juice coming off more on the acidic side, many people may be surprised to find that the fruit is actually a boon to digestion.
That’s thanks, in part, to the group of enzymes found inside its delicious flesh called bromelain. The pack of enzymes are especially useful when it comes to breaking down proteins into simpler forms, like amino acids and peptides.
That makes them much more easily digested by the body, and opens up much more of the protein’s power for available use in building us back up.
Reduce Arthritis Pain
Another score for bromelain.
The collection of compounds isn’t just good for our gut. As it turns out, the enzymes also add a boost of anti-inflammatory properties to the mix that could be used to combat the cause of pain for many arthritis sufferers.
Still, scientists say the effects of bromelain should be considered more short-term (think, like the temporary relief of aspirin), rather than a long-term cure for any arthritis pain.
Speed Up Recovery
That’s the kind of recovery your body needs to go through after anything from a round of strenuous exercise to something more traumatic, like a surgical procedure.
And, again, we have bromelain to thank for this handy natural trick.
The anti-inflammatory nature of the enzymes are certainly helpful when it comes to getting stressed-out tissues and muscles back on track. But the particular way the substances interact with protein makes them an especially potent help, as the amino acids and peptides it releases into the body can be much more readily used for cellular repair and strengthening.
What That Means?
It’s no secret that we here at FruitStand are pineapple fans. It’s truly called the king of fruits for a reason.
And while we struggle to find a situation where someone wouldn’t want to munch on this tasty treat, you might want to try a bit more pineapple in particular if you’re concerned with:
- Recovering from an injury, surgery, or particularly intense workout routine.
- Maintaining health while pregnant.
- Building up better blood health.
- Promoting a naturally easier time with digestion.
They may be spikey on the outside, but, with the myriad ways they can help us out, pineapples really are big old sweeties on the inside.