Papaya is an orange colored juicy fruit, which is not only delicious but also very healthy. It has been famous for hundreds of years and was once called the “fruit of the angels” by Christopher Columbus. Papaya is a natural source of vitamins and minerals that are essential for the normal functioning of the body. It is famous for its luscious taste and can be eaten as a fruit in the raw form, a smoothie, or as a vegetable in various recipes. The health benefits of papaya include better digestion, relief from a toothache, stronger immunity, weight loss, skin care, and a better heart health. Papaya is believed to prevent cancer. No wonder, the fruit is quite popular for its high nutritive and medicinal value. Here are some of the most important benefits of papaya.
1. Helps in weight loss
Those looking to lose weight must include papaya in their diet as it is very low in calories. The fibre content in papaya leaves you feeling full and also clears your bowel movement making your weight loss regime easier.
2. It 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 eventually lead to disease. Antioxidants, including the carotenoids found in papayas, can neutralize free radicals so that they are no longer able to cause harm. Research has found that fermented papaya can reduce oxidative stress in the elderly and people with prediabetes, mild hypothyroidism and liver disease.
3. Reduces arthritis pain
The presence of papain and chymopapain in papaya is responsible for the anti-inflammatory effects of the fruit. The reduction of inflammation reduces pain in the joints. Moreover, one research study discussed findings linking low levels of vitamin C with a higher risk of developing arthritis. High in vitamin C and papain, the papaya plays a role in prevention of and reducing pain and inflammation from arthritis.
4. Lowers cholesterol
Papaya is rich in fibre, Vitamin C and antioxidants which prevent cholesterol build up in your arteries. Too much cholesterol build-up can lead to several heart diseases including heart attack and hypertension.
5. Helps digestion
Papayas are very often consumed for proper digestion. The presence of papain, 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, high blood pressure, and other health conditions.
6. May reduce cardiovascular disease
Papaya is one of the richest food sources of folate you can purchase at the grocery store. Folate is important in the reduction of homocysteine levels in your body. Homocysteine is an amino acid associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Moreover, folate is important in preventing neural tube defects in developing babies.
7. Boosts your immunity
Your immunity system acts as a shield against various infections that can make you really sick. A single papaya contains more than 200% of your daily requirement of Vitamin C, making it great for your immunity.
8. Reduces acne & burns
The latex obtained from papayas is used to treat the areas on the skin affected by acne. The fleshy side of the papaya skin can be used as a mask to cure acne. A diet which includes papayas will help cure the condition internally, making the skin clear. When the latex from the fruit is applied on burnt area, it helps in reducing the marks caused due to the burn.
Papaya is rich in valuable nutrients and has a delicious taste. Its strong antioxidant properties may help reduce your risk of many diseases, especially heart disease and cancer. It may also defend against the visible signs of aging, helping your skin remain smooth and youthful. To experience the many benefits of papaya, consider adding this healthy and delicious fruit to your diet.