Papaya is a native fruit from CentralAmerica with its buttery consistency and sweet taste, has attained widespread popularity. This is a fruit which you come to love once you develop a taste for it. It is not everyone’s favorite, but those who love it find it hard to get by a morning without digging into a bowl of freshly cubed papayas. The orange-coloured flesh is very tempting indeed, but what puts most people off, is the slightly bitter aftertaste that accompanies the otherwise sweet fruit. Cristopher Columbus called it as “The Fruit of Angels”.
Papayas are rich in Vitamin C, Antioxidants, and various other nutrients. Papayas contain papain, an enzyme similar to the digestive juice pepsin; papain extract is marketed as a meat tenderizer.
Digestion – The enzyme papain present in papaya is known to aid digestion by breaking down proteins. Therefore, a glass of papaya juice is often recommended as a home remedy for digestion-related problems or constipation.
Helps fight heart disease – In addition to Vitamin C and beta-carotene, papayas are a good source of vitamins E and A; these antioxidants help limit the oxidization of cholesterol in the bloodstream, which is associated with a lower risk of heart attack and stroke.
Anti-inflammatory – Apart from papain, papaya also contains other effective enzymes that help against inflammation and promote healing of burns.
Diabetes – Many researchers have found that the consumption of raw papaya could help maintain blood sugar level and cholesterol because of the high fiber content, thereby keeping a check on diabetes. According to a study done by the Centre of Excellence for Biomedical and Biomaterials Research at the Mauritius University, green tea and fermented papaya work together as preventive means for diabetes. In some parts of India, especially the North East, papaya flowers are locally used as a preventive measure against diabetes. The bitter flowers are lightly sautéed in a little oil and consumed as a side to rice on a regular basis.
Immunity – Papaya is a great source of vitamin A, B, C, and K and is known as an excellent immunity booster. It is great for the growth of body tissues, including hair and skin. It helps in maintaining collagen, the structural protein of connective tissues. It is said that a medium-sized papaya could provide you double your daily requirement of vitamins.
Keeps arthritis at bay – A study of more than 20,000people found that those who consumed the lowest amounts of vitamin C–rich foods were more than three times likely to develop arthritis than those who consumed higher amounts. One papaya provides more than twice the daily dose.
Lowers cholesterol – Papaya is rich in fiber, 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.
Help reduce stress – After working hard for the whole day, it is a good idea to come home to a plate papayas. The wonder fruit is rich in several nutrients like Vitamin C which can keep you free from stress. According to a study conducted by the University of Alabama, found that 200 mg of Vitamin C can help regulate the flow of stress hormones in rats.