Pineapple – Properties and medicinal uses

Botanical name: Ananas comosus Merr.
Other names: Nana, Ananas, Cayenne pineapple.

Pineapple which is a compound fruit is a fruit of the pineapple plant, Ananas comosus Merr., a herbaceous plant of the botanical family Bromeliaceae, which usually reaches a height of 50 cm.
Pineapple was first cultivated commercially in Hawaii in the nineteenth (19th) century, and are now the largest producer of this popular and nutritious fruit.
Properties of Pineapple fruit
The components of pineapple are divided into the nutritive and non-nutritive components. Below are its nutritive components:

● A pineapple fruit which is properly matured contains a high amounts of carbohydrates, which are mostly sugars. Carbohydrates in a ripe pineapple are set to be about 11% of its total content.

● The pineapple fruit contains very low amounts of fats and proteins.

● It contains minerals in significant amounts. Some of the minerals present are manganese, magnesium, potassium, iron etc.

● Vitamins are present in pineapple in reasonably high amounts. It is noteworthy of vitamin C, vitamin B6, vitamin B1, and folates.

Below are its non-nutritive components:

Bromelin – This substance found in pineapple acts in the same way as the pepsin present in the stomach. It helps breakdown proteins and facilitates digestion in the digestive tract.

Citric and malic acids – The presence of these acids potentiate the action of vitamin C. They also gives pineapple its characteristic acidic taste.

Health benefits / medicinal uses of pineapple
The pineapple fruit is known for various medicinal values. Its most common indication is its ability to function as a wonderful dessert, as it facilitates the digestion of other foods. Below are some of the medicinal uses of pineapple:

Gastric ptosis
This disorder which is known as prolapsed stomach is caused by the stomach’s inability to empty itself. The regular consumption of pineapple in the cases of this disorder can help eliminate it. This can be done by eating a ripe and fresh pineapple before and after meal.

For those suffering from sterility caused due to insufficient production of gametes ( sperm in men and ova in women) should consider the consumption of pineapple as a great way of getting rid of this disorder. Pineapple contains a trace element known as manganese, this tropical fruit can be said to be one of the richest fruit in this mineral. Manganese is a trace element which is actively involved in the formation of body’s reproductive cells.
Thus, the concept behind this indication shows that ‘the more you eat pineapple the more your body’s supply of manganese, and the more your body’s supply of manganese the more the formation of reproductive cells in your body’.

The regular consumption of pineapple is highly recommended in cases of scanty gastric juice (hypochlorhydria). This condition is manifested by a very slow digestion and a sense of heaviness in the stomach.

Stomach cancer
Pineapple is known to be a strong inhibitor of the formation of nitrosamines, carcinogenic substances (substances that can cause cancer) formed in the stomach as a result of chemical reactions between nitrites and specific proteins contained in certain foods. Thus, a person willing to avoid stomach cancer should adopt the regular consumption of pineapple fruit.

The pineapple fruit is a very good complement to a weight loss diet. It has a moderate satiating effect which reduces appetite, and moreover, it facilitates urine production.

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By Abbati

Abbati studied Biological sciences at Ahmadu Bello Univeristy, Zaria. He loves learning about the medicinal properties of foods, and the need to explore them!

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