As the saying goes, “Good things come in small packages.” This statement could not be truer than in the case of the kiwifruit. The most common species of this delectable little wonder is the Actinidia deliciosa, more commonly known as Hayward kiwifruit.
The inside of this furry little oval fruit is a beautiful, semi-translucent emerald green flesh that is speckled with tiny edible seeds and packing an energizing taste that brings to mind a mixture of strawberries and bananas but with its unique sweet flavor.
With the growing popularity of the kiwifruit, other species are now becoming more widely available. These include the hardy kiwifruit and the silver vine kiwifruit. Both are smooth-skinned varieties that are the size of cherries, whose flesh has a golden yellow-green color.
The kiwifruit has an interesting history. Its recent rise in popularity reflects a combination of an appreciation of its taste, nutritional value and its unique appearance.
Kiwifruit is native to China, where it is originally known as Yang Tao. In the early 20th century, they were brought to New Zealand from China by missionaries. However, the first commercial plantings didn’t occur till decades later. In 1960, they were renamed Chinese Gooseberries.
In 1961, Chinese Gooseberries made their debut at restaurants in the United States. Kiwifruit was later “discovered” by an American produce distributor who felt the U.S. market would be very receptive to this unique, exotic fruit.
Kiwifruit offers more than a tropical flair to your fruit salad. These mini delights are packed full of nutrients that help you live a healthier life. A few of the many health benefits these unique furry little wonders include:
DNA Protection – Researchers have long been fascinated by kiwifruit’s ability to protect DNA in the nucleus of human cells from oxygen-related damage. Even though researchers have yet to figure out which compounds in kiwifruit give it this protective quality, they are sure that this healing property is not limited to the nutrients most commonly associated with the fruit.
Excellent Antioxidant Protection – Kiwifruit is an excellent source of vitamin C. Vitamin C is the primary antioxidant in the body which neutralizes free radicals that can damage the cells and lead to problems like inflammation and cancer.
Taking adequate amounts of vitamin C has been proven to be helpful in reducing the severity of serious health conditions including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and asthma.
It has also been shown to prevent conditions such as colon cancer, atherosclerosis, and diabetic heart disease.
Control Blood Sugar, Improve Cardiovascular Health and Colon Health – Kiwifruit is a very good source of dietary fiber, which has been shown useful for some health conditions. Researchers have shown diets containing plenty of fiber can reduce high cholesterol levels, which may reduce the risk of heart disease and heart attack.
Fiber is also good for the removal of toxins in the colon. This is helpful in preventing colon cancer. It also keeps blood sugar levels under control for people with diabetes.
Protection Against Asthma – The vitamin C in kiwifruit has proven protective against respiratory problems associated with asthma such as wheezing. Children seem to benefit the most from the reduction in respiratory wheezing.
Protection Against Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) – Data, published in the Archives of Ophthalmology has shown that eating kiwifruit may lower your risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
Macular degeneration is a medical condition of the eyes that result in blurred or no vision in the center of the visual field. Early in the progression of the condition, there are usually no symptoms. However, over time, some people experience a gradual worsening of vision that may affect one or both eyes.
The data showed that eating 3 or more servings of fruit a day can lower the chances of AMD by 36%. AMD is the primary cause of vision loss in older adults.
Interesting facts about kiwifruit
Jam-packed with several vitamins and nutrients, eating kiwifruit is an excellent way to ensure you receive your daily requirement of nutrition. However, it is not just a unique way to receive all of these nutrients and guard against several serious health conditions; it is also a pretty interesting fruit.
Here are some interesting facts about kiwifruit to make sure you receive all of the benefits this little fruit can provide:
Aid protein absorption
Kiwifruit contains enzymes that help with protein absorption by breaking down nutrients so they can be delivered to tired muscles. This is why it is an excellent idea to include them in your after workout protein shake.
For beautiful skin
When your face needs a little rejuvenating pick-me-up, kiwifruit is a favorite ingredient in all natural face masks. Kiwi is rich in alpha hydroxide acids, vitamin C, E and K. They are ideal for exfoliating, nourishing and anti-aging.
Origin of its name
The kiwifruit originally got its name because of its uncanny resemblance to the small oblong fuzzy little bird named a kiwi.
Male kiwifruits can pollinate up to eight female fruits on a vine.
Healthy for moms and their babies
Since they contain up to 10% of the daily recommended value of folic acid, kiwifruit is suggested to pregnant women for healthier babies.
Eating two kiwifruits an hour before bedtime will help you fall asleep quicker, sleep more soundly and feel better in the morning when you wake up.
Concerns about kiwifruit
Kiwifruit may slow blood clotting and increase bleeding. This is why you should not eat the fruit up to two weeks before a surgical procedure. You should also not eat it if you have a bleeding disorder.
Kiwifruit may also cause an allergic reaction in people who are allergic to some fruits, plants or spices such as avocados, birch pollen, fig, hazelnut, latex, poppy seeds, rye, sesame seeds or wheat.
Kiwifruit is a sweet, delicious addition to any salad or to just eat by itself. However, there are several different uses for this little brown fuzzy fruit. Some of these uses include:
Yes, it is true kiwifruit can give you that “lift” you may occasionally need men. Containing the amino acid arginine which is a well-known vasodilator and has been used to treat impotence in men. Kiwifruit is also a good source of zinc which helps to enhance testosterone in men.
The low glycemic index and high fiber content of kiwifruit prevent a strong insulin rush unlike other fruits with high sugar content. This helps prevent the storage of fat, making it beneficial for weight loss.
Anti-aging – The rich variety of antioxidants in kiwifruit can delay the effects of aging throughout the body.
Skin firmness – Kiwifruit has a high content of water-soluble vitamin C which is involved in collagen formation. Collagen is a connective protein that imparts firmness to your skin.
Vitamin C not only gives your skin firmness, but it also repairs it. Kiwifruit has more vitamin C than oranges do. Vitamin C also helps to heal cuts and abrasions quicker and prevents rough, dry skin.
Prevents hair loss – Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, and since kiwifruit is a rich source of vitamin C it plays an important role in the creation of collagen which circumvents the hair from splitting and breaking.
Stimulates hair growth – The abundance of Vitamin C found in kiwifruit can stimulate hair growth by maintaining the integrity of the microcirculation that supplies blood to your hair follicles.
Overall hair health – Kiwifruit is rich in several vitamins and nutrients that help maintain healthy hair. The topical application of kiwifruit can treat hair problems like dandruff, along with rough and dry hair.
Kiwifruit is usually called a “wonder fruit” for a very good reason. There are several health and beauty benefits that this delectable fuzzy little fruit provides, making it a great addition to your health and beauty regime.
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