The amazing nutritional properties of kiwifruit

The kiwifruit is proving once more that big things come in small packages. The juicy, green-colored fruit is usually only five to eight centimeters long and five to six centimeters wide. But it is big in flavor and nutrition.

It is proving to be a superstar when it comes to nutrition. A single kiwifruit supplies more than the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) of vitamin C for adults. The body needs vitamin C to fight cancer, heart disease, and inflammation. Vitamin C provides a strong defense against infection and helps form collagen, a major element of connective tissue, skin, and bones.

Kiwifruit is also packed with the antioxidant vitamin E. This means it stops bad cholesterol from damaging the body and protects cell membranes from harm. Vitamin E also helps maintain the structure and smooth functioning of skeletal and cardiac muscles. A strong skeletal system shields the body from injury and keeps muscles strong.

It also has almost 35 percent of the RDA for vitamin K. Vitamin K regulates blood clotting, helps transport calcium throughout the body, boosts bone health, and reduces the risk of osteoporosis and bone fractures due to advanced age.

The wonder food is also a rich source of fiber, which is why kiwi has a laxative effect. It can block carcinogens from the blood stream once they been metabolized in the liver.

Actinidin, an enzyme that improves digestion, is found in the kiwifruit. So, too, are organic acids, which have marked antioxidant effects.

Not to be overlooked are the carotenoids like beta-carotene and lutein, which lowers the risk of cataracts and maintains good eyesight. This makes the kiwi fruit even more valuable for those with a history of glaucoma, cataract, and other eye problems.

Chinese healers have known the benefits of kiwi for centuries. In fact, traditional Chinese medicine uses the roots and fruits of this natural superfood to cure stomach, rectal, and breast cancers, along with hepatitis viral infections. The juice of the kiwifruit quenches thirst, helps in digestion, and reduces irritability, inflammation, and vomiting.

Today, modern science recognizes the wonders of the kiwi fruit following clinical trials that proved its effectiveness in keeping the body healthy. These clinically-tested benefits revolve around the following:

  • Promotes proper bowel movements — Daily intake of the fruit improves stool bulk in healthy older adults. Research also showed that the kiwi relieves symptoms of chronic constipation without having harmful effects.
  • Protects against bacteria — A study showed that kiwi fruit prevents the growth of E.coli and Staphylococcus aureus, plus three common fungal species.
  • Increases immunity — Another study revealed that kiwifruit extract improves the immunity of mice against cholera and diphtheria. This could have implications in boosting the immunity of children and other people at high risk for diphtheria and cholera.
  • Prevents allergic reactions — Other animal studies showed that extracts of kiwifruit had anti-allergenic effects, making it a strong candidate for preventing allergic reactions like bronchial asthma or eczema.
  • Hastens recovery from the common cold — A human trial revealed that preschool children and older adults who consumed kiwifruit recovered form cold or flu faster than those who consumed bananas.
  • Lowers bad cholesterol levels A human study showed that taking two to three kiwifruits a day lowered triglyceride levels by 15 percent. Another clinical trial involving male smokers revealed that those who took three kiwis a day for eight weeks had significantly reduced blood pressure levels.
  • Raises antioxidant levels —  A study showed that kiwifruit juice raised plasma antioxidant capacity after 30 minutes, with effect lasting up to 90 minutes. Similar findings were seen in two human studies in the United Kingdom. One of these studies also showed that kiwifruit seemed to promote DNA repair.
  • Prevents anemia — A study of young women with mild anemia showed that those who took two kiwifruits with iron-fortified cereal daily had significantly improved their iron levels compared to those who ate cereal with banana. Kiwi’s vitamin C, carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin content are deemed likely responsible for this.
  • Prevents cancer Mice studies have shown that kiwifruit juice prevents cancer cells from growing in the body.  Another mouse study revealed that kiwi juice strengthened the bone marrow, implying that it could reduce the harmful effects of chemotherapy.

Tired of eating raw kiwifruit ? No worries. You can include it in smoothies, parfaits, jams or others. You not just get all the vitamin goodness of this super food. You also get to enjoy it in so many other ways.

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