The Forgotten and Underrated Fruit is Back in Season
Kiwi is a fruit holding great surprises. Inside of this small, oval-shaped fruit featuring brown fuzzy skin resides a brilliant, semi-translucent emerald green flesh speckled with a few concentrically arranged white veins and small black seeds.
These emerald delights contain numerous phytonutrients as well as well-known vitamins and minerals that promote your health.
Below are 14 benefits of eating Kiwi:
1. Helps Your Digestion with Enzymes
Raw Kiwi contains actinidain, a protein-dissolving enzyme that can help digest a meal much like the papain in papaya or bromelain in pineapple.
2. Helps Manage Blood Pressure
Kiwi’s high level of potassium helps keep our electrolytes in balance by counteracting the effects of sodium.
3. Protects from DNA Damage
A study by Collins, Horska and Hotten showed that the unique combination of antioxidants in Kiwi helps protect the cell DNA from oxidative damage. Some experts suggest this can help prevent cancer.
4. Boosts Immunity
Kiwi’s high vitamin C content along with other antioxidant compounds has been proven to boost the immune system.
5. Supports Weight Loss
Kiwi’s low glycemic index and high fiber content means it will not create a strong insulin rush like other fruit with high sugar contents so the body will not respond by storing fat.
6. Improves Digestive Health
Kiwis are a great source of fiber. This prevents constipation and other intestinal problems.
7. Helps Clean Out Toxins
The fuzzy fiber of Kiwi helps bind and move toxins from your intestinal tract.
Eating 2 to 3 Kiwis a day has been shown to reduce the potential of blood clotting by 18 percent and reduce triglycerides by 15 percent. Many individuals take aspirin to reduce blood clotting, but this causes many side effects including inflammation and intestinal bleeding. Kiwi fruit has the same anti-clotting benefits with no side effects.
9. Suitable For Diabetics
Kiwi is in the ‘low’ category for glycemic index, meaning it does not raise your blood sugar quickly. It has a glycemic load of 4, which means it is safe for diabetics.
10. Protects Against Macular Degeneration and Other Eye Problems
Macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss in older adults. A study on over 110,000 men and women showed that eating 3 or more servings of fruit per day decreased macular degeneration by 36 percent. Kiwi has high levels of lutein and zeaxanthin, which are both natural chemicals found in the human eye. Although both fruits and vegetables were studied, this same effect was not shown for vegetables.
11. Creates Alkaline Balance
Kiwi is in the “most alkaline” category for fruits, meaning it has a rich supply of minerals to replace the excess of acidic foods most individuals consume. A few of the benefits of a properly acid/alkaline balanced body are: youthful skin, deeper sleep, abundant physical energy, fewer colds, less arthritis and reduced osteoporosis.
12. Protects the Skin
Kiwis are a good source of vitamin E, an antioxidant known to protect skin from degeneration.
13. Tastes Delicious
Kiwis look and taste great. Kids often love them because they are so different from most fruits. For nutritional balance it is always good to eat a variety of foods. Each food has its own unique qualities and powers. The trouble with most people’s diet is that we eat such a limited number of foods, which limits the amount of nutrients we get.
14. Has Fewer Pesticides
Kiwi fruit is on the list of foods that are generally safe from a lot of pesticide residues. For 2016 it came in with the top 10 safest foods. While it is always good to support organic when you can as a matter of principle, it’s also good to know whether there is a big danger if organic is not available or viable for you.
Kiwi was named after the New Zealand Kiwi bird—an unusual flightless bird—because they are both small, brown and furry.
Not all Kiwi is fuzzy! The most popular species of Kiwi is appropriately called fuzzy Kiwi, but there is also golden Kiwi with a smooth bronze skin. The golden Kiwi is actually sweeter and more aromatic in flavor.
Although Kiwi's have been native to China for centuries, practically no one in North America knew what they were 60 years ago. They were first introduced to the U.S. in 1962.
A Few Quick Serving Ideas:
Kiwi's are so delicious, they can be eaten as is. One of our favorite ways to do so is to peel with a paring knife and slice.
Add Kiwi to tossed green salads.
Top a tar or pie with Kiwi slices
Kiwi popsicles - perfect for staying refreshed
Serve sliced kiwifruit and strawberries, fruits whose flavors are naturally complementary, topped with yogurt.
Mix sliced Kiwi, orange and pineapple together to make chutney that can be served as an accompaniment to chicken or fish.
Blend kiwifruit and cantaloupe in a food processor to make a chilled soup. For a creamier consistency, blend yogurt in with the fruit mixture.