Guavas are tropical fruits believed to have originated in Central America where it was initially called ‘sand plum’. It is oval in shape with light green or yellow skin and contain edible seeds. Asides from its unique flavor and fragrance, guava is recognized as one of the super fruits, owing to the numerous health benefits it offer. It is a powerhouse Fiber. This mostly ignored fruit is extraordinarily rich in vitamin C, replete with lycopene and antioxidants that are beneficial for even your skin. They also are rich in manganese which helps the body to absorb other key nutrients from the food that we eat. Some of guavas’ benefits are credited to the presence of folate, a mineral which promotes fertility. It also has potassium which helps normalize blood pressure levels. Since guava is 80% water, it helps hydrate your skin. Guava leaves are also not left out of the wonderful benefits of guava as they can be used for herbal tea and the leaf extract as a supplement.
Fun facts about guava
- Guava is tropical fruit that belongs to the myrtle family.
- Exact origin of guava is unknown.
- Researchers believe that it originates from Central America and Mexico.
- There are around 150 species of guava that can be found in tropical and sub-tropical areas around the world.
- Strawberry guava and apple guava are invasive species of guava. They easily conquer new habitats and eliminate native species of plants
Here are some amazing benefits of guava
- Boosts your immune system
When the immune system in the body is weak, it is far easier for chronic diseases and infections to take root in the body.
Guavas are one of the richest sources of vitamin C, and low levels of vitamin C are linked to an increased risk in infections. Guava fruit contains 4 times the vitamin C content present in oranges. Vitamin C helps improve immunity and protects you against common infections and pathogens.
Research has shown us that vitamin C also protects your body’s cells from damage, thereby averting serious diseases like arthritis, cancer, and heart disease. Just ensure you have the fruit ripe – as that is when it contains the most vitamin C
- Protects you from cancer
The antioxidants lycopene and vitamin C fight free radicals, which can cause cancer. These antioxidants can be very useful in inhibiting the growth of cancerous cells and also prevents tumor growth. Lycophene in guava are especially powerful in aiding the treatment of breast, oral and prostate cancer.
Apart from antioxidants, guavas also contain fiber that prevents hemorrhoids and colon cancer.
Guava leaves on the other hand contain oil that acts as an anti-proliferative and it is tested to target cancerous growths and to stave off the growth and the spread of cancerous cells.
- Manages Diabetes
Guava is one of the most beneficial fruits that help keep the blood sugar levels in check. Due to the high amount of dietary fiber and low glycaemic index it embodies, guavas positively affect the glucose blood sugar levels, hence preventing the development of diabetes. While the low glycemic index inhibits a sudden spike in sugar levels, the fibre content ensures the sugar levels are well regulated.
- Boosts heart health
The high amount of dietary fiber embodied in guava helps lower the levels of triglycerides and bad cholesterol which contributes to heart diseases. Guava helps improve the sodium and potassium balance of the body, thereby regulating blood pressure in patients with hypertension. This magical fruit improves levels of the good cholesterol.
The polysaccharides (a type of carin guava leaves act as antioxidants and fight oxidative stress (3). Oxidative stress, as we know, can create chaos in your body’s system, and the heart is very vulnerable to it
- Boosts your digestive health
The digestive system facilitates the whole body is functioning properly. The adequate absorption of nutrients and the regular excretion of toxins and waste are necessary for the body to stay healthy. Being that guavas are an excellent source of dietary fiber, they preserve digestive health. Therefore, eating more guavas may aid healthy bowel movements and prevent constipation.
Guava’s antimicrobial properties can also fight the harmful gut microbes and prevent digestive infections, diarrhea being the most common of those. This is especially true with the extracts from the fruits and leaves.
- Improves eyesight
Guavas are extremely rich in vitamins and especially in Vitamin A which is well known as a booster for healthy eyes. The vitamin A properties of guava helps prevent macular degeneration and protect the retina from being damaged by the effects of free radicals. Vitamin A keeps the oxidative stress at bay and also prevents eye diseases such as cataracts and vision loss. Even though guavas are not as rich in Vitamin A as carrots, they are still a very good source of the nutrient.
- Manages blood pressure
The dietary fiber contained in guava is very beneficial to keep the arteries and blood vessels clean. Fiber helps promote a moderate blood flow which is necessary for preventing excessive blood flow to the heart. Guavas are hypoglycemic and can be very helpful in regulating adequate blood flow throughout the body.
- Treats constipation
Guava seeds, if ingested whole or chewed, serve as excellent laxatives too, helping the formation of healthy bowel movements.
- Aids weight loss
Guavas are a weight-loss-friendly food. Its weight loss properties are attributed to its fiber content. It is also comparatively low in calories. It is also well packed with vitamins and minerals just in case you feel like you are losing out on any important nutrients. You should definitely incorporate it into your weight loss diet.
- Helps relieve menstrual symptoms
Many women are often disconcerted by painful dysmenorrhea symptoms such as stomach cramps.
However, there is some evidence that guava leaf extract may reduce the pain intensity of menstrual cramps.
In a study, 197 women who experienced painful menstrual symptoms found that taking 6 mg of guava leaf extract daily resulted in reduced pain intensity. It appeared to be even more powerful than some painkillers.
Therefore, taking guava leaf extract daily may help decrease symptoms of painful menstruation, including cramps.
- Improves your skin health
The antioxidants in guava can protect your skin from damage and delay signs of aging The abundance of vitamins A and C contribute here – especially vitamin C, which enhances skin firmness. Guava extract’s antimicrobial properties also help treat acne as they are effective in eliminating the bacteria that cause acne.
Guava might be one of the simplest fruits, but it is definitely an amply nutritious one.