Papaya is a fruit loved both by the ancient yogis of India and also by Christopher Columbus, the explorer, who was searching for India. He named the fruit “the fruit of the angels.” Papaya is well-known for its funky taste and delicious watery texture. (Read: Uses of baking soda for acne)
In addition to being tasty, it is also dense with nutrients and benefits. Let’s look at some of the benefits of papaya.
1. It aids your digestion with great effect. It also can cure constipation in a jiffy with its natural laxative properties.
This is the reason many people eat papaya first thing in the morning. Papaya contains latex, which aids in bowel movements. Papaya is also rich in fibre, which produces good roughage and hence good passing of stools.
Because of this quality, papaya maintains the digestive system properly, keeping it clean – which is very important for everyone’s health.
And if you suffer from constipation problems, eat the ripe fruit to relieve the problem. It is one of the best natural laxatives in the world!
2. It has great anti-oxidant properties that helps fight degenerative diseases of the body. (Read: How to grow tall)
Papaya is very rich in carotenoids that neutralise the effect of free radicals and oxidation damage in the body.
This is why papaya has proven to be a good fruit to help recover from liver damage and illness. A recent study also found out that papaya also fights oxidation damage done to the brain in the form of Alzheimer’s disease. By reducing free radicals, Papaya keeps the body young for a longer time.
3. Papaya is very rich in lycopene and Vitamin-C, and hence an excellent fruit to keep your heart healthy.
In addition to preventing heart diseases, papaya also promotes good cholesterol and eliminates bad cholesterol from the body. In a scientific study, people who ate papaya regularly had a good ratio of good cholesterol to bad cholesterol in their body.(Read: Warnings and causes of Heart attack)
That means papaya can essentially prevent heart attacks if supplemented with exercise and a good diet!
4. Papaya is very effective in treating motion-sickness and morning sickness.
People who get sick and vomit because they are on a bus or a train can avail this benefit of papaya. Papaya works to normalise the contractions of the stomach – which in turn relieves the affected from sickness.
Pregnant women, however should eat papaya with caution, as the fruit has a high content of laxatives – which can induce contractions. (Read: Stomach bloating remedies)
Pregnant women should always be given fully ripe papaya, and in small quantities.
5. Papaya is an excellent aphrodisiac and helps cure erectile dysfunction.
Papaya is an excellent fruit to increase sexual performance in men. The fruit contains arginine, which helps conditioning of the muscles in the penis. The fruit extract is what is used in the modern pills like Viagra.
6. Papaya is excellent in fighting skin acne and dandruff.
Papaya can be crushed and applied as a face pack to instantly unclog the pores which in turn will release excessive stored oils. This will prevent acne on the face.
Papaya can also be applied on the scalp to get rid of dandruff. You can use papaya pulp with yoghurt, coconut oil and banana to fight any dandruff related problems! (Read: Dandruff remedies)
7. Papaya is an excellent fruit for diabetics.
Papaya has very low sugar content, even though it is sweet to taste, making the fruit an ideal treat for diabetics. And because it is so might in antioxidants, the fruit can also be eaten by normal people to prevent type-2 diabetes.
8. Papaya is very efficient in treatment of menstrual pain (Read: Remedies for menstrual pain)
Menstruation has a lot of side-effects, abdominal pain being one of the troublesome one. Women experience varying degrees of pain, some even suffer through excruciating pain leading them to taking days off from work and school.
Papaya contains an enzyme called papain, which helps regulate the menstrual flow, making the 5 days go by easy.
9. Papaya is excellent in reducing stress and also keeps your eyes healthy!
Because Papaya is rich in vitamin C, it helps to regulate stress hormones in your body. Studies suggest that we consume a minimum of 200mg of Vitamin C to reduce stress every day. Papaya gives us double that amount in one serving!
10. Papaya also has special compounds like lutein and zeaxanthin, which help keep the macular shape of your eyes normal. That means your natural eye lens stays in its normal shape and you won’t need glasses to wear!
11. There is enough evidence to suggest that papaya is also a good cancer fighter.
As we mentioned papaya contains carotenoids and carotene and vitamin C, which are by themselves excellent compounds for cancer prevention.
But what makes Papaya special is that it contains special enzymes called Proteolytic enzymes that help break down the protective layer of cancer cells so that our immune system can kick in and destroy them!
All in all, papaya is a highly underrated tropical fruit. What it lacks in popularity, it makes it up for in valuable nutrients!