7 Mind-Blowing Reasons To Eat More Guava
By Angelique Johnson
One of the most underappreciated of fruits, guava, is an amazing food that is believed to have originated from an area extending from southern Mexico into Central America. The tree is common throughout all warm areas of tropical America and in the West Indies, the Bahamas, Bermuda and southern Florida.
If you’ve never had guava before, the fruit has a strong odor and a sweet, potent taste when ripe. It has been used in a dessert called cascos de guayaba (stewed guava shells) throughout Latin America and the Spanish-speaking islands of the West Indies. Guava halves get their central seed pulp removed, strained and added to the shells while they’re cooking to enrich the syrup.
This tiny sweet delight is not only scrumptious, but is also stuffed with medicinal properties! There’s nothing better than eating something good for you that is actually tasty and delectable, too!
The following is a list of reasons you’re crazy if you don’t start including guava into your life (for real though).
1. Weight Loss
Guava is rich in protein and fiber, which has been shown to encourage weight loss by promoting feelings of fullness.
In an analysis published in the Malaysian Journal of Nutrition, pink guava puree taken orally for six weeks was also found to significantly decrease body weight as compared to a control.
Guava is also low on the glycemic index, a relative ranking of carbohydrate in foods, according to how they affect blood glucose levels. Low glycemic index foods take longer to digest and absorb, which produces a gradual rise in blood sugar and insulin levels. This is beneficial for weight control, because it helps to control appetite.
2. Improves Heart Health
The same study published in the Malaysian Journal of Nutrition that discovered the weight loss benefits of guava also found it to have heart health benefits.
Guava significantly reduced blood pressure and effectively lowered both LDL-cholesterol (the bad cholesterol) and triglycerides. It even helped to raise HDL-cholesterol (the good cholesterol), which scavenges and removes the bad cholesterol.
Another investigation published in the Journal of Human Hypertension also found that the high fiber and potassium content of guava helped to lower total cholesterol by 7.9%, triglycerides by 7% and effectively reduced blood pressure in patients diagnosed with hypertension.
3. Helps With Fatty Liver Disease
Fatty liver disease occurs when your body has trouble breaking down fats. As a result, fat begins to build up on your liver tissue. Many conditions can put you at risk for fatty liver disease, including diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, sleep apnea and an underactive thyroid. Having fatty liver disease puts you at a greater risk for developing heart problems such as heart attack and stroke.
In a study published in the journal Nutrition and Metabolism, 2 grams per day of guava leaf extract was found to prevent the accumulation of fat on the liver and lower liver insulin resistance by improving the use of adiponectin in the liver, a protein that helps to stimulate glucose use and fat burn.
4. Protects Against Cancer
This tiny fruit packs an anti-cancer punch! The results of an experiment published in the Journal of Medicinal Food found guava to interfere with many signaling processes that are linked with cancer growth, showing that guava is a great source of therapeutic compounds that can be used for both the prevention and treatment of cancer.
Guava extract has also been shown to be beneficial in the prevention of prostate cancer, gastric cancer and colon cancer as it helps to encourage a certain type of programmed cell death called apoptosis in cancer cells.
5. Prevents And Helps To Reduce The Effects Of Diabetes
Got diabetes? Maybe you don’t but you want to help with prevention. Try guava tea! Research shows that guava tea prevents increases in blood glucose levels by slowing the digestion of sugars in the gastrointestinal tract. Consequently, daily intake of guava tea was shown to be useful to prevent the development of diabetes.
An American Journal of Chinese Medicine study also showed that not only does the juice of guava help to prevent diabetes, but its hypoglycemic effect may also help to reverse the severity of diabetes.
6. Helps To Boost The Thyroid
Guavas are a good source for copper, which is an important part of regulating thyroid metabolism by the way it helps to control hormone production and absorption. The thyroid gland is one of the most important glands in the body for regulating hormones and organ system function, so guava can help balance your health in many ways.
7. It Prevents Constipation
Life is too short to not have a satisfying poop every single day! Guava is one of the fruits with the richest sources of dietary fiber. Its seeds, if ingested whole or chewed, serve as excellent laxatives.
Both fiber and the laxative properties of the seeds help to form healthy bowel movements, which helps the body to retain less water and thoroughly clean your digestive system. Proper excrement of bulk and toxins is essential for good health and frequent consumption of guava can ensure both.
How do you use guava in your diet? Smoothies? Snacks? Juices? Let us know in the comments below and have fun with this awesome fruit!
Angelique Johnson is a nutritionist from Miami, FL. Through her own journey in weight loss, she discovered her love for health and nutrition and realized she wanted to help others achieve a healthier lifestyle. Angelique has been featured as a nutrition consult on CBS4 Miami News and is a published author on many online health sites. She is passionate about debunking diet rumors and showing her clients how to have a healthy, balanced relationship with food.
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