Dragon fruit or pitaya is a fruit whose roots can be traced to south America. Though these days it is also grown in Asian countries like china, Vietnam and Thailand. Dragon fruit’s name comes from the scaly nature of the outer peels, just like the mythical dragon from the medieval ages. Although it is hard to find, but the benefits it offers are so many that it is worth looking for improving our health.
Dragon fruit has a reddish/yellowish skin and the flesh is usually either red or white. It contains lot many black colored seeds, but these are edible in nature. To eat we can cut it across the length and take out the inner edible portion like a scoop. Only the inner white/red portion with the seeds should be eaten and the outer layers must be carefully separated.
The fruit is immensely rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, all in abundance.
Nutritional Benefits Of Dragon Fruit:
Nutrition in 100 g of dragon fruit is discussed below
- 52 kcal energy
- 1 g protein
- 4 g fat
- 11 g carbohydrate
- 3 g fiber
- 34% of required daily values of Vitamin C
- 6 % of required daily values of Iron
- 7 % of required daily values of Thiamine
- 9% of required daily values of Riboflavin
Let us now discuss the amazing benefits we can derive from this exotic fruit.
Exemplary Benefits of Dragon Fruit:
1. Weight Loss:
Dragon fruit has an abundance of dietary fiber which will help us feel full for a long time and avoid the physical craving for food. It is also known to increase our metabolic rate and hence aid in our weight loss goals.
2. Boosts Our Immunity:
Dragon fruit contains an abundance of Vitamin C which is like an armor for our body’s immunity. It also contains antioxidants which will boost our immune system by expelling the free-radicals that are produced by our cells when they metabolize. This metabolism can cause life threatening diseases such as cardiac problems and cancers.
3. Lowers Cholesterol:
The antioxidant ‘Betalain’, present in Dragon Fruit guards the bad cholesterol (LDL) from getting oxidized.
4. Better Brain Health:
Dragon fruit contains Flavonoids, which improves brain health and lessens the threat of contracting cardiac problems.
5. To Treat Diabetes:
The fruit contains an astonishing amount of fiber which helps in stabilizing the glycogen levels and prevents the occurrence of sugar spikes caused by the consumption of high glycemic index foods. It reduces the oxidative stress from the stiffness in the aorta in case of diabetics, studies have found.
6. Acne Treatment:
Dragon fruit being rich in Vitamin C is extremely helpful in case of acne too. The fruit when eaten would also lessen the occurrence of acne, but if some have occurred we can take its pulp and turn it into a paste and apply it over the affected area and wash it off in 20-25 minutes. This will help in healing the acne faster.
7. Treatment For Color Haired:
If you use a conditioner that contains dragon fruit or the fruit juice itself on such hair, it will open-up the follicles and let the hair breathe and stay healthier.
8. Sunburn Relief:
Turn the dragon fruit pulp into a paste after scooping it out. Then pour into this paste the inner-liquid in the Vitamin E capsule and mix them thoroughly. Application of this paste to the affected area and leaving it for 30-45 minutes before washing it off with cold water will give a lot of relief.
9. Improves Digestion:
This fruit contains a good amount of dietary fiber which regulates the bowel movement and prevents problems such as ‘Irritable Bowel Syndrome’ (IBS) or ‘Constipation’.
10. Anti-fungal and Anti-bacterial Qualities:
Eating dragon fruits regularly enhances the WBC count and prevents the breeding of any bacterial/fungal infections in our body. It also helps in speedy recovery from any sort of wounds/bruises too.
11. Fighting Asthma and Coughs:
The Vitamin C in this fruit also helps in relieving asthma and coughs to a certain extent, though it cannot replace proper prescribed treatments as a cure.
The anti-inflammatory properties of dragon fruit help in removing the inflammation which is typical of arthritis.
13. Fatty Liver:
It has been proven in research that consuming dragon fruit also reduces the chances of fatty liver.
14. Memory Booster:
Dragon fruit is also known to increase the memory retention power.
15. For Bone and Teeth Health:
Being rich in calcium and phosphorous, dragon fruit also helps in increasing bone and teeth strength and the bone mass in teeth, hence, giving us better teeth strength.
16. Improved Vision:
The fruit contains vitamin A in Carotene form which helps in ensuring perfect vision and preventing or treating any eye problems.
17. Anemia Cure:
Being a good source of Iron, dragon fruit improves the hemoglobin and treats anemia.
18. Rich Magnesium Content:
Magnesium is an important mineral which balances the calcium, sodium and potassium levels. It also improves nervous health. Dragon fruit is highly beneficial this way.
Apart from detoxifying the body from inside, along with the high Vitamin C content, Dragon fruit helps us stay young by reversing the aging process.
20. Eliminates Triglycerides:
These seeds are replete with omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids with eliminate the triglycerides and ensure a better cardiac health. We have seen a lot of benefits offered by this exotic fruits, let us see a few things to keep in mind while buying, storing and eating the dragon fruit.
- When buying a dragon fruit, make sure that they do not have brownish spots on the outside.
- Check whether the fruit has ripened by checking if its interior is full with pulp.
- Keep it under refrigeration and it can safely be stored for at least two weeks if you have bought fresh dragon fruits indeed.
- Do not store it without proper refrigeration otherwise it will rot very soon.
- If you begin to have any kind of an allergic reaction, the it is in your best interest to avoid this fruit.
- If you already suffer from any food allergies, it may be best to consult your doctor or nutritionist before eating it.
If you want to try out a new crazy looking fruit with a wide range of health benefits as we told you above the rush to a fruit seller who could get you these now.