Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Papaya Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits

Papaya, a delicious sweet fruit was named as “fruit of angels” by Christopher Columbus. Papaya is not only a sweet, mouth watering fruit, but also has multiple applications in medicine too. Papaya is a tropical fruit and so is grown and cultivated in all tropical countries. South American papaya is named as Mountain Papaya. People in Belize and North America calls it papaya, is widely known also as pawpaw and papaw in Africa and United Nations. Papaya is famous in makes of beauty products like skin lightening creams. 

Papaya Tree Information

Papaya is grown in the carica papaya plants from the plant family called Caricaceae. This is the first transgenic tree for papaya fruit. Papaya is grown into the plants and big trees. These plants are grown with single straight stem and found as tall as 5 to 10 meters. The leaves of this plant are spirally arranged and are greenery and limited to the upper side of the trunk. These leaves are very long and wide with 50 to 70 centimeters in diameters. These trees are not found with branches, however, could be possibly seen when they are lopped. The flowers of these trees are like wax and are very small in size.

These trees are grown very rapidly and start fruiting right after 3 years. Since it is highly sensitive to frost, they don’t grow in the colder environments. 

The stem and bark of papaya are widely useful for various purposes. They are majorly used in rope production. The latex that looks like thick white milk of papaya tree is enriched with papain and protease, which play a key role to tenderize the meat and of course the other proteins. This method has been in practice for thousands of years in indigenous Americans. However, this latex has to be avoided to direct contact with the skin as it may cause allergic reactions and irritation. Presently, it is also used as a component as a powdered meat tenderizers. 

History of Papaya

Papaya is originated from the tropics of the Americas. Cultivation is also initiated here, especially in Mexico in Central America many centuries before even Mesoamerican classical civilization had been emerged. This fruit had been well spread by the explorers of Spanish and Portugal to sub tropical countries too. 

Riped Papaya Image

Papaya Description

The size of the fruit varies from 15 to 19 centimeters and is very long with a diameter ranging from 10 to 30 centimeters. Raw papaya looks green and then transitions its colour to the hue of amber to orange after it is ripe. The flesh, internal to this fruit looks both in orange and yellow colours. The fruit is generally eaten without the skin and seed of papaya after it is ripe. 
This papaya is not only the fruit to consume it directly and also is used for cooking as well as in traditional medicine. The raw papaya can be cooked in salads, stew and curries. Moderately cooked papaya is used in Thai curries like Kaeng som. Indonesians prepare lalab salad with green papaya and its young tree leaves. 

The flower buds are also used to sauté and stir fry along with green tomatoes and chilies for preparation of the dish called Minahasan flower vegetable fry. As pectin is in high amount in papaya, it is more suitable for preparation of jellies. The leaves of these trees are also fried just like spinach and eaten as a side dish. 

The seeds of papaya are black in colour and are sharp and spicy to taste. They are also used as substitute of black pepper, after they are grounded.

Varieties of Papaya Available

Like many other fruits, papaya is also available in a wide number of varieties and out of them carica papaya is the most common one and is widely cultivated throughout the world. 

Basically, there are two kinds of papaya widely used in the world are Golden and Formosa. There are red fleshed papaya fruits with varieties called Sunrise, Caribbean Red and Maradol. 

Papaya Nutrition Facts

Papaya is enriched with rich nutrients and becomes a good source of it. This fruit is specialized for Vitamin C, folate, dietary fiber and provitamin A carotenoids. Not only the pulp of the fruit, but also seeds and skin are rich with nutrients like phytochemicals, like polyphenols and lycopene. Danielone and phytoalexin which are pathogenic fungus, present in papaya fruit are recently found to show their antifungal activity against Colletortrichum gloesporioide. 

For the rich nutritional values various parts of its fruit and tree are used directly in medicine too. Raw papaya is more effective in usage of the medicine.

Papaya Nutritional Value

All values are per 100gms
Water in Papaya
Protein in Papaya
Fat in Papaya
Minerals in Papaya
Crude Fiber in Papaya
Carbohydrates in Papaya
Energy in Papaya
Calcium in Papaya
Phosphorous in Papaya
Iron in Papaya

Papaya Health Benefits

Papaya is a probable medicine for malaria

The leaves of papaya, dried and used to make tea, which is used as a treatment of malaria. It is because there are antimalarial and also anti-plasmodial activities were found during the preparation of any kind of these plants. 

Papaya can probably a treatment for Dengue Fever

It is expected that the blood platelet levels are raised, with papaya and so it is also used to cure the dengue fever. 

Papaya for better digestion

For the digestive fibers present in papaya, they are also used for digestive problems in the form of tablets and widely available in the market.

Treatment to stings and burns with papaya

The papain present in fermented papaya flesh is made as an ointment and applied on the stings, burns and cuts on the skin. For ruptured disc also, papain injections can be used for good relief and cure.

Papaya suppress the effects of progesterone

It is preferred to be eaten by the woman, who suffers from the effects of progesterone, because phyto-chemicals of this fruit could suppress its effects.

Papaya prevents liver cancer

Lycopene of papaya, has anti-proliferate effects on the cells causing cancer, so papaya juice is advised to consume for preventing the cancer to a better extent.

Papaya in Indian Languages

Indian Language
Local Name
Papaya in Bengali
Pepe, Paka
Papaya in Guajarati
Papaya in Hindi
Papaya in Punjabi
Papaya in Kannada
Papaya in Malayalam
Papaya in Marathi
Papaya in Oriya
Amrut bhanda, Pachila
Papaya in Tamil
Papaya in Telugu
Boppayi pandu

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