Pineapple is an amazing fruit. --- side note: I find it funny that pretty much every other country calls it Ananas and Americans call it a Pineapple-- I like Ananas better! --- It is a multiple fruit, which means that it forms as the multiple fruits (drupelets) of the individual flowers grow and merge together. Pineapple can be grown at home; they do well in warm climates. Pineapple, while often associated with Hawaii, did not make it to the area until the early 1800s. It is native to Paraguay and southern Brazil. See below for ways to incorporate it into your diet and a favorite recipe of mine!
Pineapple is an excellent source of Vitamin C and manganese. In addition to the powerful antioxidant, Vitamin C, there are flavonoids present, such as quercetin. Fresh pineapple is the only known source of an enzyme, bromelain, which has been used in alleviating joint pain and arthritis, reducing inflammation, and inhibiting tumor growth.
Flavonoids are polyphenol compounds abundant in fruits, vegetables, nuts, tea, and coffee, and studies have shown they function as antioxidants, possessing biological activities beneficial to health. With a higher intake of flavonoids it has been shown that there is a lower risk of atherosclerosis, which can lead to heart attack and stroke. Quercetin is a flavonol compound and can help protect against ulcers and stomach cancers.
Nutritional Benefits | just some of the amazing qualities… per 165g or 1 cup
- Vitamin C // 131% DV
- Manganese // 76% DV
- Vitamin B6 // 9% DV
- Copper // 9% DV
- Thiamin // 9% DV
- Dietary Fiber // 9% DV
- No Saturated Fats
- No Cholesterol
What it can help me with |
- Reduce Inflammation, bromelain enzyme --- great for sore throat relief
- Improve digestion, high fiber and water content promote regularity and a healthy digestive tract
- Healthy Skin, antioxidants help fight skin damage caused by sun and pollution; improve skin texture a.k.a reduce wrinkles; improve formation of collagen
- Protection against ulcers and stomach cancers, quercetin content
- Lower risk of heart attack and stroke, flavonoid content
- Help combat the formation of free radicals known to cause cancer, due to high vitamin C content
How I can use it | Cubed, raw **
- Consume it plain and fresh, add it to a smoothie, on top of cereal or granola, add to homemade salsa, bake into a spice cake, or freeze and save some for a later time
- Sweet & Savory Pineapple Recipe recipe below
- Make sure to get canned in 100% juice and use the liquid; this way you won’t miss out on important minerals and vitamins that can still be present
When not to eat:
- Pineapple can increase symptoms, such as heartburn, for those with gastro-esophageal reflux disease
- If your kidney has an inability or is slow at removing excess potassium from blood, do not consume pineapple
** how I like to use it!
recipe. recipe. recipe. recipe. recipe. recipe. recipe. recipe. recipe. recipe.
Sweet & Savory Pineapple
This recipe is easy to make, so there are no excuses for not eating amazing, nutrient packed, delicious foods. I wrote about sea salt and honey here, and I just wanted to touch on the power of cinnamon and ginger, just a couple players in the spice blend below.
Cinnamon is high in fiber and manganese, a good source of calcium, and contains antioxidant anthocyanidins and chalcone polymers. Anthocyanidins mean they may protect against cardiovascular disease, cancer, and other conditions in which oxidative damage is important. Chalcone polymers increase your cells’ ability to metabolize sugar by up to 20 times. Wow.
Ginger an amazing system soother and contains antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds including shogaols, gingerols, and 6-dehydrogingerdione (DGE). Shogaols inhibit growth of human lung cancer cells and cancer cells which also being an incredible anti-inflammatory. Gingerol can inhibit the growth of tumors and is an excellent anti-inflammatory agent. DGE suppress’ cancer cell growth.
There are so many good things about these two spices, I didn’t have enough space, so stay tuned for a more detailed post in the coming weeks.
To the recipe!!!
INGREDIENTS || try to buy organic as often as possible but don’t miss out on greatness if you don’t have all organic
- 1 pineapple
- 3-5 pinches of spice blend (see below)
- 2-3 pinches of sea salt, more to taste
- *Honey to taste
*note: some vegans do not consume honey—that being said, honey hosts so many amazing and incredible benefits, makes me feel great without sugar crashes, and together are good enough reasons for me … feel free to substitute maple syrup or agave if you are a strict vegan
Spice Blend || have fun with the ratios… I liked mine a litter spicier, so I added more red pepper and black pepper – for a sweeter spice blend, use more cinnamon
- 2-3 tbsp dried red pepper
- 2-3 tsp. black pepper
- ½ tbsp. ginger
- ½ tbsp. nutmeg
- ½ tbsp. cinnamon
To make spice blend || add all of your desired spices to a blender or spice grinder, I used my magic bullet, and blend until combined – if using spices already in powdered form, just stir together store || in a small container for further use (good to add to stews, corn, salad dressings, etc.)
- Cut pineapple any way you desire -- I cut the sides, top and bottom off of mine and then sliced the little pentagons into fifths.
- Put pineapple into a mixing bowl or serving dish.
- Add desired pinches of sea salt and spice blend over top of the pineapple
- Drizzle with honey
- Stir with a wooden spoon – if no wooden spoon, use what you have
- Eat out of the bowl or plate and serve!
A little salty, a little sweet, a little spicy. No taste bud left behind. Enjoy!
[ recipe inspiration from Free People Blog // photos by yours truly]