4 Important Health Benefits of Kiwi


Copyright 2012 - Kris Heeter, Ph.D.

Even though kiwis are small and not the most common fruit, many people are surprised to learn that kiwis have incredible health benefits. Despite their small size, one little kiwi can have as much Vitamin C as a regular size orange.

Along with the obvious benefits of Vitamin C, kiwis contain a number of nutrients that protect DNA from being damaged, they contain a high amount of fiber, and kiwis can help lower the risk of macular degeneration.

1. Kiwi Phytonutrients

Kiwis contain a variety of flavonoids and carotenoids. Flavonoids and carotenoids, and other phytonutrients act as antioxidants that help protect and repair DNA damage. These neutralize free radicals that can cause inflammation and that can lead to diseases like cancer.

2. A Good Source of Vitamin C

Getting enough vitamin C naturally is one way to boost your immune system and kiwis are loaded with it.

This vitamin acts as a water-soluble antioxidant in the body and has been shown to help reduce the symptoms and severity of asthma, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis.

It also helps reduce the risk of a number of diseases including colon cancer, atherosclerosis, and heart disease.

3. Benefits of Kiwi Fruit and Skin Fiber

The green kiwi fruit is an excellent source of dietary fiber. Fiber binds to and helps remove toxins from the colon. In addition, fiber-rich foods, help regulate and stabilize blood sugar levels.

And what many people aren't aware of is that the skin is also edible. It is soft and thin and contains even more fiber and nutrients. It may feel a little furry to the tongue at first, but it's definitely worth consuming if you can adjust to the texture.

4. Kiwis Help Fight Macular Degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) is the primary cause of vision loss in older adults. The beta-carotene in yellow and orange veggies, as well as in fruits like the kiwi, has been a key nutrient in helping protect against this disease.

Research reported in a study published in the Archives of Opthamology suggests that eating three or more servings of fruit per day may lower the risk ARMD by 36% compared to people who consume less than 1.5 servings per day.


Kiwi Breakfast Smoothie Recipe and Tips

Smoothies are a great breakfast you can fix the night before. You can prepare and blend them before you go to bed, stick the blender top in the refrigerator, get up, give it a pulse and pour in a "to go" mug. This is a great breakfast on the run!

There is no need to worry about a loss of nutrient content in preparing kiwi and other fruits in advance like this. Research has shown that minimal processing of kiwi (cutting and chilling does not significantly alter the nutritional content for up to six days.

Below is one of my favorite kiwi smoothie recipes. It's fantastic fresh or as a frozen slushy!

Kiwi Surprise Smoothie Recipe

2 kiwis - peeled and sliced
2 apples cored, peeled and sliced
Small splash of lemon juice
1/2 cup of orange juice or other 100% juice (e.g., Juicy Juice brand)

Place all ingredients into a blender and blend for one minute!

Double or triple the recipe and freeze leftovers for another day!

Serves 2

Additional Tips and Suggestions:

  • Freeze the mixture for a frozen treat.
  • Add ground flax seed for extra nutrition or flax seed oil

IMPORTANT HEALTH NOTE: Kiwi Linked to Latex Allergy

Like avocados and bananas, the kiwi contains compounds that are associated with the latex-fruit allergy syndrome.

There is strong evidence of the cross-reaction between latex and these foods. If you have a latex allergy, you may very likely be allergic to these foods as well. The latex-fruit allergy syndrome is described in depth in the article: A Connection Between Latex, Fruit and Nut Allergies.

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Comments 28 comments

carol7777 profile image

carol7777 4 years ago from Arizona

Good hub on kiwi fruit. We both enjoy it, and I do eat the skin, as it is easier to eat and peel. Lazy, but now I know I am doing something healthful.

healthylife2 profile image

healthylife2 4 years ago from Connecticut, USA

Excellent hub on the many benefits of kiwi. Another benefit is that it tastes great. I'm glad you added that the nutritional benefit is not lost if blended the previous day. With so many vegetables it helps to eat them right away. Voted up and shared this one.

billybuc profile image

billybuc 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

I have to be honest....I have never tasted a kiwi....but I do trust your advice, Kris, so I'll have one before the week is out....but I'm going to tell Bev that she influenced me. :) Great hub!

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 4 years ago from Indiana Author

@carol777 - I have to confess that I've not eaten much of the skins in the past but will be making it a point to do so from here on out. At first I wasn't sure if they were edible. But now I know!

@healthylife2 - I was glad to find that there wasn't much of a nutrient loss within six days - that's very unusually with many other whole fresh fruits and veggies.

@billybuc - you'll have to give us your thoughts after trying one! They should be slightly soft when you squeeze them gently - if not, they are too firm, they aren't ripe yet and won't be very sweet.

Thanks all for stopping by!

phdast7 profile image

phdast7 4 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

Kris - I like Kiwis, but I don't eat them very often. Same thing with avocado and I almost never have a banana. I say all this because I do have a strong latex and shell-fish allergy.

I never gave fruit a second thought as far as an allergic reaction. Interesting and useful information. Maybe I will have a Kiwi now and again and just be aware of any allergy symptoms. Good Hub. Thanks.

teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 4 years ago

I don't eat enough kiwis and I have no excuse because they are readily available all year round here where I live. I am going to have to make a point to pick these up more often. Great hub topic.

rebeccamealey profile image

rebeccamealey 4 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

Awesome smoothie recipe! I have never thought of kiwi and apple flavors together. I am glad to know kiwis are even better for you than I thought. Cool looking Hub! I will share!

donnah75 profile image

donnah75 4 years ago from Upstate New York

Thanks for the smoothie recipe. Voted up.

Mhatter99 profile image

Mhatter99 4 years ago from San Francisco

Healthy too? I love kiwi, and toy have provided an additional excuse, Thanks

mvillecat profile image

mvillecat 4 years ago from Milledgeville, Georgia

I love Kiwi but don't think I could ever eat the skin. I want to make some Kiwi jam cause it sounds really good. I voted up and tweeted.

Phil Plasma profile image

Phil Plasma 4 years ago from Montreal, Quebec

Great hub - I'll definitely increase my kiwi fruit intake.

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 4 years ago from Indiana Author

@phdast7 - thanks for adding to the conversation. I've just completed a related article on the fruit-latex allergy relationship and have listed all fruits (and nuts) that have been noted in the research literature (I've added a link in above). Which fruits and nuts that one can develop allergies too will vary from person to person.

@mvillecat - kiwi jam sounds interesting! I've have had that before. You'll have to share a recipe here on hubpages if you find a good one.

Mama Kim 8 profile image

Mama Kim 8 4 years ago

Wonderful information here. I will definitely start eating the skin from now on ^_^ Voted up and pinned

rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

Wonderful information on Kiwi. Frankly, it's too expensive here and getting it fresh is also not easy. I wish it was now that I know of its immense benefits.

voted up, interesting and shared.

RTalloni profile image

RTalloni 4 years ago from the short journey

We love kiwi! Thanks for this info on how packed with nutritional benefits they are. I had heard that the skin was edible, but I wondered if it was possible to get them clean enough to be safe because they are so fuzzy, even more so than peaches.

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 4 years ago from Indiana Author

@RTalloni - I sort of wondered that too. And I think the bigger thing for me is the texture of the skin. I've been getting better about that though. If they are sliced into real thin ovals, I don't notice that texture as much. Thanks for stopping by:)

Brett.Tesol profile image

Brett.Tesol 4 years ago from Thailand

A very informative hub. Kiwis are delicious anyway, but with all those health benefits, this hub should persuade many more to start eating them too!

Shared, up, useful, pinned and tweeted.

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 4 years ago from Indiana Author

@Brett.Tesol - thanks for stopping by and sharing. I remember as a kid that kiwis were just not available here in the Midwest so I had not idea what I was missing. I'm so glad they are available almost year 'round here.

daisydayz profile image

daisydayz 4 years ago from Cardiff

Great hub, I never knew kiwis were so good, and that smoothie sounds yummy!

Darren DeBari profile image

Darren DeBari 4 years ago from Bricktown New Jersey

Great Stuff! My cousin is into acupuncture and is a nutritionist in Hoboken NJ. He's got wonderful health videos and music on youtube-Stay Healthy!

MargaritaEden profile image

MargaritaEden 4 years ago from Oregon

Great hub, good reminders of how wonderful this fruit is, sharing it.

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 4 years ago from Indiana Author

@daisydayz, @Darren DeBari, and @MargaritaEden - thanks for stopping by and sharing:)

daisyjae profile image

daisyjae 4 years ago from Canada

I love kiwis and I will try your smoothie recipe!

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 4 years ago from Indiana Author

@daisyjae - thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoy the smoothie!

profile image

Rogene Robbins 3 years ago

I love kiwi! Good information.

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 3 years ago from Indiana Author

Rogene, I've grown to love it too! Thanks for stopping by:)

vibesites profile image

vibesites 3 years ago from United States

I've tasted kiwi once and it was really different but good. It's a luxury to have it here as it's expensive tho. Thanks for sharing about its great health benefits. :)

Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 3 years ago from Indiana Author

@vibesites - thanks for stopping by. Too bad that it's expensive there!

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