The Pineapple, a Perfectly Delicious Fruit
Where is Guadeloupe?
What is a pineapple?
The pineapple, Ananas comosus, is the only edible member of the bromeliad family. It was discovered in 1493 by Europeans on the Caribbean island of Guadeloupe. Thriving in a tropical climate, it is now grown throughout the southern hemisphere.
The hard "shell" of the pineapple is actually clusters of flowers that have grown and fused together. The sweeter the smell and the heavier it is, the riper the pineapple is. The more scales it has, the juicier.
The edible part of the pineapple is the soft, juicy flesh between the core and scales. The base of the fruit is the sweetest and most tender. The pineapple is unique in that it immediately stops ripening when picked. The top can be cut off and planted, much like a sweet potato.
Health Benefits of the Pineapple
The pineapple - a perfect fruit - is really almost perfect.
§ High in manganese - Manganese is important for the development and maintenance of strong bones and connective tissue.
§ High in bromelain - Bromelain helps the body digest food better and aids in easing indigestion. Bromelain helps to rid the body of intestinal worms (yuck). It is also an anti-inflammatory agent, so it is good for those who suffer from osteoarthritis.
§ High in vitamin C - The high vitamin C content in pineapple reduces the amount of mucus in the throat in the same way oranges do. It discourages blood clot development and can relieve morning sickness in pregnant women. The acid content discourages plaque growth in the mouth.
§ Pineapple also contains calcium, potassium, fiber, folate, vitamin B6 and vitamin B1.
§ It tastes delicious, is low calorie and satisfies cravings for sweets. Pineapple tastes good raw, cooked, grilled or dipped in dark chocolate (yum).