- Diet & Weight Loss
Pears Health and Nutrition
Pears, more than any other fruit, are a great source of fibre.
They are a very popular fruit, but how many of us are aware of pears health and nutrition content?
Some varieties have a very high iron content, these are the pears that turn brown as soon as they are cut open and exposed to air. The quicker the fruit changes colour, the higher it's iron content.
Varieties of Pears
Pears Health and Nutrition
As well as fibre and iron, pears contain a variety of vitamins and nutrients: Vitamins A, B1, B2, C, E, Copper, folic acid, niacin, potassium and phosphorus. Also calcium, chlorine, sodium, magnesium, and sulfur.
With all these benefits, pears are listed as hypoallergenic, very unlikely to cause adverse reactions, and so are recommended for infants.
Pears health and nutrition benefits help in many areas:
Their high pectin content (often more than apples) goes a long way to controlling cholesterol llevels. Pectin also has a diuretic and mild laxative effect.
They are high in antioxidants, protecting cells from free radical damage.
Eating the whole pear, including its skin, is very good for a healthy colon, and digestive tract.
The high levels of fructose and glucose make the pear a good choice for sportsmen, as it is a quick and easy natural source of energy. Pear juice in particular, a wonderful natural 'energy drink'.
A large glass of pear juice is also effective in reducing fever.
Pears are particularly helpful to our eyesight. Many of their wonderful nutrients help prevent cataracts, battle macular degeneration, and generally keep eyes bright.
Pears contain high levels of boron, which helps the retention of calcium, thus preventing osteoporosis. The anti-inflammatory effect of pear juice has been noted in patients with arthritis and other inflammatory diseases.
Pears and their juice are also recommended in pregnancy, both for the health of the mother and the fetus. The folic acid they contain helps prevent neural tube defects in babies.
Wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath and excess phlegm in children can be relieved with pear juice.
Drinking pear juice in the summer is particularly beneficial to keep your body temperature down.
A glass of pear juice in the morning and another at night will keep you cooler in the hot weather.
It will also soothe and moisten the throat, staving off sore throats.
Warm pear juice with honey is especially good for the throat, often used by singers.
They should be eaten while reasonably firm, just denting slightly at the touch of a finger, rather than let them get too soft. Overly hard pears can be aided in softening by placing them in a paper bag at room temperature.
Try to store away from foods with strong smells like onions and garlic or fish, as pears tend to absorb odours from around them.
While pear juice is listed as beneficial in a lot of these cases, as always it's better to make your own juice, liquidising everything, including the peel, so as to get the benefits from the entire fruit. It can be strained after liquidising, but you will have taken the best the fruit has to offer.
When eating pears always eat the peel, especially when needing the fibre content.
Many of the main causes of colon cancer have come from a low intake of copper, and of fibre. Pears are rich in both of these, so make sure you add them to your diet every day.
100 g of pear has only 40 calories.
They make a wonderful addition to cereals, oatmeal (try porridge with chopped pear, grated ginger and honey), salads and yoghurts, as well as making a very healthy dessert, and any-time snack. They mix particularly well with blue cheese.
Adding sliced pears and walnuts to a salad will double your nutrient intake.
As they are a fruit which is available all year round, we can enjoy pears as often as we like, and we should, as they are one of mother nature's greatest assets.