What are the benefits of Pitahaya for the human body?

Pitahaya is an exotic plant of the cactus family. Thanks to its high vitamin C content, this fruit is a natural “initiator” of the immune system. The pitahaya comes from South America.

The fruit likes heat and does not resist direct sunlight. It is not cultivated much in our latitudes. For the most part, the fruit is imported from abroad. They have a fairly exotic appearance, but they are characterized by a delicious pulp.

Where and how does the pitahaya grow?

Pitahaya is the fruit of an forest epiphyte cactus. It also is called dragon fruit due to its rounded and ovoid shape and the scales of its surface. The outer surface of the fruit can be yellow or pink blue.

Pitahaya is an elongated eg g-shaped ber. The cortex is harder, with several sharp and convex scales, especially at the top of the fruit after flowering.

The ends of the scales can be green, while in mature fruits they can be red. There are no thorns in the fruit; Rarely the surface of the skin is covered with bristles, sometimes with cotton lumps behind the scales.

The typical fruit weight ranges from 300-850 grams. The record in this area is 1. 5 kilograms. The fruit has a edible and juicy pulp and tiny seeds. The seeds are numerous, scattered by the fruit pulp, black, 1 mm in size, oily, edible. The hard outer peel of the pitahaya is not edible. Sometimes the soft interior cortex is left when serving it.

Dragon fruit is presented in 3 varieties:

  • Fruit with red cortex and red pulp;
  • Fruit with red cortex and white pulp;
  • Fruit with yellow cortex and white pulp.

Red dragon’s consumption can cause urine (pseudohematuria) and harmless red stool.

Important: Pitahaya pollen is proven by its polyphenols content and its antitumor effect.

The Pitahaya comes from the tropical and subtropical regions of South America. It grows mainly in low coastal areas, as well as in high altitudes.

The distribution of dragon fruit types depends on the specific area:

  • Hylocereus undatus. The original origin zone cannot be determined due to the long history of the pitahaya. It is believed that the fruit originated in the islands of the Caribbean Sea, from where the species extended to the continent.
  • Hylocereus triangularis. This species of Pitahaya is widely distributed by the Caribbean islands, especially the largest (Cuba, Jamaica, Dominican Republic).
  • Hylocereus megalanthus. It grows in Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia.
  • Hylocereus polyrhizus. Distribution Area – Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Ecuador.
  • Hylocereus Costaricensis. Area of greater origin – Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama.
  • Hylocereus monacanthus. The area of greatest distribution is Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia.

Composition and calories of dragon fruit

The dragon fruit contains 60 kcal per 100 g. The edible seeds of the fruit contain monounsaturated fats, omega-3 fatty acids, essential for the heart.

Studies show that dragon fruit is an important source of antioxidants that can prevent free radicals from damaging cells, whose exposure causes premature aging and the development of various diseases.

The fruit has a high content in many other important micronutrients.

Nutrients Content per 100 g
Water 87 г
Protein 1. 1 г
Fats 0. 4 г
Carbohydrates 11. 0 г
Fiber 3 г
Vitamin B1 0. 04 mg
Vitamin B2 0. 05 mg
Vitamin B3 0. 16 mg
Vitamin C 20. 5 mg
Calcium 8. 5 mg
Iron 1. 9 mg
Match 22. 5 mg

For fa t-soluble vitamins, the UI unit is usually indicated:

  • A: 1 IU is the biological equivalent of 0. 3 µg of retinol or 0. 6 µg of β-carotene.
  • C: 1 IU is the biological equivalent of 50 µg of L-ascorbic acid.
  • D: 1 IU is the biological equivalent of 0. 025 µg of collector or ergocalciferol.
  • E: 1 IU is the biological equivalent of 0. 67 µg of D-Alfa-Tocoferol or 0. 9 µg of DL-Alpha-Tocoferol.

Dragon fruit attributes

The red pulp of the dragon fruit contains the lycopene red dye, which reduces the risk of prostate cancer. The seeds are good especially because of omeg a-3 an d-6 fatty acids, which reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

When consumed regularly, the dragon fruit cleans the organism, reinforces the immune system, accelerates healing and help with respiratory diseases. In addition, the pitahaya only contains simple sugars, so it is better digested.

Dragon fruit favors eye health, improves digestion, reinforces metabolism, strengthens bones and teeth, helps recover appetite, provides energy to the organism and reduces cholesterol.

The fruit is also good for the skin, thanks to its moisturizing properties. In Asia, diabetics often use the dragon fruit as a rice substitute, fiber source (fiber content gives fruit an antidiarrheal effect).

Useful and therapeutic properties of the dragon fruit

The dragon fruit acts as an antidepressant, soothing, favors a fast and repairing dream. It favors concentration, which helps obtain better results in activities that require mental activity.

Better than La Granola

Pitahaya is extremely low in cholesterol, which helps keep the body happy and healthy. It is an ideal fruit to maintain balance that reduces sweet cravings.

Help to the health of the heart

Pitahaya helps reduce bad cholesterol and increase the good. It is a source of monounsaturated fats, thus helping the heart to stay in good shape.

Dietary fiber content

Dietary fiber (fiber) is an important nutrient that young people and older need. The best way to obtain fiber is through the consumption of fruits and vegetables. Pitahaya, like many other species, is rich in fiber (almost 3 g per 100 g).

Its high dietary fiber content can help in the fight against bad digestion and constipation. The pulp and seeds of the pitahaya also contain proteins that contribute to the general health of the organism.

Active antioxidants

To free the body of free radicals and carcinogenic substances, it must consume foods containing antioxidants. Pitahaya has them in abundant quantities.

To help diabetics

The high level of dragon fruit fiber, in addition to improving digestion, can control diabetes and stabilize blood sugar levels.

Important: See a doctor before making any change in your diet to make sure it is appropriate to consume the product.

Reduce aging signs

Regular dragon fruit consumption, rich in antioxidants, will help maintain firm and young skin. You can prepare a facial mask combining exotic fruit with honey. This mask can be a good alternative to ant i-aging treatments.

Dyed hair

Drain with dragon fruit juice, it is an excellent way to restore dyeing hair. Adding the juice to a conditioner and applying it directly on the scalp, chemically dyed or treated hair can be protected. The hair follicles will open, the hair can breathe and remain healthy and soft.

Relief of arthritis symptoms

Arthritis is a disease that affects the joints, causing severe irritation and mobility problems. The inclusion of dragon fruit in the diet can help fight this disease. This fruit action is due to its ant i-inflammatory effects.

Acne treatment

It is not just a benefit to teenagers. Pitahaya is rich in vitamin C, so its extracts are added to varying preparations against acne. Apply fruit pieces in the affected areas (on the face or anywhere else of the body) and clarify with water after 15 minutes. Use 2 times a day to get better results.

Calm down

Combining the dragon fruit with cucumber and honey juice, you can create a mixture similar to aloe vera. It is a good lotion after the sun that can calm the burnt or dry skin. Vitamin B3 moisturizes the skin and moves heat from the affected area.

Damages and contraindications

Some people are prone to allergies to the dragon fruit. Therefore, it is advisable to eat a small piece of fruit for the first time. If adverse reactions are not produced, the dragon fruit can be consumed safely and with greater health benefits.

Other contraindications are not yet known. In case of chronic diseases, it is recommended to consult a doctor before consuming the dragon fruit (as well as any other new product).

How to choose the right dragon fruit?

What aspect should have a good mature fruit? Pitahaya berries can be roses or red, yellow, with the white pulp dotted with black grains. Red fruits can also have the red pulp.

The skin with pointed scales should not be dry or stained, nor the tips of the green scales that cover the fruit. The dragon fruit seems quite hard, due to the thick skin, about 2 mm thick (it is also hard when it is cooled in a store).

The too ripe fruit is soft, dehydrated, flaccid and wrinkled, with brown spots.

How do you pee and eat the dragon fruit?

The ripe fruit can easily peel: cut the end, pulling the bark down. But it can also be cut in half and eat it with a spoon.

To prepare the dragon fruit for consumption, it is better to wear gloves. It peels carefully with a knife and cut into slices. You can eat the fruit alone, use it to decorate dishes, make confitted fruits, jams and jams. It is also suitable for soups, salads and creams. Dragon fruit combines well with vegetables, fish, eggs, meat and cheese.

IMPORTANT: It is consumed better fresh, optimally refrigerated. Or try it in a slightly different way. For example, combine red fruit with blue cheese, yellow fruit with strawberries, orange slices.

You can also prepare a healthy juice. After cutting it, remove the pulp, put it in a blender and pour cold water on top. Add sugar and lime juice if necessary.

How long can you keep?

The fruit is very sensitive to abolish and must be careful. Keep the pitahaya in a cool, dry and without direct sunlight for 5 or 6 days. It is more delicious fresh, so it is recommended to consume it immediately after buying it.

Can I grow Pitahaya at home?

Pitahaya can be cultivated in our conditions as ornamental cactus. In a greenhouse, they can flourish and produce fruits. For example, wavy Hylocereus is widely used in nurseries as a basis for delicate or chlorophyll forms of cacti. Consequently, this type of plant is also found in our florists.

Pitahaya is an adequate fruit to lose weight in a healthy way, used as a component of a complete diet. It favors digestion, emptying, contains vitamin C, so it stimulates the immune system and accelerates metabolism. Attention, in large quantities you can have laxative effects!

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