Remember when I shared with you all the chemist details and health benefits of lemon? Well, I have another post today just like that.
This installment of my chemist solutions series is all about the scientifically proven reasons why pineapple is beneficial for you. Yes! Pineapple is delicious, juicy, and so tasty, and just like all fruits, it is good for you.
But, pineapple is uniquely good for you due to the chemical composition. Isn’t it awesome that a fruit, like pineapple, can look pretty, taste amazing, and be really good for you!
Another reason I love chemistry!
First, let’s talk about what prominent chemicals are in pineapple.
Vitamins | Citric and Malic Acids
Just like with most citrus fruits, pineapple contains all your acidity. It has a good amount of vitamin C (ascorbic acid), as well as vitamin A.
Pineapples also contain small amounts of Vitamin K, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) and even a larger amount of folate (folic acid). Be sure to read this list of nutritional data for more of a breakdown in numbers.
Pineapple has a large list of minerals contained in the fruit. An analysis of fresh pineapple juice showed high amounts of zinc, potassium, phosphorus and magnesium, along with traces of manganese, iron and sodium.
Side note: This experiment of fresh pineapple juice and deacidified (processed pineapple juice) is an interesting study showing how much more nutrients are in the fresh version. I am always a huge advocate for eating non-processed fruits for this very reason!
This is the big one in the world of chemicals, and perhaps what makes pineapple so unique!
The bromeliad family is made up of plants like pineapples, scarlet star, and Spanish moss. Most of these plants are very tropical looking and almost like succulents and cactus. The interesting thing about this family of plants, is the pineapple is the only one that is edible!
Chemically, bromelain extract is a mixture of proteolytic enzyme which is a protein digesting enzyme.
Bromelain plays a key part in the nutrition and health benefit aspect of pineapple.
So, now let’s dive into the incredible scientifically proven reasons why pineapple is beneficial for you!
Yep, all of those above are scientifically proven to benefit your help. Here are the details:
Thanks to bromelain, pineapple has been scientifically proven to reduce inflammation in the body. Many studies show that it is just as effective as a drug, which is why this enzyme is extracted from pineapple and used in various things.
It helps reduce inflammation like post operational swelling which can be internally or externally. Bromelain is even approved in Germany as a post-injury medication because it can reduce inflammation!
Incredible Digestive Aid
Thanks again to this chemical, bromelain, pineapple is one of the most well-known digestive aids. Since it is a protein digestive enzyme, it is especially helpful in breaking down foods that your body may be having a hard time with.
With high levels of vitamin B1, along with the other benefits, pineapple is an incredible energy booster. It helps turn carbohydrates into energy and helps with proper muscle function.
I researched this a little bit a few years ago, and was surprised how many studies showed pineapple was good for your sinuses! It is shown to help reduce mucous in the throat. This is another benefit of bromelain.
One of the minerals I mentioned was phosphorus. Phosphorus plays a key role in our bodies for bone health and formation. Your body needs more than just calcium for that. Calcium actually needs he phosphorous to maximize the benefits. I learned about this in biochemistry in college, and I thought that was very interesting! This article from the US National Library of Medicine goes into more detail on that.
Of course, with high levels of vitamin C, pineapple is great for the immune system. Since there are also high levels of Vitamin A, it contains many antioxidants, making it great for your immune system.
Since pineapple is chemically proven as an anti-inflammatory and good for bone health, then it is definitely a great option for arthritis. Most of the research I have read, confirms this more for osteoarthritis, which helps that type of joint pain.
I have been eating pineapple for years for RA. It isn’t a magical formula for the joint swelling, but I can always tell a difference when I eat it regularly during the summer seasons. I have more energy and just feel better, which makes the RA pain less. So, it definitely doesn’t hurt!
I’ve heard many rumors over the last decade about pineapple and fat burning. I have researched this scientifically over the years, but there is no actual evidence it burns fat. However, it is scientifically proven to help with digestion as I stated before since it contains bromelain. It is especially helpful in breaking down proteins, so it can help in other areas.
And, obviously, if you are trying to get healthier, pineapple is a great substitute for sweets or another processed type of food!
A quick chemist tip for you! Due to bromelain, pineapple does not work in things like gelatin. It will only break it down further!
It is also not a good idea to mix it with yogurts or dairy products until right before you serve a dish, since it does break down everything like that! Before I was a chemist, I mixed greek yogurt with some fresh pineapple, then I put it in the fridge to eat later. It was a soupy mess when I came back to it! Not very appealing!
One more bonus tip!
Check this guide for picking up a ripe pineapple!
Enjoy eating pineapple this season!