Medically reviewed by Ashwathy V. Pillai, Postgraduate Degree in Dietetics & Applied Nutrition
Papaya is also known as pawpaw to the Europeans and Australians.
Pawpaw is a powerhouse of nutrients which is low in calories but very rich in vitamins and minerals.
Its vitamin content can fulfil almost half of the vitamin c daily requirement. Besides being a tasty fruit, there are many benefits of papaya that brought this fruit up on our health radar.
So let’s read on and know this juicy fruit better. There are benefits of papaya not only in terms of health but also in terms of skin.
10 Benefits of Papaya are:
- Papaya benefits in digestion
- Papaya benefits the heart
- Papaya benefits against cancer
- Papaya benefits menstruation
- Papaya benefits body immunity
- Papaya benefits against diabetes
- Papaya benefits weight loss
- Papaya benefits people with arthritis
- Papaya benefits for eyes
- Papaya benefits the skin
Below are the 10 health benefits of papaya that you may not have known.
1. Papaya benefits indigestion:
Papaya contains the enzyme papain. This enzyme helps a great deal in digesting protein effectively.
It is even considered better at protein digestion than pepsin, a protein-digesting enzyme secreted by our pancreas.
Moreover, eating papaya can even prevent constipation. It has high fiber content that helps in digestion too.
2. Papaya benefits the heart:
Papaya is rich in antioxidant vitamins that help in keeping the heart healthy.
It has vitamin A, C and E which prevent clogging of arteries. Also, papaya is rich in phytonutrients.
These prevent oxidation of cholesterol that prevents the heart from attacks. The high fibre in papaya is also responsible for keeping the heart healthy.
3. Papaya benefits against cancer:
The enzyme papain in papaya is found to prevent the growth of cancer cells by significantly attacking the coating on cancer cells.
Moreover, the antioxidant vitamins and phytonutrients in papaya are found to work against free radicals. This protects the body from cancer.
Researches in laboratories have shown that dried papaya leaves produce anticarcinogenic effects.
Papaya leaf extracts when exposed on certain cancer-affected cells, the results were found the cells showing slowed down tumour growth.
Do you know?
Papaya origins belong to Mexico and Central America
Papaya outgrew its physical boundaries and is now cultivated in various parts of the world.
In the year of 1550, it came to India and surprisingly today India, is the largest producer of papaya.
Christopher Columbus refereed papaya as the “fruit of the angels“.
4. Papaya benefits menstruation:
Papaya juice is very hot and its consumption helps in inducing menses. That is why it is often advised to drink papaya juice during irregular periods.
Green and unripe papayas are considered as a home remedy to correct irregularity of menses.
To be noted: Papaya can be harmful to pregnant women as it is hot and may lead to contractions in the uterus that may lead to abortions.
5. Papaya benefits body immunity:
Papaya also helps in boosting body’s immunity. The presence of antioxidants in papaya helps in improving the immunity system of the body and hence helps it fight against many diseases.
What nutrients are in papaya?
One small papaya (152 grams) has:
- Calories: 59.
- Carbohydrates: 15 grams.
- Fiber: 3 grams.
- Protein: 1 gram.
- Vitamin C: 157% of the RDI.
- Vitamin A: 33% of the RDI.
- Folate (Vitamin B9): 14% of the RDI.
- Potassium: 11% of the RDI.
- Trace amounts of calcium, magnesium and vitamins B1, B3, B5, E and K.
6. Papaya benefits against diabetes:
Although it is often sweet in taste, papaya can be great for diabetic people. The reasons to support this are its low sugar content and low glycemic index (it is basically a measure of how foods affect blood glucose levels).
Also, it not only helps people with diabetes, including it in diet can actually help to prevent diabetes. All the more reason to include papaya cubes in your daily routine!
7. Papaya benefits weight loss:
Are you trying to lose weight? Then you got to add papaya to your diet because:
- Papayas are low in calories while rich in vitamins and minerals.
- They contain antioxidants that burn down calories as well as extra fat deposits in your body.
- Papayas are rich in dietary fibres. Thus, eating a bowl of papaya cubes can make you feel full for a longer time. Hence, you will be snacking less and maintaining weight more.
8. Papaya benefits people with arthritis:
An enzyme, chymopapain, found in papaya is very effective in preventing rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
Papayas have anti-inflammatory properties that prevent arthritis. Moreover, the vitamin C content in papaya prevents osteoarthritis of knees.
Papayas are sweet in taste and have vibrant appearances. It requires tropical climate to grow and is now available throughout the year.
9. Papaya benefits for eyes:
The richness in Vitamin A is a major factor in making papaya beneficial for eyes. Papaya keeps the eyes healthy as well as help in improving eyesight issues in adults.
So if you are finding difficulties in finding things, have some papaya servings to improve your eyesight!
10. Papaya benefits the skin:
You will find many beauty products mentioning the presence of papaya in them. Why? Well, because this fruit has got many skin benefits.
From fighting against skin issues like acne, pimples to destroying dead skin cells, there are many papaya benefits for the skin.
Moreover, papaya face packs are advised for firming of skin and anti-aging properties.
Applying of raw papaya mashed paste along with some honey and leaving it for 15 minutes can give you a glowing skin.
Facts about papaya benefits:
- Besides the fruit, the leaves and seeds of papaya have medicinal importance too.
- Papaya leaf tea is used for treating many ailments.
- Papaya tree bark is often used to make ropes.
- Papaya was once thought to be an exotic fruit.
- Papaya contains folic acid, pyridoxine (vitamin B6), riboflavin, and thiamin (vitamin B1), which are known as essential vitamins because they are not produced in the body.
To be noted: Although there are many health benefits of papaya, it is advised to have it in moderate amount. Excessive intake of papaya may lead to issues due to its high fructose content.
Are you running out of recipe ideas to include papaya in your daily routine? Here’s a fun recipe of Crunchy and Healthy Thai Papaya Salad.
So now that you are well aware of the amazing benefits of papaya, go and try some interesting ways to include papaya into your daily diet.
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