Deliciously sweet with musky undertones and a soft, butter-like consistency, it is no wonder the Papaya was reputably called the ‘fruit of the angels’ by Christopher Columbus. Once considered quite exotic, this tropical fruit encourages digestion, eases indigestion and is known to relieve heartburn by many cultures. The papaya fruit can now be found in markets throughout the year. Although there is a slight seasonal peak in early summer and fall, papaya trees produce fruit year round.
Indeed, this once very exotic fruit has some very powerful nutritional benefits. This low calories sweet and refreshing fruit is loaded with vitamin A and harbors more vitamin C than the well renowned orange. It also contains vitamin E, foliate, and potassium.
‘Medicinally, papayas are remarkably different from other fruits in two significant ways. First, along with cherries, they are warming in thermal nature, rather than cooling or neutral like most other fruits. Second, the enzyme papain, which aid digestion, is found in high levels in unripe papayas and their seeds. Papain is used in commercial meat tenderizers to break down proteins,’ Writes Rebecca Wood in The New Whole Foods Encyclopedia. So, if you are one of the many like myself that can’t make it throughout the day without popping antacids, this fruit is for you!
Papaya contains two very important enzymes, papain and chymonpapain, which help and aid to digest protein in the body. Of the two enzymes, papain is the most abundant and most active enzyme, which breaks down proteins and soothes the stomach by promoting a healthy acidic environment. T
hese enzymes are the most concentrated when the fruit is picked green as after ripping and picking the enzymes diminish.
Some of the most amazing benefits of papaya: it’s a great natural digestive aid as well as it promotes digestive health. More benefits include the medicinal use of papain for defibrinating wounds in hospitals, prevents scar deformation, helps the inflammatory process in the acceleration of wound healing, and for those of you around the water it is used in the treatments of jellyfish and insect stings.
Many experts, such as Dr. Lytton-Bernard, have claimed rejuvenating properties fro papaya, especially for the control of premature ageing. It may be that it works simply because a poor digestion leaves the body without correct nutrients. Thos who find it almost impossible to digest anything frequently find that papaya used regularly, either in tablet or juice form, marks the turning point in the climb back to vitality and good health. Papaya has many amazing properties that are outside the scope of this particular article, but more can be found at this very insightful website http://www.home-remedies-for-you.com/articles/Papaya-Health-benefits.html
Some cautions to be aware of would include not eating the unripe papaya as it may lead to uterine contractions, which would make this an off-limit fruit for many pregnant women whom suffer with heartburn. Stomach upset or nausea may occur. If these effects persist or worsen, contact your doctor promptly. An allergic reaction to this product is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include rash, itching, swelling, dizziness, or trouble breathing. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist. If you have any of the following health problems, consult your doctor before using this product: stomach problems (e.g., absorption problems, lack of enzymes that digest food), pancreas problems (e.g., pancreatitis), any allergies. Liquid preparations of this product may contain sugar and/or alcohol. Caution is advised if you have diabetes, alcohol dependence or liver disease. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about the safe use of this product. Papaya must not be used during pregnancy. All check with your doctor before starting something new.