Pitahaya Or Dragon Fruit is rich in fiber, minerals, and vitamins of group B. We tell you here about its possible health benefits.
Dragon fruit is a plant known as pitahaya. It is a cactus that only blooms at night and typically grows in dry tropical or subtropical environments.
What is the Pitahaya Or Dragon Fruit?
Pitahaya is a fruit native to Central America. It is a tropical fruit classified as a sweet fruit of showy colour. The pitaya plant (Hylocereus undatus) belongs to the Cactaceae family. It has an oval shape, with spines on the outside and in the markets, you can find three varieties mainly:
- The first variety: Hylocereus costaricensis, with red flesh and pink skin.
- The second variety: Hylocereus monacanthus, with red flesh and pink skin
- The third variety: Hylocereus undatus, or Queen of the night, with white flesh and pink skin.
All varieties are very aromatic, and their flavour, which is similar to that of watermelon, is very sweet and pleasant with many benefits. One of the characteristics of the pitaya plant is that it is a very aromatic plant, and it opens at night, which is why this fruit is known in some regions as Queen of the night.
Nutritional contribution of dragon fruit
1. Carbohydrate and protein content
Dragon fruit contains approximately 12 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams (with almost 8 grams of sugar in the same serving) and 1.18 grams of protein, according to data from the United States Department of Agriculture.
2. Vitamin and mineral content
Pitahaya contains vitamin A in the form of carotene, which would help strengthen memory. Various studies support the possible relationship between the consumption of vitamin A and the prevention of Alzheimer’s.
It also provides vitamin C (2.5mg / 100gr), which would help strengthen the immune system, and antioxidants that would help destroy free radicals in the body. These molecules can cause all kinds of diseases, such as cancer and cardiovascular problems, among other health problems.
Other nutrients in dragon fruit include vitamins B1, B2, and B3. These vitamins are believed to help maintain skin hydration (which is why they are included in topical skin treatments), while also allowing for lower LDL cholesterol levels.
Finally, it includes minerals, approximately 18mg / 100gr of calcium and 0.74mg / 100gr of iron, and small amounts of potassium, chromium, and magnesium.
3. Fibre content
Dragon fruit is a good source of fiber, with about 3 grams of fiber for every 100 grams of fresh fruit, which rises when the fruit is dry and provides 4% of the daily value for dietary fiber.
4. Fat content
Dragon fruit seeds provide protein and fat. Being so small, they spread throughout the fruit, making it impossible to remove all the seeds. However, most of the fat in the seeds is of the monounsaturated type.
This nutritional information applies to the edible meat of dragon fruit. So, it contains a total of 60 calories per 100 grams, which provides 3% of the daily value of calories.
As you can see, dragon fruit is not only tasty but also nutritious. Try incorporating it into your regular diet. Remember that a balanced diet is based on the consumption of vegetables and fruits, mainly.
Properties And Benefits
- Delays cellular aging.
- Strengthens the immune system by stimulating the production of white, red, and platelet cells.
- It has an anti-inflammatory effect.
- It helps us regulate intestinal transit, and its seeds have a laxative effect.
- It helps us prevent kidney stones.
- Regulates blood sugar levels.
- It stimulates collagen production.
- Improves the absorption of iron (essential to avoid or combat iron deficiency anemia).
- Excellent for the formation of bones and teeth.
- Being rich in water and low in carbohydrates, its consumption is excellent for people who carry out weight-loss diets.
Also, Read- Top 5 Health Benefits Of Watermelon Rind