Hello, Health

The fruit to eat to avoid feeling feverish during change of season

Pineapples give your immunity a major boost.

 |  Hello, Health  |  4-minute read |   22-08-2016
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Do you become a magnet for cold and flu attacks when the season changes?

An easy and tasty way to give your immunity a fillip is by eating pineapple regularly. Yes!

241720_082216120005.jpg Sweet! 

That's because the enzyme bromelain and loads of vitamin C this delicious fruit delivers can help cut inflammation of the nasal cavity and remove excessive mucus from the respiratory system - and thus help combat (and even keep away) regular colds and coughs, and even bronchitis.

Unfortunately though, the only time most of us eat pineapple is when we eat the Hawaiian pizza, or maybe drink the piña coladas.

I know a few people who eat it regularly, (a friend has a slice or two every day in fact), but their number is very low. This fruit is really underrated - for the kind of benefits it bestows, and mostly gets overshadowed by other more common written-about (so eaten) fruits likes banana, berries, pear… Time to change that!

Also read - 12 simple ways to cut cholesterol

It is loaded with antioxidants, which have restorative and free radical fighting properties, so it is particularly great to have when sick. That's why it is often advised after surgery, to help reduce the trauma associated with incisions or injections.

It is a debloating food; perfect for the days you are feeling bloated as it is loaded with minerals (potassium) and enzymes that help cut the bloat and detoxify the body.

frothy-pineapple-ban_082216120053.jpg Care for a pineapple smoothie?

Try this simple smoothie (from my book Don't Diet! 50 Habits of Thin People): Cut 1/2 cup pineapple, 1/2 cup papaya, 1 frozen banana, 1/4 cucumber (with skin) into small pieces, add 1 cup chilled coconut water, mix, whirl and sip. Or have a green smoothie (spinach with pineapple and ginger).

Pineapple is the only major dietary source of bromelain, a unique protein digesting enzyme that has anti-inflammatory properties, is a proven anti-cancer agent and also functions as a scavenger enzyme (helps clean up damaged cells). It is great for cleaning out our pollution-taxed lungs too.

Besides being an immunity booster, it helps protect vision and prevents cataracts. Plus, enough vitamin C in diet improves the quality of our skin and makes it radiant.

6a00d83451fa5069e201_082216120110.jpg Toasted pineapples are heavenly.

There's more. This juicy fruit delivers beta carotene, copper, zinc and folate, which help boost fertility, both in men and women.

It also has high amounts of trace mineral manganese that protects cells from free radicals and helps build strong bones, and thiamin, vitamin B that is imperative for energy production in the body.

pineapple-mint-salad_082216120333.jpg Pineapple salad.

Finally, here's one myth that needs busting. Many people don't eat this fruit thinking that it is "sweet". It is considered high in calories, but the fact is that 250gm of pineapple gives only 125 calories and even though its glycemic index is 66, it is so loaded in fibre that its glycemic load (which is what matters actually!) is only 6. 

So please feel free to have it; it won't make you fat. In fact my experience as a weight management practitioner shows that a slice or two goes a long way in helping curb your cravings for sweets. A tasty way to stay thin!

Eat more

Avoid pineapples when skin is still green, as it might cause acidity. When ready - ripe golden though, this precious fruit is alkaline, which is great for realigning our gut's Ph balance. 

It's great as a cut fruit and as part of a fruit salad, but try eating it in different ways too; get adventurous with it.

Also read - Simple cancer-killing foods you must eat every day

May be like making chicken salad? Make it magnificent with chopped apples, and pineapple cubes. Think in terms of half chicken, half fruit. Or pair it with walnuts and snack on it.

vegan_soup_pineapple_082216120242.jpg Pineapple soup with cucumber and gazpacho. 

Use it in cooking too: pineapple pulao, pineapple and avocado soup, chilled melon and pineapple soup are a few of my favourites.

But my ultimate favourite is this simple quick to make tangy chaat: chop pineapple, apple, and boiled sweet potato, mix them up, sprinkle some chat masala, squeeze some lemon juice and dig in!

Also have you tried blending crushed pineapple pieces into cottage cheese for a sweet spread on your toast?

Divine.

Writer

Kavita Devgan Kavita Devgan @kavitadevgan

The writer is a nutritionist, weight management consultant and health writer based in Delhi. She is the author of Don't Diet! 50 Habits of Thin People (Jaico) and Ultimate Grandmother Hacks: 50 Kickass Traditional Habits for a Fitter You (Rupa).

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