The small black seeds from papaya are like valuable pearls, since they indicate the nutrient content from this tropical fruit.
Let’s learn a little bit more about papaya
The papaya has always been worshipped in primitive civilizations due to its healing properties.
Currently, it is used in occidental medicine to produce medicines and many cosmetic products. This is proof of its value for health and cosmetics.
In fact, the papaya has been classified as “the fruit from angels” due to its healing properties.
This tropical fruit is orange, sweet and juicy. It has a pulp and black seeds that also have several uses too.
They are available throughout the whole year in Europe.
Papaya and calories
Properties of papaya
The clinical studies have proven that it has multiple beneficial properties for our health. For example, some of the most important ones are:
- Regulating the digestion
- Supporting weight loss diets
- Restoring the intestinal health after an antibiotic treatment
- Fighting against aging and reducing the onset of wrinkles
- Lowering high cholesterol levels
- Preserving the cardiovascular health
- Relieving the inflammation
- Helping with the healing of wounds
- Increasing the fertility
- Inhibiting the growth of some cancer cells sometimes
Benefits of papaya
Reducing intestinal discomfort
It improves the digestion and relieves gastrointestinal discomfort, abdominal distension, indigestion and constipation.
The pulp of papaya has many nutrients, such as papain, an enzyme that supports the digestion.
Green papaya has the highest content of this substance. Therefore, it is a perfect ingredient to make salads, specially the typical Chinese salad.
Moreover, it is also present in the leaves of the papaya tree. To put it simply, it produces a chemical reaction in our digestive tract what breaks down the protein from food into amino acids. After that, our body will be able to use them immediately. In addition, this enzymes protects our body against inflammation caused by diseases like rheumatism, for instance.
The rest of the ingredients from this fruit are essentials nutrients. In fact, some of the have powerful antioxidant effects.
For stomach ulcers
The papain and fiber from papaya does not only have benefits for the digestive system. Rather, it could also be used to treat gastric ulcers according to some experiments with animals.
A clinical study with laboratory rats from 2009 found out about the efficacy of papaya against ulcers. Therefore, the papaya concentrate extract could be a natural alternative to treat ulcers in humans.
Moreover, the proteolytic enzyme called papain from papaya can also fight against intestinal parasites and strengthen the immune system.
Papain also has benefits to fight against viruses, allergens and fungi in the bowel. Eating this fruit after an antibiotic treatment will help to restore the intestinal flora and strengthen the immune system. Consequently, we could say that it has a preventive effect against cancer.
Papaya as a malign cell inhibitor
Traditional medicine has started to recognize the benefits of papaya for our health. Currently, there are more than six hundred studies that are analyzing the healing power of papaya against cancer.
Moreover, many universities carry laboratory studies focused on testing the properties of papaya against different types of cancer. Including breast cancer, cervical, pancreas, liver and lung cancer. Usually, the researchers tend to use papaya leaf dry extract for these studies.
All these studies have concluded that, after taking the papaya extracts, the growth of cancer cells drop within 24 hours.
Other studies suggest that, apart from the papain enzyme, papaya has other relevant ingredients. For instance, the mustard oil group, which are effective against different types of cancer, such as colon cancer and leukemia.
The epidemiological studies highlight the high bioavailability of lycopene. Consequently, our body and tissues absorb it more quickly, protecting the prostate cells against cancer. This study concluded that men who eat papaya have 83% less chances of suffering prostate cancer.
The papaya seeds specially fight against acidification.
Now, we know that cancer cells grow faster in an acid environment. Therefore, the papaya seeds contribute to preventing the onset of cancer.
How to eat papaya
We have already mentioned that its most nutritious parts are the pulp and black seeds.
So, we can use the pulp to cook some recipes. For instance, we can make a salads, which is quite typical in Asian cuisine.
Moreover, some nutritionists suggest using the papaya seeds to make juices or shakes. In fact, this is a great way of taking advantage from all its nutrients.
If you have a look at the ingredients from the best anti-aging treatments, you will find that most of the contain papaya extract.
The papaya extract is actually the best natural product to deal with wrinkles.
The papain enzyme that we mentioned before due to its digestive properties also has antioxidant properties. Therefore, it can improve the state and appearance of the skin. More specifically, it shortens the wound healing processes, increases the elasticity and prevents the onset of wrinkles.
It helps to eliminate dead cells so that the pores will not saturate producing acne. In addition, it also smooths the superior layer of the skin and reduces the wrinkles.
On the other hand, its antioxidant content, such as beta-carotene and vitamins A and E improve the aspect oft he skin strengthen the hair and nails. Moreover, its topical used applied as a mask or cream, makes the skin more elastic and firm. To the point that it can make freckles and sunspots disappear.
Papaya recipes for your skin
Here you have some tips if you want to make the most of the benefits of papaya for the skin.
- Make a mask mixing a third part of the pulp from the fruit, an egg yolk, one avocado, a teaspoon of honey and a teaspoon of olive oil.
- Mix them up until everything is well combined.
- Wash your face with water and, after drying it, apply the mask avoiding the eye contour
- Wear it for 15 minutes and then, remove it with hot water.
- The results are amazing! A healthy, radiant and revitalized skin!
Contraindications of papaya
Despite being a natural fruit, the amount of medicinal properties from its pulp and seeds have a series of contraindications:
- It can cause stomach problems or diarrhea
- Do not eat if you are following a diuretic treatment
- It can trigger an allergic reaction
- There are no studies about its benefits or interactions during pregnancy or lactation
- Ghandehari F, Fatemi M. The effect of Ficus carica latex on 7, 12-dimethylbenz (a) anthracene-induced breast cancer in rats. Avicenna J Phytomed. 2018 Jul-Aug;8(4):286-295.
- Zhang Y, Wan Y, Huo B, Li B, Jin Y, Hu X. Extracts and components of Ficus carica leaves suppress survival, cell cycle, and migration of triple-negative breast cancer MDA-MB-231 cells. Onco Targets Ther. 2018 Jul 27;11:4377-4386. doi: 10.2147/OTT.S171601. eCollection 2018.
- Septembre-Malaterre A, Stanislas G, Douraguia E, Gonthier MP. Evaluation of nutritional and antioxidant properties of the tropical fruits banana, litchi, mango, papaya, passion fruit and pineapple cultivated in Réunion French Island. Food Chem. 2016 Dec 1;212:225-33. doi: 10.1016/j.foodchem.2016.05.147. Epub 2016 May 25.
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