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Dec 13, 2013 by KAREN FOSTER
Why Guavas Should Be Considered A Superfood


Guavas have the highest concentration of antioxidants that protect against cell damage which ages skin and can cause cancer. This inexpensive and humble food should be regarded as one of the top 'superfoods' nature has blessed us with.


Guavas are rich in dietary fiber, vitamins A and C, folic acid, and the dietary minerals, potassium, copper and manganese. Having a generally broad, low-calorie profile of essential nutrients, a single common guava fruit contains about four times the amount of vitamin C as an orange.

A series of tests published in the Food Research International Journal found that among fruits found in India, including Himalayan apples and pomegranates, bananas and grapes, that the guava, the poor man's fruit in India, has the highest concentration of antioxidants as compared to all the other fruits.

The study found that while there is a presence of antioxidant concentrations of just under 500 milligrams per 100 grams in guavas, 330mg in plums and 135mg in pomegranates, apples have a quarter of the antioxidants in guavas and bananas merely have a tiny fraction with 30 mg per 100 grams.

Guavas are beneficial in regulating blood pressure. One guava contains almost a similar amount of potassium that's present in bananas. Potassium reverses the effects of sodium, thereby regulating the balance of blood pressure.

Consumption of guavas helps slow down the absorption of sugar in the blood. It is rich in fibre and is helpful for diabetics. Also, studies have shown that a diet that is high in fibre (5.4 gm per 100 gm of fruit) is linked to a lower risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. Individuals suffering from constipation problems, too, can benefit form the high fibre content.

Did you know that guavas contain four times more Vitamin C than oranges? Vitamin C contains antioxidant properties that protect cells from the damage of free radicals and is useful in lowering the risk of cancer.

Even though guavas don't contain iodine, they are still beneficial in promoting healthy thyroid function, because it contains copper, which aids the production and absorption of hormones.

Guavas are a good source of manganese that acts as an enzyme activator utilising nutrients like thiamine, biotin and ascorbic acid.

If you want to optimise your brian function, turn to this fruit. Guavas are rich in the B group of vitamins. Niacin, better known as Vitamin B3, promotes blood circulation, thereby stimulating brain function. Vitamin B6, that is pyridoxine, helps in brain and nerve function.

Women with fertility problems can eat guavas as they contain a good amounts of folate, which contain fertility-promoting properties.

Eye problems can be kept at bay as guavas contain an abundance of Vitamin A that helps in improving vision.

Guava is good for the skin, too. Because of its Vitamin E content, astringent properties and antioxidants, the skin is nourished. Skin ailments like scurvy can be dealt with due to the high Vitamin C content in guavas.

Pink guavas are said to contain twice the amount of lycopene present in tomatoes. Lycopene protects the skin from being damaged by UV rays and also works against prostate cancer.

Even the leaves of guava have medicinal properties. The juice of the leaves is said to provide relief from cold and cough by reducing the formation of mucus, disinfecting the respiratory tract and preventing bacterial activity in the throat due to its astringent properties.

Guavas are sold in varying degrees of ripeness. However, it's best to quickly eat them within two days of getting ripe.

Foliage diseases, such as anthracnose, can be a problem in humid climates where guava is grown. They are regularly controlled with fungicide applications so it is important for the consumer to access organic varities that use natural methods to control pests.

Karen Foster is a holistic nutritionist, avid blogger, with five kids and an active lifestyle that keeps her in pursuit of the healthiest path towards a life of balance.


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