The guava is a superfruit. From the fruit itself, right down to the leaves, it's loaded with health benefits. Dietitian Phoebe Thong from SingHealth Community Hospitals (SCH) shares more.
Did you know that the often overlooked guava actually belongs to the berry family? Well, now you do! While the most commonly seen variant in Singapore is the one with white / pale green flesh, the guava fruit can range in colour from white to pink or even red.
Even guava leaves are used to make teas and are reported to be helpful for health as well. But for the purpose of this article, we are going to focus on the fruit, which is what Singaporeans typically consume. Packed full of health benefits, find out how guava actually helps with your health!
7 Health benefits of guava
1. High in vitamin C
Forget about oranges,
a single guava fruit has about 4 times the vitamin C of an orange! Vital to the body, vitamin C not only improves wound healing, it also improves iron absorption and helps the body’s immune system to function properly. As vitamin C is a water soluble vitamin which is not retained by the body, it relies on a daily intake to maintain healthy levels.
2. Aids digestion
High in fibre, one guava contains about 67 - 88% of the recommended daily fibre intake. As guava is a source of both soluble and insoluble fibre depending on the part of the fruit eaten, this can help to prevent constipation and may also relieve symptoms of diarrhoea. While most of us generally shun the seeds when eating the fruit, the seeds can actually serve as a laxative for those who have trouble with bowel movements!
3. Helps weight loss
Consuming such high fibre fruits can also help to manage one’s weight as the bulk from the fibre can keep you feeling fuller for longer periods and thus preventing one from overeating during or in between meals.
Guava is low in glycaemic index and glycemic load, making it a great choice for people with diabetes. Also, because of the high-fibre content, it can help to regulate blood sugar levels by slowing down the release of sugars into the bloodstream.
5. See better!
Guava is high in vitamin A, which is essential for good eye health. While not as high ranking as the titular carrot, guava is still a respectable source of vitamin A. This helps your eye maintain healthy retina and mucous membranes, and might also slow down. This helps your eye maintain healthy retina and mucous membranes, and might also slow down
age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Click
here for more prevention tips for AMD.
6. For healthier babies!
Besides vitamin C, which is essential for a healthy baby’s growth, guava also contains folate that is vital during pregnancy. Folate prevents malformations in the foetus, and helps in the development of the baby’s nervous system. Read more about folate
7. Look younger than your age
That surely got your attention! The wide range of antioxidants and vitamins in guava aid in good skin health, and may also slow down the skin aging process. To simplify that, less wrinkles (if you already have them…it slows down others from forming)!
Easy ways to incorporate guava into your diet
A popular way for Singaporeans to consume the guava fruit is to have it cut raw, sprinkled with plum / prune powder (酸梅粉). However, do scrimp on the powder as it is high in sugar.
Besides snacking on the raw fruit, you can also add guava into your salads.
Check out this delicious guava salad recipe from Changi General Hospital (CGH). Last but not least, add guava as one of your fruits of choice when having / making a fruit juice.
With all these health benefits, we hope that you don’t gloss over the guavas at your next supermarket outing!
Nutritional analysis of guava
1 whole small guava (325g) has approximately:
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