If you are a fan of eating fruits then you must have heard about this vibrant and nutrient-rich food that is Dragon fruit. Also known as Pitaya or “strawberry pear” is very popular in America and even Asia. It is a tropical fruit that has a sweet taste and a vibrant color on the outside.
Dragon fruit has become one of the popular choices of the people and the good part is you do not have to go to a tropical region to get your hand on it. Given its popularity, it can be easily found in supermarkets everywhere. If you are new to this gem of fruit and would like to more then continue reading.
What is dragon fruit?
Before we jump into the many benefits of dragon fruit we must know a little about the dragon fruit like its taste, how it is grown, and so on.
Dragon fruit or a pitaya has a vibrant pink or yellowish color that is in the shape of a bulb and has green leaves in the form of spikes surrounding it. It almost looks like a ball of fire with that color.
The most interesting bit is that it grows on a cactus called Hylocereus which in greek can be divided into “hyle” and “cereus” which means woody and waxen respectively.
It grows in tropical regions all around the world but is popular in trade with the rest of the world. In the beginning, the fruit was grown in the Mexico and southern American region. It was then carried by people over the years to other parts of the world.
From the inside, the fruit is white and pulpy with black seeds spread all over that are to be eaten with the pulp. Most people describe the taste somewhat between a kiwi and a watermelon, it is slightly sweet and can be a little sour as well. The seeds, however, taste like any other seeds and are often consumed together with the pulp providing a nutty flavor to the fruit.
Now that we have learned that this fruit is delightful in taste we shall move ahead to talk about the nutritional qualities of the fruit.
Nutritional value of a dragon fruit
Dragon fruit is not just good in taste but it is also a storehouse of a lot of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. We shall now discuss the dragon fruit benefits in detail to give you a bigger picture of this fruit and convince you to include this in your diet.
Dragon fruit health benefits:
Here are some amazing health benefits of dragon fruits that you should know about and don’t miss out on:
1. Rich in the nutritional content
One of the biggest perks of eating a Dragon Fruit is that it is high in nutritional content. It has a lot of vitamins and minerals like- Vitamin A, Vitamin C. It is also rich in magnesium, iron, and calcium.
2. Rich in antioxidants
Apart from being rich in nutrients, it is also high in antioxidants such as phenolic acid, flavonoids, and betacyanin. This is the one that is responsible for preventing your body from premature aging and also from free radicals that can cause cancer.
3. Help lower your blood sugar levels:
This study is still in the experimenting phase but it has been proposed that consuming dragon fruit helps in regulating blood sugar levels. It helps to replace the damaged cells that are in your pancreas which is responsible for the hormone insulin which helps in the breaking down of blood sugar in your body.
4. It keeps you full for a long while
What can be better than eating something that helps to stay full for a long time and especially fruit? This can be a very effective trick if you are trying to cut down your snacking habits as this can be replaced by the junk that you would rather choose.
5. It does not have the extra fat
If you want to go for a fat-free alternative maybe if you are dieting then a dragon fruit would be the ideal option for you. It is free of fat and at the same time rich in fiber content. So if you are thinking about dieting then eating dragon fruit can help you a lot.
The fruit is rich in Vitamin C and so many other nutrients and antioxidants that help strengthen your immune system. It is also rich in probiotics that help to feed the healthy bacterias in your body which in turn helps to maintain the balance between good and bad bacteria that prevents your body from so many diseases.
How to cut a Dragon Fruit?
If you are convinced to add dragon fruit to your diet then the next step is to buy one and just eat it. But if you are eating it for the first time or just holding it in your hands then it can appear a lot daunting to cut and even.
To cut it open you can first cut the top and bottom parts which makes it easier. Then cut the fruit in half from the top. After this, you can either scoop the pulp out with a spoon or eat directly.
Some risks of eating dragon fruit
There are pros and cons to everything, this goes with dragon fruit too. Although it is safe to eat and is rich in so many nutrients and has so many health benefits you should know about these risks too.
The risks of eating dragon fruit are scarce but it is good to prepare beforehand. Some people may have an allergic reaction to it and may develop symptoms like vomiting, hives, or even can have their tongue swelling up. Always try a small piece before. Also, make sure the fruit is properly washed and it’s not spoilt.
This article provides you with all the information that you need to know about this wonder fruit known as dragon fruit. If you want to try it out then go ahead and enjoy its tropical taste and many health benefits.
P.S It makes for amazing Instagram worthy pictures.