Health Benefits of Kiwi Fruit
Kiwi fruit (Actinidia chinensis) originated in the Chang Kiang valley of China. Botanists renamed the commonly used fruit variety as A. deliciosa in 1984 and reserved the name A. chinensis for the yellow-fleshed kiwifruit.
Since ancient times, Chinese used it as a health tonic, especially, for women after childbirth and for children to enhance immunity. In the early 1900, kiwi fruit was first exported to Asia as an ornamental vine. Americans tasted the fruit in the year 1904 and it reached New Zealand in 1906. The potential nutritional benefits of the exotic fruit were identified by the New Zealanders and they started cultivating it commercially.
Kiwi fruit has a brown hairy peel with white pulp and green flesh. It has tiny black seeds and green creamy and yummy flesh. Immature fruits are hard while mature ones are softer and yield to little pressure. They are full of vitamin C and act as good appetizers in salads, fish, meat dishes, puddings, cakes and pies. However most of us are unaware about the varied heath benefits of this delicious fruit.
Nutrient Values in Kiwi Fruit
The kiwi fruit is rich in vitamin C, vitamin E, potassium, dietary fiber and magnesium. It contains low amount of sodium, cholesterol and saturated fat.
A serving of 177g of kiwi fruit contains -
Calories - 108
Carbohydrate - 26g
Dietary fiber - 5g
Vitamin C - 133mg
Protein - 2g
Sodium - 5mg
Sugar - 16g
Calcium - 6 percent
Vitamin E - 3 percent
Iron - 3 percent
Health Benefits of Kiwifruit
The fruit plays an important role in facilitating weight loss and promotes general health and wellness.
Owing to ant-oxidant properties, kiwi fruit is effective in protecting against Age-Related Macular Degeneration (ARMD).
Kiwi fruit has more vitamin C than equal amount of oranges. Children fed 5-7 portions of kiwi fruit developed 44 percent less chances of being affected by wheezing as compared to those who were fed once a week, according to an Italian study published in the Thorax, an International Journal of Respiratory Medicine (BMJ group).
Another study published in the Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that kiwi fruit consumption could significantly improve sleep quality in adults with sleep problems.
Eat this delicious fruit by peeling and slicing it or add it to a fruit salad. Use it to make chutney or blend it to prepare a chilled soup – whatever way you use it, the nutritional benefits remain the same.