Guava is very common in Asian countries, but is increasingly available in the western world, particularly as more of its health benefits are revealed. Its scientific name is Psidium Guajava. It is a somewhat round or pear-shaped seasonal fruit, and is light green, yellow, or maroon in color on the outside when it is ripe. Guava also has white or maroon flesh and lots of small hard seeds enveloped in very soft, sweet pulp. It is eaten raw (ripe or semi-ripe) or in the form of jams and jellies. This popular fruit is a powerhouse of nutrients. If the traditional adage says that “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” in Europe and Americas, the phrase is probably changed to “a few guavas in the season keeps the doctor away for the whole year” in the Indian Subcontinent and places where guavas typically grow.
Eat a serving of guava to satisfy your daily vitamin C requirements –one serving of this fruit contains 628 percent of the amount you need. The vitamin C in guava may help prevent cell damage caused by environmental and free radical damage and assists in the absorption of iron. This fruit also provides 21 percent of the vitamin A and 20 percent of the folate you require each as well. This makes guava a good choice to improve your eyesight and decrease the risk of birth defects when you are pregnant or planning to conceive. Additionally, you take in lesser quantities of vitamins E, K and B-6, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin and pantothenic acid in a 1-cup serving of this fruit. Guava contains 20 percent of the daily recommended intake of potassium, a mineral important for your heart function. This fruit provides 19 percent of the copper you need each day, as well as 12 percent of the manganese. These minerals are critical for the function of your nerves, brain and blood vessels. Guava contains less than 10 percent of the calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc and selenium you need each day, too.
Guavas are extremely good sources of vitamin-A, which is well known as a booster for vision health. It can help slow down the appearance of cataracts, macular degeneration, and general health of the eyes. It can not only prevent degradation of eyesight, but even an improvement in eyesight once it has begun to degrade. Another of the tremendous positive benefits of guavas is the presence of B3 and B6 vitamins. B3 (also known as niacin) can increase blood flow and stimulates cognitive function. B6 is a great nutrient for brain and nerve function. Therefore, eating guava can help you increase brain function and sharpen you focus. Guavas can improve the texture of your skin and help you to avoid skin problems more than even the highest ranked beauty creams or skin toner gels. This is chiefly due to the abundance of astringents in the fruit (more astringent is present in immature guavas) and in its leaves. Your skin can benefit from either eating the fruits (this helps tighten your muscles apart from your skin) or by rinsing your skin with a decoction of its immature fruit and leaves. It will tone up and tighten the area of loosened skin where you apply it.
Until tomorrow: A good laugh and a long sleep are the best cures in the doctor’s book. Irish proverb.
Dorothy Prats / [email protected]