Attention kiwi lovers. As delectable as the kiwi fruit is, did you know that this fruit also offers numerous health benefits? It’s not surprising, as nature offers countless natural foods that have been used as medicine throughout history. Also known as the Chinese gooseberry, and once the “sunny peach”, kiwifruit has been declared by some to be one of the world’s most nutritionally perfect foods. It’s time to experience all of the kiwi fruit benefits that the fruit has to offer.
The Many Kiwi Fruit Benefits – Experience them Today
Weighting in at about 4 ounces and resting at about 3 inches long, the kiwifruit is known for it’s high vitamin C content – containing more of the vitamin than even an orange. Overall, some notable vitamins and nutrients in kiwi are:
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin K (helps with absorption of vitamin D)
- Potassium (as much as a banana)
- Vitamin E
Kiwi is also a great ‘prebiotic’ food. Prebiotic nutrients help to feed the probiotic bacteria in your gut (these bacteria are essential for optimal health). This helps keep digestive health in check while also helping to prevent a number of health issues.
Here are over 9 kiwi fruit benefits.
1. The Fruit Lessens Respiratory Problems Like Asthma, Coughing, and Wheezing
One of the most well known health benefits of kiwi fruit revolves around it’s ability to lessen respiratory issues like asthma and wheezing. In fact, kiwi and other vitamin C-rich fruit provide significant protection. The most famous study showing this connection comes out of Italy, and was published in the journal Thorax. The study involved 18,737 children aged 6-7 living in Italy. The researchers found that those consuming the most citrus and kiwi fruit were:
- 44% less likely than the control group to experience wheezing
- 28% less likely to experience runny nose
- 25% less likely to have chronic cough
- 32% less likely to have shortness of breath
According to the study abstract:
“Intake of citrus fruit or kiwi fruit was a highly significant protective factor for wheeze in the last 12 months … Although the effect of other dietary components cannot be excluded, it is concluded that the consumption of fruit rich in vitamin C, even at a low level of intake, may reduce wheezing symptoms in childhood, especially among already susceptible individuals.”
2. Kiwi Protects Against DNA Damage, Cancer
As mentioned, kiwi fruit is quite rich in vitamin C. Acting as an important water-soluble antioxidant, vitamin C is essential for preventing free radical damage. What’s more, kiwi contains a number of flavonoids and carotenoids responsible for protecting DNA from oxidative stress. The vitamin C content and phytonutrients help to prevent a number of issues related to DNA damage and oxidative stress, including: osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, and cancer growth.
3. Improve Cardiovascular Health
Kiwis are loaded with vitamin C, polyphenols, and are a good source of potassium – all of which work together to reduce the risk of blood clots, protect the blood vessels and heart, and protect the the body from free radicals that cause oxidative stress, which could lead to atherosclerosis (one cause for heart disease). Further, kiwis reduce blood clotting without negative consequence unlike aspirin, which is routinely recommended by doctors to reduce clotting.
According to a study conducted in University of Oslo, Norway, participants consuming 2-3 kiwis each day for just under 30 days “reduced their platelet aggregation response (potential for blood clot formation) by 18% compared to controls eating no kiwi”. What’s more, kiwis helped to lower blood triglycerides by 15 percent.
4. Protection against Macular Degeneration
Further adding to kiwi fruit benefits, your eyes are also boosted by the fruit! Containing famous vision-promoting compounds lutein and zeaxanthin, kiwi seems to be the perfect fruit for maintaining vision and protecting against macular degeneration. Lutein is a phytonutrient known for protecting the eyes from free radical damage by helping filter out damaging blue light and ultraviolet light. Zeaxanthin offers the same and similar benefits; both have been repeatedly shown to protect against vision loss, and slow the progression of dry macular degeneration. The antioxidants could also help improve visual acuity. Kiwi is a good source of lutein and zeaxanthin.
Data from one study involving over 110,000 women and men, which was published in the Archives of Ophthalmology, found that age-related macular degeneration can be prevented through fruit consumption. The study indicates that 3 servings of fruit can help stave off this primary cause of vision loss in older adults by 36%. This is compared to those consuming less than 1.5 servings of fruit daily.
5. Kiwi for Pregnancy
We know today more than ever before how important it is to maintain a healthful diet during pregnancy, and one of the well-known important nutrients for mom’s-to-be is folate – also known as folic acid (the syntehtic form). An extremely important B vitamin for producing and maintaining new cells, folate is an essential compound for optimal pregnancy. The vitamin helps prevent birth defects like spina bifida and helps the baby to grow sufficiently. But how does this tie in with the kiwi fruit? Kiwi offers a notable dose of folate!
Additionally, as we know, kiwi is packed with vitamin C – another very important vitamin recommended for pregnant women. Vitamin C is essential for bone growth, maintaining cell strength, and the bone development and tissue repair for the child in the womb.
Other Kiwi Fruit Health Benefits
- 6. Prevents constipation, keeps digestive tract healthy due to fiber and supplying prebiotics.
- 7. Immune Booster, Chases the Common Cold Away – The kiwi fruit may be small, but it packs a powerful immune-boosting punch. Packed with vitamin C, B6, B12, K, zinc, folate, fiber, and other nutrients, the Golden kiwi fruit is perfect for boosting the immune system and preventing a cold or sickness.
- 8. Promotes healthy and beautiful skin – Vitamin C helps keep the skin looking young and vibrant. The vitamin aids in the growth and repair of bodily tissues, which affects collagen formation and skin pigmentation, and helps to rejuvenate damaged skin.
- 9. Facilitates absorption of iron, which helps to prevent anemia.
Kiwi Fruit Benefit Summary – The Kiwi Fruit is Great for:
- Strengthening the immune system and preventing colds or sickness.
- Protecting against respiratory problems, including asthma, coughing, and wheezing
- Promoting healthy skin
- Supporting the digestive system
- Promoting a healthy pregnancy
- Boosting heart and cardiocascular helath
- Promoting vision and maintaining eye health
- Preventing anemia
- Protecting against DNA damage and oxidative stress