If an apple a day can keep the doctor away — well, imagine what a kiwi can do.
Kiwifruit do not get the attention they deserve. These sweet, furry little fruits are a nutrient-dense fruit with many health benefits.
One raw green kiwifruit has about 61 calories, 15 grams total carbohydrates, 3 grams of fiber and only 9 grams of natural sugar. The kiwi is also packed with essential nutrients, such as vitamin C, calcium, iron, vitamin B-6, magnesium, potassium and more.
“This combination of nutrients has positive health benefits if consumed regularly and is linked to improved digestive, immune and metabolic health,” said Valerie Agyeman, a women’s health dietitian and founder of Flourish Heights, a nutrition and wellness website.
Kiwifruit is one of the easiest ways to get the daily dose of vitamin C your body needs. Kiwifruit has 100 grams of vitamin C, or 150% of the recommended daily intake. Vitamin C is an ascorbic acid your body needs to form muscle, collagen and bones. Some studies suggest that eating kiwi can help those with asthma and may reduce wheezing in children.
Vitamin C and antioxidants in kiwi can also help reduce acne by firming and tightening the skin while fighting the inflammation.
Kiwi is also rich in potassium, aiding in kidney function and preventing kidney stones from forming. Kiwifruit contains about 300 mg of potassium, which can help lower high blood pressure.
Another excellent health benefit of kiwifruit is that it is packed with fiber and is water dense. Fiber assists in breaking down food, and high water density allows your body to stay hydrated, both of which help with healthy digestion.
“Fiber is known to help with issues such as constipation because of this. A single kiwi contains about 3 g of fiber, about 12% of the daily recommended intake. Consistently consuming one or two kiwis a day can significantly impact one’s digestion,” said Ms. Agyeman.
Fiber and water allow adequate bowel movement, which prevents constipation. This also can help with irritable bowel syndrome and other inflammatory diseases.
While its nutrient content will make your body happy, eating kiwifruit can also make you feel better. The fruit is rich in tryptophan, which allows the body to make serotonin and helps improves your mood. This also can help with a good night’s rest.
If you’re looking for a quick and easy nutritious snack, a kiwi or two is a great option. You can cut a kiwi in half and spoon out the flesh. If you want to incorporate some extra fiber, the brown furry skin is also edible, as long as you make sure to give it a rinse first. Including the skin in your snack increases the fiber content by 50%.
While eating a kiwi with a spoon or whole is fun, there are many ways you can incorporate a kiwi into your day. Ms. Agyeman said it works great in smoothies, topping off a salad or even jam.
“Two kiwis a day satisfies a respectable portion of the daily recommended intake of fiber and also provides a variety of essential nutrients. If you experience trouble swallowing, hives, itchy throat or tongue, the fruit should be avoided,” Ms. Agyeman advises.
Sammy Lucero is a nursing Co-Op student at Drexel University.