Know more about dragon fruit benefits and side effects by reading this article. Here, I examine how this pitaya fruit benefits the lives of all those who consume it.
I will also list the side effects of the dragon fruit (pitaya) so that you understand the possible risks you may be exposing yourself to by eating this amazing fruit.
First, let’s see What dragon fruit is and what a dragon fruit plant looks like? Where does it grow in abundance?
Dragon Fruit Tree & Fruit
Dragon Fruit Plant
The Dragon fruit plant is a vine. It is an epiphytic cactus belonging to the genus Hylocereus. The plant is regarded as a native botanical of South and Central America.
It has been introduced across the Southeast Asian continent including in countries such as Vietnam, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Indonesia, Thailand, and Malaysia.
Red Pitaya, commonly referred to as Dragon fruit, fits into the family Cactaceae and from the Cactoidea subfamily which belongs to the tribe Cactea.
The Dragon fruit plant is superb to look at with a beautiful fragrant scent and a stunning fruit that displays vibrant shape and colors.
The dragon fruit plant is both attractive and full of flavor. A quality that somewhat compares to melon and kiwi. It has amazing health benefits as well, which will be discussed later in this article.
Red Dragon Fruit
Red dragon fruit may not only be a new product but also a nutritious, tasty, and strange product produced in Vietnam. It is a soluble fiber fruit that rids chemodeoxycholic acid synthesis and fecal bile acids losses.
Its appearance resembles the substantiated mechanism similar to that where fiber depresses serum cholesterol.
The skin of a dragon fruit plant may vary from dark red to yellowish in color. It has red or white edible flesh depending on the variety. It also has several edible small black seeds.
In comparison to conventional white dragon fruit, the red dragon fruit display totally unique characteristics.
On the outside, the red dragon has a hard enclosure that is bright bold red. Deep into the somewhat outer red crimson, red dragon fruit is a decorative nutrient structure double that of the white dragon.
The red dragon fruit has Vitamin A, between 1.30 to 1.08 Parotid, Vitamin C 12-6, lipid, and glucide. It brings about a high level of nutritional value to your body.
Dragon Fruit Benefits
The extract of Pitaya can be acquired from the fruit through a process of drying, concentration, and extraction to get a pink powder. The popular Pitaya benefits relate to its anti-aging properties.
It’s also known for aiding the intestinal tract. Thus, users of pitaya extract use it as either a health or medicine food.
But some people use it in making cosmetic products because it’s known for its lightening effect on dark or brown human skin.
Some of the common dragon fruit benefits include:
Helping in Digestion
It is in the public domain that fiber helps in digestion. The consumption of vegetables and dragon fruit is also the best avenue to acquire get fiber.
Dragon fruit is rich in fiber, a health property that can help with your bowel movement in the morning. It can as well help you to eradicate IBS and constipation problems.
For every 100 grams of fresh version, dragon fruit is close to one gram of fiber. 100 grams of this fruit is also approximately 10 grams.
That makes it a food with a high amount of fiber. If your desire is to consume more fiber, the best remedy is to ingest the skin of dragon fruit or pitaya.
Additional pitaya benefits are linked to its ability to help in digestion because of its oligosaccharides. The contained oligosaccharides play a role in prebiotics. That in turn, helps to improve your gut digestion and health.
Prebiotics does more functions than that. Studies indicate that it’s a good option for ameliorating, the value of life that is vital for curing degenerative ailments, vascular diseases, hypersensitivity, cancer, and obesity.
Boosting the Immune System
Another dragon fruit benefit relates to the fact that it’s heaved with flu-fighting and flavonoids vitamin C.
This is a great protein for strengthening your body’s immune system. Indeed, the fruit contains extra vitamin C when compared to a carrot. That makes dragon the best food we have in the market today which is rich in vitamin C.
Dragon fruit also has a high level of antioxidants that can assist you to eliminate your free radicals to control. The power of curbing these free radicals does not only come from not only rich fiber, niacin, protein, iron, phosphorus, and calcium.
They also relate to the fruit’s vitamins B1, B2, and B3. When all these nutrients work together, they help to improve your body’s immune system even more.
Preventing and Treating Diabetes
We know that dragon fruit has a high content of fiber that can help your body in solving digestion problems.
However, we should as well note that when used, it can assist us not only stabilize our blood sugar levels but also to sustain our body’s normal blood sugar level. Thus, it helps to prevent sugar spikes when consumed with a high glycemic index.
Studies by nutritional experts further indicate that the use of Pitaya benefits us because it helps to suppress oxidative stress. This assertion suggests that if you ingest dragon fruit, it can help you limit problems associated with diabetes.
Similarly, these nutritional professionals also think that when consumed in excess, it can cause lead to a decrease in diabetes symptoms and diabetic risks.
Retaining your Youthful Look
Despite the fact that antioxidants are good at maintaining perfect internal body organs, your skin also benefits from the wonderful little antioxidants found in dragon fruit as well.
The vitamin C in dragon fruit helps to keep your skin firm and tight, thus, providing you with a youthful skin appearance.
Also, another dragon fruit benefit relates to the fact that it contains high levels of phosphorus, an element that helps to boost your skin’s anti-aging unit.
Each cell of your body contains an essential mineral called phosphorus. It’s this cell component that contributes close to 1% of your total body weight.
And since phosphorus is embedded in each and every cell of your body, it helps to replenish and repair critical cells that assist in retaining your skin’s youthfulness. Thus, we can say that dragon fruit plays an important part in preventing premature aging.
Possibly Stops Cancer
Dragon fruit has a high amount of phytoalbumin. When these elements are integrated with hosted minerals and vitamin C, the fruit becomes a good food with high cancer-preventing qualities and effective antioxidant properties.
Lycopene is also another important cancer prevention compound in dragon fruits. Also found in other vegetables like tomatoes, the lycopene provides the body with skin color pigments. That, therefore, means the fruit plays a role in one’s skin pigment.
Side Effects of Dragon Fruit (Pitaya)
We all know that Pitaya fruit is a good source of minerals and vitamins. To date, there are no critical side effects reported in eating dragon fruit.
It’s proven to be safe for ingestion by even breastfeeding and pregnant mothers. However, some of the notable adverse effects of dragon fruit or Pitaya include:
Causes Reddish Feces and Urine
Many nutritional experts recommend their patients suffering from heart diseases, asthma, and diabetes consume Pitaya. However, some people have reported that they receive reddish faces and urine when they consume it.
Nonetheless, no concrete evidence supports these allegations so far.
Harmful to Health if Used Excessively
Excess consumption of dragon fruit can be harmful to your health. Pitaya seeds are rich in polyunsaturated fats such as omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids.
These acids play a big role in minimizing the risk of cardiovascular disorders and triglycerides.
Dragon fruit also helps to keep normal body function including eliminating toxic heavy metals from your body. It also improves your eyesight.
Lycopene, the red color element found in dragon fruit is also associated with lowering the risk of prostate cancer.
Nonetheless, when consumed in excess, dragon fruit can be a health hazard to your body because it contains high fructose levels.
Dragon Fruit Can Cause Diarrhea
Some people claim that when you take Pitaya, instead of softening the stool, it hardens it. It also causes constipation. That is because dragon fruit has hard seeds which resemble consuming crap.
It also has a pink to white flesh and a fragrant smell that encourages you to gulp the whole fruit in one chew. A few moments later, you excrete the dragon fruit the same way you consumed it with little seed and in a dark red color.
Yet, it gives you diarrhea, a good reason to believe that it has a diarrheic effect. This is another reason given by our esteemed readers for making dragon fruit unpleasant for their use.
READ MORE: Where to buy dragon fruit seeds near me.