Pineapple is the perfect ingredient to incorporate into almost every meal. Whether you want to enjoy it in a smoothie, as a snack, or even on pizza, pineapple can complement any meal this season. Aside from its tastiness, pineapple packs extra nutritional benefits. TikTok users have hailed pineapple for its weight loss purposes, but the tropical fruit is known to affect the body in a number of ways aside from weight loss.
According to the USDA, one cup of pineapple contains 82 calories, and can pack 21 grams of carbohydrates, which are essential to give energy to both the brain and body. Because pineapple contains high amounts of the enzyme known as bromelain, it can prompt the body to increase absorption of certain nutrients. Bromelain is being further researched to determine if it can decrease the amount of fat the body can store. Vanessa Rissetto, MS, RD, co-founder of Culina Health in New York City, also notes that this particular enzyme can break down the proteins into amino acids, which helps the body turn fat into energy. These enzymes can also ease digestion and help the body break down proteins found in meat.
There’s a reason why pineapple is so many people’s go-to summer snack: the fruit can be used to hydrate the body. “Pineapple consists of 86% water, which is definitely hydrating,” says Keri Gans, MS, RDN, author of The Small Change Diet. Keeping the body hydrated is crucial for weight loss and controlling your appetite, as the body often mistakes thirst for hunger. Pineapple offers a neat solution that both hydrates the body and simultaneously can help curb your midday cravings. Rissetto recommends incorporating a half-cup serving of pineapple and pairing it with protein or fatty snack, such as cheese or nuts. This strategy, she says, will “help to slow digestion and stabilize blood sugar,” so you’ll feel fuller, longer.
Apart from its remarkable weight-loss benefits, pineapple is packed with many vitamins and minerals the body needs. For one, it is a great source of vitamin C, a known anti-inflammatory agent for the body. According to the USDA, pineapple actually contains 78.9 milligrams of vitamin C in a single cup serving, which amounts to more than the daily recommended intake. Not only can it fight against inflammation, but it can brighten the skin, and can boost your immune health overall.
In fact, a study found that children who ate pineapples reported an overall lower risk of viral and bacterial infections. Those who ate the most pineapple had up to four times more disease-fighting white blood cells.
High in both vitamin C and manganese, pineapple is also packed with other beneficial nutrients including:
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin B3 (niacin)
- Vitamin B2 (riboflavin)
While pineapples can provide many benefits to the body, it is recommended to eat pineapple along with a healthy diet, so as to continue giving the body the nutrients it needs.