Dragon fruit benefits health in numerous ways. This exotic fruit is delicious and richly nutritious which makes it incredibly beneficial for health. Native to South America, dragon fruit or Pitaya is cultivated all over Europe and Southeast of Asia.
The two varieties of dragon fruit consist of red and white pulp respectively with a cluster of tiny, edible, black seeds. Dragon fruit is known for its sweet and tangy flavor and crisp texture.
Dragon Fruit Nutrition Facts:
The reason behind the fact that dragon fruit benefits health in numerous ways is because of its rich nutrition. The exotic dragon fruit is richly packed with vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. The fruit is loaded with vitamin C, thiamine, antioxidants, polyunsaturated fatty acids, proteins, lycopene, riboflavin, and carotene.
Its mineral content includes calcium, magnesium, sodium, and iron. The fruit has a phytochemical compound called betalain that is highly beneficial for cardiac health. 100 grams of dragon fruit calories are 60.
20 Incredible Dragon Fruit Benefits for Hair, Skin and General Health:
The dragon fruit benefits are innumerable, 20 of the most important Dragon fruit uses are elucidated below-
1. Reduction in Cholesterol
Dragon fruit is a promising remedy for high cholesterol. The fruit is richly packed with omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids and polyunsaturated fats that help to lower the level of bad cholesterol. Additionally, dragon fruit is richly supplied with antioxidants that help to fight against increasing cholesterol.
2. Regulation of Bowel Movement
Dragon fruit is rich in soluble and insoluble fibrous content and is loaded with water which makes it highly significant for the digestive system. The soluble fibers get fermented by the healthy intestinal bacteria.
The fermentation process releases short-chained fatty acids out of which butyrate helps to maintain gastrointestinal health(1). The insoluble fiber eases the movement and excretion of bowels. Dragon fruit is a natural remedy for constipation and irritable bowel syndrome.
3. Dragon Fruit Diabetes Health Benefits
Dragon fruit has a high content of carotenoids, polyphenols, thiols, glucosinolates and tocopherols that work in combination to lower blood glucose levels. The high fibrous content of dragon fruit helps to curb the sudden spikes of blood sugar. Diabetics suffer from oxidative stress and stiffness in the aorta. Dragon fruit being rich in antioxidants protect the body from oxidative damage.
4. Improvement of Cardiac Health
Dragon fruit protects the body from oxidative stress and damage with its rich content of antioxidants. Its mono-saturated fatty acids preserve cardiac health and prevent the stiffening of arteries. Its magnesium content is highly effective in the prevention of deposition of cholesterol in blood vessels. This protects the individual from atherosclerosis and greatly reduces the risk of heart attacks(2).
5. Aids in Weight Loss
Dragon fruit aids in shedding excessive body weight because of its low calorie and rich fibrous content. Almost 95% of the fruit is water. It accelerates the rate of metabolism and curbs your appetite thereby promoting weight loss.
6. Prevention of Cancer
Dragon fruit has the ability to fight against cancer by curbing the metastasis of cancer-affected cells.
The anti-carcinogenic properties of dragon fruit are attributed to the enzyme lycopene, carotene and vitamin C that work in unison to prevent the growth of tumors. Even the dragon fruit peels can prevent cancer with their content of polyphenol compounds.
7. Prevention of Congenital Glaucoma
Dragon fruit is known for its potent ability to inhibit the detrimental effects of the protein cytochrome P450 which is located in the liver and is generally associated with congenital glaucoma.
8. Prevention of Renal Bone Disease
The renal bone disease is a kind of kidney failure which affects the bones in the body and makes them fragile and weak. This disease results in failure of activation of vitamin D for the absorption of calcium.
Failure to absorb calcium leads to weak and rickety bones. Dragon fruit is rich in calcium. Its high calcium content can prevent such a terrible disease and keep the bones strong and firm.
9. A cure for Dengue
The disease dengue is identified by the patient’s abnormally low count of platelets. While the normal range of platelet count is 150000-450000 in a microliter of blood, for a patient of dengue(3), the platelets fall to a count as low as 10000.
Depletion of platelets causes hemorrhage. A daily dose of dragon fruit can help to increment the platelet count in blood owing to its potent antioxidant nature.
Make yourself a fresh bowl of dragon fruit salad every day to improve the platelet count and get relieved from dengue.
10. Improves Functioning of the Central Nervous System
Dragon fruit is a highly effective natural remedy for nervous disorders like epilepsy, seizing fits, convulsions etc. It helps to soothe the central nervous system and improves the coordination of motor sensory nerves.
Regular consumption of dragon fruit improves the production of red blood cells in the body. Its vitamins and minerals protect the brain and CNS and improve mental performance.
11. A cure for Respiratory Disorders
Dragon fruit is rich in vitamin C that makes it highly beneficial for the natural treatment of respiratory problems. You might be suffering from severe coughing fits, mild cough, and cold or a grave condition of bronchitis or asthma.
Consumption of dragon fruits twice or thrice a day can instantly relieve you of the symptoms, the constant dry coughing, and running nose. Vitamin c is also essential to prevent infection of the respiratory system.
Read More: Home Remedies For Asthma
12. Dragon Fruit for Strong Bones and Teeth
The two most essential minerals required for strong teeth and bones are phosphorus and calcium. Dragon fruit contains both the minerals in sufficient quantities which make it highly beneficial and nutritious for the development of strong bones and firmly rooted teeth. It enhances bone density, strengthens the roots of teeth.
13. Fights against Arthritis
Dragon fruit is rich in anti-inflammatory properties that make it highly beneficial for osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and osteoarthritis. The drug helps to heal the pain, reduces swelling and cures the inflammation.
Get More: Home Remedies for Arthritis
14. Prevention of Anaemia
Anemia is a disease in which the patient suffers from a deficiency of red blood cells and low level of hemoglobin in the blood. The patient feels fatigued and his skin becomes pale. The primary cause of anemia is the lack of iron-rich food in the diet.
Dragon fruit is one of the best natural cures for Anaemia. It is richly packed with iron and its high content of vitamin C enhances the absorption of iron which in turn pumps the level of red blood cells and cures anemia.
15. Prevention of Skin Cancer
Dragon fruit is rich in antioxidants that fight poisonous free radicals, protect the skin from damage caused by the UV rays of the sun, repair broken skin tissues and thus prevent the skin from getting afflicted by cancer.
Drink a glass of dragon fruit smoothie or plain juice on a daily basis to detoxify your skin and make it glow with health.
16. Eliminate Tan and Sunburn
Basking and sunbathing might be fun but sunburns are painful and not so easy to get rid of. Treat the blisters with dragon fruit pack to cure the burning redness and enrich your skin. Being an excellent source of vitamins A, C, and E, dragon fruit can be highly beneficial for the natural remedy of sunburns.
- Scoop the flesh out of a dragon fruit and mash it into a smooth puree.
- Add a few drops of vitamin E oil to the puree and stir well.
- Smear your sunburnt skin with the pack and leave it on for about half an hour.
- Rinse the mask off with cool water and let the skin dry on its own.
- Do this thrice a week for the best results.
Know More: Natural Cures For Skin Cancer
17. Dragon Fruit Health Benefits during Pregnancy
Dragon fruit is highly beneficial for the health of expecting mothers. The fruit is an excellent source of iron that helps to maintain the generation of red blood cells in the body and protect the mother from suffering from anemia.
Dragon fruit is rich in carbohydrates that provide the mother with much-needed energy and enhances her stamina. The fruit contains folate, which is a vitamin that is highly essential for the formation of red blood cells.
Folate is also beneficial in protecting the developing fetus from the effects of the neural tube. The high fibrous content of dragon fruit regulates bowel movement during pregnancy and protects the health of the digestive system. Thus dragon fruit is highly beneficial during the period of pregnancy.
18. Dragon Fruit for Healthy Hair
You can prepare a rich hair mask with dragon fruit, yogurt and egg whites.
- Scoop out the pulp of the dragon fruit and mash it well.
- Add 2 tablespoons each of plain yogurt and egg whites to the mash and mix well to prepare a smooth and rich hair spa mask.
- Regular massage with this mask enriches the scalp with essential nutrients that keep it from going dry and flaky.
The mask induces the production of sebum in the scalp which moisturizes the hair, makes the root strong and prevents the occurrence of dandruff.
Dragon fruit is highly anti-inflammatory in nature which protects the hair and scalp from the disease Cicatricial alopecia which is a condition of permanent loss of hair in which the hair roots and follicles get severely and irreparably damaged thus preventing the growth of new and healthy hair.
19. Prevents Dryness of Skin
Dry skin is a serious skin issue and often leads to conditions like psoriasis, eczema and premature aging of the skin. Dragon fruit is rich in essential vitamins and minerals that help to keep the skin nourished and supple.
The high water content of dragon fruit keeps the skin naturally moisturized and prevents the occurrence of dry skin or eczema.
Regular application of dragon fruit and vitamin E oil face mask enhances the production of natural oils that prevent the formation of wrinkles and keeps the skin well hydrated thus preventing the occurrence of eczema.
20. Improvement of Vision
People often complain of painful eyes and indistinct vision. Dragon fruit can resolve this issue of visual impairment. The fruit consists of beta-carotene, antioxidants and other beneficial pigments that preserve the health of eyes and protect them from the detrimental effect of free radicals.
Dragon fruit can even serve as an effective cure for eye problems like macular degeneration and cataract.
Side Effects of Dragon Fruit:
A few general dragon fruit side effects include-
- Interference with pregnancy
- Skin allergies and rashes
- Increase in blood glucose
- Troubled bowel movements
Dragon Fruit Recipes:
Dragon Fruit Popsicle Recipe-
- Blend a tablespoon of condensed milk
- Pulp out a dragon fruit
- Add a tablespoon of powdered sugar in a blender and blend
- Pour the blended content into a popsicle container
- Pop in an ice-cream stick into it
- Refrigerate for a few hours and have a delicious and healthy Popsicle
Dragon Fruit Shake Recipe-
- Peel and cut dragon fruit segments into a blender
- Add Lime juice and basil
- Also, add sparkling mineral water and sugar
- Blend it thoroughly and pour it into a glass
1. Is dragon fruit a Superfood?
Response: Dragon fruit is a super food that is an excellent source of essential nutrients which makes it highly beneficial for health.
2. Can a diabetic patient eat dragon fruit?
Response: Dragon fruit has a high content of carotenoids, polyphenols, thiols, glucosinolates, and tocopherols that work in combination to lower blood glucose levels and is therefore highly beneficial for diabetics.
3. When can you eat a dragon fruit?
Response: When the fruit becomes ripe, the color of its peel changes to bright red or yellow and its flesh feels slightly soft at touch. That’s when you can eat the fruit.
4. Why do they call it a dragon fruit?
Response: Because of the spiky peel and reddish color, the fruit resembles the appearance of a Chinese dragon and hence the name Dragon fruit.
5. What are the health benefits of eating dragon fruit every day?
Response: Eating a dragon fruit every day might just keep the doctor away. A dragon fruit every day can help with the following-
- Detoxification of the body
- Preservation of cardiac and gastrointestinal health
- Prevention of cancer
- Protection of skin from oxidative damage caused by toxic free radicals
Strengthening of the body immune system and more