NUTRITION CORNER: Guava has many health benefits

Guava (Scientific name: Psidium guajavais) is a tropical fruit that is rich in nutrition. When ripe, it has a sweet musky aroma and tart taste.

Guava has many health benefits. It is low in calories and fats but contains several vital vitamins, minerals, and antioxidant  compounds that are pivotal in the prevention of cancer, anti-aging, as well as an immune-booster.

Guava is a very rich source of soluble dietary fiber which makes it a good laxative. The fiber content helps protect the colon mucous membrane by decreasing exposure time to toxins as well as binding to cancer causing chemicals in the colon.

Fresh guava-fruit is an excellent source of Vitamin-C and Vitamin-A and flavonoids.  Vitamin-C helps our body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge cancer causing harmful free radicals from the body. It is also necessary for collagen synthesis in the body. Collagen is the main structural protein in the body required for maintaining the integrity of blood vessels, skin, organs, and bones.

Vitamin-A is needed for maintaining healthy mucus membranes and skin.

Flavonoids like beta-carotene, lycopene, lutein and cryptoxanthin are compounds that have antioxidant properties. Carotene  protects from lung and oral cavity cancers.

A fresh guava contains potassium, an important component of cell and body fluids that helps in controlling heart rate and blood pressure. Guava has more potassium than a banana.

The guava fruit is also a moderate source of B-complex vitamins such as pantothenic acid, niacin, vitamin-B6 (pyridoxine), vitamin E and K, and minerals like magnesium, copper, and manganese.#