The fruit is not only relished by humans, but by many mammals and birds as well. The spread of introduced guavas owes much to this fact, since animals eat the fruit and disperse the seeds in their droppings.
In several tropical regions, including Hawaii and Florida, some species have become invasive species. On the other hand, several species have become very rare due to habitat destruction and at least one, is already extinct.
Depending on the species, a guava’s flesh and seeds can be white, orange, pink or red. The skin is green before maturity and becomes yellow, maroon or remains green when ripe. They are best eaten when semi-ripe because they are crunchy.
Guavas are a treasure-trove of nutrients. Their being high in antioxidants has made them known as one of the “superfoods.” They are also known for their high pectin content.
Guava contains one of the highest vitamin C content among produce at four times more than oranges. Vitamin C is known as one of the potent antioxidants which help protects cells from free radical damage. High levels of oxidants in the body can damage cell membranes and may contribute to the development of heart disease and cancer.
It is rich in fiber, one of the most talked about nutrients today as it has found to be beneficial in a wide range of disease prevention including diabetes by slowing down the absorption of sugar in the body and thus very beneficial for diabetic individuals. A high fiber diet has also been linked to a lowered risk of developing type-2 diabetes.
Guavas are very good sources of vitamin A, the nutrient best known for preserving and improving eyesight.
Munching on guava also supplies a good amount of folate in the body. Folate is a must-have nutrient for a healthy pregnancy.
One cup of guava is packed with almost the same potassium as bananas. Potassium works as an important factor in regulating blood pressure by reversing the role of sodium in unbalancing normal blood pressure.
Guavas are good sources of copper, a trace mineral which plays a role in thyroid metabolism especially in hormone production and absorption.
One of the key functions of manganese in the body is being an enzyme activator including the enzymes responsible for the utilization of some key nutrients such as biotin, thiamine and ascorbic acid. Guavas are good sources of manganese.
Magnesium is one of the essential minerals which needs to be obtained from food as the body cannot make them. Eating guavas can help relax the nerves and muscles through its good amount of magnesium content.
The B group of vitamins play a vital role in brain function. Guavas are rich in vitamin B3 and B6. Vitamin B3 stimulates brain function and promotes blood flow and vitamin B6 is an important nutrient for brain and nerve function.
Regular guava consumption can also do the skin good through its vitamin E content. Vitamin E helps maintain healthy skin through its antioxidant properties.
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