Health Benefits and Nutritional Value of Dragon Fruit

Mazlan has a love of fitness and health. He is a fan of cycling, yoga, at-home exercises, and eating healthy.Dragon Fruit Facts

I first heard of dragon fruit in the early 1980s, when one of my friends brought it home from Vietnam to us to taste. This strange looking fruit didn’t draw us in and was kept to decay in the refrigerator. However, this is a different story we enjoyed it so much that I planted it in our garden. I also discovered the health benefits and amazing nutritional benefits that dragon fruit has.

This article explains everything you must learn about dragon fruits, which include:

  • Different Types Of Dragon Fruit
  • Dragon Fruit Health Benefits
  • Dragon Fruit Nutrition Facts
  • Dragon Fruit and Pregnancy
  • Dragon Fruit Stem–Edible?
  • What Dragon Fruit Taste Like
  • How to Eat Dragon Fruit
  • How to Choose a Ripe Dragon Fruit
  • Where to Buy Dragon Fruit
  • Yellow Pitaya
  • Red Flesh Is Better

Dragon fruit is a great source of health benefits and is an increasingly sought-after fruit in all countries.

greatstuffDifferent Types Of Dragon Fruit

Dragon fruitis also referred to as Pitaya originated from South America and is now found in all the tropical Asian countries. Its skin is covered in “scales” and is available as a yellow-skin or red-skin variant.

  • The red-skin variety can be translucent or white flesh.
  • The yellow-skin variety can only be found in white flesh.

The popularity of dragon fruit is due to the numerous benefits that dragon fruit can provide. The red-skin variety that has red flesh has more advantages in comparison to different varieties i.e. the red-skin that has white flesh as well as the yellow-skin dragon fruits variety.

In this article we will examine the advantages of the red-skin variant.Dragon Fruit Health Benefits

Despite the long time of existence of the fruit however, it was only in recent times that research was conducted on the benefits to health of dragon fruits and the following are the results:

Dragon Fruit is a great fruit for people who suffer from Type 2 Diabetes

The study shows that those with diabetes have a higher risk of developing problems with vascular circulation by at most two times.

Based on the research conducted at researchers from the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences of Universiti Sains Malaysia as published by the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health Dragon fruits that are high in antioxidant betacyanins, can help stop this stress from causing diabetes.

Red Flesh Dragon Fruit

Another study of patients suffering from Type 2 diabetes who are not dependent on insulin the blood sugar levels by over 19% in the case of a daily 600 gm amount from the fleshy red skin dragon fruit for the course of four weeks.

The flavonoid antioxidants found in the red flesh of dragon fruits can be responsible for this reduction. For those suffering from Type 2 diabetes, eating the dragon fruit that is red in flesh will help you control your sugar levels.Red flesh fruit of the dragonDragon Fruit May Reduce Cancer Risk

The red pigments found in the dragon fruit’s red flesh are high in lycopene, phytoalbumins and flavonoid antioxidants that help to stop the development of cancerous cells.

According to The American Institute for Cancer Research electronic news the phytochemical lycopene, which is found in red flesh dragon fruit is able to help to prevent prostate cancer.

In a separate study conducted by Pawel Pa’sko and colleagues from Jagiellonian University Medical College, Poland dragon fruit with high antioxidant qualities and cytotoxic properties to colon cancer cells could become a significant chemopreventive ingredient of the diet.

Flavonoid antioxidants may also reduce inflammation conditions like gout and arthritis.White fleshed dragon fruit

FlickrDragon Fruit May Reduce Cholesterol

Dragon fruit contains high amounts of both soluble and insoluble fibers. 100 grams of fresh dragon fruit will give you 1 milligram of fiber. When dried the content of fiber is higher at 10 grams for every 100 grams of powdered or dried fruit.

These fibers may improve the digestion system, which can reduce the amount of cholesterol from your diet in your body.

In a study on clinical research that was published in American Journal of Applied Sciences 6 (7) 1341-1346, 2009 edition taking a bite of the fruit known as red dragon for five weeks led to a remarkable reduction in cholesterol levels.

Prebiotic Action of Dragon Fruit

In accordance with the research from Food Chemistry (June Edition 2010) The fiber found in dragon fruit is composed mostly of the oligosaccharides. The fiber is not digested by the stomach but serves as a prebiotic, which aids to increase the production of lactobacilli as well as Bifidobacteria. Both are healthy bacteria.

If taken in the correct quantity, these microorganisms help with digestion and help keep the immune system healthy.

Dragon Fruit Protein, Carbohydrates, and Calories

100 grams of dragon fruit contains around 2.0 grams of protein, and 9 g of carbs that is around 33% and 44 percent of the daily value, respectively.

Pitaya is also low in calories, with only 60 calories, or 3 percent of your daily requirement.

This is a good thing when you’re engaged in a weight-loss program.

Dragon Fruit Vitamins & Minerals

Dragon fruit contains a significant amount of Vitamin C 100 grams of the fruit provides 500mg of Vitamin C. Also, the fruit has Vitamin A B1, E, but in lesser amounts.

The mineral content of dragon fruit comprise a high amount of magnesium, potassium, zinc as well as Phosphorus. In lesser quantities, it contains iron, calcium as well as copper.

With all these advantages, dragon fruits can be a full meal on its own.

Refer to this table for a detailed description of the minerals and vitamins composition.

Dragon Fruit Nutrition Facts

NutrientsNutritional Value per 100gHealth Benefits
Protein2.0 gIn order to build and repair tissues, make hormones, enzymes, and help the body in releasing energy
Calcium5.7mgTo ensure strong, healthy bones
Potassium57mgAids in the metabolism of carbohydrate, and helps regulate blood pressure. heart health
Magnesium28mgThe body’s temperature is controlled as well as detoxification and energy production
Ascorbic Acid (Vit C)500mgImprove immune system strength, heals cuts and bruises faster.
Vitamin E106 ugProtection against toxin. Thins the blood and aids in hair and skin maintenance
Phosphorus23mgTo form tissue
Retinol (Vit A)20 ugFor detoxification of the body, skin health and improved night vision
Iron3.4mgRed blood cell production and to provide energy for the body
Copper31 ugFor a strong bone, tissues and thyroid gland
Zinc14mgImproves brain function and can help reduce appetite
Thiamine (Vit B1)48.9 ugAids in the production of energy and in the process of metabolizing carbohydrates
Lycopene14.35 mgAids in keeping the body healthy and guards against damages caused by free radicals

Dragon Fruit and Pregnancy

Fruits during pregnancy are healthy and a red dragon fruit that is full of mineral and vitamins fiber, fat acids can be beneficial for a woman who is pregnant as well as her unborn child.

One of its many advantages is the iron content which is crucial for pregnant women and decreases the chance of anemia. Folates are also contained that are vital in the creation of red blood cells.

Dragon fruits are also high in fiber and may provide relief from constipation.

Based on the study conducted by A. Widyaningsih and A. Widyaningsih. It is safe for women who are pregnant to consume dragon fruit. It is delicious fresh , or in your mixed fruit salad in a juice or in smoothies.Pitaya, or dragon fruit tree in flowering stage

Eran Finkle, CC BY 2.0 via Flickr.comIs Dragon Fruit Stem Edible and Nutritional?

Surprisingly, according to the research done of the University Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia the stem of the dragon fruit is able to be powdered and eaten as it has a high nutritional content.

Dragon Fruit Stem Benefits

This study concluded that early root of red dragon fruits contains higher nutritional value than the mature stem.

Dragon Fruit Taste

Dragon fruit is distinctive and exotic, but its taste is often boring and bland. It’s not fiery or powerful like its name. The red flesh variety is however, sweeter.

Dragon Fruit Seed contains Omega-3 & Omega-9

The flesh is a pleasant texture, with tiny seeds throughout similar to kiwi fruit. Do not be intimidated by the tiny seeds, as they are nutritious and edible. The seeds are a source of natural oils and fat-soluble acids that are in the form the oleic acid and linoleic acid (Omega-3 and Omega-9) that are beneficial for cardiovascular health.A way to eat dragon fruit is cut in two, then scoop the flesh out with the help of a spoon

iddiride, CC BY 2.0 via Flickr.comHow to Eat Dragon Fruit

You can slice the ice cube in half and scoop it out, or cut into quarters, peel the skin and serve it on a platter. It is more enjoyable if you chill it. Some people include a small amount of lime juice to enhance the flavor.

It is also possible to slice it in cubes and use it in your fruit salad mix.

Dragon Fruit Juice, Sorbet, and Smoothie

If you want something new, try it in the form of dragon fruit juice sorbet or a smoothie.

  • To make the juice of dragon fruit cut the fruit in two pieces, then scoop out the pulp, and mix it. It is possible to add sugar or ginger, honey, or lemon juice if you wish. Make sure to add water to the consistency you desire.
  • For sorbet made of dragon fruit similarly, blend the pulp of the dragon fruit together with lime juice (and orange juice – if desired) until it is the mixture is smooth. Place it in your ice cream maker. then freeze.
  • To make a dragon fruit smoothie make sure to freeze the scooped fruit pulp. If you’re prepared to prepare the drink, pour in your frozen pulp of dragon fruits, mix in the milk (or yogurt) and blend. It is also possible to add other fruits to the dragon fruit smoothie like mango, pineapple, banana, mango, etc.

Dragon Fruit Skin

The skin of the skin of the dragon fruit, but in certain Southeast Asian countries, the skin is picked and consumed on its own or in salad. Based on research conducted done by an academic from the Faculty of Chemical Engineering and Natural Resources The skin or peel is very high in flavonoids that are beneficial for anti-inflammatory, anti-tumor and antiviral benefits.

Dragon Fruit Fun Facts

1. Dragon Fruit flower blooms only at night , and lasts for only one night. Pollination must occur during that night to allow it to produce fruit.

2. Draco fruit trees when kept in good condition, will last for more than a hundred years.

How to Choose a Ripe Dragon Fruit

Dragon fruit is generally mature and ready for eating. If you push on it using your fingers and the it expands some, it’s a good choice for eating. If it’s too soft, then it’s over-ripe , and the flesh of the dragonfruit could be too squishy. If it’s very hard and firm, you must take it off for a few days to allow it to mature.

Don’t keep it for too longor it will become too soft. If you’re not ready to eat it right now then put it in the refrigerator. It should last for up to two weeks in the fridge.

Dragon fruit that is free of any blemishes usually costs more. I’ve noticed that the quality and flavor of the flesh of the dragon fruit differs between those that have and without blemishes to be different. Also, don’t waste your money!

However, do not purchase the fruit if it is covered in flaws or blemishes because it could be too ripe. Another indication of ripe dragon fruit is dry and brown edges of its ‘leaves.

Where to Buy Dragon Fruit

Dragon fruits are currently found in the majority of supermarkets. You can also explore your luck at the Asian food market that is available in your region.

The season for growing traditionally runs between June and December, so there is enough time indulge in these exotic fruits.

Buy Dragon Fruit Online

If you’re still having trouble getting dragon fruits in your region be patient because it’s also available online, however, you’ll need to purchase huge quantities of them!Yellow Dragon fruit, or Yellow Pitaya that has white flesh

Fibonacci, GFDL via Wikipedia CommonsYellow Skin Dragon Fruit or Yellow Pitaya

Although this article is focusing on the red dragon variety of fruit however, it is not comprehensive without comparative information on these two types.

In the beginning, the dragon fruit plant is yellow and requires a lengthy time to develop and then harvest. Based on the conditions of its growth it will produce four and six cycles of fruit each year, which is similar to the Red Skin variety.

This fruit has a smaller size, but is more sweet in flavor. The method to eat the fruit is the same as its red skinned cousin. Also, because it’s sweeter, Yellow Pitaya is a superior juice drink.

While it is cultivated primarily because of its yellow fruits but the flower also can also be used for commercial purposes. It’s a spectacular flower and is possibly the largest cacti plant in the world.

Yellow surface of Dragon Fruit is native to the northern regions of South America and is not typically cultivated in South East Asia, yet.

More FAQs on Dragon Fruits

Here are some of the most frequently-asked questions regarding dragon fruit:

Is Dragon Fruit a Superfood?

Superfoods are food items with rich nutritional content, containing lots of minerals, vitamins, as well as antioxidants, and are extremely low in calories. Dragon fruit, which has high nutrition and low calories, has been awarded the title of a superfood.

Is Dragon Fruit Good for Weight Loss?

Dragon fruit, which weighs around 100 grams It has a calorie count of just 60 calories and is suitable to help you lose weight. It is also lower in sugar and carbohydrates than other tropical fruit.

Is Dragon Fruit Good for Your Skin?

Dragon fruit is great for skin since it is high with Vitamin C. It is possible to remove acne by applying a paste on the area affected. It also helps treat sunburns and help keep your skin hydrated. It also increases collagen production to ensure glowing, healthy skin.

Is Dragon Fruit Good for Your Hair?

The niacin in dragon fruit increases blood flow to provide nourishment to the hair follicles and scalp. The best method to get the most benefit is to give your hair a massage using the paste of dragon fruit. It’s also great for those who often color treat and treatment their hair chemically.

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