The papaya is the fruit of the plant Carica papaya, in the genus Carica. It is a large tree-like plant, the single stem growing from 5 to 10 meters tall, with spirally arranged leaves confined to the top of the trunk; the lower trunk is conspicuously scarred where leaves and fruit were borne.
The fruit is ripe when it feels soft (like a ripe avocado or a bit softer) and its skin has attained an amber to orange hue. The fruit's taste is vaguely similar to pineapple and peach, although much milder without the tartness.
The ripe fruit is usually eaten raw, without the skin or seeds. The unripe green fruit of papaya can be eaten cooked, usually in curries, salads and stews.
Green papaya fruit and the tree's latex are both rich in an enzyme called papain, a protease which is useful in tenderizing meat and other proteins. Its ability to break down tough meat fibers was utilized for thousands of years by indigenous Americans. It is included as a component in powdered meat tenderizers, and is also marketed in tablet form to remedy digestive problems.
Papain is also popular (in countries where it grows) as a topical application in the treatment of cuts, rashes, stings and burns. Papain ointment is commonly made from fermented papaya flesh, and is applied as a gel-like paste. The fruit can be directly applied topically to skin sores.
The fruit can also be made a paste and applied to the face and the whole body. It helps to clear blemishes and pimple marks. It also leaves your skin healthy and smooth.
Women who have irregular periods can consume papaya on a regular basis. Papaya helps in regularizing the menstrual cycle.
The black seeds are edible and have a sharp, spicy taste. They are sometimes ground up and used as a substitute for black pepper. In some parts of Asia the young leaves of papaya are steamed and eaten like spinach. The seeds are anti-inflammatory and analgesic, and they are used to treat stomachache and fungal infection.
For a regular BM-bowel movement consuming papaya on a daily basis has shown tremendous improvement in the BM. People with IBS-Irritable bowel syndrome can also benefit from consuming this fruit.
Diabetic patients can consume this fruit as it is very low in sugars.
The mature (ripe) fruit treats ring worms
Lowers High Blood Pressure
Green fruits treat high blood pressure if consumed on a regular basis and also avoid salt.
Papaya is used as an aphrodisiac since ancient times.
Leaves of Papaya
The leaves are used as a heart tonic, analgesic, and to treat stomachache.
The roots are used as an analgesic
Papaya, raw Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy 40 kcal 160 kJ
Carbohydrates 9.81 g
-Dietary fiber1.8 g
Fat 0.14 g
Protein 0.61 g
Vitamin A equiv. 55 μg 6%
β-carotene 276 μg 3%
Thiamin (Vit.B1) 0.04 mg 3%
Riboflavin (Vit.B2) 0.05 mg 3%
Niacin (Vit.B3) 0.338 mg 2%
Vitamin B6 0.1 mg 8%
Vitamin C 61.8 mg 103%
Calcium 24 mg 2%
Iron 0.10 mg 1%
Magnesium 10 mg 3%
Phosphorus 5 mg 1%
Potassium 257 mg 5%
Sodium 3 mg 0%
Pregnant woman and woman who are trying to conceive can avoid this fruit for that time period. Women in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and other parts of the world have long used papaya as a folk remedy for contraception. Unripe papaya is especially effective in large amounts or high doses.
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