We're used to hearing that tasty and healthy rarely go together, but these tropical fruit easily prove otherwise. In rain forests and tropical climates around the world grow treasures rich in both nutrients and taste - meet 8 easy to come by exotic fruit that really pack a healthy punch!
Remember: Consume these fruit in their raw form, not as dried fruit (high in sugar) or as canned.
This fruit comes to us straight from the Amazonas area and was brought to the rest of the world by hikers from other countries. The asai is a type of palm tree with a small purple fruit that is considered a 'antioxidant bomb'. The extremely high level of antioxidants the asai contains have made it a very sought after anti-aging tool, in addition to its exotic taste. Additionally, the asai is a fruit that is rich in protein and contains Omega 6 and Omega 9 fatty acids. Due to its low sugar content, it is also safe for diabetes patients to eat.
The guava mainly grows in the Caribbeans and the nations of South and Central America. In addition to vitamins, potassium and fiber, the guava is also a rich source of potassium, an element needed for a variety of biological processes in the body. The guava contains anti-bacterial materials as well as substances that lower the blood sugar levels. It is also known to relax clenched muscles and aids the digestive system.
The mango may not be so exotic in all places, but it originally comes from the rain forests of India and China. Like other tropical fruit, the mango is rich in vitamins A and C, potassium and fiber, as well as antioxidants. The mango fruit also contains a lot of iron, crucial for burning energy and every action the body takes. Almost every part of the mango tree can be used for medicinal purposes.
This wax-textured, star shaped fruit is not very common, but can still be found in specialized fruit shops. It comes from the tropical climates of South East Asia. Each fruit is about 40 calories and is a great source of vitamin C essential for the immune system, especially during the winter, as well as a fantastic source of vitamin A, which is known to improve sight and skin function.
The hairy fruit with the sweet & sour taste comes from South China. The kiwi is among the fruit with the highest Vitamin C content in the world, twice more than oranges. It is a great source of magnesium, essential for the heart and blood systems, and also a fat-free source of vitamin E, which is rare in fruit. It is also known as a great natural remedy for the flu and the various parts of the plant (including the fruit), aid in the battle against joint pain, kidney stones and various types of cancer.
From Central America comes this beautiful orange fruit, packed full of great nutrients. It has a unique enzyme called papain which helps to disassemble protein and helps in renewing tissue. In traditional Chinese medicine, the papaya is a remedy for constipation. It also contains a lot of folic acid, which helps keep our DNA, bone marrow and blood cells intact.
Passionfruit (aka passiflora)
This fruit has become more popular in recent years, and some even grow it in their back yard for its vitamin A and C content , for its potassium levels and its fiber. It is only about 16 calories a fruit and is known to have great relaxation effects, and so we recommend eating it before sleep to treat insomnia. It is also chock full of antioxidants.
Like many of the others on this list, the pineapple originally comes from the tropical areas of South America - mainly Brazil, Bolivia and Paraguay. The pineapple also contains a lot of vitamin A and C, but what's special about it is the bromelain - an enzyme that has strong anti-bacterial properties and is essential to the digestive system. It is even used in mainstream medicine, but is best taken directly from raw food.