With large leaves and a height of 3 feet or more, pineapples grow on a plant that is grounded with a thick stem. The surface of the fruit is scaly and irregularly shaped, with rough bark. Pineapple was named after the pinecone, because of its similar appearance. The flesh of the fruit is sweet and yellow, and very aromatic. Since 2000, most of the fresh pineapples sold in Europe and the United States are hybrid versions, which have lower acidity levels. Once a pineapple is harvested it will no longer ripen, so it is best to wait to harvest the fruit until after it has ripened.
WHERE IT CAN BE FOUND:
Caribbean, Central America, South America, Africa, the South Pacific, Philippines, Asia, Hawaii
PROPERTIES AND USE:
Anti-inflammatory, anti-aging, tonic, and
used to treat cancer, digestion problems,
sore throat, sinus infection, bruises, colds, poor immune system function, cancer, prostate conditions, sun spots, gout, arthritis, hay fever, obesity, colitis
It is best to eat pineapple fresh, because
heat deactivates the enzymatic properties of bromelain. Cut off the top and the scaly bark, and the flesh of the fruit can be cut away from the hard inner core and eaten. Another way to enjoy the medicinal benefits is by drinking fresh, unheated pineapple juice. In the Maya lands, going on a 10 to 30-day pineapple juice cleanse is said to reduce the appearance of sunspots and detoxify the liver.
DETOX SMOOTHIE Makes 1 serving This smoothie is so delicious, it’s hard to
believe it’s medicinal.
2 slices pineapple, chopped 1/2 papaya, cubed
1/2 small apple, chopped
2 tablespoons plain yogurt Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 mint sprig
Ground cinnamon, for garnish
• Blend all ingredients except the cinnamon.
• Before serving, sprinkle with a bit of cinnamon, which will add flavor and a boost of iron, calcium, and manganese.
Drink in place of breakfast.