Arguably, kiwis are one of the best-loved fruits around the world thanks to both their sweet/tangy taste and their gorgeous appearance, especially when sliced.
You might be one of those who enjoy eating kiwis for their amazing taste and also for their eye-pleasing appearance. Eye-pleasing indeed with its vibrant green flesh and tiny black seeds.
However, the problem is you may change your mind about eating kiwi after reading this article. Because the potential health benefits of kiwifruit can outweigh its eye-pleasing appearance and amazing taste, that alone can be your principal reason to eat and enjoy it.
In this article, we are going to discover the top 8 health benefits of Kiwifruit.
But, before diving into these health benefits, let’s briefly look at kiwi’s origin, history and also the leading producers and the nutrient facts of kiwifruit that make this fruit one of the healthiest foods on earth.
History of Kiwifruit
The other name used for kiwi is “Chinese gooseberry”. Actually, this name was the first-given name for kiwifruit in New Zealand.
According to a story; The reason that people called kiwi “Chinese gooseberry” was about this fruit grew up in wild in China before being introduced to New Zealand by a school teacher.
As of 1950, New Zealand started exporting kiwifruit to the U.S.A. However, allegedly its name ” Chinese Gooseberry” induced some problems in the American market and among American consumers.
Therefore, in 1959, the New Zealander exporters decided to name the fruit ” kiwifruit “. The name comes from New Zealand’s National bird – the Kiwi bird – that is said to resemble kiwifruit.
Availability of Kiwi
Since kiwi can be grown in different places around the world, they are mostly available in four-season in supermarkets around the world.
Even though kiwi’s name is mostly associated with New Zealand; the U.S.A, Turkey, Greece, Italy, Iran, and China are also the leading producers of kiwi, according to the report.
Nutritional Value Of Kiwifruit
Many of us have heard that kiwifruit contains a high amount of vitamin C and is therefore healthy. But, it would be unfair to limit the health benefits of kiwi to those associated with vitamin C.
Kiwi provides various essential nutrients to the human body. The most famous one is vitamin C. But, kiwifruit is also rich in Vitamin K, vitamin E, potassium, folate, calcium, beta-carotene, dietary fibre and phosphorous.
Health Benefits of Kiwi
As containing many essential nutrients and components which play a different and significant role in bodily functions, it is safe to say that kiwifruit offers many health benefits to the human body.
Without further ado, let’s begin to enumerate one by one these health benefits of kiwi.
1- Contributes to Skin Quality
Especially women who take care of their skin must be familiar with the relationship between collagen and skin health.
Collagen has many important roles in skin health and can combat several skin conditions mainly by increasing skin elasticity and hydration.
Since kiwi is a perfect source of vitamin C, which is essential for the production of collagen, this fruit can work wonders for your skin.
Indeed, other foods that contain vitamin C would provide the same effect. However, what makes kiwi special is its peculiarly high vitamin C amount. A kiwi that weighs 100 gm can meet almost all your daily vitamin C needs.
Moreover, kiwifruit contains vitamin E which may reduce the damage to your skin done by UV rays, according to Healthline.
2- May Prevent Constipation
It is normal to suffer from digestive problems from time to time. One of these problems is constipation. Even though it is normal to experience this digestive issue a couple of times throughout the year, this risk can decrease further with kiwi consumption.
Kiwi’s benefits to digestion are not limited to constipation though, this fruit can improve digestion in many ways thanks to its high dietary fibre content. In addition to fibre, proteolytic and actinidin too, which are available in kiwi, can boosts digestion.
3- Helps Blood Pressure
Since high blood pressure can cause life-threatening conditions such as heart disease( heart attack – heart failure ) and stroke, it is vital to keep blood pressure at a comfortable level.
According to experts; Kiwi is one of the most effective foods that can help you manage your blood pressure. This blood pressure-lowering effect of kiwi stems from its potassium, vitamin C content and the bioactive substances, that exist in kiwi.
In a scientific study, researchers from the Oslo University Hospital reported that; participants who ate 3 kiwis every day for 2 months experienced lower blood pressure than those who ate 1 apple in the same period. And, researchers attribute kiwi’s effectiveness in lowering blood pressure to its bioactive substances.
Additionally, potassium exists in the kiwi fruit and can reduce blood pressure by relaxing the blood vessels.
4- Supports Immune System
Your immune system is the first and foremost defence system of your body against the germs that cause many illnesses. Therefore, keeping the immune system powerful means keeping yourself away from infectious diseases.
As noted in the scientific report, vitamin C is one of the most significant components of the immune system. And, as we mentioned earlier, kiwi is among the best sources of vitamin C. To be more precise, 100 gm of kiwifruit can meet your daily vitamin C requirement.
Other essential nutrients that exist in kiwi also support your immune system. Here is a study that reveals the strong correlation between kiwi and the immune system.
5- Good For Your Eyes
Macular degeneration – most common in people over the age of 50 – is an eye condition that leads people to vision loss.
Experts note that regular kiwi consumption can significantly decrease the risk of this eye disease. Because, the centre of the macula – where the disease starts- is made of lutein, zeaxanthin and beta-carotene which all are available in kiwifruit.
Therefore, experts suggest that kiwifruit can rebuild the (damaged) macula with its lutein, zeaxanthin and beta-carotene content.
What’s more, kiwi can provide a handsome amount of copper which is one of the necessary substances for the healthy nervous system, which means healthy functions of the retina.
6- May Increase Sleep Quality
Even though there is not enough evidence that enables us to say ” kiwi consumption definitely improves sleep quality”, some studies suggest that kiwi consumption may help people overcome sleep problems.
In a study carried out with 24 adults, researchers found that the participants’ sleep quality significantly increased as a result of eating 2 kiwis before bed for a month.
Researchers think that the kiwi’s serotonin content is the reason why the sleep quality of the participants improved.
In fact, we published a comprehensive article on this website, which examines the relationship between kiwi and sleep.
7- May Reduce Blood Clot Risk
Blood clotting is an important function of the human body that prevents us from too much bleeding. However, sometimes, too many blood clots form in veins/arteries and cause serious health problems such as heart attack and stroke.
People who have the risk of blood clots may be prescribed certain blood thinner drugs, one of which is aspirin.
According to scientists, kiwi can be an alternative and natural blood thinner. In a study, researchers found that consuming 2 to 3 kiwis daily for a month decreased platelet aggregation (blood clotting) by %18 in the participants.
8- May Prevent Cancer
No one knows the exact cause of cancer. However, scientists point out many risk factors for cancer.
According to scientists; free radicals pave the way for cancer by damaging human DNA. Therefore, removing these free radicals from the body can potentially reduce the risk of cancer.
Kivi can help you banish these free radicals from your body thanks to its rich antioxidant content. Furthermore, kiwi’s high vitamin C content can neutralize free radicals, thus may lower the risk of cancer caused by free radicals.
Tarkan is an experienced health writer ( currently more than 600 articles ) and also the founder of this website namely www.neededforhealth.com. His expertise in health stems from in-depth medical research and knowledge which he obtained over the course of many years.
Tarkan enjoys sharing factual knowledge on health, psychology and nutrition. He always aims to deliver evidence-based recommendations, provide links to related scientific studies.