|Origin||The pineapple is native to southern Brazil and Paraguay where wild relatives occur. It was spread by the Indians up through South and Central America to the West Indies before Columbus arrived.|
|Description||The pineapple looks very similar to the pinecone, very popular all over the world for its sweet and tart flavour.|
|Growth Habitat||The pineapple is a tropical or near-tropical plant. Full sun needed for good growth and sweetness.|
|Foliage||Long pointed leaves 55-180cm, usually needled-tipped, spiral tightly round a short stalk. Green or striped with red, yellow or ivory down the middle or near the margins. A small crown of short leaves grows on top of the pineapple fruit.|
|Pineapple is an excellent source of vitamin C and manganese. It is also a good source of vitamin B1, vitamin B6, folate, copper and dietary fiber.|
|Health Benefits||This fruit acts like a digestive as well as a natural anti-inflammatory fruit. It contains a group of sulfurs that aids digestion.
Bromelain present in fresh pineapples helps reduce swelling in inflammatory conditions like gout, arthritis, sore throat and acute sinusitis. The recovery time for surgeries and injuries is also reduced.
Enzymes in pineapples are used successfully for treating rheumatoid arthritis.
It also speeds up tissue repair associated with general surgery, diabetic ulcers and injuries.
This fruit also reduces blood clotting and aids in removing plaque from the arterial walls.
People suffering from angina can consume pineapple because it enhances blood circulation in narrowed arteries.
Pineapples are also used to cure throat infections and bronchitis.
This fruit is very efficient in treating anemia and arteriosclerosis.
Also, it is an excellent cerebral toner.
Pineapple aids in building healthy bones.
As pineapple is rich in vitamin C, it is good for oral health. It also prevents periodontal disease and gingivitis.
|Commercial Uses||Pineapples can be eaten fresh, in fruit salads, vegetable salads, and pasta dishes, and in cooking such as cakes, jams, chutneys, puddings, cooked with meat dishes such as ham or in pizzas. It was found to arouse appetite; the unripe fruit was effective as diuretic and contraceptive, an in the expulsion of intestinal worms. Some scientists found in its leaves possible cure for venereal diseases. The crown or leaves of the plant also serve as raw material for wallpaper and furnishings. The waste from canning can be further processed into animal feed. In the Philippines, the fibers from the pineapple leaves are used to make a unique, woven fabric. Bromelain extracted from the stem and fruit is used as a meat tenderizer and also used for those suffering from osteoarthritis, acute inflammation and sports injuries.|