Is Pineapple High in Sugar?
Pineapple season is upon us, and we couldn’t be happier! A symbol of hospitality, welcome and prosperity the world over, this sweet-and-juicy tropical summer fruit is as good for you as it is delicious. If you’ve only ever eaten the canned variety, you’re missing out – the amazing flavor fresh Paradise Pineapples from Pittman & Davis leaves preserved pineapple in the dust!
Here are some answers to common questions about pineapple:
Where Do Pineapples Grow?
There can be some confusion over the question, where do pineapples come from? Although the fruit has a strong association with Hawaii, it is not native to the Hawaiian Islands. Pineapples can be traced back to their origin in South America, and are linked together with Hawaii because of the large pineapple industry that was built in Hawaii in the early 1900s.
Hawaii’s pineapple industry evolved over the fact that the islands’ conditions happened to be just right for this tropical plant: lots of sunny days, temperatures between 65ºF and 95ºF, and sandy, loamy soil.
The Hawaiian pineapple industry declined during the 1980s due to high labor and land costs. Where are pineapples grown today? Most on the world market come from Costa Rica.
What Do Pineapples Grow on?
Pineapples don’t grow on trees, ya know!
Seriously, they don’t – pineapples are aggregate fruits, which means they form from a cluster of flowers (about 100-200) that are fused together. One pineapple will grow on the central stalk of a single, large “mother” plant with sword-like leaves. The plant dies after producing a pineapple, but first it produces a sucker that grows into another pineapple plant (pineapples do not grow from seeds).
Is Pineapple Good For You?
For all its sweetness, one cup of pineapple chunks contains only 74 calories, making it a great, low-calorie snack. And a healthy one – pineapples are also fat-free, cholesterol-free and low in sodium, and they’re rich in vitamins, enzymes and antioxidants. Pineapple has also been shown to boost the immune system, help build strong bones and aid indigestion.
Here’s a quick rundown on just a few of many pineapple health benefits:
- Vitamin C: Pineapple contains a significant amount of vitamin C, a water-soluble antioxidant that fights cell damage, boosts the immune system, and helps fight heart disease.
- Manganese: One cup of raw pineapple chunks contains 2.6 mg of manganese, a mineral that’s important for developing strong bones and connective tissue.
- Fiber: Like many other fruits and vegetables, pineapple contains dietary fiber, which is essential in keeping you regular and in keeping your intestines healthy.
- Bromelain: Unlike many other fruits and veggies, pineapple contains significant amounts of bromelain, an enzyme that breaks down protein, which may help with digestion in treating osteoarthritis.
Pineapples do contain sugar, though – about 14 grams per cup, which can easily fulfill your daily allotment of carbs. Diabetics particularly should consume pineapple in moderation, and it’s best for everyone to stick with fresh over canned pineapple.