Kiwifruit Health Benefits
What is Kiwifruit?
Kiwi fruit, also known simply as "kiwi" or "kiwifruit," is a small fruit with a fuzzy brown exterior and vibrant green flesh inside. It is oval in shape and has tiny black seeds spread throughout the flesh. The fruit has a unique and refreshing flavor that is often described as a combination of strawberries, bananas, and melons.
Kiwi fruit originated in China, specifically in the Yangtze River Valley. It was originally known as the Chinese gooseberry. In the early 20th century, seeds of the kiwi fruit were brought to New Zealand by missionaries. New Zealand's favorable climate and growing conditions allowed the fruit to thrive, and it was eventually cultivated and commercially grown there. As a result, New Zealand became the leading producer and exporter of kiwi fruit.
In the 1960s, to avoid conflicts with trade restrictions related to the term "gooseberry," the fruit was renamed "kiwifruit" as a marketing strategy, highlighting its resemblance to the kiwi bird, the national symbol of New Zealand. Since then, kiwi fruit has gained popularity worldwide and is now grown in various countries with suitable climates, including Italy, Chile, France, and the United States, among others.
Biggest Producers of Kiwifruit
The biggest growers of kiwifruit are:
China: China is the largest producer of kiwifruit in the world. It has favorable growing conditions and a long history of cultivating the fruit. The major kiwifruit-producing regions in China include Shaanxi, Sichuan, and Zhejiang.
Italy: Italy is one of the leading producers of kiwifruit globally. The country is known for its high-quality kiwis, particularly the Hayward variety. The main kiwifruit-growing regions in Italy are in the northern part of the country, such as Lazio, Veneto, and Emilia-Romagna.
New Zealand: Although New Zealand is not the largest producer, it has played a significant role in the global kiwifruit industry. New Zealand's kiwifruit industry began with the cultivation of the fruit in the early 20th century, and it remains an important exporter of kiwifruit, especially the Hayward variety.
Iran: Iran has become a major player in kiwifruit production in recent years. The country has suitable climatic conditions for kiwi cultivation and has been increasing its production and export of the fruit. The main kiwifruit-growing regions in Iran include Gilan, Mazandaran, and Fars provinces.
Greece: Greece is known for its high-quality kiwifruit, particularly the Actinidia deliciosa variety. The country has favorable Mediterranean climate conditions for kiwi cultivation. The major kiwifruit-growing regions in Greece are in the northern part of the country, including regions like Peloponnese and Thessaly.
Other notable kiwifruit-growing countries include Chile, France, South Korea, Japan, and the United States (primarily in California). The global demand for kiwifruit continues to grow, and new kiwifruit-growing regions are emerging in different parts of the world.
8 Kiwifruit Health Benefits
Kiwifruit is known for its numerous health benefits. Here are some of the key health benefits associated with consuming kiwifruit:
It's worth noting that individual health benefits may vary, and it's always a good idea to incorporate a variety of fruits and vegetables into your diet for overall well-being.
When is it best to east kiwifruit?
Kiwis typically reach their peak ripeness during the late summer and early autumn months in the northern hemisphere, specifically from August to October. The exact timing can vary depending on the specific variety and growing region. Kiwifruit are typically harvested when they are mature but still firm and allowed to ripen off the vine.
You can determine if a kiwifruit is ripe by gently pressing it. If it gives slightly under your touch and feels slightly soft, it is likely ripe and ready to eat. Overripe kiwifruit become mushy and may have a fermented taste, so it's best to eat them when they are at their ideal ripeness, neither too hard or too soft. Keep them refrigerated to prolong their shelf life.
Kiwifruit Bioactive Compounds
Kiwifruit contains several bioactive compounds that contribute to its health benefits. Here are some of the key bioactive compounds found in kiwifruit:
These bioactive compounds work synergistically to provide various health benefits associated with kiwifruit consumption. However, it's important to note that the concentration of these compounds can vary depending on the kiwifruit variety, ripeness, and growing conditions.
Kiwifruit Vitamins and Minerals
Kiwifruit is known for its impressive vitamin content. The chief vitamins found in kiwifruit include:
While these vitamins are the chief ones found in kiwifruit, it's worth noting that kiwifruit also contains trace amounts of other vitamins such as vitamin B6, folate, and vitamin E, which contribute to its overall nutritional profile.
Kiwifruit contains a variety of minerals and trace minerals. Here are some of the notable ones found in kiwifruit:
These minerals and trace minerals in kiwifruit contribute to its overall nutritional value and can support various physiological functions in the body.
Benefits of Eating Kiwi at Night
Eating kiwi at night may offer several potential benefits. Here are a few reasons why consuming kiwi before bedtime can be advantageous:
Kiwifruit Health Benefits – Sleep Promotion: Kiwi is known for its sleep-promoting properties. It contains several compounds that may help improve sleep quality, such as serotonin and antioxidants. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that aids in regulating sleep-wake cycles and promoting relaxation. Additionally, the antioxidants present in kiwi can help reduce oxidative stress, which can contribute to better sleep.
Kiwifruit Health Benefits – Melatonin Content: Kiwi is one of the few fruits that naturally contains melatonin, a hormone that regulates the sleep-wake cycle. Consuming kiwi before bed may increase melatonin levels in the body, helping to promote better sleep and regulate sleep patterns.
Kiwifruit Health Benefits – Fiber Content: Kiwi is a good source of dietary fiber. Consuming fiber-rich foods before bed can help promote satiety, keeping you feeling full for longer. This may prevent hunger pangs or disturbances during the night, potentially leading to a more restful sleep.
Kiwifruit Health Benefits – Nutrient Density: Kiwi is packed with essential nutrients, including vitamins C, E, K, and folate, as well as minerals like potassium and magnesium. Enjoying a kiwi as part of your evening routine can provide your body with these beneficial nutrients, supporting overall health and well-being.
Kiwifruit Health Benefits – Digestive Health: The fiber content in kiwi can aid digestion and promote regular bowel movements. Consuming kiwi at night may help maintain a healthy digestive system, preventing discomfort or disturbances that could disrupt sleep.
It's important to note that individual responses to kiwi or any food can vary. While kiwi may offer potential benefits for sleep, it's advisable to listen to your body and observe how it specifically affects you. If you have any specific concerns or dietary restrictions, it's best to consult with a healthcare professional or nutritionist.
About Eating Kiwifruit Skins
Every part of the kiwifruit is edible, including the skins. But watch out of you're prone to kidney stones as the skins contain oxalate. Find out more about this here.
Kiwifruit Culinary Uses
Kiwifruit is a versatile fruit that can be used in various culinary preparations. Here are some of the most popular culinary uses of kiwifruit:
These are just a few examples of the culinary uses of kiwifruit. Its versatility allows for creativity in incorporating it into a wide range of dishes and preparations.
Herbs, Spices, and Minerals
As with everything we eat, herbs and spices work optimally in the presence of the full complement of 75+ pure hydrophilic plant-derived minerals. See this page for a complete rundown of why we need ALL the minerals mother nature ought to give us with our foods. Unfortunately, if the herbs and spices are grown on mineral-deficient soils (most commercial farm soils are), they will also lack vital minerals.
Volcanic And Glacial Soils
Those fortunate to have fresh glacial or volcanic soils added to the soil in which their herbs grow can be certain that their herbs will contain many minerals now missing in most soils around the world.
Can We Add Minerals To Grow Bags?
Yes. Our Powdered Minerals contain 75+ minerals from 70-million-year-old Senonian compost extracted from the TRC mines in Utah. Simply add a spoonful of the powder to a watering can before watering the Grow Bag. You only need to do this once because plants take the minerals in trace amounts to be incorporated into their tissues. Think about tomato plants in greenhouses: mineral-rich, juicy tomatoes every time! But growing your own herbs is just as good.
It’ll be worthwhile experimenting: compare the growth and yields of herbs grown in soils with added powdered minerals with those in grow bags with ordinary compost. First, of course, you must adopt the scientific approach and use controls with various mineral dosages. Then repeat the experiment with other herbs. But one thing is for sure: eating mineral-rich herbs will mean you also get to benefit from the minerals.
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