Guavas are tropical trees which originated in the region of Central America. The fruits of guava tree are light green or yellowish in color from outside with an oval shape and it also contains edible seeds in it. Leaves of the guava tree are also used as a potent herbal tea and even its extract is used in several supplement forms.
Several evidence-based health benefits of guava have been reported since, guava as the fruit is an amazingly rich source of vitamin C, antioxidants, potassium, and fiber.(1)
It is a potent nutrient with many benefits; from its leaves to the fruit, it is full of various health benefits. The impact of eating guava on health ranges from helping with blood sugar levels, digestion, heart health, weight loss properties, immunity booster, and much more.
How Healthy are Guavas To Add Up In A Daily Diet?
Daily diet must be a properly balanced one to keep away all the diseases. Adding guavas to the daily diet is a good idea since the fruit is enriched with several potent nutrients. Several different varieties of guava are cultivated these days and are readily available as well. However, the common guava or apple guava having the botanical name as Psidium guajava L. is well planted worldwide. The taste of ripe guavas also varies from sweet to juicy tangy, tart or sour at times.
Eating guavas daily adds up an abundance of nutrition like high fiber, magnesium, and potassium content along with vitamin A, C, and B9. Guavas are a rich source of energy.
Over time, several research studies have linked up guavas with the prevention of type 2 diabetes. As per a study, guavas help in regulating as well as lowering blood glucose levels.(2) Since they have a very low glycemic index, this makes it a healthy diabetic food and even for those who are at risk of developing diabetes. It is in a way no less than a natural tool to prevent type 2 diabetes and even research studies have supportive data for the same although extensive research is still ongoing on several aspects of it.
Glycemic index of guava is very low being 12-24 in comparison to other available fruit options and glycemic load ranges between 1.3 – 5, which is again low which makes it a super fruit for diabetes.(2)
Effects of Guavas on Blood Sugar
Choosing what to eat and how to eat depends upon an individual. However, opting for the best and nourishment rich natural fruits like guavas fully loaded with hypoglycemic properties is the best. This is why guava helps in preventing blood sugar spikes. Other than this, guava also has certain medicinal properties which helps to keep the blood sugar levels low.(3)
As per certain evident data collected in several research studies, guava can actually improve the glucose control in the blood by its hypoglycemic properties. Some animal studies have also revealed the potent controlling impact of guava leaf over the blood sugar levels and insulin resistance.(4)
The guava tree is fully loaded with benefits for diabetic people or those at risk of developing it. Even the leaf is used as an herbal infused tea since it helps controlling blood sugar levels. As per a study, consuming guava leaf tea after a meal helped in controlling sugar spikes in the blood due to its hypoglycemic effect which lasted for nearly two hours.(5) Guava extract is another source of potential anti-diabetic effects.
It is for all these benefits that guava is considered as a poor man’s apple mainly in the tropical as well as sub-tropical countries. This fruit is eaten raw even without peeling.
However, as per a study, guava fruit when eaten without peel is more effective in lowering blood sugar as well as triglycerides, and cholesterol levels in the blood.(3,5)
Moreover, guavas can be consumed in the form of drinks or some fusion desert or pudding or raw for the best benefits. Adding it to a fruit salad or a diet salad of a choice with personalized garnish can enhance the benefits of diet to another level. Consuming one to two guava fruits daily can actually help in keeping cholesterol, sugar levels, and weight in check. Its pharmacological effects are not just confined to keeping sugar levels in control but also keeping the heart healthy by keeping bad cholesterols in control.(5)
Nutritional Constituents of Guava
Guava, besides its several hypoglycemic benefits, is good for digestion and healthy for the skin. It is recommended to consume 2 cups of guava serving every day, especially, if a person is trying to regulate blood sugar levels.
Guava contains several nourishing constituents which provide various health benefits. Guava has nearly 13g of total carbs which further split to give 8g sugar and 5g fiber.
Besides carbs, guava also possess proteins of nearly 2g per fruit.
Some of its main constituents include:
Carbohydrates further break down to give glucose, which is utilized by the body cells as an energy source for various metabolic activities. The glucose reaches the body cells via the bloodstream. After eating anything which contains carbohydrates, the blood glucose level increases as the carbs get converted to glucose. The sugar content further metabolizes quickly and reaches the floating bloodstream rapidly reaching out to every body cell.
The fiber content present in guava is not quickly digested by the body but it slows down the carbs metabolism and digestion process. Further, dietary fiber passes out from the body without affecting the bloodstream. Fibrous foods not only makes a person feel full but also helps in the digestion process although they themselves do not get completely digested in the human body.
As mentioned, guava has nearly 2 g protein per fruit. So adding such relishing healthy fruit to diet also benefits the body with protein content. Generally, by adding up 5 g or more amount of protein in any carbohydrate meal can slow down the digestion process of the body. It further builds a gradual blood glucose level preventing a sudden spike of sugar levels post digestion in the blood.(4) This can be done by adding foods like lean protein cheese, salmon in the normal carb diet. However, guava in itself does that because it has a certain amount of protein content in it to trigger that action. Fresh fruits like guavas are rich in natural sugar which helps in minimizing the overall carbohydrate diet effects on the body by controlling high-level sugar spikes in the body.
Guavas are delicious and incredibly loaded with nutrients. This fruit in itself is low in calories but is loaded with fiber and has protein to some extent. It is an excellent fruit for a healthy diabetic diet due to the hypoglycemic effects it possesses.
Guava extract is also known to help with heart health, digestion, hypoglycemic effects, and boost up the immune system as well. Hence, intake of guava on a regular basis is an absolute must. Taking guava in the raw form or in several contemporary foods is the choice of an individual. Several different drinks like juices, smoothies, shakes, and even cocktails is readily available in the market today with the taste and benefits of guavas. However, guavas serve the purpose of nourishment at its best if eaten raw in the actual fruit form.
- Díaz‐de‐Cerio E, Verardo V, Gómez‐Caravaca AM, Fernández‐Gutiérrez A, Segura‐Carretero A. (2017, Apr) Health effects of Psidium guajava L. leaves: An Overview of the Last Decade. International Journal of Molecular Science. 18(4): 897. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5412476/
- Kumari, Suchitra et. al. (2016, Sep) Effect Of Guava In Blood Glucose And Lipid Profile In Healthy Human Subjects: A Randomized Controlled Study. Journal Of Clinical & Diagnostic Research. 10(9): BC04 – BC07. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5071920/
- Oh, Won Keun et al. (2005, Jan) Antidiabetic Effects Of Extracts From Psidium Guajava. Journal Of Ethnopharmacology. 96(3): 411-415. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15619559
- Deguchi, Yoriko, and Kouji Miyazaki. (2010) Anti-Hyperglycemic And Anti-Hyperlipidemic Effects Of Guava Leaf Extract. Nutrition & Metabolism. 7: 9. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2831039/
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