Pineapple juice is an exotic drink that is made from squeezing the pulp of the tropical fruit. The most popularly sold variety of the fruit is the Smooth Cayenne, grown largely in sub-tropical regions. Commercially, the juice is sold in different forms since it is used to provide the base to various drinks, as it adds a sweet flavor.
It is often added to Sangria (wine). The Queens Cocktail, native to the New York City borough, has pineapple juice too, and so does the Brazilian Abacaxi cocktail, among others. Of course, it is widely drunk as a fresh juice. Pineapple juice is healthy, as it contains vitamins and minerals. It is considered a home remedy for digestive ailments. On the downside, you cannot drink pineapple juice every day, it can only be a refresher consumed once in a while, as is the case with all juices containing sugar and carbohydrates.
When ordering pineapple juice at a restaurant, ensure it does not contain added sugars as it could be processed with preservatives for storage, thereby decreasing the nutritional content. The best way of making pineapple juice is to make it at home. While keeping in mind the limited research conducted so far, here are some of its potential benefits.
An enzyme found in pineapple stem and pulp called bromelain is said to aid the breaking down of proteins. However, during the processing of pineapple juice, bromelain content is reduced, not providing this benefit. Instead of having the juice as a standalone, it can be added to a high-fiber diet with fruits and vegetables to improve digestion.
Bromelain is supposed to have a similar power as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) in treating inflammation, but without as many side effects. It is also used to treat trauma or surgery, pain and inflammation from a sports injury. However, research needs to be done on bromelain’s direct impact on inflammation.
Bromelain, as per some test-tube studies, may stimulate an immune response to bronchitis, pneumonia and sinusitis. However, it has to be used in addition to antibiotics. No research has been conducted exclusively on human beings, hence confirmation of these findings remain to be done.
So far, there is no research conducted on pineapple juice per se and its benefits on heart health, but a few test-tube studies say that bromelain reduces blood pressure and severity of cardiovascular conditions.