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Nutritional breakdown of papaya
Papayas are an excellent source of vitamin C and one single medium fruit provides 224% of your daily needs. Papayas are a good source of folate, vitamin A, magnesium, copper, pantothenic acid and fiber.3 They also have B vitamins, alpha and beta carotene, lutein and zeaxanthan, vitamin E, calcium, potassium, vitamin K and lycopene, the powerful antioxidant most commonly associated with tomatoes.
How to incorporate more papaya into your diet
You can incorporate more papaya into your diet by making a tropical fruit salad or adding a few slices to your favorite dish.
Look for fresh papayas with reddish orange skin that are soft to the touch. One of the best ways to enjoy a papaya is as is. Just cut like a melon, scoop out the seeds and enjoy. The seeds of the papaya are actually edible, but have a bitter, peppery taste.
Make a tropical fruit salad with fresh papaya, pineapple and mango.
Muddle papaya into your glass of lemonade, iced tea or water for a burst of fresh fruity flavor.
Make a fresh salsa with papaya, mango, jalapeno, red peppers and chipotle pepper. Use as a topper for your favorite fish tacos.
Add a few slices of frozen papaya to your smoothies. Combine with pineapple juice, half a frozen banana and Greek yogurt for a sweet tropical treat.
Potential health risks of consuming papaya
If you have a latex allergy, you may also be allergic to papaya because papayas have chitanases, often causing the cross-reaction between latex and the foods that contain them.3
It is the total diet or overall eating pattern that is most important in disease prevention and achieving good health. It is better to consume a diet with variety than to concentrate on individual foods as the key to good health.
Information about other fruits
If you've enjoyed reading about the potential health benefits of papaya, why not take a look at our collection of articles about other fruits.