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Kiwi-licious Super Fruit

Kiwi-licious Super Fruit

Kiwi fruit may not be one of your first choices when buying fruit, but it should be! It is a small green fruit with fuzzy brown skin and small black seeds. The seeds and skin are edible, although most people peel kiwi fruits to avoid the rough texture of the skin. If you choose to eat the skin, the fiber and vitamin content will be higher. Kiwi fruit is nature’s own multivitamin, it is a powerhouse rich in nutrients. In an analysis of the ability of 27 most popular fruits to provide the recommended amounts of nine essential nutrients – protein, vitamin A, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, folate, vitamin C, calcium and iron – kiwi fruit won! The results showed green kiwi fruit to be the most nutrient dense fruit followed by pawpaw, orange and mandarin.

Like most fruits, kiwi fruit is high in the mineral potassium. Potassium is essential for proper fluid balance in the body and for proper cell function, normal muscle contraction and regular nerve response. One cup of kiwi fruit provides 28 percent of the estimated minimum requirement per day of potassium. The same cup provides 26 percent of the recommended daily intake for copper and more than 8 percent of the recommended daily intake for manganese.

One cup of kiwi fruit contains more vitamin C than a cup of orange slices -- 167mg for kiwi, which is almost 200 percent of the recommended daily intake, compared to 98mg for orange slices. Your body needs vitamin C to produce collagen, a protein that is part of all of your connective tissues. Vitamin C also helps you make neurotransmitters, which are essential for proper brain function. Kiwi fruit is also high in vitamins E and K, with 1 cup providing 18 percent of the recommended daily intake of vitamin E and 60 percent of vitamin K. Vitamin E supports the immune system and vitamin K is essential for proper blood clotting.

Firm kiwi fruit ripen after a few days to a week when stored at room temperature, but should not be kept in direct sunlight. Faster ripening can occur when placed in a paper bag with an apple, pear or banana.Once a kiwi fruit is ripe, it should be stored far from other fruits, as it is very sensitive to the gas they may emit, tending to over ripen even in the refrigerator. If stored appropriately, ripe kiwifruit normally keep for about one to two weeks.

While the choice in vitamin and mineral supplements can bamboozle, the best choice is so often nature first. Foods, like kiwi fruit, are packed with nutrients along with special plant or phytochemicals. These naturally occurring antioxidants interact within the fruit in complex ways that are not reproducible in a pill or supplement. In fact, kiwi fruit contains many natural substances that science has not named yet so you are unlikely to find these in capsules. So bite by bite, it pays to enjoy green kiwi fruit everyday!

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