Touted for their profuse levels of nutrition as well as enticing flavours, fruits form an integral part of healthy balanced diets worldwide. Mother Nature has indeed blessed humankind with myriad varieties of fruits that uplift wellbeing and prevent disease, with the oval-shaped pears featuring prominently as a superfruit, being a nourishing bounty for overall health.
Pears are grown extensively worldwide and deliver a spectrum of key nutrients including fibres, proteins, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants and thereby ensure good health by keeping ailments at bay. Famed for their ability to facilitate smooth digestion, bolster metabolism and immunity and fortify bones, muscles and joints, pears also control sudden spikes in blood sugar levels in diabetes and avert the risk of cancer.
Possessing an inherently sweet taste and crunchy texture, pears can be enjoyed as such, or added to salads, made into a juice, infused in smoothies and even enjoyed in pastries and desserts like pies, cakes, tarts. Granted, this pleasant-tasting fruit confers umpteen benefits for overall health and wellbeing and is highly recommended by nutritionists and doctors alike to be added to the regular diet.
Pear Fruit Tree:
The pear tree thrives in several parts of the world, flourishing in coastal and temperate regions with pleasant climates, in countries across North America, Europe, South America and Asia. The nation that tops in the cultivation of pears across the globe is China, while the USA, Italy, Argentina, Turkey, India, Spain, Chile also produce vast quantities of this nutrient-dense fruit.
The pear tree and shrub belongs to the botanical family of Rosaceae, which also includes apples, plums, cherries, peaches and almonds. Classified under the genus of Pyrus, there are more than 3000 varieties of pears grown around the world bearing different sizes, shapes and tastes, with the popular kinds being the European variant Pyrus communis or Bartlett pear, Pyrus pyrifolia i.e. Nashi pear or Asian pear native to China, Japan, Korea and the Green Anjou, Red Anjou, Bosc varieties.
The tree grows up to medium height of 10 – 17 m, having a narrow elongated crown at the top and can be either deciduous or evergreen. The leaves are arranged in an alternate pattern, being shimmering and green in some species while showing a pale silvery hue with hairy projections in others. The flowers of the pear tree have five petals and are mostly white, but at times display yellow or pink shades and bud into the pear fruit, which is either oblong with the classic pear-shape like in European varieties or round and resembling apples, like the Nashi pear.
The pear fruit has a thin delicate outer skin which is green, white, yellow or red depending upon the variety and contains a juicy flesh within that has a luscious texture and mellow sweet taste, along with tiny black seeds. While the seeds are discarded, the outer skin as well as inner pulp of the pear fruit is edible, not only offering a delicious taste but also ample nutrition.
Pear Fruit Nutrition:
The pear fruit is nothing short of a superfood, supplying vital essential nutrients of carbohydrates, proteins, dietary fibres, as well as vitamins A, B, C, K and a plethora of minerals and antioxidants. The nutritional values of 100 g (grams) serving of pears, according to the Food Database of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), is as follows:
Water 84 g
Energy 57 calories
Carbohydrates 15.23 g
Dietary fiber 3.1 g
Fat 0.14 g
Protein 0.36 g
Thiamine (B1) 1% 0.012 mg
Riboflavin (B2) 2% 0.026 mg
Niacin (B3) 1% 0.161 mg
Pantothenic acid (B5) 1% 0.049 mg
Vitamin B6 2% 0.029 mg
Folate (B9) 2% 7 μg
Choline 1% 5.1 mg
Vitamin C 5% 4.3 mg
Vitamin E 1% 0.12 mg
Vitamin K 4% 4.4 μg
Calcium 1% 9 mg
Iron 1% 0.18 mg
Magnesium 2% 7 mg
Manganese 2% 0.048 mg
Phosphorus 2% 12 mg
Potassium 2% 116 mg
Sodium 0% 1 mg
Zinc 1% 0.1 mg
Being an excellent source of pivotal vitamins and minerals, pears support strong bones and joints, fortified muscles, enriched skin texture and healthy hair growth. They also abound in polyphenol, flavonoid, carotenoid antioxidants that boost immunity, prevent cancer, enhance eye health and augment heart wellness. Undoubtedly, pears are a wonderful addition to the daily diet and provide a ton of health benefits for uplifted overall wellbeing.
What Are The Benefits Of Pear Fruit?
Fights Free Radical Damage
The pear fruit is rich in Vitamin C and other phenolic compounds called flavonoids. These prevent the damage of cells due to free radicals, pollutants and toxic chemicals which leads to the health ailments such as heart disease, cancer and arthritis. Free radicals are developed in the body when the body is exposed to the radiation, tobacco or smoke and during the process of breaking down of food. The antioxidant property of pears effectively combats toxins in the body.
Bolsters Immune Function
Vitamin C enhances the white blood cells production and also assists in the functioning. As Vitamin C is an antioxidant, it eliminates the oxidative damage and enhances the smooth functioning. Vitamin C effectively boosts the immune system to counteract the colds.
Reduces The Risk Of Stroke
The negligible amounts of sodium and cholesterol in the pear fruit lowers the chances of stroke and health ailments such as inflammation, oxidative damage, cardiac health, atherosclerosis, blood pressure and endothelial health. The development of plaque in the body results in the stroke or heart attack which could be reduced with the Vitamin C.
Boosts Good HDL Cholesterol
The pear fruit is a great source of Niacin which regulates cholesterol synthesis in the system. Niacin enhances the good HDL cholesterol levels and reduces the amounts of harmful triglycerides and bad LDL cholesterol in blood.
Consuming pears in routine diet helps to speed up the assimilation of carbohydrates, fats and proteins in food, by acting as a catalyst to enzymes in biochemical processes. This in turn promotes proper appetite and helps maintain optimal body weight.
Dietary fiber in pears supports the digestive system in the material movement and stimulate stool which is helpful for those having the irregular stools or constipation. It supports in healthy weight and reduces the chances of heart disease and diabetes.
Heals Muscle Cramps
Pears possess adequate amount of potassium. It enhances the strength of muscles and reduces the muscle cramps which is caused due to the low level of potassium.
Hydrates The Body
The abundant water content in pears makes them a perfect way to quench thirst and cool the body during hot summer climates, when people are often dehydrated. The fruit can be consumed as such or squeezed into a juice, chilled and sipped, to ensure adequate water supple and electrolyte replenishment in the body cells.
Treats Nervous System Disorders
The bioactive constituents in pears known as terpenoids help in improving nerve function. Hence, it is effective as remedy for those suffering from neuronal complications like seizures.
Cures Liver Damage
Liver damage leads to the various liver diseases which are caused due to the excessive consumption of alcohol, anemia, malnutrition, infection and hepatotoxic drugs. Pear contains hepatoprotective agents. Thus, it helps to effectively treat liver ailments like hepatic cirrhosis, fibrosis and liver inflammation.
Pear Fruit Benefits For Skin And Hair:
Enhances Skin Texture
An adequate amount of Vitamin A and C could be obtained from the pear fruit which helps to prevent the damage from the oxidative stress caused from the poor diet, stress and pollution. It also reduces the dryness of the skin and reduces the wrinkles.
Clears Suntans and Dark Spots
The phenolic content in pear fruit comprises useful skin-whitening agents. Pear fruit extracts are being used as a skin treatment ingredient because it is not only an antioxidant but may also possess UVB-blocking ability.
Pear and Oatmeal Face Pack:
½ cup oatmeal
1 cup water
Mix the ingredients with pear juice extract and blend it into a homogenous paste.
Apply on your face in an even layer, leave it on for 10 minutes.
Wash off with lukewarm water.
How It Works:
The active flavonoid components in pears possess wonderful skin brightening properties that will rejuvenate skin cells, slow down ageing and leave your face looking flawless and radiant.
Acne vulgaris is a skin condition which leads to the inflammation caused due to the skin infection. The pear fruits possess the anti-acne properties such as anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antibacterial properties, to effectively combat the microbes causing acne and thus reduce inflammation and scarring on face.
Treats Skin Infections
Extracts prepared from the juice of pear fruit are very effective against Staphylococcus aureus, a common bacterial microbial agent that causes many skin disorders such as blisters and pustules, as well as hypersensitivity and allergies.
Promotes Hair Growth
Pear fruits are laden with vitamin B3, B5 and plenty of antioxidants that promote blood circulation to the hair and scalp and stimulate the growth of healthy hair roots i.e. follicles and long, strong thick hair. Moreover, the polyphenols and carotenoids in pear fruits contain anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial traits, that help dispel dandruff, itching, flaking in the scalp, arrest hair fall and confer long and lustrous tresses.
Pear Fruit Recipes:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 cups cold water
For the filling:
5 cups sliced peeled fresh pears
1 tbsp lemon juice
½ cup sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp butter
In a large bowl, mix flour and salt; cut out the edges until it becomes crumbly.
Gradually add water, tossing with a fork until dough holds together when pressed. Shape into a disk; wrap and refrigerate 1 hour or overnight.
Preheat oven to 425° F. In a large bowl, toss pears with lemon juice. In a small bowl, mix flour, 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon; add to pear mixture and toss to coat.
On a lightly floured surface, roll half of dough into a 1/8-inch.-thick circle; transfer to a 9-inch. pie plate. Trim crust even with rim. Add filling; dot with butter.
Roll remaining dough to a 1/8-inch.-thick circle. Place over filling. Trim, seal and flute edges. Cut slits in top. Sprinkle with remaining sugar.
Bake until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly, 45-50 minutes. Cover edges loosely with foil during the last 20 minutes if needed to prevent overbrowning. Remove foil and allow it to cool.
Serve the delicious pear pie warm as dessert after lunch or dinner or enjoy it as an evening snack with tea or coffee.
Pears abound in vitamin C for uplifting immunity, as well as offer dietary fibres to facilitate smooth digestion, bowel movements and prevent gut problems like constipation and stomach infections. Lemon juice is packed with antioxidants that flush out toxins, free radicals from the system and cleanse the liver, kidneys and blood of impurities, while cinnamon is imbued with cinnamaldehyde, a potent phytonutrient that displays decongestant traits to remedy respiratory illnesses like cough, cold, sore throat and improve lung power.
Pomegranate And Pear Green Salad
½ cup mixed nuts – pecans, almonds, walnuts
1 cup spinach leaves
½ cup kale leaves
½ cup feta cheese, crumbled
1 large ripe pear, thinly sliced
Arils from 1 pomegranate
2 inch ginger piece, minced
In a pan, roast the pecans, almonds, walnuts in a bit of ghee until they emanate an appetizing aroma.
Mix the pear slices, pomegranate arils, spinach and kale leaves in a bowl, adding a bit of minced ginger for a zesty flavour.
Top it off with the roasted nuts – pecans, almonds, walnuts and have this wholesome and scrumptious pomegranate and pear green salad for lunch or dinner as a healthy starter.
Pears supply ample iron for enhanced red blood cell synthesis and transport, combatting anaemia and fatigue, as well as potassium to effectively lower high blood pressure and safeguard heart health. Rich in vitamin C and flavonoid antioxidants, pomegranates prevent neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s dementia, Parkinson’s, and also stimulate blood circulation and ease abdominal cramps in times of menstrual cycles in women. Spinach and kale supply vast reserves of dietary fibres, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous for regulating appetite, digestion and fortifying bones and joints.
Pear Fruit Side Effects:
In general, pears do not cause allergic reactions when compared to several other fruits. They can be eaten by people of all ages, including babies and young children, by serving it mashed or juiced.
However, since pears contain considerable amounts of calories, overconsumption of this fruit must be avoided to prevent unhealthy weight gain.
Furthermore, having high quantities of pears on a daily basis can lead to digestive disorders like bloating, nausea, vomiting, constipation owing to its high fibre content. Hence it is advised to eat a moderate amount of pears as part of the regular diet to procure its outstanding health benefits and steer clear of the side effects.
Pears are brimming with pivotal nutrients such as vitamin A, vitamin C, B vitamins, calcium, iron, zinc, potassium as well as a buck load of antioxidants to enhance physical and mental wellbeing. These oval fruits with a delicious sweet taste and juicy yet crunchy texture aid in augmenting vision, heart health, metabolism, immunity, digestion, as well as strengthening bones, muscles, joints and preventing cancer.
Add a serving of pears to the daily diet to reap their amazing wellness incentives for optimal health and prevent chronic diseases.