HEALTH BENEFITS AND INDUSTRIAL USES OF PINEAPPLE

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CHAPTER ONE

1.0     Introduction

Pineapples are one of the most popular tropical fruits in the world, the important food which can be eaten fresh or in a processed form. It is composed of nutrients which are good for human health. Due to researchers carried out on the relationship between nutrients in pineapple and human health (Akinmusire, 2011) pineapple plays a vital role in human health due to its high nutrient composition as well as its numerous health benefits for the proper functioning of the body. The fruit is investigated on edible portion to contain nutrient such as carbohydrates sugars, vitamins A, C and carotene, beta. It contains low amounts of protein, fat, ash and fiber; Pineapples also contain antioxidants such as flavonoids, vitamin A and C (Tochi et al., 2008). Thus, these antioxidants reduce the oxidative damage such as that caused by free radicals and chelating metals. It also has the enzyme complex protease (bromelain). Bromelain contains peroxidase, acid phosphate, several protease inhibitors and organically bound calcium (Tochi et al., 2008).

Pineapples are widely recognized for their mineral and vitamin contents and high nutritive value which offers great taste and health benefits (Suaads and Eman, 2008). They also improve blood lipid profiles in people affected by hyper-cholesterolemia and enhance consumer’s health through inhibition of breast cancer, congestive heart failure (CHF), and urinary tract infection (Kurowka et al., 2000).

In addition to consumption, pineapple leaves are used to produce the textile fiber pina in the Philippines, commonly used as the material for men’s Barong Tagalog and women’s Baro’t saya formal wear in the century.  The fiber is also used as a component for wallpaper and other furnishings.  Pineapples are found in a wide array of cuisines.  In addition to consumption, the plant are classified as a versatile, due to its multiple uses, the fruits which is cultivated predominantly for consumption either fresh or in a processed formed (Akinmusire, 2011) the stems and leaves serves as source fiber as well as a meat tenderizing agent.  Parts of the plant are used for silage and hay for cattle feed.  The plant has a short stocky stem and tough, waxy leaves, when creating its fruits produces up to 200 flowers or more than depending on cultivars (SARH, 1994).  The fruit of pineapple is arranged in two interlocking helices, eight in one direction, thirteen in the other each being a fibonacci number (Jones et al., 2006).  The fruit is a good source of dietary supplement, and known to be a rich source of vitamins, minerals, protein, fats, dietary fiber and other important nutrient that may lower the risk of cancer, heart disease and other chronic disease (Kurowska et al., 2000).

HEALTH BENEFITS AND INDUSTRIAL USES OF PINEAPPLE