Did you know about the wide range of papaya benefits, apart from being an appetizing fruit? Papaya is an extremely rich source of multiple nutrients, vitamins, and health-promoting enzymes. To learn about papaya benefits, read this article in detail and know about the fruit than simply its tempting taste.
How to quantify the attributes of papaya benefits? According to a scientific paper released in 2013, papaya offers an abundance of vitamin A, vitamin B complexes, and vitamin C. There are two very important proteolytic enzymes present in papaya – chymopapain and papain.
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What do you understand by proteolytic enzymes?
Proteolytic enzymes are very essential in terms of your biological functioning. In your body, stomach and pancreas usually produces proteolytic enzymes. Such enzymes perform several processes inside your body, specifically breaking down proteins into simpler units for effective digestion and absorption. Proteolytic enzymes also go by the names of proteinases, proteases and peptidases. Therefore, one of the enriching papaya benefits is that you can easily supplement your body with proteolytic enzymes during deficits. Proteases such as chymopapain and papain have antifungal, antiviral and antibacterial properties.
Being a tropical fruit, papaya is exceptionally healthy offering enormous amounts of antioxidants. The more the content of antioxidants, the higher are the chances to combat inflammation, pathogenic diseases and aging effects.
You can easily go for several home remedies with papaya to treat common skin and hair problems. Due to the wide array of beneficial effects, papaya has gained a lot of popularity in the natural treatment section.
What is the nutrient quotient in papaya?
The scientific name of the plant producing papaya fruit is Carica papaya. Initially the place of origin of papaya was restricted to southern part of Mexico and Central America. However, now you can see papaya growing almost in every region across the world.
Muscle meat has a composition of tough proteins that are difficult to digest by your regular biological system. Papain enzyme in papaya acts as an effective proteolytic agent, helping in breaking the strong peptide chains in muscle meat. Thus, it is one of the papaya benefits in use for several years to make meat tender and easy for consumption.
You can have papaya in two ways- eat raw when it is ripe, and cook if it is unripen. If you are pregnant, always prefer eating cooked papaya as unripen papaya can trigger contractions due to high latex content.
The shape of papaya is quite similar to pears, only what differs is the size. Unlike pears, the length of papayas can extend up to 51 cm (equivalent to 20 inches). For an unripe papaya, the skin is usually green in color. Ripe papayas appear light to dark orange. The inside flesh of papayas are mostly orange, yellowish or reddish. Papaya has many black colored seeds that you can cook as well, however, the taste is bitter.
A small papaya, weighing not more than 152 grams will have the following nutrient composition:
- Calories to offer- 52
- Amount of carbohydrates- 15 gm
- Fiber content- 3 gm
- Amount of proteins- 1 gm
- Recommended dietary intake (RDI) for vitamin A- 33 percent
- RDI for vitamin C- 157 percent
- Potassium content as per RDI- 11 percent
- RDI for vitamin B9 or folic acid- 14 percent
- Nutrients found in traces include magnesium, calcium and various vitamins like E, K, B1, B5 and B3.
Accounting for the antioxidant carrying quality, papaya benefits include the presence of healthy antioxidative agents like carotenoids. One specific type of carotenoid that will find in abundance is lycopene.
Surprisingly, your body finds it easier to absorb healthy antioxidants from papaya way better than any other vegetables or fruits.
What is papaya’s role in skin improvement?
The range of papaya benefits for skin extends from reducing wrinkle appearance, control of acne to treating melasma.
1. Reduction of wrinkles.
Papaya has high content of lycopene (a powerful antioxidant), which easily contributes to reduced wrinkle formation and delays aging signs. As you age, it becomes difficult to hide evident signs of wrinkles and aging. Papaya extracts can help you fight potential damage and wrinkling of your skin due to aging.
Why do you think process of wrinkling and skin damage advances with age? While aging, your skin cells produce excessive amount of free radicals. Activity of free radical release within cells increases oxidative stress, leading to potential cell damage. Antioxidative agents like lycopene in papaya can fight oxidative stress, making your skin healthy, smooth and radiant.
Papaya benefits for skin also accounts for improving your skin’s elasticity, which can reduce wrinkle appearance. Moreover, you may even go for a skin pack mixture of lycopene and vitamin C to minimize facial wrinkles more effectively.
2. Controlling acne formation.
Proteolytic enzymes in papaya like chymopapain and papain can significantly help in minimizing inflammation. You will find the presence of papain in various exfoliating beauty products. Exfoliation accounts for removal of dead cell debris from your epidermal layer to allow better permeation of air and nutrients.
Papain can help in exfoliation of skin by clearing clogged skin pores with dirt and dead cells, thereby reducing acne. According to some studies, papain confirms for an effective cure for scarring. Protein-breaking enzymes like papain even prevents accumulation of damaged keratin within skin pores that can form tiny bumps.
A rich content of vitamin A in papaya also promotes acne reduction as per many reports. Retinol or vitamin A (topical form) can protect your skin from unwanted acne lesions and inflammation.
3. Treatment of melasma.
Melasma is a type of skin disorder that results in the appearance of faded, dirty and dark patches. You can use papaya extract as a home remedy for curing melasma or ‘chloasma’. Moreover, papaya is a good source of vitamins, beta-carotene and several other phytochemicals to promote skin-lightening process. You can extract the seed oil of cold-pressed papaya for lightening up your skin and erase the dark patches commendably.
How does papaya improve hair problems?
Papaya benefits are not just restricted to your skin, but also extend to resolving several hair and scalp related issues. The extract of papaya can work as an efficient hair conditioner, improve hair growth as well as prevent dandruff.
1. Conditioning hair with papaya.
Did you know that papaya could serve as an excellent hair conditioner than any other artificial hair care products? The rich Vitamin A content in papaya makes it super effective in promoting sebum production. More your scalp produces sebum, better is the nourishment, protection and strengthened hair quality.
You can easily prepare your own papaya hair-conditioning mask at home. Simply take a small bowl and add half portion of ripe papaya, one tablespoon of honey and half a cup of coconut oil. Blend all the ingredients into a smooth mixture and apply on damp hair. Next, let the mask rest for around forty minutes, and then wash with a mild shampoo and conditioner.
2. Promote hair growth
If you are facing hair loss problems or potential baldness, go for a papaya hair mask immediately. As per a study in 2018, presence of compounds like lycopene in papaya can stimulate significant hair growth activity.
3. Prevention of dandruff
Why do you suffer from dandruff problems? The main reason behind dandruff formation is the presence of malassezia, a type of fungi. Papaya offers antifungal effects apart from antibacterial and antiviral ones. You can use papaya seeds for both protecting your scalp from dandruff troubles as well as control the dandruff intensity.
What do you know about papaya soap?
Have you ever heard of anything called a papaya soap? Yes, you heard it right! You can do so much out of a simple fruit like papaya, apart from just eating it. In the recent times, you will find many people using papaya soap for radiant and healthy-looking skin. What is so special about papaya soap?
Papaya soap is nothing but a gentle soap, coming with all the papaya benefits infused into a small soap bar. It is absolutely safe to use papaya soap on all parts of your body, even your face. When you are using a regular soap bar, it might prove to be a little harsh on your skin. However, with a natural soap made out of papaya extracts- the scenario can be completely different.
Regular soaps often contain various synthetic ingredients that can be harmful for your skin, if not washed away completely. A normal soap can easily wash off the natural moisture content of your skin while removing dirt. Due to such impacts, your skin becomes prone to conditions such as-
- Rosacea- appearance of small reddish bumps on your skin with pus inside them, mostly affecting the cheeks, forehead and nose.
- Psoriasis- a chronic case of autoimmune skin disorder that results in quick accumulation of skin cells, leading to skin scaling.
- Increased itchiness and dryness
On the contrary, papaya soap is full of natural components like papain for digesting tough protein buildups on your skin. Apart from promoting protein breakdown, papain also offers anti-inflammatory effects on your skin.
What more can you ask than a soap with all possible papaya benefits?
Papaya promotes a glowing and healthy skin because of its rich content of vitamin C, with benefits like-
- Stimulating production of collagen to strengthen your skin cells and keep them hydrated all the time.
- Minimize chances of irregular pigmentation
- Being a strong antioxidant, vitamin C can help lessen inflammation.
Papaya soap is also rich in vitamin A (retinol) to add on to your skin benefits. Vitamin A helps in the development of fresh skin cells, as well as reduce blemishes, scars and dark spots.
Other benefits of papaya soap
1. Provides relief from insect bites and stings.
If you have any wounded spot or an insect bite, you can apply papaya soap on the infected area. Papaya soap can alleviate possible insect sting symptoms like swelling, itchiness, redness and pain.
As papain has anti-inflammatory properties, papaya soaps can reduce swelling and pace up the process of wound healing. Moreover, there are certain insect venoms that are peptides in nature. Peptides are the chains of amino acids that join to form protein molecules. Papain can easily break down venom proteins, allaying skin irritation, and soreness.
2. Removes stains and dirt
Cleansing your skin is not the only application of papaya soap. Did you know that papaya soaps could remove stains as well? Papaya soap serves as an excellent stain remover. Due to the quality of papain to ‘eat or digest’ proteins, papaya soaps can remove any protein-based dirt marks. Stains resulting from protein dirt may include egg spills and grass stains.
3. Prevent hyperpigmentation of skin
Are you facing problems like uneven skin tone? Worry no more as papaya soaps can easily help in smoothening of your skin complexion. Hyperpigmentation is a skin disorder, where your skin faces discoloration and darkening due to hormonal imbalance and overproduction of melanin.
Using papaya soap on areas of dark spots can help your skin to lighten up, by reducing discolored patch formation. Natural ingredients present in papaya soap can also limit the excess production of melanin pigment, preventing chances of hyperpigmentation.
Side effects of papaya soap
Papaya soap is a natural product, yet it may not be suitable for your skin for various reasons. So, if you are allergic to edible papaya or its soap form, it is not a safe option for you. Apart from the whole papaya fruit, do not use the soap if you have allergies against latex. Note that, papain is a product of latex present in unripe papaya.
You should always check the response of your skin before applying any new product on it. If you are a first time user of papaya soap, apply it on a small patch on your arm and check for any allergic reaction. Immediately discontinue using papaya soap if you come across the following responses like redness, itching, and bumps on your skin.
You can easily buy papaya soaps online or any beauty retailers. Also, look out for local beauty shops for papaya soaps or papain-based soaps.