Passion Fruit Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits

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Passion fruit is a nutritious tropical fruit of the passiflora vine that grows in warm climates of  Australia, South America, India, and Africa. However, today, passion fruit is grown throughout the world.

It has a tough rind and a sweet-tasting pulp with black edible seeds

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Passion fruit can be classified into purple and yellow Species. While the yellow one has slightly soft skin. The purple version is more firm and grows smaller in size than the yellow one

Other Fruits to read about, are Tamarillo, Tamarind, Fruits That Start With P. 

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Either way, they are both nutritious and full of benefits. This article takes you through the nutritional facts and health benefits of passion fruit.

Passion Fruit Nutrition

Passion fruit is a good source of carotenoids, beta-cryptoxanthin, polyphenol, minerals, and vitamins A and C, which also double up as powerful antioxidants.

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Single passion fruit contains

  • Calories: 17
  • Fiber: 2 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 4 grams
  • Sugar: 2 grams
  • Protein: 1 gram
  • Vitamin C:5 mg, or 9 percent of the daily requirement
  • Vitamin A:5 mg, or 8 percent of the daily requirement
  • Iron:3 mg, or 2 percent of the daily requirement
  • Potassium: 63 mg, or 2 percent of the daily requirement

These values may seem low, but they only represent a single small fruit. And since you are more likely to consume more than one in a sitting, these nutrients will add up.

Passion Fruit Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits
© Provided by Healthier Steps passion fruit varieties on a brown background

Health Benefits of Passion Fruit

1. It’s a good source of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds

Passion fruit is rich in phytonutrients such as polyphenol flavonoid and carotenoid that have been shown to fight free radicals and prevent oxidative stress.

High levels of free radicals in the body are harmful. If not neutralized, they may cause oxidative stress, which will lead to cell damage, including mutations, causing chronic diseases such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer, among others.

Passion fruit also contains other types of antioxidants like piceatannol, which have been shown to protect against insulin resistance in overweight individuals.

This antioxidant may also offer anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer benefits, according to research.

A study to ascertain the benefits of piceatannol on metabolism found that piceatannol may promote glucose metabolism, including insulin sensitivity.

Beta carotene is another important antioxidant in passion fruit. It gets converted to vitamin A in the body, which promotes various functions, including eye health, lowering cancer risk boosting the immune system, reducing the risk of acne supporting bone health, and promoting growth and reproduction.

It also contains vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that supports healthy aging and strengthens the immune system.

2. It’s a good source of fiber

Fiber is an essential nutrient needed in the body for different reasons, including supporting digestive health, preventing constipation, improving gut issues, lowering cholesterol, promoting weight loss, and strengthening immunity,

The passion fruit pulp is rich in fiber which can help support these benefits.

Besides, it contains soluble fiber that slows digestion and regulates blood glucose levels.

3. It may fight inflammation

Inflammation is the root cause of most chronic conditions. If not addressed, prolonged periods of inflammation can increase the risk for various chronic conditions, like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, and cancer.

In one study, people taking purple passion fruit peel extract recorded less stiffness and reduced joint pain than those in the control group.

4. It can support skin health

Passion fruit contains vitamin A, promoting healthy skin cell production and maintaining firm and healthy skin.

Other benefits of vitamin A for the skin include;

  • Stimulating collagen production which reduces the occurrence and appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. Additionally, research shows that passion fruit seeds contain certain peptides that may also promote collagen production.
  • Strengthening the skin barrier, which offers protection against pollution, bacteria, and other skin infections.
  • Protecting against UV damage by reducing skin-sun sensitivity. According to a 2013 study, piceatannol, among other antioxidants, present in passion fruit, reduced photo-aging.

In a different study, piceatannol was also shown to boost skin health in various ways, including inhibiting melanin synthesis, neutralizing free radicles, promoting skin hydration, and promoting glutathione antioxidant production.

  • Its high anti-inflammatory properties may reduce swelling and irritation resulting in a soothing effect on the skin.

5. Contains essential minerals

Passion fruits contain essential minerals like calcium, potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus, which can promote bone health, support the heart, and enhance the nervous system.

How to Eat Passion Fruit           

First, you need to make sure your passion fruit is ripe and ready. Unripe passion fruits are usually green and may require 3-4 days on the counter to ripen. In most cases, ripe fruits aren’t harvested as they fall off the vine.

A ripe passion fruit should be large, plump, and a bit wrinkly with a dark purple or dark yellowy-red color.

To eat, cut it into two, then scoop with a spoon. The seeds are edible and often eaten together with the flesh and juice.

While most people may enjoy eating the fruit directly from the rind, there are various other ways to eat the fruit, including

  • Squeezing the juice through a sieve and adding to cocktails or using it to flavor water
  • Add on salad for an extra crunch and sweet taste
  • As a flavoring or toppings on desserts such as cakes or mousse
  • Add to some sauces and marinades for an improved taste
  • Make a tropical smoothie along with other fruits

Potential side effects

Side effects of passion fruit are rare. However, if you are allergic to latex, you may avoid passion fruit as it contains the same compounds as latex.

Final Thoughts

Passion fruit is a tropical fruit with a characteristic purple or yellow color.

It’s rich in nutrients, especially antioxidants, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, which have been shown to promote health.

Passion fruit may increase antioxidant protection, fight inflammation, promote fiber intake, enhance healthy skin, and support cardiovascular health.

It’s also very easy to incorporate into the diet as you can easily add to drinks, salads, etc.

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