Dragon fruit on cactusDragon fruit is a tropical fruit that grows on the  Hylocereus cactus, otherwise known as the Honolulu Queen.

This plant is pretty exotic-loo

king, as you might expect from a Honolulu Queen. It’s a sprawling cactus that grows along nearby rocks and trees like a vine.

The cactus opens its large, white flowers only at night, earning them the nicknames “Lady of the Night” and “moonflowers.” The fruits start to grow on the plant after the cactus flowers.

According to ancient Chinese legend, dragon fruit was formed out of fire breathed by a dragon in a battle.

9 Dragon Fruit Benefits

#1 — It Contains Prebiotics, Which Are Good for Your Gut Health

Prebiotics play the role of fertilizer for the good bacteria in your digestive system.

Red flesh dragon fruit contains an abundance of oligosaccharides, which are a type of prebiotic. Research shows that the oligosaccharides in pitaya can trigger the growth of lactobacilli and bifidobacteria, two important probiotics.

#2 — It’s Good for Your Digestion

Fiber is essential for digestive health. And dragon fruit is packed with high-quality fiber.

Particularly, a form of fiber that can reduce your risk of certain cancers, cardiovascular disease, and obesity.

One cup of pitaya contains seven grams of fiber. This is almost one-quarter of your recommended minimum daily fiber needs.

#3 — It Boosts Your Immune System

Dragon fruit pulp is rich in antioxidants, like vitamin C, which is great for your immune system.

Antioxidants help your body stave off cell damage and degenerative diseases.

#4 — It Helps Prevent and Fight Cancer

Dragon fruit contains antioxidants called hydroxycinnamates, which can help prevent cancer.

It also contains lycopene, a powerful compound also found in tomatoes, which has been shown to be beneficial in protecting against chemical and natural toxins.

#5 — It Helps Stabilize Your Blood Sugar

Not only is the fiber in dragon fruit great for your digestive health, but it also maintains blood sugar balance.

Adding pitaya to your diet could help steady your blood sugar after eating other glucose-spiking foods. Pitaya has been shown to counteract insulin resistance induced in mice.

#6 — It’s Heart Healthy

Dragon fruit is a good source of flavonoids, which are antioxidant pigments that have a positive impact on heart health.

And dragon fruit with red pulp is particularly high in betalains, which provide its color and can reduce LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels.

And the edible and tasty seeds are rich in omega-3 and omega-9 fats, which are good for your heart and provide many other benefits.

#7 — It’s Healthy for Your Skin

The vitamin C in pitaya does more than boost your immunity. It also boosts collagen production, which can help keep your skin looking healthy and young.

#8 — It Can Boost Your Iron Levels

Six ounces of chopped dragon fruit provide 1.26 mg of iron.

Iron is important for transporting oxygen throughout your body and to your organs. It’s also necessary for metabolism, growth, and development, among many other intricate processes in the body.

If you’re looking to boost your iron stores naturally, you may want to consider adding pitaya to your diet. Vitamin C helps enhance your iron absorption, so having both nutrients in a pitaya makes for a sweet package deal.

#9 — It Can Help Support Healthy Bones

Dragon fruit contains magnesium, an essential mineral for maintaining a strong skeletal system.

One cup provides 80 mg of magnesium, which is one-quarter of the minimum daily recommendation.

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Author: Bhavin

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