General description

The common types of guava include apple guava, yellow-fruited cherry guava, strawberry guava, and red apple guava. Guava is mostly eaten raw (when ripe or semi-ripe) or consumed in the form of juice, jams, and jellies. Some say it has a floral taste, a cross between a pear and a strawberry.

The most frequently eaten species, and the one often simply referred to as “the guava”, is the apple guava (Psidium guajava). Guavas are typical Myrtoideae, with tough dark leaves that are opposite, simple, elliptic to ovate and 5–15 centimetres (2.0–5.9 in) long. The flowers are white, with five petals and numerous stamens. The fruits are many-seeded berries. It is known as payara in Thailand and bayabas in the Philippines. Other common names are peru (derived from pear) and amrood.

Guavas are of interest to home growers in subtropical areas as one of the few tropical fruits that can grow to fruiting size in pots indoors. When grown from seed, guavas bear fruit as soon as two years and as long as 40 years

Guava fruits, usually 4 to 12 centimetres (1.6 to 4.7 in) long, are round or oval depending on the species. They have a pronounced and typical fragrance, similar to lemon rind but less sharp

What makes it special is that increasing the shelf life of this fruit does not require excessive use of chemicals or pesticides as in the case of grapes, apple, and other β€œexotic” fruits. It is one of the least chemically treated and sprayed fruits

Benefits

  • Guava wood is used for food smoking in Hawaii and is used for barbecues
  • Guavas are rich in dietary fiber and vitamin C, with moderate levels of folic acid. Low in calories per typical serving, and with few essential nutrients, a single common guava fruit contains 257% of the Daily Value (DV) for vitamin C. It also contains vitamin A, E, B, as well as potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, sodium, copper, selenium, and zinc.
  • Controls Diabetes as It Helps Reduce Blood Glucose (due the content in fiber)
  • Guava is one of the richest sources of vitamin C and iron among fruits
  • Prevents Hair Loss and Even Boost Hair Growth.
  • The fruit, leaf, and fruit juice are used as medicine.
  • Guava helped reduce LDL cholesterol levels and blood pressure in study participants
  • Hormones : Guava is a good source of copper, a mineral important for regulating metabolism by helping to control hormone production and absorption
  • Skin : improves texture of skin and prevents premature aging, thanks to the astringents it contains (specially in the immature variety). Besides eating it, you can use it by rinsing your skin with a decoction of its immature fruit and leaves. It will tone and tighten the area of loosened skin where it is applied
  • Scurvy : guavas contain 4 times more vitamin C than oranges
  • Diarrhea & Dysentery : Whether you chew on its leaves or eat the raw fruit, the astringent qualities add substance to loose bowels and reduce the symptoms of diarrhea. It can cure dysentery by inhibiting microbial growth and removing extra mucus from the intestines
  • Disinfectant and anti-bacterial properties
  • Vision : guava improves eyesight thanks to vitamin A. It can help slow down the appearance of cataracts, macular degeneration
  • Constipation  : its seeds serve as excellent laxatives
  • Brain Health : Vitamin B3 (also known as niacin) can increase blood flow and stimulates cognitive function, whereas vitamin B6 is a nutrient correlated with brain and nerve function
  • Treats Cough & Cold : the guava leaf extract is anticough and antimicrobial. Juice of raw and immature guavas, or a decoction of its leaves, is very helpful in relieving coughs and colds by reducing mucus, disinfecting the respiratory tract, throat, and lungs, and inhibiting microbial activity with its astringent properties.
  • Dental care : The juice of guava leaves has been known to cure toothaches, heal swollen gums and oral ulcers.

Cooking

  • In Mexico and other Latin American countries, the guava-based beverage agua fresca is popular. The entire fruit is a key ingredient in punch, and the juice is often used in culinary sauces (hot or cold), ales, candies, dried snacks, fruit bars, and desserts, or dipped in chamoy. Pulque de guava is a popular alcoholic beverage in these regions.
  • In many countries, guava is eaten raw, typically cut into quarters or eaten like an apple, whereas in other countries it is eaten with a pinch of salt and pepper, cayenne powder or a mix of spices (masala)
  • Guava is a popular snack in Taiwan, sold on many street corners and night markets during hot weather, accompanied by packets of dried plum powder mixed with sugar and salt for dipping.
  • Guava juice is popular in many countries. The fruit is also often included in fruit salads.
  • Because of its high level of pectin, guavas are extensively used to make candies, preserves, jellies, jams, and marmalades
  • Red guavas can be used as the base of salted products such as sauces, substituting for tomatoes, especially to minimize acidity. A drink may be made from an infusion of guava fruits and leaves
  • The fruit can be halved, then the fibrous center and the seeds removed. The fruit can then be used as a topping or eaten raw, made into candies or jellies, or blended in a fruit/vegetable smoothie. Alternatively, it can be juiced, making a delicious and healthy beverage.
  • Seeds are edible and contain lots of fiber

Side effects

  • The ripe fruit should be avoided by people who are suffering from cough and cold, as it can exacerbate the problem.
  • Avoid drinking water immediately after eating the fruit as it can lead to a sore throat.
  • Medicines that have a huge concentration of guava may not be suitable for pregnant or breastfeeding women. It is always better to eat the fruit in its natural form
Categories: Plants