Everyone knows the phrase, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” and that bananas are a good source of potassium, but there are some other fruits that can add a boost to your body. It’s important to have a variety so you don’t miss out on all the benefits some lesser-known fruits can offer.
While bananas are the most popular source of potassium, having 6 fresh figs (891 mg of potassium), which is nearly 20 percent of your daily need and about double one large banana. In a recent 5-year study from the Netherlands, high-potassium diets were linked with lower rates of death from all causes in healthy adults age 55 and older. Also, you get some calcium to keep your bones nice and strong!
According to a French study that was published in the Journal of Nutrition, lychee has the second-highest level of heart-healthy polyphenols of all fruits tested – and nearly 15 percent more than grapes. Those polyphenols are known to play a role in warding off cancer. It also has powerful antioxidants!
Just one cup of guava has nearly five times as much vitamin C as a medium orange (377 mg versus 83 mg). That vitamin C, while boosting your immune system, also is a key ingredient in collagen production and can help keep your skin looking good.
Most everyone needs to keep their cholesterol down and while an apple can help, one large Asian pear has about twice as much of the cholesterol-lowering fiber (40 percent of your daily need). People who ate the most fiber had the lowest total and “bad” cholesterol levels, according to a recent study of Baltimore adults.
This exotic fruit has one of the top sources of beta-cryptoxanthin, which research suggests can protect against lung cancer. Both papaya, and the more common watermelon, are rich in lycopene. Research shows that the nutrient lycopene may protect against several different types of cancer, including stomach, endometrial, and prostate.
Razi Berry, Founder and Publisher of Naturopathic Doctor News & Review (ndnr.com) and NaturalPath (thenatpath.com), has spent the last decade as a natural medicine advocate and marketing whiz. She has galvanized and supported the naturopathic community, bringing a higher quality of healthcare to millions of North Americans through her publications. A self-proclaimed health-food junkie and mother of two; she loves all things nature, is obsessed with organic gardening, growing fruit trees (not easy in Phoenix), laughing until she snorts, and homeschooling. She is a little bit crunchy and yes, that is her real name.