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  • Writer's pictureCaroline Healy

The Many Gut-Healthy Benefits of Papaya

I spy with my little eye... a papaya boat! Today I'm throwing it back to one of my favorite places, Hawaii, and frequenting Sunrise Shack in the mornings.

A few weeks ago, I sent in my Viome gut health test, and the results I got back told me that papaya is one of my gut's "Superfoods" (and for good reason!)... I'll be posting my thoughts and personal experience with Viome in the coming days, but here are some the reasons we should be enjoying papaya on the reg (pun intended):

Gut-Healthy Benefits of Papaya:

1.) Relieves bloating and constipation- due to the enzyme called "papain" which aids in digestion

2.) Contains fiber- fiber helps your digestive tract run smoothly, reduces inflammation, and boosts your metabolism (1/2 papaya contains 30% of your daily fiber requirement!)

3.) Anti-inflammatory- full of antioxidants (also decrease oxidative stress in the liver, stomach, and kidneys)

4.) It's hydrating- papayas are 85-90% water!

5.) Strengthens immunity- rich in Vitamin C

6.) Great for skin- contains vital nutrients (Vitamin A and antioxidants) that promote healthy, smooth, glowing skin (your skin health is largely connected to your gut health!)

BYOB: Papaya Boats

For those of you who have never had a "papaya boat", now is the time.

You simply slice a papaya in half, scoop the seeds (save them if you want to throw in some extra fiber, but be careful because a little bit goes a long way with these little guys), and top with whatever you want. My favorite toppings include: coconut yogurt (extra probiotics), sliced bananas, berries, granola, nuts, nut butter, coconut flakes, etc.

Feel free to get creative, and for moms trying to get kids to eat more fruit (or veggies-- this works for veggies too), try letting them build their own "boats"! It's a fun way to get them to eat healthy and enjoy it at the same time. Plus, they are delicious.

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