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Guava, a fruit, above all, but also a plant, less known than the first but essential. Since the time of the Aztecs the properties of this 'sand plum', as it was called at the time, were extolled, now we are going to get to know them by remembering that the plant and fruit, called guava, or even guayava, are native to central-southern America and the Caribbean. The plant, specifically, is an evergreen tree that is labeled in the scientific world as Psidium guajava.
From its lands of origin, this fruit tree has already spread to most of the tropical areas of the planet. It belongs to the myrtaceae family, however, which are plants widespread on the Italian territory and so is the same Guava.
We certainly don't expect it to be present like i Poplars, but let's not even consider it a rare tree. We can recognize it by the rather large and dark green leathery leaves and, in spring, also by large flowers, with a candid color.
Today, again speaking of plants, we can consider two species of guava, leaving aside for a moment all the cultivars that have gradually sprung up over the years. Alla Psidium guajava, defined as “the real one”, is accompanied by the Littoral psidium, slightly smaller. In terms of size, we must imagine that the largest specimens can reach even 7-10 meters in height, but often these trees stop at 4 meters, especially if cultivated and not grown wildly.
Let us now deal with the fruit which is useful as well as tasty. One of the reasons why it is particularly appreciated is linked to the beneficial effect it has both on the skin and on the digestive system, stomach and pancreas in the first place. We find it then often recommended for those suffering from bouts of vomiting or diarrhea, or gastroenteritis, toothache or infections in those areas.
Containing many soluble fibers, guava is also often used as a remedy for constipation, boasts remarkable laxative properties, especially if you eat it without discarding the seeds. Not only does this fruit go to the bathroom, but it also protects the mucous membrane of the colon and reduces the risk exposure to cancer pathologies.
Among the properties of guava not yet praised, there are also those antivirals which, combined with the previous ones, make this fruit a remedy too in case of ulcer and skin diseases.
In the protagonist fruit, a lot loved by the Aztecs, we also find a high content of vitamin A and a modest but satisfactory content of those of group B. As for the C vitamin, we find more of it than in oranges, especially on outer peel, and are essential for the synthesis of collagen, useful for keeping blood vessels, skin and bones intact. Today perhaps less, but once vitamin C was also useful for fighting scurvy.
Thanks to the presence of flavonoids (beta carotene, lycopene, lutein and cryptoxanthin) Guava is considered a food antioxidant, therefore to be included in the menu also taking advantage of the fact that it is rich in potassium, copper, phosphorus and manganese.
Guava: where to find the fruit
There guava as a fruit is not widespread like apples and oranges but today by looking carefully in neighborhood markets or in fruit and vegetable shops, as well as in well-stocked supermarkets, we can find it. Otherwise, on Amazon, we find its juice, at 14 euros, in one-liter packs.
Guava: how to eat
If eating it, we find gods small seeds and we think of discarding them, let's not do it, because they are edible and above all they are rich in properties that are important for our well-being. The peel can also be eaten and I advise you to do it, after having washed it well, because it contains vitamin C, in large quantities.
That said, let's take the fruit in hand and get ready to enjoy the flavor by cutting it in half, for example, as many do, and then take the pulp with a teaspoon. Alternatively we can insert the guava as the main ingredient of juices, ice creams, jams, creams and sweets.
It is a fruit that should be tasted, if possible, to understand what it is and if we can like it. It is also quite popular with sophisticated palates. It tastes sweet but not too much, because aromatic. When you dip the spoon into the pulp, it turns out that it has a buttery texture, which is on the peel yellow, pink or deep red.
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