Many people have probably heard of Dragon fruit but are not sure what it is and how to use it.
In social network pictures, we can see an exotic plant of light pink or red color, a white-green interior with black seeds.
In addition to its exotic appearance, it also has a specific taste, which will be described in more detail in the text.
What is dragon fruit?
Dragon fruit is a type of cactus. This exotic fruit got its name from a specific appearance resembling a dragon’s skin.
It is a tropical fruit that has gained popularity in recent years precisely because of its unique appearance and taste.
This fruit has spine-like growths on its skin, which is exactly why it got this specific name.
Besides dragon fruit, it is also called pitaya or pitahaya.
In addition to these names, the name Dragon fruit began to be used in America in 1963.
Moreover, this fruit is also known as strawberry pear because its taste resembles a mixture of taste of strawberry and pear.
Dragon fruit should be bright red or pink. It tastes best when fully ripe, like a kiwi or a peach.
What does it taste like
The taste of this fruit can vary significantly depending on the variety of fruit.
Accordingly, some dragon fruits may taste sweeter while others may be slightly sourer.
This fruit contains citric acid, which gives it a slightly sharp taste, but it is not too sour like other types of fruit.
Its taste is described as a mixture of kiwi and pear flavors.
And the dragon fruit itself has a kiwi-like texture as well as small black seeds inside.
From all of the above, you can’t help but want to try it.
Types of dragon fruit
There are several types of this amazing fruit. However, three main types prevail:
- Hylocereus Undatus – its origin has not been established with certainty, but it is assumed that it most likely originates from the West Indies, Guatemala, El Salvador and Costa Rica.
This type is otherwise the most widespread. Its interior is white with black seeds, so it is called white flesh pitaya.
- Hylocereus Costaricensis – This species is also known as the Costa Rican pitaya or the Costa Rican night cactus.
As we have already mentioned, it is a type of cactus originating from Central America and South America.
It is grown for its fruit but also as an ornamental vine because it has large and exotic flowers.
Pitaya roja, or red-fleshed pitaya, is another name for it.
- Hylocereus Megalanthus – Also a type of cactus originating from the northern part of South America. This plant is grown commercially for its fruit. Also, it is a beautiful decorative creeper plant with perhaps the largest flowers of all cacti.
The yellow fruit has thorns, unlike the red dragon fruits and is commonly known as, “yellow pitahaya”, “kirin fruit”, “yellow dragon fruit” or “yellow pitaya”.
This amazing tropical fruit is very low in calories and extremely high in fiber.
In addition to this, like most tropical fruits, it contains a high level of vitamin C and antioxidants.
One portion of this fruit contains only about 102 calories. There is no fat, which you will admit is very important to know.
It has 22 g of carbohydrates, 8-12 g of sugar, 5 grams of fiber and 2 grams of protein.
Why should you eat?
Dragon fruit is full of healthy ingredients that can be very useful for your body and mind.
How to eat dragon fruit
First, you should choose ripe fruits that are bright red or pink.
You can eat it by cutting it in half with a sharp knife.
When you cut it in half, you can eat it with a spoon by scooping out the cut halves.
Moreover, you can peel the skin and then cut the pulp into pieces and eat.
The peel can also be eaten, you just need to know how to properly remove the excess and then eat the whole fruit.
Dragon fruit on an empty stomach
You can eat this fruit on an empty stomach. Fruits generally contain a lot of fiber and help you feel fuller for longer.
Later during the day, it will prevent you from overeating other foods and make you not reach for unhealthy foods.
You can freely eat dragon fruit with your meal. More precisely, it is desirable to eat it with a meal because this fruit will make you feel full sooner and prevent you from eating more food than you need it.
This is especially important for people who want to lose weight or lead a healthy life, take care of their diet and want to maintain their existing weight.
Eating this unusual fruit in the evening helps you relax and sleep better. Therefore, if you have a problem sleeping, we recommend you try it before going to bed.
You can certainly consume this fruit between meals as a snack. Its rich texture will satisfy all your senses and make you feel full until the next meal.
When is the best time to eat it?
If you were to ask us when is the best time to eat Dragon fruit, the answer would be, when you want.
You can consume it at any time of the day, depending on the results you want to achieve.
If you are on a diet, it is best to consume it in the morning on an empty stomach or with a meal.
If you want to have a more peaceful and beautiful sleep, we recommend it in the evening.
However, if you want to include it in your daily menu and maintain your weight, you can eat it between meals.
Can you eat Dragon fruit skin?
The answer is YES. The skin of this fruit is edible, and you can eat it freely.
You can also peel it if you want to consume this fruit without the skin.
How to store
Dragon fruit can be at room temperature for several days if you haven’t cut it.
If you have, it should be eaten immediately or put in the refrigerator.
It can last a day or two if left in the refrigerator. Use it before it starts to turn brown.
If you want it to last longer in the refrigerator, put it in a plastic bag to protect it from air penetration and the aroma of other foods in the refrigerator.
What is dragon fruit good for
This tropical fruit is full of vitamins, as we have already mentioned, like the A vitamin and the C vitamin.
These vitamins are extremely important for strengthening the immune system as well as for raising the level of iron in the body.
Iron is necessary to supply our body with oxygen and provide it with the necessary energy.
Vitamin C helps in the accumulation of iron.
Benefits of consuming Dragon fruit
The health benefits of consuming dragon fruit are numerous. This powerful fruit helps prevent various types of diseases.
It is rich in antioxidants
Antioxidants like betacyanin and phenolic acid protect your body from free radicals that can be responsible for diseases like cancer and premature aging. Antioxidants from this fruit also help maintain your immune system.
It helps with diets
It is an excellent snack between meals because it is high in fiber and fat-free.
It helps you stay full longer between meals, which is very important for people who have problems with overeating and being overweight.
It reduces sugar level in the blood
This fruit lowers blood sugar levels by helping your body break down sugar.
However, the studies were conducted on mice, so it is not completely known how much of this fruit should be eaten to have these benefits for the body.
It is an excellent source of magnesium
Magnesium is a mineral that is very important for our body and plays a big role in various functions of the body.
Moreover, it is very important for the health and normal functioning of our muscles and nerves.
By consuming this fruit, we can get the optimal amount of calcium necessary for the normal functioning of our body.
By consuming this fruit, you get much more magnesium than other fruits.
It’s healthy for your gut and stomach – it encourages the growth of healthy bacteria in your body called probiotics.
It balances the good and bad bacteria and helps your gut stay healthy.
Red dragon fruit benefits
Dragon fruit helps in the production of red blood cells.
Red blood cells help transport oxygen from the lungs to other organs and carbon dioxide in the opposite direction. That is why their role is very important.
Consuming this fruit reduces fatigue and pallor of the skin caused by lack of oxygen
Prevents the occurrence of migraines
Migraine attacks occur due to the dilation of blood vessels in the brain.
Migraines are characterized by continuous throbbing pain that can be very unpleasant.
By regularly consuming this fruit, you can prevent the onset of migraine or reduce the pain of a migraine
Improves bone health
Bone health requires a healthy and balanced diet to keep your bones healthy and strong.
Dragon fruit is full of calcium, which is the basic ingredient for the formation of your bones.
Also, it contains many vitamins and minerals that are of great importance for the health of the bone system.
Regular consumption can prevent some diseases such as osteoporosis and brittle bones.
Protects the body from free radicals
Free radicals in the body can cause various diseases, such as atherosclerosis, and the consequences of atherosclerosis are heart attacks and strokes.
It is very important to note that the antioxidants found in this powerful fruit successfully defend the body against free radicals and their consequences.
Stimulates collagen production
Collagen is the most important protein in our body. It is responsible for the condition of the skin, hair and nails.
With age, the amount of collagen decreases. Therefore, it is very important to consume foods that stimulate the production of this protein.
Dragon fruit is exactly the type of fruit that stimulates the production of this very important protein.
This fruit slows down skin aging and makes our nails and hair healthier and stronger.
Possible side effects
Although consuming this fruit has numerous benefits, there are still possible side effects that should be paid attention to.
Redish color pee
After consumption, your pee might turn pink or red. Do not worry about that.
After your organism processes this fruit, it will return to its normal color.
Allergies can occur very rarely, but you should be careful.
If itching, burning, swelling of the throat, or vomiting occurs, it is necessary to seek medical help as soon as possible.
Reasonable consumption of Dragon fruit, like any food in general, should not leave any consequences for your stomach.
The fibers in this fruit are natural diuretics that help our intestines and stomach function smoothly.
However, if we overdo it, consuming a large amount of dietary fiber can lead to stomach discomfort, flatulence, intestinal obstruction, and diarrhea.
Therefore, consume this fruit wisely and in moderation.
Consuming this fruit is known to help with high blood pressure.
However, consuming a large amount of this fruit can lead to an excess of potassium in the body, which can lead to hypotension.
Hypotension occurs if the blood pressure falls below the normal level.
In this case, it causes symptoms such as fainting, depression and loss of consciousness.
If you have a problem with low blood pressure, you should be careful with portions of dragon fruit or eliminate it from your diet.
Antioxidants can be harmful
Antioxidants in dragon fruit have several advantages and have a very favorable effect on your immune system.
However, large amounts of antioxidants such as beta carotene, and vitamin E, can be harmful to your health.
Healthy meals with Dragon fruit
You can be very creative with this fruit and use it in different ways and add it to different dishes.
Some people consume it simply as a fruit, but there are many ideas for how you can still use it.
– With this fruit, you can make a vitamin bomb from a fruit salad by adding it to the fruit you like, such as blueberries, kiwi or bananas. The choice is truly limitless. It all depends on your wishes.
– Have you tried jam made from this fruit? If you haven’t, when you try it you won’t be able to resist it. You can make it yourself very simply, and you can find different types of recipes on the Internet.
– Popsicles with Dragon fruit – you can mix this fruit with another type of fruit such as strawberries or pineapple, add a little milk and sweeten with ingredients as desired. Then mix everything and freeze.
This is a delicious and healthy treat for you and your children.
– Dragon fruit smoothie – in this smoothie you can add practically everything you like. You can add different types of fruit or vegetables. You can also make it with water, regular, almond or coconut milk. This way you will have a healthy meal or snack between meals.
In addition to this, you can add protein to it and have a snack for muscle recovery after training.
– Cocktails – If you are a cocktail lover, you can make incredible exotic cocktails with this fruit. According to your wish, they can be with or without alcohol. You have countless possibilities.
– Ice cream – the perfect treat for hot summer days. If you want a healthy ice cream without too much sugar, you can make your own by adding ingredients as desired, including the indispensable dragon fruit.
– Cakes – you can also make various types of cakes and cookies with this interesting fruit. The taste and appearance will be unforgettable.
– You can even make your wine with this fruit
Your Dragon fruit tree
If you want to enjoy your plant, you can plant this fruit very easily.
First you need to buy one fruit and then remove and clean the seeds from the pulp.
Cleaned seeds should be soaked in water or a wet towel for at least 12 hours.
Plant your seed in the ground. The soil should be slightly sandy to retain water and provide your plant with the necessary humidity.
This is a type of cactus, a tropical plant, so it is very important to expose it to direct sunlight because it needs a lot of sun to survive. Your cactus need at least 6 hours of sun.
Water your plant consistently
Cut back your plant regularly to make room for new seedlings
Dragon fruit is also a creeper, so it needs support to keep it under control. Make sure that the stems do not break because they may be overloaded with fruit. Provide it with firm and secure support.
How long does it take to grow
In a period of 6 to 8 months, your plant can bloom. While it takes a little longer to start bearing fruit, 2-3 years.
When it reaches maturity, it can give 4 to 6 cycles of fruits during the year.
So, you will have an exotic fruit and can make various delicacies and an ornamental plant that will decorate and beautify your living space.
Is it high in sugar
Like other types of fruit, this fruit contains natural sugars, so you should be moderate. However, there is nothing to worry about.
One serving of this fruit has only 8 grams of sugar, which is almost half as much as other tropical fruits.
For example, the same amount of mango has 15 grams of sugar.
Is it good for your diet?
As we mentioned earlier, this tropical fruit is extremely rich in fiber. By consuming this fruit between meals, you will feel full longer.
Moreover, you can consume it with a meal. Since it has little sugar and no fat, it is an excellent choice for your diet.
However, you cannot expect to magically lose weight.
You have to be moderate with other food and include some kind of physical activity and the results will not fail.
Dragon fruit helps you to persevere in your goal to lose weight and prevents a sudden drop in sugar and therefore the need to overeat.
We forgot to highlight two more interesting facts about this fruit.
The dragon fruit tree can grow up to 20 feet tall and its flowers bloom only at night.
We don’t know if it has a more exotic look or taste.
Enough to make you want to try it, if you haven’t already. We believe you’ll find a favorite way to consume it.
When you do, let us know what you think. We will be glad to learn more new and delicious recipes.