Who would have thought that a pear, an often overlooked fruit, would be such a great addition to anyone wanting to add more fiber to their diet? Pears are one of the oldest fruits in the world, in fact the Greek poet Homer referred to it as a “gift of the gods.” Praise indeed but why?
In fact the health benefits of the pear are quite impressive.
Soluble Fiber – Pears are one of the very best sources of soluble fiber, which is a type of fiber that helps lower cholesterol which is vital for heart health.
Insoluble Fiber – They are also rich in insoluble fiber, in fact approximately 6 grams of fiber per pear. Insoluble fiber assists the movement of food through the gut which is a real boost to the digestive health.
High in Vitamin C – One pear contains up to 11 percent of our daily recommended intake of Vitamin C and 9.5 percent of our daily recommended intake of copper. Pears are also said to have more nutrients per calorie than calorie per nutrient.
Low Calorie – Pears are one of the very low-calorie fruits providing just 58 calories per 100g.
Rich in Flavonoids – a phytonutrient linked to heart health. Pears also may help protect against diabetes due to their polyphenols an antioxidant believed to reduce inflammation that may lead to Type 2 diabetes.
Low Glycemic Index – obviously fruit contains sugar but actually pears are classified as a low glycemic index food which means their sugars are absorbed slowly.
Helps Maintain Bone Health – Pears are a good source of two nutrients key to skeletal health: vitamin K and boron. Some experts consider vitamin K to potentially be the most important nutrient there is for fighting osteoporosis as it builds bones better than calcium. Boron has the ability to help keep bones strong by adding to bone mineral density, preventing osteoporosis, treating inflammatory conditions like arthritis, and improving strength and muscle mass. Boron is often underutilized in terms of preventing osteoporosis, but many health experts consider it an important part of preventing age-related bone disorders.
Long Storage Life – one of their unique qualities is that they ripen best off the tree, therefore they are picked fully mature but actually not quite ripe. They ripen best at room temperature so leaving them on your counter top will ripen them as opposed to them going past their best as do most fruits when we get them home from the supermarket. If you wish for them to ripen slowly, place them in the fridge where they can stay for up to seven days. If you want to know if your pear is ripe basically check the neck. Apply gentle pressure near the neck or stem, if it yields slightly, it’s ripe and ready to enjoy!