Pears, a member of the rose family, is a deciduous tree.
They thrive best in places with moderate climate with enough sun and a well-drained soil. The tree can grow to as high as 45 feet or more with a pyramid-shaped crown. Its leaves are a bit oval in shape and alternately arranged on the branches. Did you know that in Europe, pear leaves were smoked long before tobacco was introduced? The flowers they exhibit are in pink or white colors which contain both stamens and pistils (reproductive organs) that depends on insects for pollination. Pear fruit is round, conical or oval in shape and usually green, yellow or reddish skin color. Their flesh is either creamy or white filled with stone cells, which are called “grits”. Pears continue to ripen even after being harvested, you can pick them up green. They start to produce fruit only on their 4th year after planting and can survive for 50 years or more.
Pear is a superfruit that is fully loaded with vitamin C and K to improve your immune system; essential minerals like potassium and copper, and dietary fibers to ease up your digestion. They are super rich in phenolic phytonutrients that includes hydroxycinnamic acids, hydroxyquinones, flavanols, anthycyanines, carotenoids and other hard to pronounce compounds to help you maintain a strong immune system, protect you from the damaging effects of free radicals and fight off cancer. Pears also helps you maintain a healthy heart with its rich supply of potassium and quercetin by preventing artery damage. And to lower your bad cholesterol level, the high pectin level in pear will effectively do the job.
Pears are known to be hypoallergenic and safe enough to be used as the first juice given to infants. To get the most nutrition, eating pears unpeeled is the best way. The peel contains almost 4 times more of phenolic phytonutrients as that of the flesh.
Now, let’s have a bit of history about this awesome fruit. Pears are considered as one of the oldest cultivated fruits in the world. They were a valued commodity in the ancient world because of their versatility and long storage life. Pears are said to have originated from Asia and Europe and its cultivation started in China around 1134 years BC. In ancient China, pear is a symbol of immortality. Homer, the great Greek poet acclaims it as a “gift from the gods” and to the ancient Greeks, pear is an important part of their diet and instant relief for nausea.
There’s nothing much to be worried about this wonderful fruit which is considered as one of the safest food you can find. Although pears are not in the list of the “top dirty dozen foods”, buying them from your known farmers market lessen your chances of exposure to pesticide residues.
Beauty tip for the ladies: Homemade face pack to treat oily skin – Mash pear + 1tspn whipped cream + 1tspn honey = balanced pH of the skin. Apply and wash off after 15 minutes.
Stay Fit. Eat organic superfoods.Photo by Fine Art America