Refreshing, juicy, and tangy with just enough sweetness to compliment the tanginess and feel completely satisfying; today’s flavor inspiration comes from my afternoon snack.

PineappleThe pineapple is really quite a bizarre fruit, in fact, technically, it’s not a fruit it is the culmination of berries that have grown together into one large organism around the stock and continued to grow out the top, which is why there is the green shoots on the top of a pineapple. Who knew??? From a culinary perspective pineapple is really quite versatile, transforming both sweet and savory dishes alike into complex and delicious offerings with an exotic flair. Pineapple is found in cuisines around the world and is one of the most economically popular around the world. Unfortunately, conventional pineapple plantations are also highly industrialized and use massive amounts of organophosphates that are highly damaging to the environment and you.  So, if you are going to buy pineapple try to go for organic and maybe keep it as a treat instead of a daily mainstay.

The enzymes in pineapple make it a great addition to meat dishes because they help tenderize, also when cooked, the sugars in pineapple become even sweeter and more intense without breaking down into quite the glycemic load that other fruits can. Pineapple is delicious raw, grilled, baked, roasted, really any way possible from a culinary perspective.

On the medicinal side, Pineapple has quite a nice repertoire for wellness. It contains bromelain, which is an enzyme that is an amazing anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, anti-clotting agent. Bromelain also is a digestive aid, helping foods break down and nutrients to assimilate. It is great for respiratory issues and can help clear the lungs for people suffering from asthma, bronchitis, or other respiratory ailments. It is high in fiber, which is always a good thing and it helps repair intestinal inflammation. Pineapple is also a super resource for minerals like copper, potassium, and manganese; which help with cardiovascular issues, as well as the reduction of oxidative stress. Pineapples are also high in Vitamins C and A and help replenish collagen and strengthen muscles and bones.

There are actually quite a few studies out there demonstrating the benefits of eating pineapple.  Some of the research shows that eating pineapple can help with things like macular degeneration, diabetes, and prostate cancer.

Incidentally, pineapple did not originate in Hawaii and the largest current day supplier is actually Costa Rica and other Central American countries. It seems that pineapple actually originated in South America somewhere between Paraquay and Brazil it has since then been cultivated in warm climates all around the world.