Pineapple Expressed

Our favorite tropical treat is also a digestive powerhouse

Pineapple helps with digestion
Pineapple is not just tasty—it also has serious health benefits.

January 31, 2021

Pineapples conjure images of frosty vacation drinks served poolside, but it turns out you should also be serving the fruit couch-side on a regular night at home.

Pineapple is an excellent source of bromelain, an enzyme that aids in digestion and can help prevent indigestion and bloating. Think of pineapple as a digestive enzyme (no pill popping necessary) and a delicious dessert in one.

Add pineapple to your smoothie
Don’t toss the pineapple core; add it to your smoothie.

The next time you are facing a big supper, try to beat that heavy stomach feeling by eating a couple slices of pineapple afterwards so your body can absorb the benefits throughout the night. As a bonus, it’s a good source of vitamin C and the mineral manganese (the trace mineral is important for healthy bones and may help fight PMS, among other benefits).

Pineapple is at its most powerful when consumed raw. Instead of buying it pre-cut, we like to buy the whole fruit—preferably fair trade and organic—and cut it up ourselves for a treat that tastes better and is cheaper. To find a perfectly ripe pineapple at the market choose one with a fragrant sweet scent emanating from the base, a bright green crown of leaves that can be pulled from the stem with only slight resistance and golden-brown skin that yields to light pressure.

Brush up on how to cut it into perfect rings and wedges here and see our top five ways to incorporate pineapple into your diet below:

    1. The strength of the bromelain is at its most potent in the core, so don’t chuck it out. Instead, dice the tough inner core and blitz it with frozen bananas in a food processor for a creamy, soft-serve-like treat.
    2. Blend chunks with lots of ginger and ice make for a satisfyingly icy smoothie.
    3. Melt dark chocolate over low heat and drizzle ribbons over chilled pineapple spears for a fast and impressive dessert that brings the tropics home.
    4. Chop into rough chunks and toss them with cilantro, red onion, olive oil and apple cider vinegar for a quick salsa that’s as good with chips as it is with roasted chicken or grilled fish.
    5. Pre-cut pineapple into chunks and store in the fridge for an easy addition to your morning yogurt or oatmeal.