Fruits & Vegetables Herbs & Plants

Papaya is a fruit and medicine

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Botanical: Carica papaya
Family: Caricaceae (papaya)

Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Brassicales
Genus: Carica
Species: C. papaya

Other common names: Papaw, Mamao, Tree Melon, Paw-Paw

Papita  in Hindi, 

Habitat:Papaya is a very a common fruit grows in tropical countries. In India,Burma,Pakistan and Bangla Desh.The papaya (from Carib via Spanish), is the fruit of the plant Carica papaya, in the genus Carica. It is native to the tropics of the Americas, and was cultivated in Mexico several centuries before the emergence of the Mesoamerican classic cultures. It is sometimes called “big melon” or “pay paw,” but the North American pawpaw is a different species, in the genus Asimina.

Troubled with heartburn and indigestion? Try    Papaya Fruit!    Papaya contains papain, a remarkable, protein-dissolving enzyme that eases many stomach ailments and is an exceptional aid to digestion. A rich source of minerals and vitamins A, C and E, papain also breaks down wheat gluten, which may be of great help those with Celiac disease.

History: The papaya needs a tropical climate that is dry when cold and wet when warm; consequently, its greatest success appears in the equatorial zone with its warm wet season and cool dry season. It is extremely sensitive to frost, and water-logging will kill the taproot within forty-eight hours. The papaya is especially susceptible to parasites, pests and diseases. This fussy plant needs a lot of water but must have good drainage, and it bears most fruit in light, porous, slightly acidic soils that are rich in organic matter. Said to be a native of the Caribbean, the Papaya is the true papaw that now grows abundantly throughout tropical America, Hawaii and many other tropical climates throughout the world.

It is a large tree-like plant, the single stem growing from 5 to 10 meters tall, with spirally arranged leaves confined to the top of the trunk; the lower trunk is conspicuously scarred where leaves and fruit were borne. The leaves are large, 50-70 cm diameter, deeply palmately lobed with 7 lobes. The tree is usually unbranched if unlopped. The flowers are similar in shape to the flowers of the Plumeria but are much smaller and wax like. They appear on the axils of the leaves, maturing into the large 15-45 cm long, 10-30 cm diameter fruit. The fruit is ripe when it feels soft (like a ripe avocado or a bit softer) and its skin has attained an amber to orange hue. The fruit’s taste is vaguely similar to pineapple and peach, although much milder without the tartness.

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It is eaten as vegetable when green and as fruit when ripen.Ripen papaya flesh is very delicious to eat.

Cultivation and uses of papaya
In Hawaii, two varieties of genetically-modified papayas, SunUp and Rainbow, have been grown by several growers since their development in the 1990s. By 2004, non-genetically modified and organic papayas throughout Hawaii had experienced widespread contamination from the genetically-modified varieties. Originally from southern Mexico, Central America and northern South America, the papaya is now cultivated in most countries with a tropical climate, such as Brazil, India, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and the Philippines.

The ripe fruit is usually eaten raw, without the skin or seeds. The unripe green fruit of papaya can be eaten cooked, usually in curries, salads and stews. It also has a relatively high amount of pectin, which can be used to makes jellies.

Green papaya fruit and the tree’s latex are both rich in an enzyme called papain, a protease which is useful in tenderizing meat and other proteins. Its ability to break down tough meat fibers was utilized for thousands of years by indigenous Americans. It is included as a component in powdered meat tenderizers, and is also marketed in tablet form to remedy digestive problems. Green papaya is used in Thai cuisine, both raw and cooked.

Papain is also popular (in countries where it grows) as a topical application in the treatment of cuts, rashes, stings and burns. Papain ointment is commonly made from fermented papaya flesh, and is applied as a gel-like paste. Harrison Ford was treated for a ruptured disc incurred during filming of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom by having papain injected into his back.

Women in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and other parts of the world have long used green papaya as a folk remedy for contraception and abortion. Medical research in animals has confirmed the contraceptive and abortifacient capability of papaya, and also found that papaya seeds have contraceptive effects in adult male langur monkeys, possibly in adult male humans as well. Unripe papaya is especially effective in large amounts or high doses. Papaya is not teratogenic and will not cause miscarriage in small, ripe amounts. Phytochemicals in papaya may suppress the effects of progesterone.

The black seeds are edible and have a sharp, spicy taste. They are sometimes ground up and used as a substitute for black pepper. In some parts of Asia the young leaves of papaya are steamed and eaten like spinach.

The papaya fruit is susceptible to the Papaya Fruit Fly. This wasp-like fly lays its eggs in young fruit. In cultivation it grows rapidly fruiting within 3 years, however is it highly frost sensitive.

Although grown to some extent in south Florida, the true papaw is not related to the North American papaw. The fruit is usually pear-sized and has a central cavity filled with edible, pea-sized seeds. Papaya fruit is eaten as a melon, included in salads and when unripe, it is cooked as a vegetable. The seeds are said to have a similar flavor as capers. The green fruit, stems, and leaves are a rich source of a gummy, milky, white latex that contains the powerful enzyme, papain. This protein-dissolving substance has not only been widely used for stomach and digestive disorders, but it is also included in commercial preparations as a meat tenderizer, chewing gum and as a stablizing agent that is used to clarify beer. Some of Papaya

Fruit’s constituents include the fermenting agent myrosin, beta-carotene, rutin, resin, linalool, lycopene, malic acid, methyl salicylate, another enzyme (chymopapain), calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, B-vitamins and vitamins A, C and E.

Beneficial Uses:
Papaya is an excellent treatment for digestive disorders and extremely useful for any disturbances of the gastrointestinal tract. Papain, the powerful enzyme in Papaya, helps to dissolve and digest protein, thus easing stomach ailments and indigestion. (Because papain breaks down tough meat fibers, it is often used in restaurants and is the major ingredient in commercial meat tenderizers!) Papaya has been effective in easing heartburn and is given to treat dyspepsia and gastric catarrh. Papaya also stimulates the appetite.

Papaya’s enzyme, papain, not only digests protein, but it extends its activity to digesting carbohydrate. Papain also breaks down wheat gluten, which may be helpful for those suffering from Celiac disease. Those who have difficulty digesting starchy foods, such as breads, cereals and potatoes, might find great relief in including Papaya in their diets.

Papaya helps to settle a nervous and upset stomach and the queasy feelings often associated with travel and motion sickness. It has also been helpful in relieving morning sickness.

The papain in unripe Papaya’s gummy milk sap has been known to kill parasites by digesting them and has been used in herbal medicine to kill and expel worms. (Papaya has even been used for termite control.)

The papain in Papaya is currently undergoing studies to investigate its efficacy in treating the Herpes simplex virus. The other papayan enzyme, chymopapain, has been used in the treatment of slipped

spinal disc and pinched nerves.

Papaya is said to stimulate the bowels in times of constipation and is also believed to be useful in treating inflammatory bowel disorders.

Since many stomach problems are the direct result of indigestion, use of Papaya appears to help prevent many ailments. It stimulates digestive acids and the production of bile, which may also lead to a healthier liver and pancreas.

Papaya is said to have compounds that act as the female hormone, estrogen and has been used in folk medicine to promote milk production, facilitate childbirth and increase the female libido. In some parts of the world, it is used to induce menstruation.

In other cultures, Papaya has many medicinal applications. For treatment of poisonous snakebites, Papaya helps to degrade the venom protein in the blood, thus losing its deadly strength. It is used topically to rid the pain of insect stings, and it is said that when applied to heal wounds, it digests dead tissue without affecting the surrounding live tissue. In Jamaica, the gummy latex of the unripe papaya fruit is slowly dripped onto warts and corns, shriveling them, and they fall off. The juice has been used as a facial wash to remove freckles.

Papaya Seeds: …………  &  see
Aroma and Flavour: Papaya seeds are slightly aromtic when fresh but their aroma is less pronounced as they dry. Fresh seeds have a sparky taste, strongly resembling that of mustard and cress. They can be used fresh or allowed to dry in the sun, when their smell and taste are somewhat diminished.

Culinary Use: The plant sap, which is tapped from the trees like rubber, is rich in the enzyme pa pain which is an efficient meat tenderizer of commercial value. Both fruit and seeds also contain papain. Rub tough meat with the seeds and the skin of the fruit, or wrap it in papaya leaves (if available) and leave to marinate for several hours. Remove the papaya leaf wrapping before cooking . Crushed papaya seeds can be added to minced meat for koftas (spicey meatballs) or to a marinade for meat. Some of the pounded flesh of the fruit can also be added. When cooked, the meat will be tender with and interesting, peppery flavor.

Crushed papaya seeds can be added to salad dressing s or sauces to serve with fish. They also add texture and flavour to a fruit salad. The fresh fruit can be served in slim wedges with the seeds still intact. Next time you cut a papaya, remember the many interesting ways in which the seeds can be used before you discard them.

Medicinal and Other Use:Carica papaya contains many biologically active compounds. Two important compounds are chymopapain and papain, which are supposed to aid in digestion. The level of the compounds varies in the fruit, latex, leaves and roots. Papaya has been used for digestive problems and intestinal worms. The softening qualities of papain have been taken advantage of in the treatment of warts, corns, sinuses, and chronic forms of scaly eczema, cutaneous tubercles, and other hardness of the skin, produced by irritation. Papain also is used to treat arthritis.

*The mature (ripe) fruit treats ringworm, green fruits treat high blood pressure, and are used as an aphrodisiac.
*The fruit can be directly applied topically to skin sores .
*The juice of the fruit (specifically the enzymes within it) are used to reduce gastrointestinal gas, useful to sufferers of IBS.
*The seeds are anti-inflammatory, anthelmintic, and analgesic, and they are used to treat stomachache and fungal infections.
*The leaves are used as a heart tonic, analgesic, and to treat stomachache.
*The roots are used as an analgesic

In India, papaya seeds are chewed to freshen the breath, and they are widely used as pessaries, also as a medicine for flatulence and piles. Australian aboringines have a more romantic approach to the seeds, and consider them to be of value as an aphrodisiac.
*Papaya Juice – Cure for Dengue*.…Blend them and squeeze the juice! It’s simple and miraculously effective to cure dengue  fever!!

Papaya leaves are very effective to cure dengue  fever
Raw papaya leaves, 2pcs just cleaned and pound and squeeze with filter cloth. You will only get one tablespoon per leaf.. So two tablespoon per serving once a day. Do not boil or cook or rinse with hot water, it will loose its strength. Only the leafy part and no stem or sap. It is very bitter and you have to swallow it like “Won Low Kat”. But it works like a magic for dengu fever..

Allergies and side-effects
Caution should be taken when harvesting, as papaya is known to release a latex fluid when not quite ripe, which can cause irritation and provoke allergic reaction in some people. The papaya fruit, seeds, latex, and leaves also contains carpaine, an anthelmintic alkaloid which could be dangerous in high doses.

Excessive consumption of papaya, as of carrots, can cause carotenemia, the yellowing of soles and palms which is otherwise harmless

In India, papaya seeds are chewed to freshen the breath, and they are widely used as pessaries, also as a medicine for flatulence and piles. Australian aboringines have a more romantic approach to the seeds, and consider them to be of value as an aphrodisiac.

Click to learn more Medicinal Uses of Papaya———Carica Papaya.   Papaw.

The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.