Pineapples (Ananas comosus) are luxurious tropical fruits from the Bromeliaceae family. Nothing else from this family has made it into our diet, which makes it the only source of a powerful enzyme called bromelain – a potent anti-inflammatory and digestive enzyme.
This lavish fruit has made it into all kinds of sweet dishes, and has even become a staple on savory dishes like pizza and gammon steak.
The health benefits of pineapple juice are numerous, and its most important ones are due to the bromelain:
Scientists have found bromelain to have powerful medical applications, including:
1. A Pain Killer
Bromelain’s anti-inflammatory properties make it a hard-hitting pain-killer. Studies suggest that it provides safe and effective relief from joint pain, including arthritic joint pain.
2. Healing Injuries
Not only is it a good pain-killer, it has also been shown to reduce the swelling and tenderness of minor injuries, and even speed up post-surgical healing.
3. Treating Disease
Bromelain alone has been shown to treat the inflammatory bowel disease ulcerative colitis and a skin disorder called pityriasis lichenoides chronica – where all other treatments have failed.
4. Treating Sinus Infections
Bromelain is used to reduce the inflammation, swelling and discomfort of sinusitis, and other sinus related problems.
5. Fighting Cancer
In animal studies, bromelain has shown promise in treating cancer by boosting the immune system’s anticancer activity, by inhibiting the spread of tumors, and by decreasing tumor growth and severity.
6. Aids Digestion
Bromelain is an enzyme which helps break down proteins. This means it helps prevent, and treat, indigestion and other digestive problems.
It also helps destroy the harmful bacteria found in the stomach and intestine.
Pineapple Juice Benefits
In addition to the actions of bromelain, pineapple is full of other vitamins, nutrients and antioxidants which provide even more health benefits:
7. It Boosts Your Immune System
The combination of bromelain and Vitamin C makes pineapple juice a good juice to drink to boost your immune system.
As you already know, Vitamin C is essential for your body’s immune response. But what you might not know is that bromelain shows immunomodulatory activity – although more research needs to be done into exactly which immune cells are affected.
It also suppresses coughs and clears mucus.
8. It Strengthens Bones
A few of the benefits of pineapple juice comes from its high manganese content. Here it’s used to build bones and connective tissues. In fact, one cup of pineapple gives you 73% of your RDA of manganese.
9. It May Lower Cholesterol
Scientists found that rats who consumed pineapple juice had a decrease in lipoproteins – the compounds which transport fat through blood, and a cholesterol-lowering metabolism increase.
This effect hasn’t been studied in humans, but these findings are suggestive of another of pineapple’s health benefits.
10. All-Round Oral Health
The Vitamin C in pineapples can reduce your risk of gingivitis (which gives you bad breath) and periodontal disease (which destroys gums).
11. It Boosts Male Fertility
Pineapple juice has been shown to increase sperm quality by increasing its motility (movement). More motility means more fertility.
2 cups of pineapple juice gives the male RDA of manganese.
It’s also helps protect sperm when frozen for storage.
12. It Helps Reduce Wrinkles
The last of our pineapple juice benefits come from the alpha-hydroxy acids found in pineapple – these are the same alpha-hydroxy acids added to expensive face creams.
To use, mix some freshly juiced pineapple juice with some raw honey to form a thick paste, and use as a face pack. Leave on for up to 30 minutes.
Fresh or Store-Bought?
To get 100% of pineapple’s nutrition, it’s always better to juice it yourself.
Store-bought juice has been pasteurized – heated to a high temperature and rapidly cooled to give it a long shelf life. High temperatures destroy some of its nutrition and denatures enzymes, meaning your store-bought juice can be a little toothless.
In addition it has a number of preserving chemicals added to it, plus added sugar, artificial flavorings and colour to help replace some of the lost pineapple taste.
To get the full health benefits of pineapple juice, it’s always better to make your own.
How To Juice A Pineapple
Juicing a pineapple is actually much easier than you’d think.
The skin of a pineapple can be juiced, and it’s rich in nutrients. This will save you a lot of effort in peeling it!
To juice it, simply top and tail it, then cut into pieces small enough for your juicer.
If you don’t yet have a juicer, our guide will help you choose the right one for your needs and budget. All of these juicers handle pineapples well.
Here’s a quick how to juice a pineapple video:
(In case you’re wondering, the juicer in the video is an Omega 8006, reviewed here.)
Tasty Pineapple Juice Recipes
Here are some quick and easy pineapple juice recipes:
Just Pineapple Juice
Juice 1/2 a pineapple and enjoy
Pineapple – Apple – Mint Juice
- 1/3 Pineapple
- 1 Apple
- 1 small handful Mint
Pineapple – Carrot – Orange
- 1/3 Pineapple
- 1 Orange
- 2 Carrots
A sweet and refreshing juice.
Pineapple – Kale – Ginger
- 1/3 Pineapple
- 4 large Kale leaves
- 1 thumb Ginger
A spicy and fragrant green juice.