Pineapple is an amazing and unique fruit. It’s delicious on its own, but we love it on pizza, in fruit salad, in juice or as a side to a cocktail, and you know a pineapple margarita is the best. But how much do you know about pineapples? They have quite a fascinating history and we bet you will be surprised by some facts about them.
- The pineapple is native to South America and was cultivated by the local people before the Europeans arrived and discovered this strange but very tasty fruit. Europeans also tried to grow it, but soon realized that it needed a tropical climate, so they transported it to their Asian and African colonies.
2. Speaking of growing pineapples, did you know that it takes almost 3 years to grow a pineapple? Growing a plant is easy, you only need to plant a pineapple leaf to grow a whole plant. But the process of obtaining and ripening of fruits will take from 18 to 20 months. And one pineapple plant can only produce one pineapple fruit at a time. Think about that the next time you complain about the Prince of Fresh Pineapples.
3. The name “pineapple” dates back to the 1660s. This is because the outside of the fruit resembles a cone. Pineapples are quite sharp and well protected on the outside, so we wonder how people figured out that they are edible and so tasty.
4. However, pineapples are tasty only when ripe. When they are unripe, their juice is irritating, and when they are very unripe, small pineapples are actually toxic and poisonous. Such unripe pineapples are unlikely to be found in the store, but the more ripe they are, the better and sweeter they will taste.
5. Pineapple is great for soothing your digestive system and promoting good digestion in general. This helps relieve bloating and can prevent this problem altogether. So, if you are experiencing minor digestive problems, eating a portion of pineapple every day can help you.
6. This delicious tropical fruit is full of vitamins and minerals. Just a few slices of pineapple contain more than your daily allowance of vitamin C, which will help your immune system function properly and keep your skin looking healthy and glowing. Pineapple is also rich in vitamin A, which supports healthy vision.
7. While vitamin C may be an obvious benefit of pineapple, not many people know that pineapples are also full of manganese, a mineral that helps keep your bones strong and healthy. It can prevent osteoporosis and arthritis.
8. Have you ever seen a pineapple plant? This is how they grow. Isn’t that fun? Even more interestingly, pineapples produce the most beautiful flowers when in bloom, which can range in color from red to purple. And then they basically produce little berries that grow together around the core. So, a pineapple isn’t technically a fruit, it’s a bunch of little fruits grown together.
9. Little known fact – pineapples do not ripen after picking. It’s not like you can buy an avocado and then just leave it on the windowsill to ripen. The pineapples in the store are as ripe as they are going to get. So pick a ripe one and eat it within a few days because they don’t really last more than 3 days at room temperature or a week in the fridge.
10. Many people will argue whether there is a place for pineapple in pizza. Some think it’s a crime against pizza, others love the freshness and sweetness it adds to their pizza. But whichever camp you fall into, you’ll be interested to learn how pineapple became such a hotly debated pizza topping. The story is much more fascinating than you ever thought.