What is a pawpaw? Commonly referred to as the ‘poor man’s banana’, pawpaw is green in colour, and oblong in shape. It has large seeds, and a creamy, custard-like filling. It has a taste that is often described as a cross between a mango and a banana.
Sounds pretty ordinary, right? Wrong! This unobtrusive little fruit is dense in nutrients and packed full of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. But wait! There is more. It is also high in iron, magnesium and potassium, as well as being rich in calcium. It has a higher concentration of protein than bananas, apples and oranges, and contains a much higher quantity of essential amino acids than most other fruits. With such an illustrious list of ingredients, it is little wonder that this fruit is becoming known as natures superfood!
So, what are some of the more common applications for pawpaw? Pawpaw is often used in natural medicine, cosmetics, skincare products, beer production and the food industry. The leaves, sap, bark and fruit can be used in many different applications.
One of the most common applications is the use of pawpaw in skincare products. Pawpaw has impressive moisturising and protective properties. The soothing, anti-inflammatory properties make it a popular choice for many topical skin products. Especially those that are used to treat sensitive and inflamed skin, such as burn creams.
Pawpaw is also often used in lip balms. Its restorative properties make it perfect to heal your cracked lips, as well as moisturising your lips to leave them feeling smooth and soft. Baby nappy rash creams will also often contain pawpaw to help soothe redness and irritation.
Does your hair have a case of the frizzies? Yes, you can use pawpaw to help tame those annoying, fly away hairs. It doesn’t stop there. Hair masks are also made from pawpaw. The masks are used to help restore moisture and repair hair that has been damaged as a result of regular colouring and heat styling.
Pawpaw is also becoming known as a dietary food due to its unique healing properties. For those suffering bloating or digestion issues, you will be pleased to know that pawpaw can also help soothe these conditions. Pawpaw contains special enzymes that can break down protein within the body and convert it to amino acids. Pretty awesome, right?
Homeopathy uses the therapeutic properties of the pawpaw. The bark from pawpaw is used to make medicines to treat fever, pain, vomiting and inflammation.
One of the more unusual uses of pawpaw is in the production of beer. Yes, you heard right – pawpaw beer. The tropical properties of the pawpaw add a light, fruity flavour to the beer, allowing it to mix well with the wheat malt and esters produced by yeast in the fermentation process. Is there anything this fruit is not capable of achieving? Probably not.
Who would have thought a simple little fruit could pack such a punch? It appears that pawpaw may just be the Fruit of the Gods.