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8 Fun Facts About Pineapple

By Ana Ferrer
WebMD Magazine - Feature

1. Pineapple Discovery

In 1493, explorer Christopher Columbus found pineapples on Guadeloupe Island in the Caribbean. The fruit is also native to southern Brazil and Paraguay.

2. Pineapples in Colonial America

American colonists regarded pineapples as a luxurious treat because of their rarity and cost.

3. Pineapple Anatomy

A pineapple is the result of many flowers whose fruitlets have joined around the core.

4. Pineapple Nutrition

Pineapples contain bromelain, an enzyme that may help arthritis pain by easing inflammation. They are also a good source of vitamin C, which helps your immune system.

5. Pineapples in Hawaii

Historically, Hawaii was the world's largest pineapple producer and source for U.S. pineapples. Today the largest producers include the Philippines, Brazil, and Costa Rica. 

6. Pineapple Selection

Pass over sour-smelling or bruised pineapples. Fruit from Hawaii or Central America tends to be freshest.

7. Pineapple Care

To make your pineapple softer and juicier, keep it at room temperature for 1 or 2 days before cutting.

8. Pineapple Calories

One cup of pineapple has 70 to 85 calories.

Pineapple Recipe

Hawaiian Grilled Pineapple Shrimp Kabobs

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp fresh (or bottled) minced ginger

1 Tbsp cider or rice vinegar

1 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce

1 tsp five-spice powder (optional)

1 tsp dark sesame oil

1 tsp honey

1/2 cup pineapple juice

1 pound large shrimp, peeled (or top sirloin beef)

2 large sweet red peppers, cut into bite-sized pieces

12 pearl onions, fresh (or frozen) and peeled

1 8-ounce package whole mushrooms, cleaned

2 cups fresh pineapple chunks (or canned in fruit juice, no sugar added)

vegetable cooking spray

 

Directions

1. Combine first 8 ingredients in zip-top plastic bag, then add shrimp. Marinate in refrigerator 30 minutes.

2. Remove shrimp from marinade. Place marinade in a small saucepan, bring to a boil, and set aside for basting.

3. Preheat grill to medium high. Spray with cooking spray. Thread vegetables, pineapple, and shrimp onto metal skewers. (If using wooden skewers, soak in water 30 minutes to prevent burning on the grill.) 

4. Place kabobs on grill, covered, over medium-high heat for 3 to 5 minutes per side until done, basting with reserved marinade. 

5. Drizzle remaining marinade over kabobs. Serve with brown rice.

 

Per serving: 251 calories, 27 g protein, 29 g carbohydrate, 4 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 170 mg cholesterol, 4 g fiber, 19 g sugar, 311 mg sodium. Calories from fat: 13%.

Find more articles, browse back issues, and read the current issue of  WebMD the Magazine.

Reviewed on February 25, 2014

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