Carb Counts and Health Benefits of Papaya

Papaya Nutritional Information

Close up of Papaya
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When Christopher Columbus encountered papayas, he called them "The Fruit of the Angels," perhaps because they are so sweet. Even though they are high in sugar, small amounts of papaya can usually be eaten as part of a low-carb diet

The fruit and leaves of the papaya tree contain an enzyme called papain, which is used as a meat tenderizer because it breaks down proteins. It also aids digestion and is used in cosmetics as a natural exfoliate.

Carbohydrate and Fiber Counts for Papaya

  • 1/2 cup papaya cubes: 6 grams effective (net) carbohydrate plus 1 gram fiber and 27 calories.
  • 1 medium papaya (5" long and 3" in diameter): 25 grams effective (net) carbohydrate plus 5 grams fiber and 119 calories.

Glycemic Index for Papaya

The averages in studies of papaya ranged between 56 to 60, with an average of 59. Here is more Information about the Glycemic Index.

Glycemic Load of Papaya

  • 1/2 cup of papaya cubes: 1.5
  • 1 medium papaya (5" long and 3" in diameter): 7

Here is more Information about the Glycemic Load.

Health Benefits of Papaya

Papaya is an excellent source of vitamin C and vitamin A and a very good source of folate and potassium. It is also rich in phytonutrients. including carotenes and flavonoids, which can protect cells from damage, lower risk of cardiovascular disease, and provide other health benefits.

There is more Information About Papaya at Calorie Count Plus.

More Carb Profiles

Sources: Leroux, MarcusFoster-Powell, Kaye, Holt, Susanna and Brand-Miller, Janette. "International table of glycemic index and glycemic load values: 2002." American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Vol. 76, No. 1, 5-56, (2002).

USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 20.

More About Papaya

While papaya is native to the tropical areas of Mexico, Central America, and South America, it is now cultivated in most countries with a tropical climate.

In the English-speaking islands, papaya is often called pawpaw and some Spanish islands call it fruta bomba or lechosa.

There are two types of papayas, Hawaiian and Mexican. The most common types in U.S. grocery stores are the Hawaiian varieties.

Hawaiian papaya have a pear shape and weigh about a pound each. In general, papaya is hard and green when unripe and changes to yellow, orange, or red when ripe.

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