It is always refreshing to bite into a cool slice of pineapple on a hot summer day. Even though it does not look so appealing on the outside, its flesh and core contain plenty of vitamins, minerals, fiber, phytonutrients, and antioxidants.1 And since it is a common fruit, you tend to bite into its juicy goodness without much hesitation and second thought, but there is a limit to how much you can eat safely. Eating too many pineapples lead to undesirable side effects. You need to exercise constraint and limit your intake of the fruit regardless of how much you like it or crave it.
Side Effects Of Pineapples
Pineapple can have the following side effects if you give in to your craving or gluttony and indulge in it excessively.
1. It Causes Allergic Reactions In Some Individuals
Pineapple contains an enzyme known as bromelain, which has the ability to digest proteins. When some people consume pineapple, they get mild allergic reactions such as itching and inflammation of the face and tongue.2 Usually, these reactions subside on their own in a few hours, but if they don’t, you should consult a doctor.
Some people can develop asthma and rhinitis as well when they consume the fruit over an extended period of time.3 You have a higher chance of being allergic to pineapple if you are allergic to other substances, such as pollen, latex, wheat, celery, papain, carrot, and fennel. Exercise caution if you are having pineapple for the first time.4
2. It Reacts With Drugs In Your Body
Bromelain interacts with certain drugs in your body due to which you need to be careful when eating pineapple when under medication. It increases the absorption of certain antibiotics like amoxicillin and tetracycline. It also increases your risk of bleeding if you are on blood thinners like warfarin, clopidogrel, and aspirin.
Think twice before eating pineapple if you take sedatives like anti-seizure medicines, barbiturates, benzodiazepines, alcohol, tricyclic antidepressants, and drugs that treat insomnia as bromelain may magnify the effect of these drugs.5 Always consult your doctor if you are planning to include pineapple in your diet.
3. It Sensitizes Your Teeth
The pH of pineapple ranges from 3.3 to 5.2, which means that it is acidic in nature.6 If you consume the fruit over an extended period of time on a regular basis, your enamel gets eroded, resulting in sensitive teeth.7 You should avoid consuming undiluted pineapple juice or biting into the fruit if your teeth are already sensitive. Precaution will prevent the condition of your teeth from becoming worse.
4. It Increases Blood Sugar Levels
If you are diabetic, it is crucial that you consult your doctor before eating pineapple. Just like any other sweet fruit, it contains fructose, a sugar that raises your blood glucose levels, and causes problems.8 Your doctor will know the condition of your health well and will be able to advise you on whether or not you can eat the fruit or how much you can eat. Always stick to the recommended intake to avoid complications.
5. It Causes Diarrhea
Too much of even a good thing is bad. Pineapple contains fiber, which aids digestion, but an excess of the fruit leads to issues like vomiting and diarrhea.9 Drink plenty of water if you suffer from such issues. Visit the doctor if your condition does not improve in a few hours, or if it gets worse. You will be able to prevent these digestive issues if you stick to the recommended daily intake of 1 to 2 cups of the fruit per day.
6. Unripe Pineapple Is Dangerous
One thing you should keep in mind when eating pineapple is that it should be ripe. Smell the bottom of the fruit to get a sense of its sweetness and look for a yellow or golden color on the outside. When you cut open the fruit, its flesh should be yellow, juicy, and sweet. Eating an unripe pineapple or drinking the juice of one is extremely dangerous. it can lead to severe diarrhea and vomiting, which can be very difficult to treat.10 Seek immediate medical attention if you happen to ingest raw pineapple.
Can Pregnant Women Eat Pineapple?
When you are pregnant, you need to get a green signal from your doctor before you introduce anything into your diet and pineapple is no exception. Usually, 1 or 2 cups of pineapple are considered safe during the early stages of pregnancy, but since each pregnancy is different, it is definitely worth getting a recommendation from your doctor. Pineapple induces uterine movements, so it induces a heavy menstrual flow and can lead to an early labor or even an abortion.1112 Extra care is required if you are planning to consume pineapple during the later stages of your pregnancy.
Recommended Serving Size Of Pineapple
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, women between ages of 19 to 30 and men above the age of 19 can eat 2 cups of the fruit per day. Women above the age of 31 can have 1.5 cups in a day.13 Exceeding these amounts is not considered good for your health.
Pineapple In The Right Amount Is Therapeutic
Eating some pineapple can also be good for you. Your body can absorb about 12 grams of bromelain per day without any side effects. Here are some of the benefits of bromelain, the proteolytic enzymes of pineapple.14
- It reduces the severity if transient ischemic attacks.
- It fights the effects of intestinal pathogens like Vibrio cholera and Escherichia coli.
- It reduces or prevents the internal clotting of blood.
- It regresses tumor cells.
- It decreases the number of days required to heal from post-surgery pain and inflammation.
- It is recommended for the treatment of chronic inflammatory, malignant, and autoimmune diseases.
- It relieves osteoarthritis.
You can go ahead and enjoy the goodness of pineapple as long as you use your discretion. Mixing it up with other fruits will ensure more benefits and fewer side effects.
|↑1||Nutrition Information on Raw Fruits for Restaurants & Retail Establishments. U.S. Food and Drug Administration.|
|↑2||Oral Allergy Syndrome. National Health Service.|
|↑3||Baur, X., and G. Fruhmann. Allergic reactions, including asthma, to the pineapple protease bromelain following occupational exposure. Clinical & Experimental Allergy. 1979.|
|↑4||Bromelain. National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health.|
|↑5, ↑9||Bromelain. University of Maryland Medical Center.|
|↑6||BBB – pH Values of Various Foods. U. S. Food and Drug Administration.|
|↑7||Nirmala, S. V. S. G., and VV Subba Reddy. A comparative study of pH modulation and trace elements of various fruit juices on enamel erosion: an in vitro study. Journal of Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry. 2011.|
|↑8||Edo, A. E., A. Eregie, O. S. Adediran, and A. E. Ohwovoriole. Glycaemic Response to some Commonly Eaten Fruits in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus. West African journal of medicine. 2011.|
|↑11||Pineapple Is Bad For Pregnancy. WHRNET.org|
|↑12||Arzoaquoi, Samson K., Edward E. Essuman, Fred Y. Gbagbo, Eric Y. Tenkorang, Ireneous Soyiri, and Amos K. Laar. Motivations for food prohibitions during pregnancy and their enforcement mechanisms in a rural Ghanaian district. Journal of ethnobiology and ethnomedicine. 2015.|
|↑13||All About The Fruit Group. United States Department of Agriculture.|
|↑14||Pavan, Rajendra, Sapna Jain, and Ajay Kumar. Properties and therapeutic application of bromelain: a review. Biotechnology research international. 2012.|