Native to tropical and subtropical areas of the world, the guava is a popular fruit with a variety of vitamins and minerals!
A Central American Origin Story
It’s believed that the guava originally came from Mexico or Central America. They were taken throughout the more tropical regions of America, as well as throughout the Caribbean, which is how the fruit began spreading throughout more tropical areas of the world.
The fruit was planted as a crop in tropical Asian regions, as well as Southern and Western areas of the United States. This includes areas from Tennessee and North Carolina south, as well as throughout the west and Hawaii.
Today, most guava production is done in the following countries:
In order to grow successfully, guavas typically need to be grown in tropical or subtropical areas. However, they’re one of the few tropical fruits that can actually be grown indoors. Usually, the plant will beat fruit after 2 years and can live up to 40 years.
There are multiple types of guava, including:
- Red Malaysian
- Tropical White
- Mexican Cream
- Strawberry Guava
- Lemon Guava
A Unique Taste
The guava fruit is typically round or oval and ranges from 1.6 to 4.7 inches in length. They smell similar to a lemon, and the outer skin is usually bitter and rough.
The inside of guavas can range from sweet to sour and may be deep pink or white. Of course, this will depend on the variety of guava that you’re eating.
Be sure to identify the type of tree your guava comes from – whether it be a Red Malaysian, Detwiler, or any variation in between!
A Tropical Dessert
Because of the fruit’s popularity, there are several dessert recipes that it is included in.
One of these is a delicious puff pastry: the guava-cream cheese puff.
The Guava As A Superfood
You might’ve seen the guava in the news recently, as it’s being investigated for potential superfood benefits. The fruit has been steadily gaining popularity, and research is now being done into how the fruit can help boost the immune system.
There are several nutrients jam-packed into the guava, so it’s no surprise that it just might be a superfood. They have quite a bit of vitamin C and dietary fiber, as well as moderate folic acid levels.
On top of that, they’re usually a low-calorie snack that includes several nutrients that are essential to the body. Something to note, however, is that the nutritional value does vary depending on the variety.
A Historical Medicine
Though less common today, the guava was often used in the 1950s for their biological properties.
Another use for the fruit is in guava seed oil. This oil is often used both in cooking and in cosmetics and includes such vitamins and minerals as:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
The Tropical Favorite
Though there are many great tropical fruits, the guava certainly stands out. Not only can it be grown at home, but it can be used in a variety of dishes – and it might even be the next superfood!