The papaya is an exotic fruit that comes from the papaya tree (Carica papaya), a large perennial plant that can grow up to 30 feet high. Papaya has previously been considered very rare but has grown in popularity due to its sweet taste and potential health benefits. Papaya, also known as pawpaw, was given the name “fruit of the angels” by Christopher Columbus. They’re a tropical fruit native to Central America, though these days they can be found throughout the world and all year long.
Papaya has various health benefits such as decreased risk of heart disease, diabetes and cancer. It’s also thought to aid digestion, support healthy blood sugar levels, reduce blood pressure and help wound healing. Papaya is full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, which is why it’s also a common ingredient in beauty, cosmetic, skin and hair care products.
Here are 10 beauty benefits of papaya:
1. Brightens Skin Complexion
A poor complexion can be a huge issue for many people. Flaky, dry patches, visibly large pores, pimples, dark circles under the eyes and uneven skin tones are just a few things that can cause complexion problems. Environmental factors like over exposure to the sun, smoking, lack of proper nutrition, aging and even smiling can make these issues more prominent. There are many things you can do to brighten and clear up your complexion though, and papaya is one natural remedy that can help.
Papaya contains an enzyme called papain, also referred to as papaya proteinase, which acts as a powerful antioxidant, and is also the component of papaya that is responsible for its skin whitening abilities. Papain also has antiviral, antifungal and antibacterial properties. This helps reduce any inflammation on the skin, bringing out a natural brightness. Papaya can also rejuvenate and exfoliate the skin to remove dead skin cells.
It’s important to use an unripe papaya peel to brighten your skin, as the highest concentration of papain is just underneath the skin. Simply massage the papaya peels across your face, and anywhere else on the body you’d like to brighten such as your hands, elbows and knees. Wait at least 15 minutes before rinsing off and following it up with a moisturizer. Brightening effects should be immediate.
Papaya is acidic, so make sure you don’t leave it on your skin for too long otherwise it can cause irritation and dryness. Allergic reactions to papaya are rare but can affect some people, with symptoms such as itching skin, rashes, watery eyes, burning around the mouth, lips, tongue and throat. It can also cause shortness of breath, nasal congestion, sneezing, abdominal cramps, gas and bloating.