Pineapple-infused water is a refreshing way to drink more H2O. Here are the benefits of pineapple water and how to make it.
Maybe you’ve heard of pineapple water, a refreshing beverage that’s not only deliciously sweet but can be a great option for folks who just don’t enjoy the taste of plain water.
After all, a large percentage of the human body is made up of water—and drinking enough fluids is important for your body to function properly.
Plus, pineapple water is a low-calorie, low-sugar, and natural alternative to sugary beverages like soda or juice, notes Nicole Stefanow, RDN, a dietitian in the New York City area.
Pineapple water, or Agua de Piña, is a traditional Mexican agua fresca, or fruit-infused drink made with sugar. However, many of the versions currently trending don’t include any added sugar.
Nutrition experts all over the country sing its praises. “I make it for myself several times a week,” adds Arielle “Dani” Lebovitz, RDN, a dietitian in Franklin, Tennessee.
Here’s what you need to know if you want to try pineapple water, including what it is, how to make it, and more.
What Is Pineapple Water?
So…what exactly is pineapple water? Is it literally just pineapple chunks soaked in water?
There are two common ways to make pineapple water. The most popular version infuses water with fresh pineapple chunks, and the other version blends freshly cut pineapple with water and strains out the pulp, says Lebovitz.
How To Make Pineapple Water
To make the infused kind, begin by choosing a ripe pineapple, which will offer more sweetness.
“First, find the fruit with the sweetest fragrance,” says Stefanow. “Second, tug at a leaf from the crown. If it detaches easily, that’s a telltale sign that the pineapple is ready to be sliced.”
Then chop up some pineapple, and steep it in water. The longer you steep, the more flavor you’ll get. And, of course, add ice if desired.
Consider opting for this base recipe: one chopped pineapple, one gallon of water, and one gallon of ice.
Nutritional Profile Of Pineapple Water
Here’s the nutritional profile—including daily values (DVs)—for pineapple water made with one chopped pineapple, one gallon of water, and one gallon of ice. This recipe serves a dozen, and the nutrition info assumes that you eat the pineapple chunks.
- Calories: 40
- Fat: 0 grams (0 percent DV)
- Saturated fat: 0 grams (0 percent DV)
- Sodium: 20 milligrams (1 percent DV)
- Carbohydrates: 10 grams (4 percent DV)
- Fiber: 1 gram (4 percent DV)
- Sugar: 7 grams
- Protein: 0 grams (0 percent DV)
- Vitamin C: 36 grams (40 percent DV)
- Manganese: 1 milligram (43 percent DV)
Benefits of Pineapple Water
Yes, there are pineapple water benefits.
However, keep in mind that when fruit is lightly infused in water, a relatively low amount of nutrients transfers to the beverage, according to Stefanow.
But you can change this! Instead of draining out the pineapple, add whole chunks to your glass. Sip your water, then eat the fruit—just like you’d do with sangria.
There isn’t a ton of published research strictly on pineapple water, but here’s what is know about the potential benefits.
“The most important health benefit of pineapple water is it provides hydration, which is vital for our bodies to function properly,” Stefanow says.
The average U.S. adult drinks less than five cups of water per day, per the Centers for Disease Control and prevention. This is much less than the recommended intake of 15.5 cups for men and 11.5 cups a day. So Americans can use any help getting in their daily quota of water.
“Adding a sweet flavor like pineapple to water can make drinking water more appealing and palatable to someone who may not be meeting their hydration needs with plain water alone,” adds Stefanow.
That’s why some people also like lemon water or lime water, too.
It Helps Immunity
“Besides being a refreshing and hydrating alternative to plain water, pineapple water may provide a sweet little immunity boost,” says Stefanow.
“Pineapple is a great source of vitamin C and manganese, which both play an important part in immune function.”
Indeed, per a cup of pineapple, you get 79 milligrams of vitamin C. This is 88 percent of the DV for vitamin C and 67 percent of the DV for manganese.
It Helps Reduce Inflammation
Pineapple contains bromelain, a group of enzymes. “Drinking pineapple water may help people with chronic inflammation, as bromelain is water-soluble and known to have anti-inflammatory effects in the body,” says Lebovitz.
Bromelain provides other anti-inflammatory benefits, too. “Research suggests that bromelain may even decrease nasal inflammation in people suffering from acute sinusitis and may shorten the duration of symptoms,” says Stefanow.
It Helps Cut Added Sugar Intake
It’s no secret that most soda contains added sugar. So if it’s the carbonation you love, making fizzy pineapple water may satisfy your soda craving.
“Fruit-infused sparkling water is a satisfying low-sugar, low-calorie alternative to soda with the same gratifying fizz,” says Stefanow. Replacing sugary drinks with this alternative is a plus.
It May Help Digestion
“Pineapple is packed with natural digestive enzymes that help our bodies break down food,” says Stefanow. “Sipping on pineapple water between meals can help support healthy digestion.”
Downsides of Pineapple Water
For most people, there are no downsides to drinking pineapple water. However, people with certain medical conditions may want to be cautious of intake.
“Since adding a fruit infusion to water is a delicate way to add flavor without all the sugar you would get from juice, it’s hard to go overboard,” says Stefanow.
“However, pineapple is very acidic, and too much pineapple water may cause heartburn or digestive issues in some people.”
Additionally, the bromelain in pineapple water may interact with some medications such as blood thinners or antibiotics, notes Lebovitz. If you’re concerned about this, speak with your doctor or pharmacist.
How To Enjoy Pineapple Water
You can, of course, drink pineapple water straight up. But you can also get creative.
Make Sparkling Pineapple Water
“My personal favorite is freezing the tough pineapple core that is often discarded as trash and using it to chill and flavor my sparkling water with a squeeze of lime,” says Lebovitz.
Steep Spiced Pineapple Water
Step up your pineapple water game by adding herbs or spices, suggest Stefanow. Pineapple pairs particularly well with mint or fresh ginger. Consider trying this mint and pineapple-infused water.
Important Notice: This article was originally published at www.thehealthy.com by Amy Gorin, MS, RDN where all credits are due.
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