So, I don’t know how to make that wiggly accent line over the “N” in my title…let’s just get that out of the way. Whatever.
I have made an executive decision to switch gears this week. If you read last week’s post, you’d note my less than discrete, semi-public self-implosion. Real classy, Kenz. I know. Hey, I’m just a human, being human. Anywho, I’m a fan of variety so we are going down the “let me school you on nutrition” path this week, because I recently learned of something pretty interesting and I’d be rude not to pass it along to my internet friends. Also, you’ll think I’m really smart and edumacated and I can stand to build up that reputation.
My home slice Jeremy Pickett, owner of Black Legion Athletic Gear (PLUG!) recently dropped on me some fact about pineapple and how it increases recovery from muscle breakdown and decreases soreness? Since I’m supposed to be the informed professional on all things food I was appalled that I was in the dark on this concept. So I used the interwebz and my old pal Google to change that. And this is what I learned…
The magic component: bormelain. Bromelain is an enzyme found in pineapple that is believed to reducing swelling (inflammation), especially of the nose and sinuses, after surgery or injury. It is also used for relaxing muscles stimulating muscle contractions, and whole other list of things we aren’t super concerned with. It is also currently used for preventing muscle soreness after intense exercise.
HOWEVER…Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence and finds bromelain to be:
Possibly effective for…Arthritis pain and knee function when used in combination with trypsin and rutin (fancy science words **yawn**). This combination seems to be about as effective as some prescription painkillers.
But possibly ineffective for…Preventing muscle soreness after exercise. Taking bromelain orally, immediately following intense exercise, does not seem to delay onset of muscle soreness and has no effect on pain, flexibility, or skeletal weakness (**sad face.**)
Well, boo to that. I was super excited to gorge myself with delicious tropical fruits on the daily. I wasn’t giving up on this dream just yet…so kept asking Jeeves…
Turns out that there is SOME merit to this claim, but only to the extent of bromelain’s enzymatic action. It does aid in digestion, to the degree that it acts on protein, breaking it down into smaller segments to be digested, but so do other enzymes produced by your body to play this specific role (aka digestive enzymes.) This is pretty much the extent of its assistance in the digestion/absorption process. So, sadly the claim of it being a magic bullet for recovery is not as true as I had hoped. Imagine that, no magic fix…I wonder if it’s because there is NO SUCH THING. Ever in life.
Well, I spoke too soon…because there is an enchanted, miracle working tool that exists when it comes to pineapples. Enter: THE PINEAPPLE CUTTER.
This dandy was a bridal shower gift and it is THE COOLEST kitchen tool I have EVER received! Talk about a short cut…cut off the top and bottom of this guy and your work is damn near done! Highly recommended for those that yam on this fruit straight up or make pina coladas regularly. Jus sayin’.
SO, there’s your dose of nutrition fact vs myth. Congrats, you’re smarter now having read it and that’s always fun. Know what else is fun? Meeting your blogger soulmate! Yup, it’s happened. Allow me to introduce everyone to Emily Cooper, fellow RD, blogger, and sarcasm enthusiast. We met via the fantabulous Vermont Peanut Butter Company, as she writes the blog for their site. Guess who’s going to be guest starring in that shortly? Like I said, it was fate. Like her up on Facebook and/or check out her never boring website/blog, Sinful Nutrition, where you can keep up on the VTPB blog. I will be droppin’ some sweet entries there in the near future. HOLLA!