Healthy ingredients: Kiwis

Whether you're a fan of the fuzzy green fruits or not, there's no denying that kiwi fruits are great for your health. Containing just 42 calories and 0.4g fat per fruit, they're loaded with vitamin C and a medium kiwi fruit contains 252mg potassium, making them the perfect fruit to consume when you're trying to reach your five-a-day.

Kiwi are native to northern China, and were brought to New Zealand in the late 1900s, when they were known as Chinese gooseberries. Later, they were renamed as 'kiwis' to avoid the high export duties charged for berries, and they take their name from the kiwi bird, the national symbol of New Zealand. Low in calories yet high in nutrients, kiwis are the fruit to consume if you're looking for beautiful skin at any age - they're packed with antioxidant vitamin C which can help to support collagen production.

Did you know that kiwis can also help you to sleep more soundly and for longer, if you've been suffering from insomnia (1)? The high potassium and fibre content of kiwks can also lower blood pressure and keep your heart healthy. A study carried out at St Thoma Hospital in Tennessee revealed that those who consumed 4069mg potassium daily experienced 49% less risk of death from heart disease than those who consumed less potassium (2). For those experiencing constipation, kiwis could help as they have a mild laxative effect.

Healthy kiwi recipes

Fuzzy on the outside, green, juicy and packed with seeds on the inside, sometimes it can be hard to know what to do with a kiwi fruit! How do you incorporate kiwis into your diet? They can be used in a range of recipes, both savoury and sweet - we have some inspiration for you.

Kiwi Mint Julep

This classic cocktail gets a tropical twist with the addition of juicy kiwi fruit - enjoy it virgin or add some bourbon for a cheeky alcoholic drink that you can enjoy on hot days.

Kiwi, Ginger and Banana Smoothie

This Jamie Oliver recipe includes potassium rich kiwis and bananas, so it's a great choice for a healthy heart. Porridge oats and natural yoghurt fill you up - we recommend enjoying this as a post-workout smoothie!

Asian Kiwi-Sesame Lemongrass Marinade

This Asian-style marinade is sweet, fruity and salty - it's perfect with red meat or pork and could be used to marinate meat before cooking it in your stir fry. If you've never considered using kiwi fruit in a marinade, we recommend trying this!

Kiwifruit French Toast

We love a good brunch recipe for those lazy weekends - great to come home to after morning bootcamp at your local park (or wake up to, if you've had a late night). Topping French toast with kiwi fruit adds a healthy boost of vitamin C, potassium and fibre, and we like to add some other fruits too, such as berries.

Mediterranean Kiwi Cous Cous

Adding fruity kiwis to vegetable cous cous makes a great, light lunch option or a side dish for salad or salmon. With heart-healthy olive oil and red wine dressing, this is one of our favourite ways to use kiwi fruits!

Raspberry Kiwi Yoghurt Lollies

Frozen yoghurt lollies with fresh fruit are a healthy alternative to sugar and additive packed lollies from your local supermarket. Try this recipe which is packed with vitamin C from the berries and kiwis - you could use honey in place of the brown sugar if you like.  Yummy!

Vegan Kiwi Mango Cheesecake

A vegan cheesecake with fruity kiwis and mangos? We love this recipe, which has an almond crust and coconut cream and cashew 'cheese' filling with kiwis, topped with a fruity mango puree sweetened with dates. If you're looking for a healthy dessert that tastes like a real treat, you've found it!

Hot Kiwi Dipping Sauce

This spicy Mexican style dip tastes great with pitta chips, home made tortilla chips or even chicken and vegetable skewers. With jalapenos, kiwis, tomatoes, onions, sugar and lime juice, it's salty, spicy and sweet - everything you want from a dip!

Easy Kiwi Jam

It might contain lots of sugar (jam tends to!) but this is a lovely treat spread on wholemeal toast, and a great way to use up leftover kiwis after cooking other healthy dishes. A little of what you fancy does you good!

READ THIS NEXT: Healthy ingredients: Delicious dates

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Author By Paula Beaton
Date On 22nd May 2015 at 12:31

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