Papaya or Pawpaw is a delicious fruit that grows on the tropical plant of the same name. It provides a number of health and beauty benefits because of the number of nutrients like vitamins, minerals, enzymes, enzymes etc present in it. Although papaya is native to central and northern South America but it is now cultivated in several countries of the world. We have already talked about the health and beauty benefits of , and in this article, we will talk about the side effects of eating too much papaya.
Side Effects Of Eating Too Much Papaya
(1) Can Cause Unwanted Termination Of Pregnancy
Papaya especially the raw papaya is very harmful to pregnant women as it can lead to unwanted termination of pregnancy by triggering contraction of uterine due the presence of latex in it. The contraction of uterine can cause absorption, miscarriage, premature delivery, birth defects in the newborn baby and sometimes even stillbirth.
In addition to this, the papain enzyme present in the leaves of papaya acts like oxytocin and prostaglandin, the two hormones responsible for inducing labor and enhancing contractions. Because of this risk associated with papaya, pregnant women should avoid eating papaya, especially the raw one to keep herself and her baby safe.
(2) Can Cause Carotenemia Or Skin Discoloration
The beta carotene present in papaya is good for our eyes as it helps in improving our eyesight, keep our eyes healthy and also protects the eyes from the risk of age-related macular degeneration. However, too much consumption of beta carotene can cause discoloration of the skin and our eye white, soles and palms may turn into yellow color as if we are suffering from jaundice. This condition is known as carotenemia. Eating too much carrot may also cause carotenoid because of the high amount of beta carotene present in it.
(3) May Give Rise To Respiratory Disorders
The digestive enzyme “Papain” present in papaya provides a number of health benefits like keeping our digestive system healthy, providing anti-inflammatory benefits, and so on but the same enzyme “Papain” is also a strong allergen which makes it bad for our respiratory system.
Consuming high quantity of papain enzyme may give rise to various respiratory disorders like obstructed breathing, wheezing, congestion of nasal passage, hay fever, and asthma.
An interesting point about papaya is that it prevents asthma because of the beta carotene present in it but the “Papain” enzyme present in it can cause asthma ( but only when you consume too much of papaya). So, it is important to keep it in moderation.
(4) Can Cause Development of Kidney Stones
Papaya is an excellent source of vitamin C, which is a powerful antioxidant that provides many benefits like protecting our skin cells from premature aging, reducing the risk of development of cancer, boosting immunity system, regulating blood pressure and so on.
A 100 gram of papaya provides around 60.9 mg of vitamin C which is around 67 percent of the daily requirement of vitamin C which means eating a medium sized papaya can provides us more than enough vitamin C . ( Source , source )
Although vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin C and our body excrete out the excess of vitamin C but it is important to note that doing same put a burden on our kidneys and having too much of vitamin could be toxic and may give rise to formation of kidney stones.
(5) May Upset Stomach
Papaya is good for our digestive system and provides a number of benefits like keeping our digestive system healthy, providing relief from constipation, smoother digestion, cleanse the digestive tract and so on. However, it is better to enjoy papaya within moderation as having too much of papaya can upset our digestive system and give rise to problems like stomachache, abdominal cramp, bloating, flatulence, nausea etc.
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(6) Could Be Risky For People With Stomach Ulcers
When it comes to stomach ulcers, then papaya is both good and bad. Good because it is said to prevent stomach ulcers and heal stomach problems because of the presence of a number of nutrients and digestive enzymes in it. It may increase the secretion of protective mucus in our stomach and also speed up the breakdown of protein, which may lessen the amount of time hydrochloric acid sits in the stomach.
It is bad because the papain enzyme present in papaya, especially the raw/green papaya can give rise to many digestive problems and may worsen the condition of the person suffering from stomach ulcers. Eating ripe papaya once in awhile is not bad but if you are on medication for stomach ulcers, then you should consult with your doctor before adding papaya in your diet.
(7) Not Safe For Nursing Women
Papaya may or may not be safe for nursing women. This is because, in some Asian countries, women are advised to enjoy salads packed with green papaya as it increases the flow of breast milk. On the other hand, in certain parts of the world, nursing women are advised to stay from papaya, especially the raw papaya, as the enzymes present in papaya may have an adverse effect on the health of the infant. The best way to clear this confusion is to consult with your doctor about the same and follow his/her advice.
(8) May Interact With Anticoagulant Medications
Papaya is not suitable for people who are on anticoagulant medicines like aspirin, warfarin etc. because of the “Papain” enzyme present in it. This is because these medicines are used for blood thinning and the papain enzyme may provide the same benefit. Enjoying papaya while being on anticoagulant medicines is bad as it may increases the risk of bleeding and bruising. Because of this side effect of papaya, it is advised to consult with your doctor about the same.
In the same way, if you have a surgery scheduled in the next few weeks then also you should stop consuming papaya because the anticoagulant nature of papaya may interfere with the healing of wounds/stitches post surgery.
Some studies have also confirmed that papaya is not suitable even for patients affected by the blood clotting conditions like hemophilia and thrombosis, and they should also stay away from consuming papaya. It is advisable to consult your doctor about the same.
(9) May Develop Skin Rashes
Papaya is a good source of vitamin C, which is an antioxidant and of papain enzyme. Both these compounds are very beneficial for our skin and provides a number of benefits to our skin. Because of this reason, papaya is used as ingredients in anti-aging creams.
However, it is important to note that there is no guarantee that every skin type will react with the topical application of these creams in a positive way. It may not be suitable for certain skin type or for certain individuals and they may experience itchy and dry skin, and sometimes even skin rashes.
To know, whether papaya infused creams and moisturizers while be good for our skin or not, it is better to test in small quantity on a small part.
(10) Some Individuals May Be Allergic To Papaya
Although papaya provides a lot of benefits but they are not suitable for certain individuals that are allergic to papaya and hence they should avoid eating papaya. In addition to this, if you are suffering from any respiratory disorders like asthma, or any allergic conditions then also you should be careful about eating papaya. This is because the pollens (responsible for causing allergic reactions) from flowers may get stick to the skin of the papaya.
To save yourself from this pollen allergy, clean papaya while wearing a glove. Discard the peel and then remove the glove, and thoroughly wash your hands. It is will be even better to cover your nose and mouth with a towel or a clean cloth to avoid allergic reactions.
Some of the allergic reactions caused by papaya are – swelling of mouth and face, itching in and around the mouth and throat, rashes on the floor of the mouth and tongue, headache, dizziness, abdominal pain, difficulty in breathing etc. Although these side effects are very rare but it is good to be careful.
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(11) High Consumption Could Be Toxic
The campaign, an anthelmintic alkaloid found in abundance in the leaves, seeds, and flesh of the papaya is good for our stomach as this chemical is very effective in flushing out parasitic worms out of our stomach. However, high consumption of this chemical could be dangerous to our health as it known to lower our pulse rate in a dangerous way. This could affect the functioning of our nervous system. Messing up with our nervous system could be very very bad and may give rise to unpredictable conditions.
(12) May Slow Down Our Heartbeat
Although papaya is good for our cardiovascular system, keeps our heart healthy and also reduces the risk of heart attack, heart strokes etc., but it is not so suitable for people who are already suffering from cardiac disorders and they should avoid using papaya. This is because the papain enzyme present in papaya is known for slowing down our heart beat in a dangerous manner, and may trigger various cardiovascular problems
(13) May Cause Diarrhea
Papaya is very effective in providing relief from constipation because of the presence of dietary fibers in it. Although dietary fibers are good but it is not advised to consume too much papaya as excessive consumption of dietary fibers can give rise to diarrhea. Another disadvantage is that fiber can even bind up with the stool and worsen the condition of diarrhea and may increase the risk of dehydration.
(14) Not Suitable For Infants Below One Year
Papaya is not so safe for infants below one year and mothers are advised to not to give papaya to their kids. This is because the presence of papain enzyme in papaya may upset the stomach of infant and give rise to digestive problems like stomachache, abdominal cramps, bloating etc.
In addition to this, papaya is also a good source of dietary fibers and the excessive amount of fiber could lead to diarrhea and dehydration. Because of this reason, it is advised to first consult with a pediatrician about the same and give papaya ( in any form ) only as per the advice of the pediatrician.
(15) Can Cause Constipation
Now, this is interesting. On one hand, papaya provides relief from constipation because of the presence of dietary fibers in it, and the excessive consumption of dietary fibers can even give rise to diarrhea and dehydration. On the other hand, eating too much of papaya could even cause constipation ( no diarrhea this time ). This is because the dietary fibers absorb water. This means, that if you are taking any fibrous fruits like papaya, banana, orange or guava , then you should also drink a lot of water. This is to make sure that when dietary fibers absorb water, then they don’t absorb all water and there is enough water in our stomach to keep our stool soft ( which makes excretion easier). Not drinking enough water, while consuming fibrous fruits like papaya can harden our stools and give rise to constipation.
These were some of the major side effects of eating too much papaya. Although papaya is safe food and provides a number of benefits to our health but it is important to keep these side effects in mind and enjoy papaya within moderation.
The information contained in the post is for general purpose only and shouldn’t be considered as a medical advice or as an alternative to medical advice. Although I’ve tried my best to keep the information contained in this post as accurate and updated as possible, but I make no guarantee of the accurateness of the same.
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