Papaya or Pawpaw is a delicious tropical fruit of the papaya tree. It is native to central and northern South America, but it is now cultivated in several countries. It provides several health and beauty benefits because of the essential nutrients in them. Now, let’s talk about some side effects of eating too much papaya.
Side Effects Of Eating Too Much Papaya
Following are the major side effects of eating too much papaya.
(1) May Cause Unwanted Termination Of Pregnancy
Raw unripe papaya is harmful to pregnant women as latex in it may trigger uterine contractions.
It may cause miscarriage, abortion, premature delivery, birth defects, and even stillborn.
However, ripe papaya (with fully yellow skin) may be eaten in small quantities after consulting with your doctor.
Ripe papaya is loaded with essential nutrients and helps in maintaining a healthy pregnancy.
It eases digestion and relieves constipation.
Antioxidants in papaya protect the uterus from free radical damage.
Folic acid in papaya promotes the brain development of the fetus and reduces neural tube defects like spina bifida.
Avoid raw papaya if you are trying to conceive as carotene in them stimulates estrogen hormone, and induces period.
(2) Can Cause Carotenemia Or Skin Discoloration
Beta-carotene, a powerful antioxidant in papaya protects the eyes from free radical damage and reduces the risk of age-related macular degeneration.
Eating too much papaya may lead to a high concentration of beta-carotene in the body, and cause carotenemia.
Carotenmia is a harmless condition that causes yellow-orange discoloration of the skin, eyes white, soles, and palms.
It is often confused with jaundice.
It is a temporary condition that subsides once the beta-carotene foods like papaya, carrots, and sweet potatoes, etc, are stopped and regulated.
(3) May Give Rise To Respiratory Disorders
Inflammatory compounds like papain, beta-carotene, and vitamin C in papaya reduces lung inflammation and improve our respiratory health.
However, in some individuals, the papain enzyme may act as a strong allergen, and give rise to respiratory problems like obstructed breathing, wheezing, nasal congestion, hay fever, and asthma.
Eat papaya in moderation, and avoid eating if you are allergic to them.
(4) May Develop Kidney Stones
Vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant in papaya protects the cells from free radical damage and provides several benefits such as the reduced risk of cancers, stronger immunity, blood pressure regulation, detoxification, reduced risk of neurodegenerative diseases, etc.
However, in excess quantities, vitamin C may increase the risk of kidney stones.
Eat papaya in moderation to minimize the risk.
If you are on vitamin C medication, Consult with your doctor before adding papaya or any other vitamin C-rich food to your diet.
(5) Eating Papaya And Managing Diabetes
Papaya has a moderate glycemic index of 60, and release sugar into the bloodstream at a slow pace.
This prevents a sudden spike in blood sugar levels and helps in managing diabetes.
Dietary fibers in papaya reduce sugar absorption by the bloodstream, regulates blood sugar levels.
Eat papaya moderately as eating too much papaya may lower blood sugar below the normal range.
It may cause symptoms like shakiness, dizziness, excessive sweating, excessive hunger, fast heartbeat, confusion, and irritability or moodiness.
If you are on diabetic medication, consult your doctor before adding pumpkin to your diet to avoid the risk of food-drug intolerance.
(6) Eating Papaya And Regulating High Blood Pressure
The vasodilating properties of potassium in papaya relax blood vessels, improve blood circulation, and relieve hypertension or high blood pressure.
Hypertension is a silent killer that causes several cardiovascular problems and affects millions around the world.
Don’t overeat papaya as high potassium levels may lower the blood pressure abnormally giving rise to symptoms such as dizziness, fainting, nausea, trouble breathing, irregular heartbeat, dehydration, lack of concentration, blurred vision, and pale skin, etc.
If you are on blood pressure medication, consult with your doctor before adding pears to your diet to avoid food-drug intolerance risk.
(7) May Upset Stomach
Dietary fibers in papaya relieve constipation and other digestive problems like abdominal pain, gas bloating, and, flatulence, etc.
However, eating too much papaya is bad for the digestive health as excessive dietary fibers may upset the digestive system, and cause stomach ache, nausea, bloating, flatulence and gas, etc.
(8) May Interact With Anticoagulant Medications
Papaya is loaded with essential nutrients and provides many health, and beauty benefits.
However, if you are on any medication, consult with your doctor before adding papaya to your diet as papaya may interfere with these medications.
Avoid papaya if you are on anticoagulant medicines ( blood thinners) like warfarin, and aspirin, etc.
“Papain” enzyme in this fruit may interact with warfarin, increases its effectiveness, and increases the chances of bruising or bleeding.
Avoid papaya if you have recently gone under the knife, and taking medication for healing wounds/stitches.
People with other blood clotting conditions such as hemophilia, and thrombosis should also be cautious of eating papaya.
Consult with your doctor to reduce food-drug intolerance risk.
(9) May Develop Skin Rashes
Papaya provides many beauty benefits and can be used topically on the skin.
Papaya extract is also added to cosmetic products like anti-aging creams, scrub, face packs, and face wash, etc.
However, these beauty products may not be suitable for all skin types.
If green papaya is used as an ingredient for cosmetic products then the latex in it may cause skin irritation, itching, and rashes, etc.
To ensure skin safety, do a patch test before using papaya or papaya products on the skin.
(10) Some Individuals May Be Allergic To Papaya
Papaya provides many health and beauty benefits as it is loaded with essential nutrients.
However, avoid eating papaya if you have a pollen allergy or are allergic to papaya (latex allergy) as it may cause allergic reactions.
Some common allergic reactions that may arise are swelling of the mouth and face, itching in and around the mouth and throat, headache, dizziness, abdominal pain, hives, itching, stuffy nose, wheezing, breathing difficulties, and chest tightness, etc.
(11) May Slow Down Our Heartbeat
Papaya improves our cardiovascular health.
Dietary fibers in it reduce LDL cholesterol, and potassium regulates high blood pressure.
Both LDL cholesterol and high blood pressure is a major cause of cardiovascular problems.
However, papaya is more suitable as a precautionary step.
If you already suffer from cardiovascular problems, you should avoid papaya or consume it after consultation with your doctor.
(12) May Cause Diarrhea And Constipation
Dietary fibers in papaya are natural laxatives that relieve constipation and other gastrointestinal problems like abdominal pain, gas, bloating, and flatulence, etc.
However, too much fiber may over-activate bowel movement, and increase diarrhea risk.
Avoid papaya while suffering from diarrhea, and even in a normal scenario, eat it in moderation.
During diarrhea, our body loses a lot of water, and essential minerals, and salts.
Losing excess water from the body may force the large intestines to soak up water from the stool.
This hardens the stool and makes them difficult to pass, thereby increasing the constipation risk.
(13) Not Suitable For Infants
Papaya is not suitable for infants as the papain enzyme and dietary fibers in it may trigger allergic reactions and digestive problems like stomachache, abdominal cramps, and bloating, etc.
Ripe papaya can slowly be introduced to the baby’s diet once the baby starts taking solid food, generally around 6 months of age.
Consult with your pediatrician for further guidance.
The information contained in the post is for general purposes only and shouldn’t be considered as 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, I make no guarantee of the accurateness of the same.
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