Kiwis, also known as kiwifruit, are small, egg-shaped fruits with a balanced sweet and tart flavor. They come in both green and yellow varieties, but green are the most common. Kiwis are native to Southwest China, where they grow on hillsides and mountains, but currently, New Zealand is the largest producer. 1
The Health Benefits of Kiwis
Good Source of Vitamin C
Vitamin C functions in the body as a powerful antioxidant that helps improve the immune system and protect cells from oxidative damage. 2 Vitamin C also improves the body’s ability to absorb iron. 3 Eating kiwis is an easy way to add more vitamin C to your diet because one average-sized raw kiwi contains 80% of the daily recommended value. 4
Rich in Carotenoids
Kiwis contain a high amount of carotenoids, a type of health-boosting pigment found in certain fruits and vegetables. 5 Research shows that diets rich in carotenoids are linked to decreased risk of developing a number of health problems, including cancer and heart disease. 6 7 One study also found that consuming more carotenoids may help to alleviate some symptoms of depression. 8
Improve Heart Health
Eating kiwis regularly may support heart health. In one study, people with normal or high blood pressure ate either three kiwis per day or one apple each day for eight weeks. The results of the study found that the participants who ate kiwis had significantly lower blood pressure than the apple-eating group by the end of the eight weeks. 9
Should I Eat Kiwi Skin or Not?
If you don’t mind the texture of the skin, you should eat it! It contains antioxidants and other nutrients. You can scrub the skin before eating it to get rid of the unpleasant fuzzy texture. However, some people (especially kids) really do not enjoy eating the skin. For those folks, it is best to peel kiwis and just enjoy the green or yellow inner fruit.
Note that some people can be severely allergic to kiwis, so be cautious with these fruits if you have never tried them before. If you are planning on eating the skin, choose organic produce to avoid topical pesticides.
Simple Ways to Eat More Kiwis
- Eat kiwis raw for a quick, nutritious snack – you can slice them or cut them in half and eat the inner fruit with a spoon
- Add chopped frozen kiwi to your morning smoothie for a health boost and flavor kick
- Top dark chocolate ice cream with chopped kiwi for an antioxidant-forward dessert
- Combine chopped kiwis and strawberries with lime juice for a zippy fruit salad
- Add finely chopped kiwi to salsa to give it a more tropical taste
- Top toast with Greek yogurt and thinly sliced kiwi
- Use a food dehydrator to dry kiwi slices and make kiwi chips
- In a blender, combine chopped kiwis with pineapple juice, then freeze in popsicle molds for a cooling summer treat