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KIWIFRUIT NUTRITION AND HEALTH: SMALL PACKAGE, BIG IMPACT

  • Health & Lifestyle
  • Did You Know's

We all want to eat healthier. But we also want to eat delicious food. Fortunately, with Zespri Kiwifruit, you get the best of both worlds: full flavor without sacrificing nutrient richness.

Zespri Kiwifruit has some of the richest combination of fiber, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. These nutrients are able to fuel your body, fortify your immune system and support a lot of your basic functions. And you get all this in a small, nutrient-dense superfood that packs a lot of taste in a small package — and all with great flavor! From the tangy sweet taste of Zespri Green to the tropical-sweet flavor with a subtle hint of mango that is SunGold.

A single serving provides more than 20 vitamins and minerals to the human body, making it a complete package of feel-good nutrition. Adding a serving of Zespri Kiwifruit a day will deliver wonderful health benefits, all while putting a smile on your face.

Kiwifruit and Vitamins

Vitamin C

To say that vitamin C is an essential nutrient is an understatement. Vitamin C helps with everything from macular health and collagen creation to fortifying our immune system and producing energy. There's only one problem: Our body can't create vitamin C on its own, nor can it store large amounts for long periods.

Vitamin C, like so many other vitamins and minerals that we need, is an "earn it and burn it" antioxidant. So we have to ingest it, either through supplements or, preferably, in foods high in vitamin C content. That's how we "earn it."

And while most of us might think of oranges when we think of foods that are high in vitamin C, one serving of Zespri Kiwifruit will provide you with more than your daily requirement. In fact, Zespri SunGold has more than three times the amount of vitamin C as an orange!

Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit Zespri Green Kiwifruit
Serving: 100g Serving: 100g
161.3 mg / 178.9% RDA 85.1 mg / 94.6% RDA

Vitamin C is not only great for producing energy and boosting your immune system, it also provides the nutrients your skin needs to look its best. Vitamin C helps your body produce collagen and elastin — essential for maintaining the vitality of your skin.

Studies have shown that getting plenty of vitamin C can improve iron absorption. Iron deficiency remains a common issue among young women and senior citizens. Eating a serving of Zespri SunGold (about two medium-sized kiwis) along with an iron-rich breakfast can significantly increase iron levels.

For an iron-fortified kiwi breakfast, try our SunGold Kiwifruit Breakfast Power Bowls. Fast. Simple. Delicious.

Vitamin E

The high level of vitamin C in Zespri Kiwifruit is the key driver of its nutrient richness. But that's not all it has on its side. Other vital nutrients — from fiber to folate, potassium to vitamin K — play a huge role in kiwifruit's unique nutrient content, especially with vitamin E.

Fruits are generally poor sources of vitamin E, but there are some fruits — like avocado and mango — that are an exception. But unlike avocados, for example, kiwifruit delivers significant levels of vitamin E without the high fat and calorie content.

Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit Zespri Green Kiwifruit
Serving: 100g Serving: 100g
1.4 mg / 9.33% RDA 0.86 mg / 5.73% RDA

Vitamin E is known for its ability to help protect the skin from sun damage and is known to help protect the body from LDL cholesterol — aka the "bad cholesterol"-- and from developing heart disease. Maximizing your vitamin E intake is as easy as incorporating leafy greens — and Zespri Kiwifruit — into your diet.

Get your fill of flavor and vitamin E with our extra-leafy, extra-tasty Shades of Green Super Food Salad.

Folate (Vitamin B9)

We need folate, also known as vitamin B9, at all stages of life — from expecting mothers and growing children to older adults. Folate is not only needed for healthy growth of cells (specifically, red blood cells), but it's needed for a variety of reactions within the body.

Like vitamin C, folate is a "earn it and burn it" vitamin. It's not created naturally in the body, nor can the body store large amounts of it. So you have to ingest it — preferably through a healthy diet of leafy vegetables and fruits — like kiwifruit. Getting plenty of folate can help ward off anemia, which is the result of low red blood cells.

Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit Zespri Green Kiwifruit
Serving: 100g Serving: 100g
31.0 µg / 4.8% RDA 38.2 µg / 5% RDA

Expecting mothers might find it especially difficult to reach their daily folate requirements. Whether you're taking folate supplements or not, adding Zespri Kiwifruit to your diet during pregnancy can help boost cellular growth and development of your baby while in the womb — giving your child a great head start!

Read more about the vitamin richness of Zespri Kiwifruit in our blog, "Kiwi Vitamins: The Key to This Superfood's Superpowers."

Kiwifruit and Potassium

Potassium is almost as important in maintaining vitality and supporting important body functions as vitamin C. Potassium supports muscle tissue, maintains electrolyte and fluid balance, and helps muscle recovery after exercise. A diet rich in potassium can help strengthen heart health and maintain normal blood pressure.

You can find potassium in a variety of foods. Most people's go-to food for high potassium content is the banana. But just one serving of Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit, two medium sized kiwis, contains 510mg of potassium, more than a banana! In comparison, one serving of bananas or one large banana provides 487mg of Potassium. And just like a banana, kiwifruit is a nice, portable snack that you can easily take with you anywhere. Just bite right in or cut, scoop & enjoy!

Want to know more about how Zespri Kiwifruit stacks up to bananas? Start here: Kiwifruit & Bananas: Nutritional Twinsies!

If you're trying to stay active, you'll need to eat a diet rich in potassium, among other nutrients. Potassium helps your muscles work properly, including the muscles found in your respiratory and digestive systems. But equally important, potassium regulates water retention and helps flush out excess sodium. Too much sodium in your body can increase risks associated with high blood pressure.

Kiwifruit and Fiber

We're used to talking about fiber in terms of keeping us "regular." But fiber does more than that! It's been found to lower your risk for high cholesterol and heart disease and even help you control your blood sugar levels. So having a diet rich in fiber is definitely a must. Fortunately, fiber is found in many foods, including Zespri Kiwifruit.

But beyond being simply a great source of fiber, Zespri Kiwifruit has one other trick up its sleeve. Kiwifruit is one of the only fruits that contain both soluble and insoluble fiber. It's this combination of fiber that helps reduce the feelings of bloat and increases digestive comfort. But more importantly, it helps sugars absorb more slowly into your bloodstream. This is perfect for anyone looking to closely monitor blood sugar levels.

Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit Zespri Green Kiwifruit
Serving: 100g Serving: 100g
1.4g / 5.6% RDA 3.0g / 12% RDA

Fiber is instrumental in removing waste from the body. This helps lower ‘bad cholesterol’ and reduce the risk of certain diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.

Kiwifruit and Digestive Health

Adding Zespri Kiwifruit to your daily diet is key to a happier, healthier gut. Eating kiwifruit can help maintain — and even improve — your digestive health through its combination of soluble and insoluble fiber. But that's not all!

Kiwifruit also has a naturally occurring enzyme, actinidin, that breaks down proteins in meats and dairy, making digestion a more comfortable experience overall. Both Zespri Green and SunGold contain actinidin. But, there is about four times more actinidin in Green than in the SunGold variety.

Actinidin has been shown to enhance protein digestion in the stomach and the small intestine. Digestion is faster and more complete, reducing the feeling of bloat from protein-rich foods and increasing digestive comfort.

Learn how the actinidin in Zespri Green Kiwifruit can be used to tenderize and marinade meat.

A small number of people have reported a mild allergic reaction to actinidin. Those people might experience a tingling sensation when eating green-variety kiwifruit but do not typically have the same reaction to SunGold kiwifruit.

Kiwifruit and Low FODMAP

FODMAPs are basically carbs and sugar alcohols that are poorly digested by the body. Instead of passing through the body, they ferment in the large intestine, causing the intestine to expand. This causes bloating and pain, common in conditions like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

FODMAPS are not always artificial. They often occur in some foods naturally. Lactose in dairy. Galactans in legumes. Fructose in some fruits and vegetables. In fact, fruits such as apples, ripe bananas and pears are considered high FODMAP foods. But Zespri Kiwifruit is a great option when you want a nutrient-dense snack without the digestive discomfort.

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is reported to affect 7-21% of the global population.

Zespri® Kiwifruit is a perfect, healthy addition to any low-FODMAP diet. Low in calories and high in balanced fibers, kiwifruit not only delivers important nutrients to the body, but they are chock-full full of prebiotics — food that nourishes the good gut bacteria in our digestive tract.

Kiwifruit and Low Glycemic Index (GI)

The Glycemic index (GI) measures how fast certain carbohydrates in food affects our blood glucose (sugar) levels. High GI foods will cause a rapid rise in blood glucose levels, whereas low GI foods are digested and absorbed more slowly. This results in a more gradual rise in blood glucose levels and insulin levels.

Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit Zespri Green Kiwifruit
GI 38 GI 39

Looking to manage your blood glucose levels? It's best to stick with low GI foods, like Zespri Kiwifruit. Foods containing carbs are considered "low GI" if they are rated below 55. Foods are considered "high GI" if they are rated 70 and higher.

Kiwifruit and Blood Sugar

The combination of high fiber content, actinidin and low GI makes kiwifruit the perfect addition to any diet when you want to control blood sugar levels — especially between meals. This combined with the potassium content in kiwifruit can help regulate and maintain normal blood pressure.

Adding kiwifruit with a heart-healthy breakfast can help prevent the dreaded mid-morning "sugar crash," keeping you energized and alert throughout the day.

Kiwifruit and Calories

Zespri Kiwifruit has a high nutrient density. This is because every kiwi bite is a complete, flavorful package of over 20 vitamins and minerals. But the one thing Zespri Kiwifruit does not have is a lot of calories.

Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit Zespri Green Kiwifruit
45 55

Based on a single medium kiwifruit.

See how Zespri Kiwifruit stacks up with other fruits in our Kiwifruit Calorie Comparison.

The low-calorie content combined with the nutrient composition is what makes Zespri Kiwifruit such a nutrient-dense superfood. You're getting a healthful heap of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants — from fiber to folate, vitamin C to potassium — in every bite.

And don't skip the skin!

Kiwifruit and Skin

It's easy to cut and scoop Zespri Kiwifruit when you want a quick, portable snack. But you're missing a lot of extra nutrients — and flavor! — by tossing out the skin. Whether it's the smooth skin of SunGold or the slightly thicker "hairy" skin of Zespri Green, you can increase your nutritional intake by eating the skin.

The skin of kiwifruit nearly doubles the fiber content of Zespri SunGold, almost tripling that of Zespri Green. Zespri SunGold contains twice the fiber with four grams per two kiwifruit serving. Eating the skin of kiwifruit along with the flesh delivers 34% more folate and 32% more vitamin E to the diet. This, coupled with the high vitamin C, supports your immune system and skin health. Basically, you could say: "eat kiwi skin to help yours!"

So, give it a try next time! After washing, just bite into your Zespri Kiwifruit like an apple. We're sure you'll love it!

We all have a lot of things in our life pulling us in different directions. Now more than ever, it's important to eat healthy foods every day. The World Health Organization (WHO) suggests eating five portions of fruits and veggies per day. That's about 400 grams, daily. Adding Zespri Kiwifruit is a simple, delicious way to reach those goals. And before you know it, you'll find yourself with more vigor and vitality and plenty extra energy to get you through your day.

Eat better. Feel better. Smile more. And enjoy Zespri.