Papaya is the fruit of the Carica papaya plant. It originated in Central America and Southern Mexico but is now grown in many other parts of the world.
Papaya contains an enzyme called papain, which can break down the tough protein chains found in muscle meat. Because of this, people have used papaya to tenderize meat for thousands of years. The papaya is a tropical fruit high in vitamins C and A, as well as fibre and healthy plant compounds.
Free radicals are reactive molecules created during your body’s metabolism. They can promote oxidative stress, which can lead to disease. Antioxidants, including the carotenoids found in papayas, can neutralize free radicals (4Trusted Source). Studies note that fermented papaya can reduce oxidative stress in older adults and people with prediabetes, mild hypothyroidism and liver disease
The papain enzyme in papaya can make protein easier to digest.
People in the tropics consider papaya to be a remedy for constipation and other symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
In one study, people who took a papaya-based formula for 40 days had significant improvement in constipation and bloating.