12 Benefits Of Kiwi Fruit, Nutrition Facts, & Side Effects

Learn about the best ways to include this low-calorie nutritious fruit in your diet.

Medically reviewed by Alexandra Dusenberry, MS, RDN Alexandra Dusenberry Alexandra DusenberryMS, RDN twitter_iconlinkedin_iconinsta_icon
Written by , BSc, Professional Certificate in Food, Nutrition and Health Ravi Teja Tadimalla BSc, Professional Certificate in Food, Nutrition and Health linkedin_icon Experience: 8 years
Edited by , BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma Arshiya Syeda BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma linkedin_icon Experience: 7 years
Fact-checked by , BTech (Biotechnology), Certified Health & Nutrition Life Coach Sindhu Koganti BTech (Biotechnology), Certified Health & Nutrition Life Coach linkedin_icon Experience: 6 years
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Kiwi fruits are known for their unique taste. These fruits are also rich in vitamins K, E, C, folate, and potassium. Kiwi fruit benefits can be attributed to their nutrient-rich profile.

The best part is they are low in calories. These fruits are native to the northern part of China.

These fruits are also loaded with fiber, which plays a vital role in bodily functions. Some evidence states that kiwis can even cut down the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

Regular intake of kiwis can offer numerous other benefits. Learn more from this article. Read on.

protip_icon Know Your Ingredient: Kiwi

What Is It?
A small, fuzzy fruit with brown and hairy outer skin and bright green or yellow flesh.

What are Its Benefits?
It is high in vitamin C, which boosts the immune system, aids digestion, and promotes healthy skin and hair.

Who Can Use It?
It can be consumed by most people as part of a healthy diet.

How Often?
It is generally safe to have one kiwi everyday as part of a balanced diet.

Caution
Individuals with certain medical conditions, such as a history of kidney stones or allergies to similar fruits, should consult with a healthcare professional before consuming it.

What Are The Health Benefits Of Kiwifruits?

What are kiwis good for? They are potent sources of dietary fiber and vitamin C and offer various health benefits. Their fiber promotes digestive health, regulates sugar levels, and aids in weight loss. Vitamin C helps improve immunity, aids in asthma treatment, fights free radicalsi  Molecules formed during cellular metabolism that can damage DNA and proteins and potentially increase cancer risk. , promotes eye health, and supports collagen production. Let’s take a look at several health benefits of kiwi fruit.

1. Help Improve Lung Function In People With Asthma

Kiwi fruit helps improve lung function in people with asthma
Image: Shutterstock

The high vitamin C content in kiwis may aid asthma treatment. In a study, intake of kiwifruit was found to have a protective effect on children with wheezing and asthma (1).

The vitamins C and E in kiwis can have a complementary effect as well. In another study, fruits rich in these two nutrients were found to enhance lung functioning in children (2).

Kiwis are potent in improving respiratory ailments like asthma. If you want to avail their benefits, we recommend you consume them more than once or twice a week (3).

Kiwifruit also works wonderfully well in boosting your immunity. The fruit helps fight oxidative stress and promotes beneficial immune responses. Studies show that kiwifruit can reduce the severity and incidences of upper respiratory tract infections (4).

Kiwifruit enhances innate and adaptive immune functions (5).

2. Promote Digestion

Fibers present in kiwi can aid digestion
Image: Shutterstock

The fiber in kiwis helps promote digestion (6). Fiber treats both constipation and loose stools – two common digestive issues. Kiwis also contain potassium, an important electrolyte that also helps the digestive system.

Another major contributing factor here is actinidin, an enzyme found in kiwifruit. This enzyme also aids digestion (7).

The actinidin in kiwis also promotes the digestion of food proteins (8). This attribute of kiwis further supports their role as ideal digestive aids.

protip_icon Trivia
The term ‘kiwifruit’ (huakiwi) was given by New Zealand cultivators as the fruit’s fuzzy appearance resembled the kiwi bird.

3. May Aid Cancer Treatment

In a study, kiwifruit extracts showed promising potential against oral cancer cell lines (9). The fruits also reduced DNA oxidative damage (10).

The vitamin C in kiwifruit fights free radicalsi  Molecules formed during cellular metabolism that can damage DNA and proteins and potentially increase cancer risk. . An increase in free radicalsi  Molecules formed during cellular metabolism that can damage DNA and proteins and potentially increase cancer risk. dramatically increases cancer risk (11).

The fiber in kiwifruit also helps fight cancer – more specifically, cancers of the digestive system.

Other critical groups of compounds in kiwis include sulforaphanei  A sulfur-containing compound found in broccoli, bok choy, and cabbage that has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties. , isocyanate, and indolesi  A crystalline organic compound found in flower oils, coal tar, and fecal matter, which is usually used in perfumery. . These are known to inhibit the action of carcinogens (12).

4. Promote Heart Health

Kiwifruit is rich in potassium, a nutrient essential for heart health. Studies show that this nutrient alone can have a dramatically protective effect against heart disease. In a study, individuals consuming 4,069 milligrams of potassium a day had a 49 percent lower risk of death by heart disease (13).

Kiwifruit intake also helps lower blood pressure levels (14). Intake of two to three kiwifruits per day may lower platelet hyperactivity and levels of plasma lipidsi  Fats found in blood and tissues that are insoluble in water and essential for normal body functioning. – two factors that can cause cardiovascular issues (15).

5. May Aid Diabetes Treatment

Including kiwifruit in one’s diet can improve the glycemic response, as per research (16).

The fruit also has high water content, making it an ideal addition to a diabetes diet. A hundred grams of the fruit contains only about 5 grams of glucose. Hence, its effect on blood glucose would be minimal (17).

A medium kiwi also contains 11 grams of carbs, which is on the lower side compared to most other fruits. The fiber in the fruit also helps regulate blood sugar levels (18).

6. Fights Inflammation

Kiwifruits contain a peptide called kissper that is known to fight inflammation. In studies, this peptide was found to combat inflammation in the colonic tissues (19).

There is no data yet if the fruit exhibits anti-inflammatory properties against any other form of inflammation, apart from that of the intestines.

7. May Help With Weight Loss

Kiwis are a low calorie fruit. They have negligible fat content. Moreover, they are rich in fiber. All this only makes them an ideal addition to a weight loss diet.

There is no direct research on how (or if) kiwis can contribute to weight loss or improved metabolism. You can replace other high-calorie foods in your diet with kiwis. This, when coupled with exercise and the right habits, may aid weight loss.

8. Promote Vision Health

Kiwi promotes vision health
Image: Shutterstock

Kiwifruits are rich in vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant. This antioxidant keeps the cells and tissues of your eyes healthy (20).

Kiwifruit is rich in vitamin C, and this is clearly shown in the graph. Green and gold kiwifruit contain 92.7 and 161.3 mg per 100 g, respectively, which qualifies them for a “high” vitamin C nutrient claim in the EU in comparison to other fruits. Kiwifruit also contains antioxidants and can improve iron bioavailability, which may help address global deficiencies in iron. Now that we know about the various ways in which kiwi benefits your health, let us take a look at their vitamin C content in the next section.

Vitamin C Level In Kiwi Fruit Compared With Other Fruits

Source: The nutritional and health attributes of kiwifruit: a review

Kiwis are also great sources of lutein and zeaxanthin, two powerful antioxidants that boost eye health (21). The bioavailability of these nutrients in kiwis (and a few other foods) is thought to be 100%.

The most important benefit of lutein and zeaxanthin is the prevention of age-related macular degenerationi  A condition characterized by vision loss due to deterioration of the macula, the part of the retina responsible for sharp central vision. (21).

9. May Promote Liver Health

A specific compound in kiwifruit was found to treat non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). NAFLD refers to a liver condition caused by the accumulation of excess fat in the liver, and it is something that is not caused by alcohol intake.

This kiwi compound, called pyrroloquinoline quinone (PQQ), was found to prevent the progression of NAFLD in mice whose mothers were fed a high-fat diet (22).

10. May Prevent Blood Clotting

There is limited research here. A study shows that kiwifruit extract contains potent antiplatelet components (23). This may help prevent strokes, heart attacks, and other associated skin conditions.

11. Promote Sleep

Woman achieving sound sleep due to kiwi consumption before bed
Image: Shutterstock

Eating kiwifruit before bed can improve sleep quality (24). In a four-week study, 24 men were given two kiwifruits one hour before bed. By the end of the time period, their sleep quality improved by 42% (25).

In addition, their total sleep time increased by 13% and their ability to sleep through the night without waking up improved by 5% (25).

12. May Enhance Skin Health

Is kiwi good for your skin? Yes, although research on the effects of kiwifruit as a topical treatment for skin health and aging benefits is still ongoing.

But still, Kiwis contain vitamin C, which is essential for collagen production. It produces connective tissue and firms your skin (26).

Kiwis are wonder fruits. They have a unique appearance. More importantly, they are replete with essential antioxidants. According to some studies, kiwi consumption may also help improve brain function (27).

We saw a few of those nutrients. In the following section, we will take a deeper look at the nutrition facts about kiwis.

What Is The Nutritional Profile Of Kiwis?

Calorie Information
Amounts Per Selected Serving%DV
Calories108 (452 kJ)5%
From Carbohydrate93.5 (391 kJ)
From Fat7.7(32.2 kJ)
From Protein6.8 (28.5 kJ)
From Alcohol0.0 (0.0 kJ)
Carbohydrates
Amounts Per Selected Serving%DV
Total Carbohydrate25.9 g9%
Dietary Fiber5.3 g21%
Starch0.0 g
Sugars15.9 g
Protein & Amino Acids
Amounts Per Selected Serving%DV
Protein2.0g4%
Vitamins
Amounts Per Selected Serving%DV
Vitamin A154 IU3%
Vitamin C164 mg273%
Vitamin D~~
Vitamin E (Alpha Tocopherol)2.6 mg13%
Vitamin K71.3 mcg89%
Thiamin0.0 mg3%
Riboflavin0.0 mg3%
Niacin0.6 mg3%
Vitamin B60.1 mg6%
Folate44.2 mcg11%
Vitamin B120.0 mcg0%
Pantothenic Acid0.3 mg3%
Choline13.8 mg
0.9mg~
Minerals
Amounts Per Selected Serving%DV
Calcium60.2 mg6%
Iron0.5 mg3%
Magnesium30.1 mg8%
Phosphorus60.2 mg6%
Potassium552 mg16%
Sodium5.3 mg0%
Zinc0.2 mg2%
Copper0.2 mg12%
Manganese0.2 mg9%
Selenium0.4 mcg1%
Fluoride~

Source: USDA

protip_icon Trivia
China is the largest producer of kiwifruit, followed by New Zealand, Italy, and Greece.

Are you wondering about how to eat kiwis? It is easy. The simplest way is slicing them up and scooping their insides. If that sounds too boring, there are other ways you can include this fruit in your diet.

How To Incorporate Kiwis Into Your Diet

• You can freeze slices of kiwifruit and eat them in place of your regular dessert.
• Slice the kiwifruit into cubes and drizzle some honey over them. You can have this delicacy as a sumptuous afternoon snack.
• You can blend kiwis with other fruits (like apples and pears) and have a nice soothing smoothie.

protip_icon Trivia
There are around 60 varieties of kiwi. The fuzzy kiwifruit is commonly sold. Other popular varieties include golden kiwifruit, Chinese egg gooseberry, and hardy kiwifruit.

You also can incorporate kiwis into your diet by trying out the following delicious recipes. Continue reading.

Kiwi Recipes

1. Kiwi And Strawberry Salad

Kiwi and strawberry salad
Image: Shutterstock

Ingredients

  • 4 ripe kiwis (peeled and sliced)
  • 1 cup of strawberries (sliced)
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons of honey
  • Fresh mint leaves

Instructions

  1. Add the sliced kiwis and strawberries to a bowl.
  2. Drizzle the honey, gently toss, and place the salad in the refrigerator for 15 minutes.
  3. Garnish with fresh mint leaves and enjoy.

2. Kiwi Smoothie

Kiwi smoothie
Image: Shutterstock

Ingredients

  • 2 ripe kiwis (peeled and sliced)
  • 1 ripe banana
  • ½ cup of Greek yogurt
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons of maple syrup
  • Ice cubes

Instructions

  • Blend all the ingredients for a thick consistency.
  • Pour your delicious kiwi smoothie into a glass and enjoy.

Try experimenting with other methods as well. With food, the options are limitless! But before you do, there is something else about kiwis you must know.

Potential Side Effects Of Kiwis

Woman with latex allergy feeling dizzy due to kiwi consumption
Image: Shutterstock

For most people, eating kiwifruit is healthy. But if you have latex allergy, you must take care. Latex allergy is a condition in which the individual is allergic to certain proteins found in the sap of the Brazilian rubber tree.

Kiwifruits contain similar proteins. Hence, when you consume them, you may experience a cross-reaction. The symptoms include skin rashes, itching, dizziness, fainting, diarrhea, and swollen lips and tongue (28).

If you do not have this allergy, there is nothing to worry. You can enjoy the goodness of the fruit. Eating one to three kiwifruits a day should be enough.

Infographic: Kiwi Fruit Sorbet Recipe

Kiwi fruit sorbet is a healthy frozen snack and one of the best summer desserts you can have. Preparing this refreshing treat at home is very easy! All you need are two ingredients – kiwi and honey (or any of your favorite sweeteners). Click on the infographic below to whip up some delicious kiwi fruit sorbet in your kitchen.

kiwi fruit sorbet recipe (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Kiwi fruits are originally from China, and can be incorporated into many desserts and smoothies. These delicious fruits make a wonderful addition to any diet owing to their creamy texture and sweet-tart flavor. Kiwi’s health benefits can be attributed to the antioxidant phytochemicals, flavonoids, fiber, vitamins C and E, calcium, phosphorus, and potassium present in it. The fruit may help manage asthma or diabetes, boost eyesight, and improve gut and heart health. However, it may cause allergies in certain people, especially those with latex allergies.

Frequently Asked Questions

How many kiwis a day should I eat?

Blanca Garcia, RDN, says, “One kiwi a day is enough to get a good amount of antioxidants, dietary fiber, potassium, vitamin K and vitamin C.”

Is kiwi healthier than apple?

According to Garcia, “In terms of nutritive content, kiwi stands supreme over apples. It is packed with double the nutrients of an apple, including vitamins C, A, E, K, and B vitamins. Moreover, kiwi has 25% more dietary fiber than apples, as well as minerals such as calcium, iron, and potassium – to mention a few. Although both are incredibly healthy, kiwi offers more nutrients than apples.”

Is kiwi good for kidneys?

Mary Sabat, RDN, says, “It has also been suggested to be beneficial for kidney health, as it is high in potassium and low in sodium. It is also a good source of magnesium, which helps to regulate blood pressure.”
Garcia adds, “However, people with urinary stones and kidney disease should avoid eating kiwi as it is high in oxalate and potassium. Doing so can cause serious symptoms and will make your kidney condition worse.”

Does kiwi fruit increase uric acid?

Pallini Winnifred, RDN, says, “Kiwi fruit does not increase uric acid levels in most people. However, some people who have gout may need to limit their intake of kiwi fruit because it contains purines, which can be broken down into uric acid.”

Can you eat kiwis every day? What is the best time to eat the fruit?

Yes, you can eat kiwis every day. You can include them in your breakfast. You can even have them at night (for better sleep).

Can you eat kiwi skin?

Yes. In fact, we recommend you eat the skin as well. The skin of the fruit contains a higher concentration of antioxidants than its flesh (29).

Is kiwi high in sugar?

Kiwi is low in sugar. 100 g of kiwi contains about 5 g (1 teaspoon) of glucose (30).

Is kiwi good for hair growth?

Kiwi contains vitamins and minerals that may support hair growth. The zinc in it can help nourish new hair follicles and promote hair growth (31), (32).

Are kiwis good for cholesterol?

Yes, consumption of kiwis may help increase HDL cholesterol and decrease LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol ratio. Thus, regular consumption of fruit can help regulate cholesterol levels (33).

Does kiwi increase acidity?

Since kiwi is a citrus fruit, people with acid reflux should avoid it as it may cause acidity.

Is kiwi hot or cold?

Kiwi is a cold food because of its cooling nature, making it a summer favorite.

Key Takeaways

  • The deliciously green kiwi fruit is native to northern China and loaded with vitamins and minerals.
  • Kiwi is good for the skin as it is rich in antioxidants and vitamins A, C and E, which help achieve healthy skin.
  • It also helps keep the luscious locks healthy by providing potassium and omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Kiwi fruit can also help people with respiratory diseases, including asthma, due to its high vitamin C content.
kiwi fruit benefits

Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

Embark on a journey to uncover the abundant nutrients and numerous health benefits of kiwi fruit. Check out the video below and explore ten remarkable advantages it has to offer!

References

Articles on StyleCraze are backed by verified information from peer-reviewed and academic research papers, reputed organizations, research institutions, and medical associations to ensure accuracy and relevance. Read our editorial policy to learn more.

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  2. Children’s lung function and antioxidant…” American Journal of Epidemiology, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  3. Asthma clinical tool” Whole Health: Change the Conversation.
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  5. Gold kiwifruit for immune support” The Proceedings of the Nutrition Society, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
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  9. Cancer prevention and therapy with kiwifruit…” Journal of Ethnopharmacology, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  10. Kiwifruit protects against oxidative DNA damage…” Nutrition and Cancer, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  11. Kiwi fruit the powder packed fruit” Texas A&M Agrilife.
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  20. Look to fruit and vegetables for good…” New York State Department of Health.
  21. Dietary sources of lutein and zeaxanthin…” Nutrients, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  22. Pyrroloquinoline quinone prevents developmental programming…” Hepatology Communications, Wiley Online Library.
  23. Inhibitory effects of kiwifruit extract on human platelet aggregation…” Platelets, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  24. Effects of diet on sleep quality” Advances in Nutrition, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
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  28. Latex allergy information” New York State Department of Health.
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  31. Nutrition of women with hair loss problem during the period of menopause” Przegla̜d Menopauzalny, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  32. Kiwi fruit, raw” FoodData Central, US Department of Agriculture.
  33. Effects of kiwifruit consumption on serum lipid profiles and antioxidative status in hyperlipidemic subjects” International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
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Alexandra Dusenberry is a registered dietitian nutritionist and a certified personal trainer based in San Diego, California. She has 6 years of experience and works with clients around the world to help them reach their health and fitness goals. She believes that food is medicine and proper nutrition is healing and essential for wellbeing and quality of life. Alexandra enjoys...read full bio

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