Jamaican Foods

Exploring Jamaican Food: Guava

Exploring Jamaican Food - Guava

Guava is an ancient fruit known to be cultivated as early as 800 BCE and archaeologists estimate that guavas have been known in Mexico and the Caribbean even before that where it grew wild. One of the fruit’s greatest claims to fame is its benefit as a fertility aid.
It was sometimes known as “poor man’s apple” in some locations since it was easier to grow than apples and a prolific producer, making it an inexpensive fruit that was beneficial for health. The tree grows to approximately 23 feet in height and can live for 30-40 years. The wood is extremely hard making it desirable for crafting wooden implements and the leaves can be used for tanning and dying.
Every part of the fruit is edible, from the yellow skin and white/pink flesh to hundreds of seeds. It’s well known for its musky aroma when ripe and is one of the most popular of Jamaican fruits. There are several varieties of guava. Some are very sweet and enjoyed raw or in salads, while others are sour and used to make guava cheese, jellies. The fruit is also utilized for flavoring treats encompassing ice-cream, butter, cakes and pies.

Fruits Jamaicans Love - Guava via totayl


Guavas contain a variety of nutrients and Jamaicans have long been aware of its properties as a medicinal. Numerous research projects have focused on the humble fruit and have verified it’s benefits as a medicinal in clinical trials. Guava is rich in vitamins and trace minerals that promote conception in women, fertility in men, and boosts the immune system.
The fruit is rich in antioxidants making it beneficial for the skin. It’s a high fiber fruit which supports a healthy digestive system and it’s low in calories for those that are watching their weight. The range of vitamins contained in a single guava is truly impressive. It’s a source of vitamins A, B6, B12, C, E, and K. It contains a healthy helping of folate, a B vitamin essential for the creation of DNA and red blood cells.
Guavas also contains choline, a substance that the body utilizes to remove cholesterol from the liver, to form membranes around cells, and to regulate mood and memory. Other nutrients include thiamine for the nervous system and memory; niacin that’s required for lowering bad cholesterol and necessary for turning food into energy; and riboflavin the body uses to metabolize proteins and fats.

Photo: Deposit Photo

About the author

Delano George Bell