A small tree to 33 ft (10 in) high, with spreading branches, the guava is easy to recognize because of its smooth, thin, copper-colored bark that flakes off, showing the greenish layer beneath; and also because of the attractive, "bony" aspect of its trunk which may in time attain a diameter of 10 in (25 cm). Young twigs are quadrangular and downy. The leaves, aromatic when crushed, are evergreen, opposite, short-petioled, oval or oblong-elliptic, somewhat irregular in outline; 2 3/4 to 6 in (7-15 cm) long, I 'A to 2 in (3-5 cm) wide, leathery, with conspicuous parallel veins, and more or less downy on the underside. Faintly fragrant, the white flowers, borne singly or in small clusters in the leaf axils, are 1 in (2.5 cm) wide, with 4 or 5 white petals which are quickly shed, and a prominent tuft of perhaps 250 white stamens tipped with pale-yellow anthers.
The fruit, exuding a strong, sweet, musky odor when ripe, may be round, ovoid, or pear-shaped, 2 to 4 in (5-10 cm) long, with 4 or 5 protruding floral remnants (sepals) at the apex; and thin, light-yellow skin, frequently blushed with pink. Next to the skin is a layer of somewhat granular flesh, 1/8 to 1/2 in (3-12.5 mm) thick, white, yellowish, light- or dark-pink, or near-red, juicy, acid, subacid, or sweet and flavorful. The central pulp, concolorous or slightly darker in tone, is juicy and normally filled with very hard, yellowish seeds, 1/8 in (3 min) long, though some rare types have soft, chewable seeds. Actual seed counts have ranged from 112 to 535 but some guavas are seedless or nearly so.
When immature and until a very short time before ripening, the fruit is green, hard, gummy within and very astringent.
Guavas or amrood is blessed with many nutrients by nature. Originally found in South America, this fruit was presumably brought to India by the Portuguese. Here are some of its health benefits:
Improves your immunity
Guavas contain four times the Vitamin C content present in oranges. Vitamin C helps in improving your immunity and thus keeps your body healthy and protects it from pathogens that cause infections. (Read: Immunity-boosting foods that are available in India and easy on the pocket!)
Improves your hormonal function
Copper, present in guava, helps in the production and absorption of hormones. This property helps in improving the function of your endocrine system especially thyroid glands which is responsible for the way in which you metabolize food, use energy, etc.
Lowers risk of cancer
Being diagnosed with cancer can be a person’s worst nightmare. Being rich in Vitamin C and antioxidants like lycopene, eating guavas can protect your cells from damage and reduce your chances of getting cancer. Additionally, Vitamin C boosts your immunity which is critical in fighting cancer cells. (Read: Top 10 food habits to prevent cancer)
Good for diabetics
Rich in fibre and with a low glycaemic index, guavas can be consumed by diabetics and those who want to prevent diabetes. When you have diabetes, your body stops producing insulin which is responsible for the absorption of glucose. Consuming fruits and vegetables rich in fibre is recommended.
Has anti-ageing properties for your skin
Guavas are rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin A and antioxidants like lycopene and carotene which protect your skin from wrinkles and fine lines, thus making you look younger. Old-age is a certainty in everyone’s life, and eating a guava every day can at least prolong the process.
Helps treat constipation
Constipation is caused when food is stuck in our colon. Guava, is rich in fibre which helps in clearing the blocked pathway and thus curing your constipation. (Read: Top 10 home remedies for constipation)
Helps improve vision
Even though, guavas are not as rich in Vitamin A as carrots, they still are still a very good source of the nutrient. Vitamin A helps keep your eyes in good condition, and also helps improve your vision. Night blindness is one of the diseases associated with a Vitamin A deficiency.
Good for pregnant mothers
Guavas contain Folic acid, or Vitamin B-9, which is recommended for pregnant mothers since it can help in developing the baby’s nervous system and protect the newborn from neurological disorders.
Helps you relax
Magnesium present in guavas helps in relaxing your nerves and muscles. In today’s stressful times, consuming a guava to combat stress and relax is certainly a good idea. (Read: Feeling stressed? Try these natural remedies)
Good for your brain
Brain is one of the major organs of our body, and keeping it healthy should be on our priority list regardless of how intelligent we consider ourselves. Guavas contain Vitamin B3 and Vitamin B6, also known as niacin and pyridoxine, which helps in improving blood circulation to the brain and relaxing your nerves.