Benefits of Bromelain
There are several possible benefits of bromelain. For example, it is often used as a meat tenderizer. However, many people may use bromelain medicinally to help with several medical conditions, such as preventing blood clots, reducing swelling caused by injuries, aiding digestion, and treating gout. Bromelain is a mixture of certain enzymes, which may have several effects on the body, such as anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties.
Bromelain is a mixture of pineapple enzymes. In addition to its use as a meat tenderizer, bromelain is also used as a dietary supplement. People sometimes use bromelain medicinally for the following purposes:
- Reducing swelling due to injuries or surgeries
- Assisting burn debridement (the removal of dead, burned tissue)
- Preventing blood clots
- Preventing or treating cancer
- Shortening labor during childbirth
- Enhancing fat removal from the body
- Treating arthritis (including osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis)
- Aiding digestion
- Reducing sinus symptoms, such as congestion
- Treating gout
- Treating or preventing urinary tract infections (UTIs)
- Treating ulcerative colitis
- Treating chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Some of these possible benefits of bromelain are more legitimate than others, although much more research is necessary to confirm that bromelain is truly effective for any use (see Does Bromelain Work?). In general, bromelain is taken by mouth for most uses, although it can also be applied to the skin as a cream (such as for burn debridement).
Bromelain is a mixture of proteolytic (protein-dissolving) enzymes. It contains substances that may slow down the growth of cancerous cells, decrease the "stickiness" of blood platelets, help to break down blood clots, and help to break down and remove dead, damaged, or infected tissue (such as in burn wounds). Bromelain may affect the way white blood cells function, which may produce anti-inflammatory properties.