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Kiwi Curiosity

Contact Author Cathy Christensen June 2010 issue of Skin Inc. magazine

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This brown, fuzzy, odd little fruit scared my kids when I first introduced it to them

It really does look like something from outer space, especially when you encounter it for the first time. However, my youngest and more adventurous taster decided to take the plunge and try the juicy green flesh one evening at dinner ... and loved it! And it’s a good thing, too, because this small oval fruit packs an enormous nutritious punch, including flavonoid antioxidants, fiber, vitamins A, C and E, and potassium.1

In the kitchen

Along with being nutrient-rich, kiwi contains ascorbic acid that works as an astringent to neutralize bacteria and tighten pores,2 and its seeds and oil also have skin benefits. The emerald flesh of this creamy fruit includes a white core and is speckled with black seeds. When it isn’t being included in recipes, it can be eaten alone either by cutting off the ends and peeling the skin or slicing it horizontally and using a spoon to scoop out the flesh; even the brown skin can be eaten for a higher vitamin C and fiber intake, just scrub of the fuzz off first.3 There are more than 40 varieties of kiwi, including the most popular Hayward variety and the rare golden variety.4, 5

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With its striking appearance, unique, sweet taste and creamy consistency, this fruit is used by spa cuisine chefs throughout the globe in a variety of ways, including soups, desserts, salads and sauces, such as:

Ki-Lime Smoothie featuring kiwi and papaya—Marc Allan’s Men’s Grooming & Spa, Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada;

Wild Sockeye Salmon topped with grapefruit and kiwi salsa—Halcyon Hot Springs Village & Spa, Arrow Lake, British Columbia, Canada;

Vermicelli in a Creamy Custard with Kiwi, Mango, Blueberries and Sunflower Seeds—Elemental Embrace Wellness Spa Retreat, Brighton, Ontario, Canada;

Kiwi Glazed Cheesecake—The Oaks at Ojai, Ojai, California;

and check out the recipe for Kiwi and Raspberry Salad—also from Chef Christine Denney, The Oaks at Ojai, Ojai, California.

In the spa

Along with being rich in free radical-fighting antioxidants, the kiwi’s oil is rich in omega-3 alpha-lineolic acid, and its seed extract can help reduce fine lines and wrinkles if consumed in supplement form.1 Whole kiwi seeds are also often used as a natural exfoliator, and the fruit’s astringent properties are often used in toners and acne formulations. It also has skin-brightening qualities. Spa treatments and products use the benefits of kiwi in everything from body treatments to nail services, including:

The Kiwi & Pomegranate Hydrator features a mask enriched with kiwi, palma rosa, vitamins and lavender essential oil—The Spa at Montchanin Village, Montchanin, Delaware;

The Kiwi Pineapple Body Wrap includes a body mask that leaves skin refreshed and smooth—The Spa at Rancho Bernardo Inn, San Diego;

The Wild Orchids Body Treatment uses kiwi, sarsaparilla and strawberry juices to exfoliate the skin—Brio Spa & Bodycare at the Mayan Palace Beach & Golf Resort, La Jolla De Cortes, Mexico;

The Kiwi Chill Pedicure teen treatment includes an aromatic foot bath—Waterfalls at Basin Harbor at Basin Harbor Club, Vergennes, Vermont;

The Kiwi-Coconut Salt Scrub uses kiwi for its skin-brightening properties—The Spa at The Breakers at The Breakers, Palm Beach, Florida;

The Spa Scrub and Glow features the exfoliating Kiwi Sugar and Salt Scrub—The Spa at The Glades, Robina, Queensland, Australia;

The Aromatic Satin Body Treatment includes a sugar-kiwi body scrub that features kiwi seeds—Envie Spa & Wellness, Calgary, Alberta, Canada;

The Organic Enzyme Facial uses kiwi, cranberry, pumpkin and chamomile enzymes—Kenwood Inn and Spa, Kenwood, California;

The Pink Malibu Paradise Spa Manicure & Pedicure blends kiwi, strawberry, raspberry, lemon-lime and sugarcane—Elegant Nail Spa, Brandon, Florida; and

The Kiwi Body Polish—Take a look at the step-by-step how-to from Sandava Spa at Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa, Clearwater Beach, Florida.

All the components of kiwi can be found in a variety of professional skin care products.

Innovative Body Science’s Kiwi Body Buff uses kiwi seeds, jojoba beads and grape seeds to buff away dull skin cells.

Antiqua Prima’s Frescare Raspberry-Kiwi Enzyme Mask refreshes, smooths and soothes normal to oily skin.

Darphin’s Hydrating Kiwi Mask provides moisture for dry, parched skin, resulting in a more youthful look and feel.

Bioelements Active Astringent controls excess oil and helps unclog pores using kiwi to help prevent blemishes.

From Decleor Paris, Brightening Make Off Cream uses kiwi essential water to help remove makeup on the face and eyes.

Murad’s Refreshing Cleanser removes surface impurities and makeup with the help of kiwi fruit extract.

A little bit different

A funky little fruit that appeals to all the senses, kiwi can add life and flavor to your cuisine offerings and your spa services. Give this colorful and nutritious curiosity a try the next time your spa needs something a bit different.







(All accessed May 11, 2010)

Access more low-cal luscious recipes for Kiwi-glazed Cheesecake and Kiwi and Strawberry Smoothie, both from Chef Denney of The Oaks at Ojai.

Related Content



Quick Facts: Kiwi

  • Kiwi was discovered in the Chang Kiang Valley of China and was considered a delicacy by the Khans.6


  • Kiwi was originally named the Chinese gooseberry until a California produce dealer renamed it “kiwifruit” because of its resemblance to New Zealand’s national bird, the brown kiwi.6


  • The fruit includes more vitamin C than the equivalent amount of an orange.3


  • Kiwi and citrus fruits have been found to help relieve respiratory-related issues in children who consumed them frequently.3


  • To ripen kiwi quickly, place them in a paper bag with an apple, banana or pear.3


  • When adding kiwi to salad, don’t do so until the last minute or it will cause other fruits in the salad to become soggy.3


  • Kiwi contain a measurable amount of oxalates, so clients with existing or untreated kidney and gallbladder problems may want to avoid eating them.3


Recipe: Kiwi and Raspberry Salad With Butter Lettuce and Raspberry Vinaigrette

From Chef Christine Denney, The Oaks at Ojai, Ojai, California

Makes 6 servings, 50 calories, 0 grams of fat

Ingredients for raspberry vinaigrette:

1⁄2 cup water

1 tablespoon agave or honey

1 1⁄2 teaspoons arrowroot or cornstarch

1⁄2 cup raspberry vinegar (or mash 1⁄2 pint of raspberries with 1⁄2 cup red wine vinegar)

2 teaspoons stone-ground mustard

Preparation for raspberry vinaigrette:

1. Combine the water, agave or honey and arrowroot or cornstarch in a small saucepan and whisk until combined.

2. Stir over low heat until mixture thickens slightly.

3. Stir the vinegar and mustard into the first mixture.

4. Cool dressing before using.

Ingredients for salad:

1 large head butter lettuce

2 large kiwis

1⁄2 pint of raspberries

Preparation for salad:

5. Wash lettuce and separate leaves.

6. Line each salad plate with a whole leaf and tear the rest into bite-sized pieces. Distribute among plates.

7. Peel and slice each kiwi into approximately eight slices; put three slices on each salad.

8. Distribute raspberries among each salad.

9. Dress each salad with a tablespoon of the vinaigrette.

Treatment How-to: Kiwi Body Polish

From Sandava Spa at Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa, Clearwater Beach, Florida 60 minutes

This luxurious, smoothing body exfoliation treatment gently polishes away dead skin cells and nourishes, leaving the skin conditioned, smooth, and more touchable with a fresh, healthy glow.

Treatment duration:

Treatment cost: $130


Vichy shower with hose

Two bowls for body polish and massage oil

Body brush



Body polish with fine kiwi seeds

Massage oil with pineapple enzymes combined with lactic acid

Key lime massage oil

Room setup:

Place a flat sheet across the treatment table and have bath towels nearby.

Step 1: Place body polish and massage oil in separate bowls.

Step 2: Greet the client and describe the treatment in detail. Discuss the client’s health history and remind her of the contraindications for this treatment, including alcohol consumption, skin rashes, fever, fractures, epilepsy, skin infections, sunburn, heart conditions, high blood pressure, allergies, hypersensitivity, and the client shouldn’t have the service if she is in her first trimester of pregnancy.

Step 3: Guide client to treatment room and ask her to remove her robe and lie in the prone position on the treatment table; leave the room momentarily to allow for the client’s privacy.

Step 4: Start the service by dry brushing the client to begin the exfoliation process and stimulate the lymph system. Dry brush starting with the back of the legs at the feet and move toward the heart.

Step 5: Apply the revitalizing kiwi body polish in the same direction as the dry brushing. Use a light but vigorous touch with motions always toward the heart. Attention should be paid to exfoliating the client; the experience should feel like massaging away dead skin.

Step 6: Ask the client to turn over and repeat Step 5, again beginning with the legs at the feet and moving toward the heart.

Step 7: Once finished, shower off the product using a Vichy shower. If you don’t have a Vichy, wet washcloths can be used to remove the product.

Step 8: Provide a towel for client to use to dry off; and leave the room momentarily for the client’s privacy. Ask her to lie prone on the treatment table after dry.

Step 9: Complete the luxurious treatment with a 20-minute massage using key lime massage oil rich in vitamin E.

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