star fruit is an exotic fruit that lacks popularity but sweet to eat
WHAT IS STAR FRUIT?
Star fruit is one of the very unusual fruits we have, but its benefits cannot be undermined irrespective of its unpopularity.
This article explores the source, nutrient content, health benefits, and potential health risk of starfruit.
DESCRIPTION & SOURCE
The Starfruit producing plant is also known as Averrhoa carambola L. Carambola tree is grown throughout tropical areas of the world. It is believed traditionally that the leaves of this fruit are also curative. It is has been traditionally used to treat stomach-ulcer by aiding digestion.
Star fruit has a thin waxy pericarp, translucent orange-yellow color skin, and yellow juicy flesh when ripe. The skin is edible and has a mild sour flavor which makes its taste very pronounce even when combined with other meals or fruit.
Starfruit has a unique taste due to the sweet-sour juice it produces.
The fruit is oval. It’s structure is made up of 5 to 6 popular ridges. When cut cross-sectionally, it resembles a star.
Each fruit can have 10 to 12 flat light brown seeds enclosed in gelatinous aril. Once the seeds are removed from the fruit, they lose viability within a few days.
Starfruit found in Nigeria usually have two colors:
The green, and yellow color shades.
Some Star fruit are large, soft, and juicy when very ripe while others are slightly sour(or tart) and small.
You will have to know that the sour varieties have a higher oxalic acid content than the sweet type.
Starfruit is packed with so many nutrients especially fiber and vitamin C
In a standard journal, it has been researched, analyzed, and documented that single medium-size matured star fruit contains several vitamins, minerals, carotene, and acids.
The Table Below Shows List Of Starfruit Nutrient Pack.
|Mineral||Amount [mg/100g fruit]*||Name||Amount [mg/100g Star-fruit weight]*|
|Sodium (Na)||3.8 – 3.85|
|Potassium (K)||167.13 – 168.0||Carotene||0.003 – 0.55|
|Calcium (Ca)||6.37 – 6.40||Tartaric acid||4.37|
|Phosphorous (P)||17.87 – 17.88||Oxalic acid||9.6|
|Magnesium (Mg)||11.85 – 12.05||Ketoglutaric acid||2.2|
|Iron (Fe)||0.34 – 0.45||Citric acid||1.32|
|Copper (Cu)||0.19 – 0.45||Vitamin B1 & B2||0.12|
|Zinc (Zn)||0.29 – 0.51||Vitamin C||25.8|
|Manganese (Mn)||0.04 – 0.52|
|Selenium (Se)||Not Detectable||*on a dry weight basis|
Star fruit is very much helpful in weight loss because of its fiber and low-calorie content. The presence of high amounts of fibers ( the fiber it contains is called-‘water insoluble fiber fractions’ or WIFF) aids in absorbing glucose and retarding the glucose diffusion into the bloodstream; as a result, it assist in controlling blood glucose concentration. Starfruit intake also exhibits hypo-cholesterolemic and hypolipidaemic effects as it enhances the removal of cholesterol, lipid, and bile acid through the excrement.
Reduction In Heart Disease And Stroke
Because this fruit is a good source of vitamin B9 (folic acid), it aid in the reduction of risk in heart diseases and strokes.
A Considerable amount of vitamin B-complex in star fruit makes it profitable in cases of hair growth and its protection to keep it firm, strong, and healthy.
Star-fruits is a rich source of natural antioxidants such as L-ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) and Gallic acid, which help in scavenging reactive oxidative species (ROS) such as peroxide.
A journal published 201… shows that Star-fruits are a good source of magnesium, potassium, phosphorous, as well as β-carotene, and vitamin C, which are known antioxidants. Another study shows that it contains proanthocyanins which serve also as antioxidants. The presence of these antioxidants aids in strengthening the immune system, guides against cancer.
You May Like: Finding Joy In The Middle Of Your Struggles
Research also found out that it has anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties by gradually reducing eczema and inhibiting the growth of Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, e.t.c.
As a traditional herbal medicine, it has been used (fruits, leaves, and roots) for so many valuable purposes, as home remedies for the treatment of sore throats, fever, cough, chronic headache, and ulcers. Recently, herbal medications are gradually popular all over the world as an alternative therapy to drug medication.
Star-fruits possess many magnificent benefits. However, it also poses a threat to health as it causes toxic effects in patients with chronic renal disease due to its high oxalate content. Patients with renal disease are unable to secrete toxic substances out of their body efficiently; as a result of it, they are affected adversely by the oxalates.
Reports also suggest that patients like this experience nephrotoxic and neurotoxic effects when they consumed Star-fruit.
Irrespective of the nutritional benefit of starfruit its toxicity needs to be seriously considered especially by patients with renal problems due to the oxalate and caramboxin content in the fruits.
Indisputably, fruits are very important in our daily diets. Star fruit is a nutritious exotic fruit with lots of health benefits. It is packed with antioxidants, vitamin c, and fiber. Getting to a local/village market to get this indigenous fruit often for your consumption will do you well health-wise.
However, people with kidney problems or those on drug prescription should eat base on instruction from their doctor.