Starfruit, also known as carambola, is a fruit widely found in the Philippines, Sri Lanka, India, Indonesia, Bangladesh, and Malaysia. The fruit has a sweet and sour taste and resembles a star when the cross-section cut is performed. Its flesh, which is loaded with minerals, is crunchy, firm, and incredibly juicy. It is approximately 90 percent water, contains both phenolic acids (polyphenols) and massive amounts of oxalic acid, and very low in sugar. Starfruit is famously known in western countries due to its nutritional values.
Nutritional Value of Star Fruit
This is the nutrient content of a single, medium-sized (91-gram) star fruit:
- Fiber: 3 grams
- Folate: 3% of the RDI
- Copper: 6% of the RDI
- Magnesium: 2% of the RDI
- Potassium: 3% of the RDI
- Protein: 1 gram
- Vitamin C: 52% of the RDI
- Vitamin B5: 4% of the RDI
Starfruit is also rich in healthy plant compounds such as gallic acid, quercetin, and epicatechin which all have antioxidant properties and various health benefits.
Known Health Benefits Of Star Fruit
Prevents Your Blood Sugar From Spiking
The glycemic index or GI is a measure of how quickly a food causes our blood sugar levels to rise. Since starfruit has a low glycemic index, it is slowly absorbed in the bloodstream and can help prevent mood swings, sugar cravings, and sugar crashes. On the other hand, foods like white bread and white rice have a high glycemic index. These foods are easily broken down and can cause blood sugar and insulin level spikes after meals.
Helps Support The Digestive System
The considerable amount of fiber present in starfruit stimulates peristaltic motion and increase secretion of gastric juices, thereby preventing constipation, easing with digestion, and protecting the body from more severe conditions like colorectal cancer. One cup of starfruit contains 4 grams of dietary fiber.
Helps An Individual Lose Weight
Due to its richness in water and fiber as well as its low amounts of calories, starfruit can be a great addition in a diet of a person who wants to lose weight. The fruit will fill you up, reduce your urge to eat, and keep you healthy.
Promotes Sleep Better
Starfruit contains an adequate amount of magnesium, a mineral linked to improving the duration, quality, and tranquility of sleep. Plus, it also helps reduce the occurrence of insomnia and other sleep-related disorders.
Starfruit Can Help Fight Infections
One cup of starfruit contains 76 percent of the vitamin C daily requirements per cup. Vitamin C is a potent natural water-soluble antioxidant that helps the body develop resistance against infectious agents and eliminates cancer-causing free radicals in the body.
Helps Maintain A Healthy Blood Pressure
Due to its high potassium and low sodium content, starfruit can help the blood vessels relax and maintain proper blood pressure.. One cup of starfruit contains a whopping 176 milligrams of potassium, compared to just 2.6 milligrams of sodium.
Keeps Your Hair Vibrant And Healthy Looking
In addition to improving the immune system, starfruit’s rich amounts of vitamin C can also create and maintain collagen, an essential protein found in hair and skin. Additionally, it also has a significant amount of vitamin A that increases sebum production thereby keeping the hair moisturized.
Simple Ways To Prepare And Eat A Star Fruit
Rinse a ripe starfruit under water. The ripe fruit should be yellow with only hints of green. Cut-off the ends and then slice it. Remove the seeds before eating.
You can simply add the fruit into your salads, fresh dishes as well as on your seafood or shell dishes. Juice it and drink the beverage. You can also make jelly, jam, or chutney out of it or use it as a garnish or turn it into pies or puddings.