Jackfruit (Artocarpus heterophyllus) is a huge and exotic fruit found in tropical countries such as the Philippines, Vietnam, and Thailand. It is thorny on the outside and has a fleshy, edible, pale-yellow, plump inside.
When ripe, this versatile food can be consumed on its own or be added on smoothies or baked goods. On the other hand, unripe jackfruit (with bright green skin) can be enjoyed as a meat substitute in barbecue, curries, whole grain bowls, Tex-Mex recipes, jackfruit pot pie, and much more.
The Nutritional Profile Of Jackfruit
Jackfruit is an ideal fruit to look for due to these nutrients and chemical facts:
- It has a set of vitamins such as vitamin A and C, calcium, potassium, iron, zinc, niacin, riboflavin, folic acid, and sodium.
- It is rich in B-complex group vitamins as well as vitamin B6.
- It is a rich source of phenolics and phytonutrients
- It is free of fats and bad cholesterol.
- It has phytonutrient properties such as anti-hypertensive, anti-ulcer, anti-cancer, and anti-inflammatories.
- It contains protein, minerals, and fiber.
- It can greatly support the immune system due to its antibacterial and antiviral properties
Nutritional Facts of Jackfruit (per 100g)
- Energy 95kcal
- Carbohydrates 19g
- Dietary Fiber 1.5g
- Fat 0.64g
- Protein 1.72g
- Calcium 24mg
- Pantothenic acid 0.235mg
- Folate 24μg
- Vitamin C 13.8mg
- Vitamin E 0.34mg
- Vitamin B6 0.329mg
- Vitamin A 5μg
- Thiamine 0.105mg
- Riboflavin 0.055mg
- Iron 0.23mg
- Magnesium 29mg
- Phosphorus 21mg
- Potassium 448mg
- Zinc 0.13 mg
- Niacin 0.92mg
The Health Benefits Of Jackfruit
Here are g some of the good reasons to add jackfruit to your diet.
Beneficial for the Cardiovascular System
Potassium, which is present in jackfruit, promotes overall cardiovascular health. This mineral is needed in balancing electrolytes, regulating sodium levels, maintaining normal blood pressure, and proper muscle function and coordination – which includes the heart that pumps the blood. All of these functions are important in maintaining good heart health.
Because of its richness in magnesium and iron, jackfruits can help improve the overall quality of sleep. Magnesium helps prevent anemia, one of the major causes of insomnia.
Slows Down Ageing
Free radicals are the reason behind the early signs of aging. Jackfruit, due to its antioxidants, can destroy these free radicals, thereby slowing down the process of aging.
Protects The Eyes
Vitamin A and some carotenoid anti-oxidants are present in jackfruit. These are essential to your eye’s health. Vitamin A helps reinforce the mucous membrane on the cornea, which acts as a natural barrier against bacteria we may come into contact with. Meanwhile, a carotenoid anti-oxidants are known as lutein which filters short wavelengths of visible blue light that enters the eye and preserves the integrity of the retina and optic nerve. Due to these, you can prevent eye diseases including age-related macular degeneration (AMD), cataracts, and retinitis pigmentosa.
Both soluble and insoluble fiber are present in jackfruit. Soluble fibers are easily broken down to produce energy whereas insoluble fibers help in easing up your bowel movement.
Jackfruit it highly recommended for healthy bones. It contains calcium as well as vitamin C and magnesium which further assists in calcium absorption.
Improves Energy Levels
Due to the fruits ample amounts of carbohydrates, it can give you a quick energy boost without the fat. Its sucrose and fructose content can be easily be digested by the body. The sugar in this fruit falls under the category of SAG (Slowly Available Glucose) which has the characteristic of releasing glucose in a slow pulsatile manner; thereby reducing the glycemic index of jackfruit.
Jackfruit has powerful anti-ulcerative, antioxidant, antiseptic, and anti-inflammatory properties. Due to this, the fruits can help treat ulcer disorder.
Helps Prevent Cancer
Found in jackfruit are phytonutrients like saponins, isoflavones, and lignans which all have anticancer properties. Likewise, its carotenoids can also help protect against cancer. Studies have found that it can help patients with breast cancer, prostate cancer, lung cancer, skin cancer, and gastric cancer.