Jackfruit is a healthful source of vitamin C and other essential nutrients, and research suggests that it may provide a number of health benefits.
Jackfruit is a tropical tree fruit native to southwest India. It belongs to the Moraceae plant family, which also includes mulberries, figs, and breadfruit.
A jackfruit is large, with thick, yellow flesh and edible seeds and pods. The flesh has a sweet, distinctive flavor, which some describe as a cross between banana and pineapple.
Due to its fibrous texture, people often use jackfruit flesh as a meat substitute in vegetarian or vegan dishes.In this article, we explore some of the potential health benefits of jackfruit. We also look into its nutritional contents, any risks and considerations, and how to add it to the diet.
Animal studies suggest that jackfruit seeds may help reduce levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and raise levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol.
LDL cholesterol, or “bad” cholesterol, is a waxy deposit that can stick to the inner walls of arteries. As these deposits build up, they can restrict the flow of blood, which can raise blood pressure and increase the risk of a heart attack or stroke.
HDL cholesterol, or “good” cholesterol, helps remove LDL cholesterol from blood vessels and send it back to the liver.
Potassium lowers blood pressure by counteracting the effects of sodium and reducing tension in the walls of blood vessels.
However, a potassium-rich diet can be harmful to people with kidney disease or any condition that alters the way that the body regulates potassium.
Jackfruit contains substances called phytochemicals, such as flavonoids, saponins, and tannins. Many phytochemicals have antioxidant properties, which means that they may help to counter the effects of free radicals.
Free radicals are highly reactive molecules that occur naturally in the body and can damage cells. This damage, known as oxidative stress, may play a role in the development of several chronic diseases, including cancer.
Phytochemicals may also prevent new blood vessels from growing around cancerous cells. A lack of blood vessels reduces the cells’ blood supply and growth.
They concluded that further in-depth studies are necessary to confirm and better understand their findings.
The glycemic index (GI) is a system for rating how specific foods affect a person’s blood glucose levels.
Foods with higher GI scores are likelier to cause spikes in blood sugar than those with lower scores. The GI system can help people with diabetes plan their meals.
The effect of jackfruit leaf extract in rats with induced diabetes. At the end of the study, the rats who had consumed jackfruit leaf extract had higher insulin levels and lower blood glucose levels than those who had eaten a control diet.
The researchers determined that jackfruit leaf extract contains flavonoids that may help prevent cell death in the pancreas, which is the organ that produces insulin.
Jackfruit is a good source of vitamin C, which is a powerful antioxidant that is essential for a healthy immune system.
Also, the body requires vitamin C to make a protein called collagen, which is vital for maintaining healthy skin, bones, and connective tissues, such as blood vessels and cartilage. Collagen is also important for wound healing.
Jackfruit contains substances with anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antifungal properties that may also help promote wound healing.
Jackfruit, particularly the seeds, is a good source of both soluble and insoluble fiber. The soluble fiber can help lower LDL cholesterol levels and slow the absorption of carbohydrates into the bloodstream, which can help prevent spikes in blood glucose after eating.
Jackfruit seeds also contain prebiotics, which can help support the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut.
Jackfruit is a healthful source of vitamin C, potassium, dietary fiber, and some other essential vitamins and minerals.
2.84 g of protein
1.06 g of fat
38.36 g of carbohydrates
2.5 g of dietary fiber
31.48 g of sugars
48 mg of magnesium
739 mg of potassium
22.6 mg of vitamin C
The flesh of unripe jackfruit is green, and it changes to yellow as it ripens. A person can eat the flesh of fresh, ripe jackfruit on its own or use it in a range of recipes, including desserts.
Also, many people use fresh, unripe jackfruit as a meat substitute in curries, pies, stir-fries, wraps, and other dishes.
To prepare fresh, unripe jackfruit:
Cut the fruit into halves, then into smaller chunks, without removing the skin.
Boil the chunks until the flesh is soft and has a stringy texture similar to pulled pork or chicken. This may take 30–60 minutes.
Peel off the skin and remove the seeds and their pods.
Jackfruit is a good source of vitamin C, potassium, dietary fiber, and other important vitamins and minerals.
Also, research suggests that compounds in the flesh, seeds, and other parts of the plant may have the potential to treat or prevent a number of health conditions.
Jackfruit is a popular meat substitute. When cooked, the unripe flesh has a texture similar to chicken or pulled pork.
Jackfruit is safe and nutritious for most people. However, anyone with an allergy to latex or birch pollen should take caution when eating or handling the fruit.