Jack fruit, called as Kathal in Hindi, is a large irregularly shaped oval fruit. Often times, listed among the exotic tropical fruits to have originated in India and Malaysia, jack fruits now grown in Asia, Africa, the USA and Australia.
Reported to be the food for Orangutans, a jack fruit can weigh anywhere between 4 kg and 20 kg. Jack fruit has a fibrous texture, resembling meat. As a result, it is often used as a meat substitute by vegetarians. Ripe jack fruit has a bland flavour and is a bit sweet. It is often peeled before consumption and can be had raw, boiled, roasted, fried or in a curry.
These are Rich in:
- Vitamin A, B, C
- Copper and potassium.
Benefits of Jack Fruit:
- Cancer healer
- Weight loss agent
- Blood pressure reducer
- Digestion improver
- Insomnia curer
- Diabetes friendly
- Eye and skin maintainer
- Ulcer healer
- Bone supporter
- Nerve system booster
Though high in carbohydrates, it has a low glycemic index owing to its high fibre content and the nature of starch, which is resistant.
Being high in fibre, it aids in digestion. Its mucilaginous pulp has been found to be useful in boosting the immune system. Other benefits include improving thyroid function, anti-cancer benefits, skin and vision improvements, lowering blood pressure and increasing sperm count.
Many people stay away from jack fruit as they believe it is high in calories and carbohydrates. Contrary to this, jack fruit can be eaten by those trying to lose weight simply because it helps keep energized and the full for longer. Besides, it helps provide antioxidants such as Vitamin C, flavanoids, phytonutrients and potassium, which boost skin and immune function.
Several studies have reported various health benefits of jack fruit, including its role in the management of type II diabetes and obesity. In one investigation, the extracts of jack fruit significantly improved glucose tolerance in both normal and diabetic patients.
Jack fruit has also been found to be have anti-ulcer effects and is useful for those with heartburn, asthma and breathing disorders.
Studies have also explored the anti-inflammatory role of jack fruit, which can be important to prevent the progression of obesity associated low-grade inflammation and its complications.
Antioxidant functions of jack fruit have been document in several studies. In fact, the jack fruit seeds have much higher anti-oxidant capacity than the edible portion. The seeds can be eaten roasted or boiled. Roasted dried seeds are also ground to make flour which is blended with regular flour for baking.