The feijoa is an exotic berry similar to a large green lemon. The fruit, up to 6-7 cm in diameter, weighs up to 130 grams. The cultivation of this shrubby plant dates back to the end of the 19th century. Its homeland is South America, although today feijoa is grown in the Crimea, the Caucasus and Azerbaijan. The feijoa is usually included in the genus of fruits, but its biological characteristics describe it as a berry.
The internal content of the fruit is a gelatinous pulp. Its flavor is reminiscent of pineapple, kiwi and strawberry. The peel is thick and bitter.
The whole fruit is used in cooking and cosmetics. In general, only the inside of the fruit is consumed, although many nutrients are found in the skin. It is recommended to dry the skins and put them in a tea for flavoring. The special thing is that not a single allergy has occurred due to its consumption.
Chemical composition and nutritional value of feijoa
It is believed that the degree of maturity of the feijoa does not affect its medicinal properties or its beneficial effects on the human body. Doctors support the belief that the berry should be available for general consumption. As for vitamins and minerals, it holds the record among similar fruits.
The exotic gift of nature can replace multivitamin complexes: the pulp contains a large number of minerals and macronutrients. A significant proportion of macronutrients and trace elements consists of:
- Potassium – 155 mg. Regulates the body’s hydroelectrolytic balance, normalizes the heart rate and the central nervous system.
- Copper – 54mg. Normalizes hemoglobin content, protects bones and joints, influences hair quality.
- Iodine – 10-35mg. Improves metabolism, supports immunity, is essential for the production of essential thyroid hormones.
The record concentration of iodine is an amazing phenomenon, since no other edible fruit contains such a quantity of this useful substance. In terms of iodine content, feijoa is close to that of fish products. This is a valuable treasure for people with thyroid disorders. In smaller amounts contained:
- Calcium – 18 mg.
- Magnesium – 9 mg.
- Sodium – 3mg.
- Manganese – 0. 085mg.
- Zinc – 0. 04 mg.
The peel contains natural antioxidant s-leucoanthocyanins and catechins- that reduce the risk of cancer.
Iron prevents the formation of anemia, activates the synthesis of white blood cells, improving the immune level of the organism. The Feijoa’s ability to reduce cholesterol is useful for those who suffer from atherosclerosis.
A surprising number of vitamins in group B makes it possible to qualify the Termly Medicinal Feijaa. B1 and B2 are responsible for metabolism and growth activity. And the combination with ascorbic acid makes these vitamins the perfect cure for fatigue and sight ailments. Vitamin B5 reinforces the immune system and reduces the chances of developing neuralgia or anomalies of the central nervous system. Vitamin has beneficial effects on the beauty and health of the skin and nails.
Vitamin C creates an antioxidant effect that protects against stress, infectious diseases and increases the resistance of blood vessels. The tannins of the fruit bark create a sour taste, but are beneficial for cancer prevention.
The essential oils of the shell provide a pleasant aroma, prevent viral diseases and dissipate sadness and bad mood.
Much of the fruit is liquid, as with most tropical fruits. One hundred grams contain
- 85 g of water;
- 1. 3 g of protein;
- 0. 9 g of fat;
- 10. 5 g of carbohydrates;
- 0. 6 g of ashes.
Proteins and fats in large quantities contained in the pulp, easily absorbed by the body – the berry is able to replace a meal with a complete set of essential vitamins and minerals.
The berry contains a large number of saturated and polyunsaturated fats. Polynsaturated and monounsaturated fatty acids are essential for the cardiac system muscles and are fundamental for heart disease prevention.
Fats regulate blood cholesterol levels, and consume the adequate amount of monounsaturated fats improves the status of patients with cardiovascular disorders. Food fatty acids increase appetite, regulate the synthesis of testosterone and androgens.
The fruit is rich in fiber – improves gastrointestinal function, normalizes stomach activity, regulates the secretion of gastric juice.
Calories per 100 grams of feijoa
Feijoa low in calories is very valuable for a dietary regime – it contains about 48-50 calories per 100 grams.
Doctors recommend eating Feijaa to those who suffer from gastritis, avitaminosis, pyelonephritis and inflammations of the gastrointestinal tract. Essential oils have dermatological value – perform an ant i-inflammatory and antibacterial function, favoring rapid healing wounds and scratches.
Decoctions are even made from the leaves of the plant, using them to relieve toothache and treat gums. Feijoa has been shown to affect the menstrual cycle, making it less painful. The plant removes excess “harmful” cholesterol, prolonging the youth and beauty of the skin.
Pregnant women benefit from the consumption of feijoa due to its high folic acid content, necessary to prevent neural tube disorders in the fetus. At 12-13 weeks of pregnancy, the fetus forms the thyroid gland – during this period, the effect of feijoa is particularly valuable.
For the male reproductive system, the berry is valuable – it prevents the chances of inflammation of the urogenital system and even has a therapeutic effect. Urologists say that the use of 1-2 fruits every day for 25-30 days helps to eliminate the initial stage of erectile dysfunction.
Cosmetology uses feijoa to make scrubs and masks – antioxidants stop the rapid aging of the skin and prevent the formation of wrinkles. The pulp and seeds of the fruit are used in scrubs.
Health risks and contraindications
Any fruits, vegetables and other products can be dangerous due to misuse, overdose or allergic reaction. In the latter case, the feijoa is definitely not harmful – the berry is not capable of causing an allergy. Only individual intolerance to plant substances can cause harm.
People with poor digestion of shellfish may not enjoy the juicy feijoa due to the excessive amount of iodine. People with thyroid disorders should also be careful with this exotic plant. Diabetic and overweight patients should not eat feijoa too often.
The consumption of this berry is not recommended for children under 2 years of age, due to the fact that the digestive tract, not yet fully formed, is not capable of digesting the exotic gifts of nature.
Main rules of use
You can only eat ripe raw feijoa – those that are not ripe can cause poisoning. The berry can be eaten raw or added to cakes, fruit salads, cocktails or made into jam. Remember that cooking will reduce nutrients to a minimum and the flavor will lose its freshness and juiciness.
In order for the healing properties to have a positive effect on the body, feijoa must be eaten regularly, for at least a month, but not more than 1-2 pieces a day. 4-5 fruits in a day will cause an adult to overdose on iodine, which is manifested by increased blood pressure, fever, excessive excitability, anxiety, metallic odor from the mouth.
For the salad, finely chop an apple, a tangerine and a feijoa. The ingredients are mixed with sultanas and covered with double cream, sour cream or natural yogurt. You can also add nuts and vanilla sugar.
How to preserve it without losing any of its nutritional benefits?
The maximum conservation time of the feijoa in a cool place does not exceed 5-6 days. The duration of storage affects the useful properties of the berry: the longer it spends in the refrigerator, the less healing properties it retains.
If you buy an immature fruit, you have to keep it next to the bananas so that it ripens more. It is advisable to store immature fruit in a cool, dark place away from sunlight. The softer the skin, the riper the fruit will be. If the skin is brown, it is a sign of a putrefactive process and can only be discarded.
Understanding the benefits and harms of the exotic berry for the body, you can properly include feijoa in your diet. This green wonder will provide you with a full load of vitamins and improve your health.