Introduction to the Elephant Apple
The Elephant Apple, also known as Cullenia exarillata, is a large bright green tropical fruit native to India and Southeast Asia. It has a sweet, mild flavor and is often eaten fresh, canned, dried, or pressed into a juice. The fruit has a thick outer rind that hides a gel-like pulp inside. It’s a popular snack in its native region and is said to have many health benefits.
The Plant and its Growth
The Elephant Apple tree is a deciduous tree that grows to a maximum height of about 50 feet (15 meters). The leaves are long and slender, and the bark is a light grey color. The flowers of the tree are yellow and fragrant, and it produces fruits from June to September.
The Elephant Apple needs a tropical climate for optimal growth and is best suited for regions with temperatures between 70 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit (21 to 35 degrees Celsius). It prefers moist, well-drained soil and needs plenty of sunlight, although it does tolerate partial shade.
Health Benefits of Eating Elephant Apple
The Elephant Apple has many health benefits due to its high levels of antioxidants and vitamins. It’s especially rich in vitamin C, with one fruit containing five times the recommended daily intake of the nutrient. It’s also a good source of dietary fiber and contains a variety of minerals, including potassium, calcium, and magnesium.
Eating an Elephant Apple can help reduce cholesterol levels, improve heart health, and protect against certain types of cancer. Its anti-inflammatory properties may help reduce the risk of asthma, allergies, and arthritis. Additionally, it is said to promote weight loss, digestive health, and cognitive function.
Nutrition Facts of Elephant Apple
One medium Elephant Apple (100g) contains about 86 calories, 0.7g of protein, 20.4g of carbohydrates, 2.6g of dietary fiber, and 0.5g of fat. It also contains small amounts of calcium, phosphorus, iron, sodium, and vitamin A and B complex.
Uses of Elephant Apple
The Elephant Apple is a versatile fruit that can be eaten raw, boiled, mashed, or made into a juice. It can also be used to make jams, jellies, and desserts. In India, it is often added to curries or used to make a pickle known as “dhokar vade”. Other popular dishes include Elephant Apple chutney and Elephant Apple sauces.
Side Effects Of Eating Elephant Apple
Excessive consumption of Elephant Apple may cause side effects such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea. Additionally, the plant is known to contain toxic compounds and should not be eaten in large amounts. Those with allergies should also avoid eating Elephant Apple as it may induce an allergic reaction.
The Elephant Apple is a unique and tasty tropical fruit with plenty of health benefits. It’s a rich source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, making it a healthier alternative to other snacks. Although its toxic compounds should be avoided, it can be enjoyed in moderation as part of an overall healthy diet.
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