One of the fruits that have been in existence for over a hundred years is passion fruit. It is available in about 500 varieties. It resembles a grapefruit and its interior is firm and juicy with several seeds. Passion fruit is known to be useful in treating diabetes and also in the prevention of arthritis and cancer. The most commonly available are the purple and yellow varieties.
• Passiflora edulis: This is small round or oval in shape with purple skin.
• Passiflora flavicarpa: Larger than the purple variety of passion fruit, this is oval in shape and is yellow in colour.
Nutritional Value Of Passion Fruit
Passion fruit serves to be a great source of dietary fibre. An 18 g serving of passion fruit would contain about 2 g of fibre, most of it being soluble fibre. Fibre keeps the gut healthy and prevents constipation. This fruit is highly nutritious and also is a good source of vitamin A and C. This fruit contains only 17 calories. Passion fruit is also rich in polyphenols more than that of other tropical fruits such as mango or banana. It also contains a small amount of iron and potassium.
Health Benefits Of Passion Fruit
• It aids in diabetes treatment. This is due to its high fibre content and low glycemic index.
• It helps in the prevention of cancer. It possesses antioxidants that can fight the cancer-causing free radicals.
• It regulates blood pressure. Being rich in potassium, it can regulate the body's blood pressure.
• Presence of vitamin C, carotene, and cryptoxanthin help in boosting the immunity system.
• Being a great source of fibre, this fruit enhances the digestive health.
• The presence of potassium and folate improves brain health and also reduces anxiety.
• Being rich in minerals such as calcium, iron, phosphorus and magnesium, passion fruit is a great way to maintain bone density.
• Passion fruit has a mixture of bioflavonoids that show positive effects on the respiratory system.
• Iron and copper present in passion fruit promote the production of red blood cells.
• During pregnancy, consumption of passion fruit is beneficial as the folate present in the fruit helps in the development of the fetus.
• This fruit contains harman, which is a sedative compound and has therefore found usage in the treatment of insomnia.
• Being a rich source of vitamin A, passion fruit helps in improving the texture of the skin.
How To Eat Passion Fruit?
The best way to eat a passion fruit is by using a sharp knife to cut it into half. You would need to use a spoon to scoop out the inside of the fruit along with the seeds. This way you can eat the fruit plain. You can eat the membrane that separates the peel from the seeds in the form of a tart. Just sprinkle some sugar onto it and eat it.
Remember not to eat the skin as it has cyanogenic glycosides. Many people enjoy eating the fruit raw. However, you can also include passion fruit in drinks, desserts, on salads and in yogurt.
What Impact Do The Seeds Of Passion Fruit Have On Our Health?
The seeds of passion fruit are edible. The gelatinous pulp that you see when you slice open a passion fruit has plenty of seeds that can be eaten. The seeds usually give the taste of tart. Eating this fruit along with the seeds provides a lot of fibre to our body. As we all know, fibre has a great effect on the health of our gut and overall digestive system.
You can extract the seeds from the pulp by putting the pulp on low speed in a blender. It's healthy to eat the flesh and seeds of passion fruit as they are loaded with antioxidants. Seeds of passion fruit deliver several nutritional benefits such as antioxidant protection and also helps in the maintenance of healthy intestinal and cardiovascular systems. The seeds are also rich in polyphenolic compounds such as scirpusin B and piceatannol.
How Much Quantity Of Passion Fruit Is Ideal To Consume?
Each passion fruit would be able to give you only about 2 to 3 tablespoons of pulp. This is one fruit where we prefer quality over the quantity obtained. Therefore, there is no specific amount set on how many passion fruits you can eat in a day. It is nutritious and can be included in your diet daily. However, there could be a few possible side effects of overeating this fruit. Read on to know when you should stop indulging in this fruit.
Side Effects Of Passion Fruit
Although most people enjoy eating this fruit without any side effects, allergies could occur in a few. People who possess a latex allergy are at a risk when they consume passion fruit. The purple passion fruit contains cyanogenic glycosides which can combine with enzymes to form the poisonous cyanide that could be dangerous.
Few studies have shown that consuming passion fruit during pregnancy and breastfeeding could be harmful. Also, as the fruit stimulates the central nervous system, it could interfere with the anaesthesia administered during a surgery. Therefore, it is recommended that if you have a surgery scheduled, then do not eat this fruit at least two weeks before the surgery.