Just a while ago I wrote a post introducing you all to a very unique fruit, the starfruit, which is also known as the carambola. Once again, the starfruit truly is a very unique and exotic fruit. Just take a look at its shape, and you’ll know why. In my last post on the starfruit, I touched a bit on the health benefits that it provides, but I’ll devote this entire blog post to the starfruit’s health benefits.
You can read my introductory post here: Starfruit: Introduction and Health Benefits
Vitamins and minerals
Starfruits are usually eaten fresh, by themselves, as well as in juice form. Fortunately, both these methods of eating starfruits save most of the nutrients, which the starfruit is packed with.
Starfruit is very rich in vitamin A and vitamin C. These vitamins are known to help with night vision as well as strengthen your immune system, respectively. In addition, the starfruit, unlike many other fruits, also is a very rich source of iron. Finally, like some other exotic fruits, the starfruit also boosts exceedingly high fiber content. In today’s world of processed foods, natural and good fiber is hard to come by, but one single starfruit (around 125 grams) provides as much as 5 grams of fiber!
Studies on the carambola have shown that they help in regulating cholesterol levels in the body. For example, properties within the starfruit help increase the amount of HDL (or good) cholesterol while lowering the amount of LDL (bad) cholesterol within the body.
The starfruit has traditionally been used in folk medicine by many cultures around the world to treat various ailments. These vary from headaches to ringworm to diseases such as chickenpox. Traditionally, cultures have used a combination of the leaves and roots of the starfruit plant for such purposes.
Colds and flu
The starfruit, because of its excellent supply of vitamin C, even rivalling that of citrus fruits, helps prevent and fight colds as well as the flu.
Dieting and weight loss
The starfruit is an excellent fruit to eat under any weight loss or dieting plan. Not only is it low in calories, it is great tasting and all natural, unlike the processed foods you get in most diet plans. Not only that, it is also high in natural fiber!
More health benefits
The carambola is high in antioxidants and flavonoids, nutrients that are crucial to maintaining a healthy body but are unfortunately hard to get in processed foods. In addition, starfruit has also been known to help with nausea and indigestion.
- Field Guide to Produce: How to Identify, Select, and Prepare Virtually Every Fruit and Vegetable at the Market
- Organic Cooking: Eating Well: 300 Simple Organic Gourmet Recipes for a Healthier Life