Star apple or caimito is scientifically called Chrysophyllum cainito and is native to the West Indies and Greater Antilles. It has now spread to Central America and is very abundant in the tropics, especially in Southeast Asia. It is called so because when you slice it, the fruit resembles a star. About 64% of the fruit can be consumed and is normally eaten raw. One cup of the fresh fruit only has 67 calories, making a star apple a great snack because of its low calories and absence of fat.
Star apples are rich in nutrients as well including:
- 64 kcal energy
- One gram of protein
- Eight grams of carbohydrates
- 18 mg of calcium
- 45 mg phosphorus
- 8 mg iron
- 01 mg vitamin B1
- One mg vitamin C
Star apples also have three grams of fiber to provide bulk to our diet, so we feel fuller for a much longer time. You can snack on star apples to help you lose weight because they can keep you from eating too much. Plus, regularly eating the fruit can protect people from diabetes as well as other cancer types.
Star Apple Health Benefits
Because the fruit is consumed raw, you can get the nutrients above when you eat it fresh. But the fruit isn’t just the part of the tree that is useful. In fact, the sap, fruit, and seeds are used for medicinal purposes:
- Leaves: The leaves of the star apple tree are for curing arthritis and diabetes when turned into tea.
- Bark: The bark of the tree is used as an ingredient to create a strong medicine, including as a cough medicine.
- Seeds: The seeds of the fruit have long been used in ointments in order to prevent infections.
As for consuming the fruit, you can obtain the following benefits:
- Eating caimito will help improve your digestive health because of its fiber Fiber is a nutrient that helps make stool soft, so that it can be eliminated easily. Normalizing bowel movements is important in curing constipation as well as other problems in the digestive system.
- Star apples have eleagnine, which is a type of alkaloid that can protect the body from microbial activities. Eleagnine also possesses anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that can help prevent numerous diseases, including cancer, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.
- The fruit contains vitamin C, a water soluble vitamin that supports various functions in the body. It also acts as an antioxidant that helps in healing wounds, producing collagen, improving immunity, and decreasing blood sugar levels.
Star apples aren’t usually available in local grocery stores, but there are specialty stores where you can find them. There are three varieties, green, yellow, and purple which is the most common.