Custard apple, popularly known as 'sharifa' or 'sitaphal' in India, is liked by people of all age groups. Though it can be eaten as raw fruit, custard apple is widely used as an ingredient in the form of desserts, smoothies, shakes, and snacks. But, do you know that besides its delicious taste, custard apple also exerts numerous health benefits?
Well yes, custard apple is full of anti-oxidants and vitamins which help the body fight many diseases. Also, it has loads of potassium, vitamin A, copper, phosphorus, fiber, calcium - the list is endless. The high anti-oxidant properties are excellent for skin, heart, bones and blood pressure. The copper content in custard apple helps cure constipation, indigestion problems and gastrointestinal infections such as diarrhoea. Let us take an insight as to why you should consume 'sitaphal' this season.
- Keeps your heart healthy: Custard apples are high in potassium and magnesium, both of which are essential for keeping cardiac diseases at bay and controlling blood pressure levels. Also, vitamin B6 and dietary fibre present in custard apple help to keep the blood cholesterol levels normal, thereby reducing the incidence of cardiac arrest and other heart ailments considerably.
- Reduces Asthma: Vitamin B6 also acts as a defensive shield, protecting individuals from inflammation of the bronchioles (which may often give rise to asthma and breathing problems).
- Prevent Diabetes: Custard apple is a rich source of vitamin C, potassium, iron, magnesium, and dietary fibre, all of which help reduce the risk of type-2 diabetes. They regulate the blood glucose level. However, for maximum benefits make sure to consume the fruit in moderate amounts.
- Helps In Weight Gain: Custard apple, with its high-calorie content, is an ideal choice for people who are underweight and trying frantically to put on some weight.
- Perfect For Pregnant Women: Custard apple is a wonder-fruit for pregnant women. Being a rich source of dietary fibre, copper, and vitamin B6, custard apple goes a long way to alleviate the symptoms of constipation and morning sickness (especially nausea) in pregnant women. When consumed regularly during pregnancy, it helps in producing more breast milk. Custard apple also contributes significantly towards the development of the brain, nervous system and immune system of the foetus.
- Cures arthritis: Magnesium present in custard apple maintains a healthy balance of fluids and electrolytes in the body. This removes the excess of fluids and acids in the joints which leads to inflammation. The end result is reduced risks of arthritis and rheumatism.
- Prevents Skin-Aging: Custard apple is a rich source of antioxidants and protects the skin from the damaging effects of free radicals. Free radicals are tiny reactive oxygen molecules that can cause damage to your skin. Custard apple has the ability to fight free radicals thereby, preventing the skin from becoming prone to skin-aging, acne, psoriasis, and eczema. It enhances the production of collagen proteins, thereby maintaining skin elasticity and youthfulness.
- Prevents Skin Diseases: The active compound 'Acetogenin' present in custard apple, contributes towards minimizing the incidence of skin cancer. Also, custard apple acts as a natural moisturizer and a detoxifier, keeping the skin hydrated with the elimination of toxins that can be harmful to the skin.
While the health benefits of custard apple are immense, the seeds of this fruit are harmful and should never be consumed. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!