Udara, Agbalumo; A Fruit You Can Never Get Enough Of
Growing up, I had this unhealthy appetite for Udara or Agbalumo. I tagged it unhealthy because I consumed every type of Udara that came my way and declared it sweet. I did not mind if it was unripe or sour as long as it was Udara then it was sweet. Thank God my taste buds have a better sense of direction.
It’s the season for this fruit again, the people from the South-South and South-East call it Udara, while does from the west call it Agbalumo.
Udara is one of those fruits that its every part has a use no matter how silly it may seem. It has a chewable skin, the inner flesh is chewable and if you are smart enough you can make chewing gum from it. As kids, we used to be creative enough to make earrings from the seeds.
The Udara skin is usually orange in color, it is called African star apple because of the way the seeds makes it look a star-shaped fruit when opened up. It is a seasonal fruit grown basically in the southern region but can be found everywhere in the country from December down to March.
Many people may not know that Udara can be extracted and made into a juice or cocktail. For an easy way to do this visit AFROLEM
Udara is not just known for the distinct pleasure it grants our taste buds but also for its health benefits.
Health Benefits of Udara/Agbalumo (African Star Apple)
- As with most fruits, it has low calorie because of its little fat content so it is definitely a healthy food.
- It is a superb snack because its high fibre content provides food bulk which both increases satiety and aids digestion so it is ideal for weight watchers. It can be snacked on to curb hunger pangs.
- It has a surprisingly decent amount of Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C). Clearly, Vitamin C sources are not exclusive to the citrus fruits family
- It could serve as a natural source of Anti-Oxidant booster to remove free radicals from oxidative stress disorders.
- Its leaf extract contains Hypoglycemic (to treat Diabetes) and Anti-Platelet activities, although it also had toxic effects on some organs. Some people also eat this fruit to reduce the inflammation associated with laryngitis and pneumonia. Other uses, including treatment for hypertension, tooth abscesses, heart problems, intestinal issues.
All-Round Basic Nutrition
1-cup serving of fresh star apple contains 67 calories. Eating star apple as a snack is a good choice as the calories are low and it provides no fat; however, this may not be enough calories to ease hunger pains and boost energy levels, as most between-meal snack are meant to do. The Diet Channel notes that 100 to 200 calories per snack is best; consider eating an oz. of cheese or a tsp. of peanut butter to boost the number of calories into this range. One serving of star apple also has 15 g of carbohydrates, or 11.5 percent of the 130 g suggested for daily consumption by the Institute of Medicine.
Nutrient Content per 100g edible Udara/Agbalumo pulp
Energy (Kcal) 91.09
Carbohydrate (g) 10.49
Protein (g) 6.99
Fat (g) 2.49
Moisture (g) 73
Vitamin C (mg) 25
Udara is beautiful, delicious and has a lot of nutritional benefits. Researches are still ongoing to prove its medicinal properties and possible application.