Persimmon is one of the first fruits that was specially grown for eating. Persimmons were first grown in China several thousand years ago, thanks to the bright sweet taste and attractive appearance of the fruitful tree.
Orange fruits called persimmons are known for their sweet, honey-like aroma. And while there are hundreds of types of persimmons, Hachiya and Fuyu are among the most popular. A heart-shaped persimmon called Hachi has an astringent taste, which means it has a lot of herbal chemicals called tannins that give immature fruits a dry, bitter taste. This type of persimmon should be fully ripe before eating. Persimmon Fuyu also contains tannins, but they are considered non-astringent. Unlike Khachi persimmons, the crispy red Fuyu variety can be enjoyed even if the fruit is not completely ripe.
Persimmons can be eaten fresh, dried or cooked. Persimmon is widely used throughout the world for the preparation of jelly, drinks, as a filling in baking, for the preparation of sauces and puddings.
Persimmon is not only tasty, but also very healthy and filled with nutrients that can benefit your health in several ways. In the article we will examine in detail the confirmed facts about the benefits and harms of persimmons for the body.
The benefits of persimmons for the body
We distinguish 7 useful properties of persimmons, for which there is scientific evidence.
1. Persimmon is rich in nutrients
Despite its small size, persimmon has many important nutrients. One persimmon (170 grams) contains:
Calories : 118 kcal
Carbohydrates : 31 gr.
Protein : 1 gr.
Fats : 0.3 gr.
Fiber : 6 gr.
Vitamin A : 55%
Vitamin C : 22%
Vitamin E : 6%
Vitamin K : 5%
Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) : 8%
Potassium : 8%
Copper : 9%
Manganese : 30%
Persimmon is also a good source of thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), folic acid, magnesium and phosphorus.
These colorful fruits are low in calories and filled with fiber, which makes them suitable for weight loss products.
One persimmon contains more than half the recommended intake of vitamin A, a fat-soluble vitamin, necessary for the immune function, vision and development of the fetus during pregnancy.
In addition to vitamins and minerals, persimmon contains a wide range of plant compounds, including tannins, flavonoids and carotenoids, which can positively affect your body.
Persimmon leaves also contain vitamin C, tannins and fiber. Persimmon leaves are often used for making medicinal teas (4).
Persimmon contains many vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, C and B, potassium and manganese. It also contains beneficial plant compounds such as tannins and flavonoids.
2. Persimmon – an excellent source of powerful antioxidants
Persimmon contains beneficial plant compounds with antioxidant properties. Antioxidants help prevent or slow down cell damage by counteracting oxidative stress, a process caused by unstable molecules called free radicals. Oxidative stress is associated with several chronic diseases, including heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and neurological conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease.
Fortunately, eating antioxidant-rich foods such as persimmons can help fight oxidative stress and can reduce the risk of some chronic illnesses.
Eating foods high in flavonoids, which are powerful antioxidants found in high concentrations in the skin and persimmon pulp, helps reduce the risk of heart disease, age-related mental disorders, and lung cancer (6).
Persimmon is also rich in carotenoid antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, the pigment found in many brightly colored fruits and vegetables. Studies have linked a high beta-carotene diet with a lower risk of heart disease, lung cancer, colorectal cancer, and metabolic diseases (7). In addition, a study conducted in more than 37,000 people showed that people with a high beta-carotene intake in their diets significantly reduced their risk of developing type 2 diabetes (8).
Persimmons are an excellent source of powerful antioxidants such as carotenoids and flavonoids. Diets rich in these compounds are associated with a reduced risk of certain diseases, including heart disease and diabetes.
3. Persimmon is good for the heart.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide and negatively affects the lives of millions of people. Fortunately, most types of heart disease can be prevented by reducing risk factors such as unhealthy diets. The powerful combination of nutrients found in persimmons makes this fruit an excellent choice for enhancing heart health.
Persimmon contains flavonoid antioxidants, including quercetin and kaempferol. The use of foods high in flavonoids has been linked by scientists to reduce the risk of heart disease in several studies. For example, a long-term study conducted with almost 100 thousand people showed that those who ate foods containing flavonoids had 18% fewer deaths from cardiovascular problems in their group compared to those who had the lowest consumption flavonoids (10).
A flavonoid-rich diet can support heart health by lowering blood pressure, reducing “bad” LDL cholesterol and reducing inflammation. Moreover, the tannins that are found in immature persimmons and give the fruit bitter fatigue can lower blood pressure.
Many animal studies have shown that tannic acid and gallic acid found in persimmons are effective in lowering high blood pressure, a major risk factor for heart disease (12, 13).
Persimmon contains flavonoid antioxidants and tannins, which benefit heart health by lowering blood pressure, inflammation and cholesterol.
4. Persimmon has anti-inflammatory properties
Conditions such as heart disease, arthritis, diabetes, cancer, and obesity are associated with chronic inflammation in the body. Fortunately, choosing foods high in anti-inflammatory compounds can help reduce inflammation and lower your risk of getting sick.
Persimmon is an excellent source of a powerful antioxidant – vitamin C. One persimmon contains 20% of the recommended daily intake. Vitamin C helps protect cells from damage caused by free radicals and fights inflammation in the body. Vitamin C reduces damage from free radicals by transferring an electron to these unstable molecules, thereby neutralizing them and preventing their further harm.
C-reactive protein and interleukin-6 are substances produced by the body in response to inflammation. An eight-week study in 64 obese people found that supplementing with 500 mg of vitamin C twice a day significantly reduced the levels of C-reactive protein and interleukin-6 (15). In addition, in large studies, a higher intake of vitamin C was associated with a reduced risk of inflammatory conditions such as heart disease, prostate cancer, and diabetes (16, 17).
Persimmon also contains carotenoids, flavonoids and vitamin E, all of which are powerful antioxidants that fight inflammation in the body.
Persimmon is rich in powerful antioxidant vitamin C, which helps reduce inflammation – a common cause of many diseases.
5. Persimmon is rich in fiber
Having too much cholesterol, especially “bad” LDL cholesterol, can increase your risk of heart disease, stroke, and heart attack. Foods high in soluble fiber, such as fruits and vegetables, can help lower blood cholesterol by helping the body secrete excess amounts of LDL.
Persimmon is a high-fiber fruit that has been shown to lower LDL cholesterol. One study found that adults who consumed cookies containing persimmon dietary fiber three times a day for 12 weeks experienced a significant decrease in LDL cholesterol compared to those who consumed persimmon-free bars (22).
Dietary fiber is also important for regular bowel motility and lowering blood sugar. Fiber-rich, instant foods such as persimmons provide a slow digestion of carbohydrates and sugar absorption, which helps prevent blood sugar spikes. A study in 117 people with diabetes showed that increased consumption of soluble dietary fiber led to a significant improvement in blood sugar (23).
In addition, fiber helps nourish the “good” bacteria in your gut, which can positively affect your digestion and overall health.
Fiber-rich foods such as persimmons can help lower cholesterol, lower blood sugar, and maintain a healthy digestive system.
6. Persimmon is good for eyesight.
Persimmon provides a large amount of vitamin A and antioxidants, which are crucial for eye health. One persimmon contains 55% of the recommended intake of vitamin A.
Vitamin A supports the functioning of the conjunctival membranes and cornea. Moreover, it is an important component of rhodopsin, a protein necessary for normal vision.
Persimmon also contains lutein and zeaxanthin, which are carotenoid antioxidants that promote healthy vision. These substances are found in high levels in the retina, a photosensitive layer of tissue in the back of the eye.
A diet rich in lutein and zeaxanthin can reduce the risk of some eye diseases, including age-related macular degeneration, a disease that affects the retina and can cause vision loss. A large amount of lutein and zeaxanthin also contains dark berries, especially blueberries , blueberries and black currants .
In fact, a study of more than 100 thousand people showed that those who consumed the highest amount of lutein and zeaxanthin had a 40% lower risk of developing age-related macular degeneration than those who consumed the least amount (27).
Persimmon contains a large amount of vitamin A, lutein and zeaxanthin – nutrients that support healthy vision.
7. Persimmon – a delicious fruit that is easy to add to your diet
Persimmon can be added to various dishes to provide an extra flavor. These fruits can be enjoyed fresh as a healthy snack or used to make delicious recipes.
In fact, persimmon goes well with both sweet and salty foods.
Here are some ways to add persimmons to your healthy diet:
- Slice persimmons into a salad of your favorite fruit.
- Add persimmons to your morning yogurt or oatmeal for natural sweetness.
- Bake persimmons in the oven and lightly pour honey to get a delicious and healthy dessert.
- Mix dry or fresh persimmons in a mixture for muffins, bread or cake, bake!
- Combine persimmon with berries and citrus fruits for a delicious fruit salad.
- Bake persimmons with chicken or meat for a unique combination of taste.
- Throw frozen persimmons into your favorite smoothie or smoothie to enrich it with additional nutrients.
- Bake persimmon slices to make natural fruit chips.
Persimmon is perfect in both sweet and savory dishes, including oatmeal, meat dishes, pastries and cocktails.
Persimmons: possible harm, contraindications and side effects
Persimmon is safe to use, it rarely causes allergic reactions. Some possible side effects from its use can be very mild – for example, an unpleasant astringent taste in your mouth and aftertaste, a slight “indigestion” in the stomach. However, persimmons should be eaten sparingly, as excessive consumption of it can harm the body.
Persimmon carries a certain risk due to the large amount of tannin in this fruit. Large amounts of tannin can have toxic effects on the body. Most tannin contains immature persimmons, so it is better to completely abandon its use. Side effects from such persimmons are manifested by a feeling of numbness of the oral cavity.
Eating unripe fruits can also cause the formation of bezoar or bezoar-free stone – these are solid elements that form in the stomach from fallen hair and plant fibers and affect digestion.
Not eating persimmons on an empty stomach – in this case, it can cause diarrhea. Eat persimmon in moderate and limited amounts.
If you have diabetes, then you should consume persimmon in very small quantities, as it contains a large amount of sugar and can increase blood glucose levels.
So, we examined the issue of the benefits and harms of persimmons for the body, to summarize:
- Persimmon is a sweet, versatile fruit full of vitamins, minerals, fiber and healthy plant compounds.
- Persimmons can promote heart health, reduce inflammation, maintain healthy eyesight, and maintain a healthy digestive system.
- In addition, persimmon is tasty and goes well with many products.
With all the benefits that persimmons can offer the body, the moderate addition of these delicious fruits to your diet should only bring benefits and no harm!