What is Chikoo?
The Sapotaceae family includes the tropical fruit chikoo. The fruit is a sweet, gritty texture and has a grainy, brown-brown pulp. The fruit produces saponin when it is unripe. However, as it ripens, the fruit softens. Sapodilla (Chiku) is an evergreen tree that thrives in warm or hot areas. Although flowering is common throughout the year, fruit production only occurs twice per year.
Modern Chikoo tree farming is primarily for harvesting ‘chicle’, a sap from the tree’s bark. India is the largest grower of the tree in the world. It is primarily grown for its fruits. Chikoo trees, which are used to grow gum, are native to the Yucatan and southern Mexico. They have been grown in Central America since ancient times.
It is low in calories, high in fat, and cholesterol-free, which helps to maintain a healthy lifestyle. It is commonly known in India as a Chikoo. However, in English and Spanish it is called a Sapodilla or Zapote. In the West Indies, it is called the Naseberry.
Sapodilla has a high-calorie content, each 100g of it providing around 83 Kcal of energy. It contains approximately 20 grams of carbohydrates, has low levels of fat and cholesterol, and is relatively low in calories. It contains approximately 5 g of dietary fibre per 100 grams of fruit. Sapodilla is rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin A and other vitamins such as niacin and riboflavin. You will also find a lot magnesium, phosphorus and selenium in Sapodilla, along with a lot iron, copper and calcium.
You should consider the health benefits and cost of chikoo. Vitamin C in chikoo strengthens the intestinal lining and helps protect against many bacterial diseases. These are 14 benefits of chiku:
- Boosts Immunity
Chikoo contains a lot of vitamin C and antioxidants, which can help you develop your immune system. The chikoo polyphenols may be used to reduce the risk of disease and fight harmful poisons. It is also antiviral and antibacterial, protecting the body against dangerous germs and viruses.
- Aids Bowel Movements
Sapota is a bulk laxative because it contains high levels of fibre. Fibre-rich foods are better for digestion and regular bowel movements. The high fibre content helps with constipation and strengthens the colon, making it more resistant to infection. It regulates your digestive system and protects against IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), which is a very common condition in India.
- Keeps your bones strong
You may not need to take supplements if you eat the Chikoo regularly. It is rich in minerals like iron, folates and magnesium. You are also protected from muscle weakness, osteoporosis and weak joints.
- It’s good for the eyes
One chikoo per day can help you avoid going to the eye doctor for many years. Vitamin A found in it can help keep our eyes healthy. Vitamin A is also known to help develop visual sensory cells, which can improve your eyesight. It can also be used to treat long-term problems with the eye.
- Get rid of your constipation
The anti-parasitic and antibacterial properties of Chikoo’s chemical compound have been shown to help prevent congestion and persistent coughs. They also eliminate phlegm from the nose and respiratory tract. The Sapodilla (Chiku), fruits and blossoms can be used to treat symptoms like congestion, colds, and coughs.
- Prevents the occurrence of cancer
Chikoo has a high level of antioxidants, which have been proven to lower the risk of certain kinds of cancer. It contains a high amount of vitamins B and A, which help maintain the body’s mucus linings. This may reduce the risk of oral and pulmonary malignancies.
Chikoo also has a high level of dietary fiber, which helps regulate good bowel movements. This is vital in preventing the development of colon cancer. Chikoo is rich in vitamins A, B, and C as well as antioxidants. It has been shown to prevent certain cancers such as oral cavity and brain cancers.
- Energy Booster
The natural sucrose and fructose concentrations in Chikoo can give your body a lot of energy. It’s a ready-to use energy source. It can be eaten during exercise or if you have a long work day ahead of yourself, you can take a chikoo before you leave the house to get an extra boost. It delivers a quick blend of organic energy to your body. It is the best fruit for pregnant women and children to provide energy and improve their overall health.
- Anti-inflammatory properties
Because of its high level of tannin, Chikoo is an important anti-inflammatory agent. It helps improve the digestive system and prevent disorders such as enteritis, esophagitis, gastritis, and irritable bowel syndrome. It reduces pain and swelling, which helps to alleviate inflammation.
- Keep your blood pressure at a healthy level
Chikoo helps maintain blood pressure and circulation. The magnesium keeps blood vessels open and functioning. Because it is rich in iron, it can be used to treat anemia. Vitamin A slows down ageing by maintaining a healthy blood supply and a healthy heart.
- Healthy hair is possible with these products
Sapota seed oil is used to soften and moisturize hair. It is best for curly hair. It can also be used to treat skin conditions such as seborrheic-dermatitis. This oil encourages hair growth and helps promote healthy hair.
- Reducing the signs of ageing
The addition of chikoo to the diet can help prevent ageing’s visible and hidden effects. Vitamin A and other antioxidants can neutralize free radicals. High iron levels in the blood help prevent haemoglobin loss. Chiku is also helpful in maintaining healthy skin that is wrinkle-free.
- Haemostatic Properties
Sapota, a plant that can reduce blood loss, is well-known for its haemostatic properties. This plant helps to reduce bleeding in injuries and piles.
- Good for Mental Health
Sapota fruit’s sedative qualities help to ease stress and relax nerves. People who are suffering from depression, sleeplessness, anxiety, and/or insomnia should consider this fruit.
- The Skin Benefits of Chikoo
Regular consumption of Chikoo can help to remove toxins from your body and keep your skin healthy and moisturized. For even more amazing benefits, Chikoo should be eaten, not applied to your skin. It’s a joy food that promotes collagen production and decreases the formation deep wrinkles.
Chikoo for Weight Loss
Chiku is great for weight reduction and reducing abdominal fat. It regulates your digestive system and protects you from IBS (irritable bowel syndrome). Chiku also has dietary fibres that can help you feel fuller longer. Chiku also aids in weight loss by increasing metabolism.
Chikoo During Pregnancy
Chikoo is safe to consume while pregnant. However, chiku is also good for your baby and you. Because it contains many nutrients such as antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and healthy calories, it is a great food for pregnant women. It provides all the benefits mentioned above and prevents nausea thanks to electrolysis and carbohydrate.
How to Choose and Store Chikoo
The market has Chikoo all year. This fruit is best if it has reached maturity and is brown in color. To ensure it is mature, scrape the fruit.
Sapota should have smooth, unblemished skin that is free from any cuts, bruises or wrinkles. To mature unripe, mature Chikoos, they must be kept at room temperature for 7-10 days. Firm, ripe Chikoos can be kept in the refrigerator for a few days.
Sapodilla is safe and has few side effects. However, overconsumption might cause intestinal difficulties. Itchy tongue can be caused by Tannin, astringent found in raw Chikoo. People with diabetes may find Chikoos problematic because they are high in the glycemic Index.
If sapodilla is eaten in excess, it can cause irritation and inflammation of the throat. This can lead to breathing difficulties, especially for children. Chikoo seeds can also cause stomach pains and vomiting if they are eaten in excess.
Can we eat chikoo every day?
Chikoo is good for your mental and physical health. It is fine to eat one chikoo per day, but excessive consumption can lead to gastric problems.
When is chikoo best eaten?
Because fruits slow down digestion, they should be eaten between meals. Because of the fiber in fruits, sugar absorption is slowed down.
Are Chikoo’s sugar levels high?
Chikoo is high in glycemic, which makes it dangerous for those with diabetes. Chikoo is high in calories. Excessive consumption of chikoo should be avoided.
Can diabetics eat chikoo
Diabetics can eat all fruits as long as they have controlled their sugar levels. Grapes, mangoes, chikoo and chikoo have high glycemic levels and should be consumed in moderation.
Summarising the Chikoo Benefits
Chikoo can be used in smoothies, cakes and preserves. This fruit is especially important during winter. You can also add raw Chikoo to fruit salads after removing the seeds. It is best to consume it in small quantities to reap its benefits.