An Apple a day keeps the doctor away. This old Welsh proverb, is familiar to most people .
Apples are highly nutritious and good for the body .One fruit, however, that is not so familiar is the sugar apple . This is a tropical fruit of the Annona ceca family. It has conical shape, measures and weigh. It has a think rind with knobby segment that easily desperate within (the fruit is) ripe. The inner flesh is light yellow to creamy white in colour tasty and has similar taste to that of custard which suggests why it is also known as custard apple .It is closely related to guyabano, but a lot more smaller in size without spikes. The fruit is granular in appearance, juicy, soft, sweet and has aromatic flavor .Sugar apple is one of the most important fruits among the long lists of medicinal and nutritive fruits which is rich in minerals and vitamins which is highly good for the body.
Sugar apple is an excellent source of vitamin B6 which is essential for preventing the accumulation of homocysteine in the blood. Studies reveal that retaining high amount of amino acid in the blood has a higher chance of causing stroke and coronary heart disease. The high amount of magnesium in sugar apple helps to disentangle the muscles of the heart there by reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke. Sugar apple contains a high amount of folate (folic acid), which is a super vital vitamin for pregnant women. Even women trying to conceive are highly recommend, including folate in their daily diets as this vitamin helps to prevent neural tube defects.
Lactating mothers are also encouraged to regularly eat sugar apple as it facilitates milk production. Sugar apple is an excellent source of thiamin which helps to convert sugar into energy.
Some benefit of sugar apple
Promotes Healthy Bones
Sugar apple contains a high amount of calcium and magnesium which are essential for promoting healthy bones, maintaining strong bones as well as increasing the bone density.
Controls the Cholesterol Level and Anti-cancer Properties
Sugar apple is an excellent source of niacin which is essential for controlling the bodies’ cholesterol level.
It also contains alkaloid , acetogenin that are effective for preventing the growth of tumor cells by reducing the risk of cancer. The bark contains tannins and astringents that have been proven effective for treating and inhibiting tumor cells and cancer.
Treatment of Toothache
Sugar apple rinds have been proven effective against toothache. Grind the rinds, mix with water and then apply on the affected tooth to ease pain. Prevents Anemia. It is an excellent source of iron which is essential for preventing and treating anemia.
Promotes Healthy Eyesight and Digestion
Sugar apple is a rich source of vitamin C and riboflavin which helps to prevent certain eye problems such as macular degeneration, poor vision, night blindness as well as maintains good vision. It helps the digestive systems to easily digest food due to its high constituent of dietary fiber. The fruit also helps to get rid of unwanted toxins from the intestines thereby aiding easy bowel movement. It also helps to reduce the risk of constipation, gastritis, heartburn, ulcer and stomach pain.
Treatment of Infections and Detoxifying Properties
Sugar apple can be used for treating skin infections and diseases such as psoriasis, boils, eczema, abscesses due to its constituent of vitamin C. Leaves decoction of sugar apple can also be used to treating individuals suffering from infections such as cold, fever and dysentery as well as packed with antioxidants and soluble fiber which makes the fruit a perfect laxative. Studies reveal that regular intake of sugar apple is essential for eradicating unwanted toxins from the body thereby making the body to remain healthier and stronger.
Ideal for Menstruating Women and Healing of Wounds
Sugar apple leaves can be decocted and taken by menstruating women to boost blood flow. The essential minerals and nutrients such as iron, copper etc present in the fruit are equally essential for menstruating women in order to replenish lost minerals and nutrients to their bodies. Sugar apple leaves can be squeezed and applied to wounds to aid healing and to prevent germs and worms from infesting the wound. The juice of an unripe sugar apple can be applied on the skin to treat insect bites and stings.
Culinary Purposes and Healthy Weight Gain
Sugar apple is a very sweet fruit that can be eaten fresh or used for preparing other dishes such as beverages, ice cream, custard apple powder, drinks, confectionery and dessert. Sugar apple is such a fruit that is packed with healthy calories and it’s sugary content helps to boost the body’s metabolic process thereby increasing one’s appetite. In a nutshell, individuals aiming to add healthy weight can use it since it good for the body.
By Mavis Adoko
A GIJ STUDENT