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Durian: The King of Fruits

By Paul Rothbart

It is well-known that fruits are a healthy part of any diet. There are a large variety of common fruits available at the local supermarket. For those who are adventurous, there are many exotic fruits. Some of them are harder to find, but worth the search. Durian is very popular in Southeast Asia where it is known as the king of fruits. Durian is a large fruit with spiky skin. Its seeds are large and the flesh has a creamy texture. Perhaps the most well-known aspect of durian is its pungent smell. Some people have described it as "trashy". If you can get past the odor, you will discover a tasty fruit that can be used in juices, desserts, or even soups. Durian also contains more nutrition than many common fruits. 

Nutrition

Durian is nutrition-dense and very good for you. One cup contains 80 percent of the recommended daily allowance of Vitamin C, one of the most important nutrients and antioxidants. It also contains B vitamins with 61 percent of the thiamine and 13 percent of niacin. Durian has significant amounts of Vitamin B6, manganese, copper, folate, and potassium. It also contains magnesium and riboflavin as well as some protein and fiber.  Durian is loaded with antioxidant plant compounds including flavonoids, polyphenols, and anthocyanins.

Health Benefits

With all that nutrition you might suspect that durian has some health benefits. You'd be correct. The Vitamin C and plant compounds in durian help fight infections and illness as well as reduce the risk of cancer. Research has found that durian can prevent the spread of breast cancer cells. The plant compounds can also help to lower cholesterol, prevent hardening of the arteries, and reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke. Durian has one of the lowest glycemic indexes of any tropical fruit. That can help to lower blood sugar and prevent type 2 diabetes.

Be Careful With Alcohol

Drinking alcohol while eating durian can cause problems. Scientists theorize that certain compounds in durian which are sulfur-like may prevent the body's enzymes from breaking down alcohol. This can raise the alcohol level of the blood. As a result, you may have heart palpitations and experience nausea. The safest thing is to not drink when consuming durian.

If you enjoy exotic, tropical fruits, consider giving durian a try. Once you get past the odor, you may find it very tasty. Cooked or raw, in sweet or savory dishes, you might find a new favorite. With its nutrition density, durian can also make you more healthy.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Goodlettsville, Tenn.

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