Last Updated on September 18, 2021 by Dr Sharon Baisil MD
Star Apple is a fruit that has been used by ancient cultures for centuries.
The other names of star apple are milk fruit, cainito, golden leaf tree, caimito, aguay and abiaba. The scientific name of the star apple is Chrysophyllum Cainito.
This article will discuss 7 star apple health benefits and 2 dangerous side effects to help readers make an informed decision about their diet.
7 Health benefits of eating star apple
All this while we praised the star apple for its numerous benefiting qualities and rich nutritional profile, but what are the actual advantages it has on health? Let us find out.
1. Star apple prevents anemia
Star apple contains a flavonoid called quercetin which is responsible for the star-shaped cells in star fruit. It contains more vitamin C than oranges and lemons. This improves our body’s ability to absorb iron from food consumed. Vitamin c enhances hemoglobin production by stimulating bone marrow and red blood cells.
People with anemia can benefit from star apple’s nutritional contents that will help to build red blood cells and prevent the condition, which is the lack of healthy red blood cells in our body.
2. Star apple has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties
Star apples are good for you because they have powerful antioxidants in them. They act as an antibiotic and antibacterial. It reduces the risk of infections in our body, potentially reducing colds or flu that can last for long periods of time if left untreated.
3. Help in relieving constipation
The star fruit is also high in fiber, like pectin, which has been shown to assist with constipation.
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Fiber helps to bulk up the stool and make it easier for you to have a bowel movement. Star apple also aids in the proper functioning of your digestive system.
This can help people suffering from some type of bowel disorder, even irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
The leaves of the golden leaf tree may be used to treat indigestion and diarrhea.
4. It has anti-inflammatory action
Star apple benefits your body by reducing joint pain and swelling from arthritis or tendonitis due to its anti-inflammatory properties.
Clinical trials have shown star apple can be used as an anti-inflammatory agent due to its star fruit contains compounds like gallic acid and pyrogallic acid that are effective in inhibiting pro-inflammatory enzymes found in our body called COX-I/COX II enzymes.
People suffering from inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis can benefit immensely from star apples as part of their daily diet plan.
5. Helps in the treatment of respiratory problems
The star fruit reduces phlegm production in bronchial tubes by thinning mucus secretions. This is how star apple helps in treating respiratory conditions like asthma and bronchitis.
The star apple has also been used to treat colds, coughs, sore throats, or tonsillitis, when made into a tea with crushed leaves of the purple star apple, added to it.
It also contains antiviral compounds that can help fight the flu or common cold by boosting immune system function and reducing inflammation in our body’s airways, which will make it hard for a virus to thrive.
People with asthma can benefit from star apple’s antiviral properties that have been shown in studies to reduce the frequency of acute attacks, as well as reducing inflammation and mucus secretion.
6. Reduces cholesterol levels due to its high fiber content
Star apple has a high amount of dietary fiber for regulating bowel movements, which can help in treating constipation.
A regular size star apple contains about 50 grams of fiber.
The fiber in star apple can help lower blood cholesterol levels by binding to bile acids in your digestive tract. It will help in reducing the risk of heart attack, stroke, and other cardiovascular diseases by lowering blood pressure.
In fact, star apples have been found to contain the highest amount of pectin among any other fruit or vegetable tested so far.
People with high cholesterol or diabetes should consider star apple as part of their daily diet to lower LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels while raising HDL (“good”) cholesterol levels at the same time.
7. Bone strengthening properties due to high calcium and phosphorus content
Star apple is a good source of minerals like calcium, magnesium, potassium, manganese.
Calcium helps maintain bone health by strengthening bones during their formation in children as well as preventing osteoporosis or brittle bones that occur later on in life. Star apples also contain the trace mineral boron.
Boron is important in maintaining proper levels of calcium and phosphorus in the body, which are necessary for preserving bone health throughout one’s life span.
People who grow up eating star apple or star fruit would be less likely to develop osteoporosis during their senior years due to strong bones all through childhood and adolescence.
In summary, the star apple health benefits are achieved through the nutrients it contains, like calcium for strong bones and teeth, iron to prevent anemia or low red blood cell count due to lack of oxygen in tissues (a condition called hypoxia), phosphorus for bone formation during childhood, as well as vitamin C that keeps your immune system healthy.
What is the Glycemic Index of the Star Apple?
The glycemic index of Star Apple is just 28. This comes in the Low Glycemic Index category and will not spike blood glucose levels.
Measuring the healthiness of any food item becomes easier with knowing the Glycemic Index of that food. The glycemic index is a measure of the carbohydrate content in a food and its eventual impact on the body.
This method is more useful for diabetics, as they have to keep a constant eye on what they are eating and how it will affect their health.
The glycemic index of any food is measured on a scale of 0 to 100. It is then classified into three different categories based on their carb-content readings.
The following is a table representing the three glycemic index groups and their ranges:
|Glycemic Index categories
|Glycemic Index ranges
|Low Glycemic Index (safe for diabetics)
|0 to 55
|Medium Glycemic Index (safe when taken in controlled quantities)
|55 to 69
|High Glycemic Index (unsafe for diabetics)
|From 70 and above
With the table’s help given above, one can easily find out what safe or unsafe category one food belongs to.
Now, let us move on to learn about the nutritional composition of this fruit.
What are the nutritional values of Star Apple?
Like every fruit, the star apple also has some other benefits to the body due to its nutritional contents.
The nutrients are the building blocks of any food that constitute the impact on the body. We already discussed that the star apple is rich in antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins, which assist in the body’s overall health and wellness.
Let us have a look at what these nutrients of the star apple are and their quantities available. This table represents the types and quantities of nutrients found in 100 grams of star apple.
|Nutrients found in 100 g of star apple
|Riboflavin (vitamin B2)
|Thiamine (vitamin B1)
|Niacin (vitamin B3)
|Ascorbic acid (vitamin C)
It also has notable amounts of minerals such as copper, folate, magnesium, potassium, etc. These are crucial minerals for the body that enable and enhance better functioning of the body.
All in all, these several nutrients nourish the body in numerous ways and have many benefits too. Let us have a detailed look at what the benefits of eating star apples are.
What are the side effects of eating too much star apple?
Alongside the many benefits, one also needs to take into consideration the dangerous side effects of this fruit.
- Too much star fruit can lead to neurological issues and disorders. It must be eaten in limited amounts.
- It can also inflame kidney damage in individuals with already existing kidney issues.
It is important to know your body and its limits and accordingly administering to it.
Frequently Asked Questions about Star Apple
What are the benefits of star apple leaves?
Answer: A tea made from the star apple leaves can treat diarrhea, hypertension, and diabetes. The star apple plant contains Citrus aurantium that is also known as bergamot which has many therapeutic properties for systems that are affected by depression. It’s believed to inhibit inflammatory cytokines like Interleukin 6 (IL-6) and Tumor Necrosis Factor (TNF).
What vitamins are in star apple?
Answer: There is a spectacular variety of nutrients in star apple – these include Vitamin A, Vitamin B-2, Vitamin B-3, and more. Particularly notable are the healthy doses of vitamin C (14% Daily Value), niacinamide (8% Daily Value), and iron (6% Daily Value). Star apples also offer a good source for vitamin E (4%) and provide an excellent daily intake of dietary fiber; 14 grams per cup! The fruit has significant potassium content as well.
Is Star apple good for high blood pressure?
Answer: Yes, the Star Apple is high in potassium, and has been widely researched for its ability to help with reducing hypertension.
A pectin-rich diet, such as Star Apples or citrus fruit supplements, can reduce blood pressure mildly through their ability to bind sodium in the gut and prevent absorption from the gut into circulation. This binding reduces sodium levels in your body thus lowering your blood pressure.
Is Star apple good for acid reflux?
Answer: Yes, star apple is good for acid reflux. Star apple contains calcium, potassium and magnesium which can relieve symptoms of acid reflux because these minerals help combat the effects of excess stomach acid. They help to regulate the digestive process and prevent things such as abdominal cramps.
What star fruit looks like?
Answer: Star fruits are bright yellow or golden orange in color, shaped somewhat like a star with five to ten pointed lobes. The flesh is juicy and translucent. It contains numerous small seeds that look like white grains of sand surrounded by pulp.
Is star apple good for diabetics?
Answer: Yes, star apple is good for diabetics. Star apples contain a healthy amount of fiber and sugar which help with the digestive system as well as keeping blood sugar levels low. It has a low glycemic index of 28 , which means it can help control blood sugar levels by slowing the rate at which star fruit is broken down into glucose.
Is star apple good for weight loss?
Answer: Yes, star apple is good for weight loss. Star apples are low in fat and calories but high in water content, fiber, vitamins, and minerals – making them a healthy alternative to star fruit.
Is star apple good for skin?
Answer: Yes, the star apple is good for your skin. Star apples are high in vitamins A and C which help protect the body from infections as well as promoting healing of wounds and preventing acne breakouts on your face or other parts of your body where blemishes might appear.
Is Star apple good for dogs?
Answer: No, Star apple is not safe for dogs. It can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and respiratory failure among other dangerous symptoms in dogs if taken in larger quantities.