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15 Interesting Benefits Of Tamarillo For Health, Hair & Skin

The name tamarillo may trick you into thinking that it is related to the sour-sweet tamarind. A close look-alike of tomatoes, tamarillos are a type of sweet fruit that is commonly termed as tree tomatoes [1] . The egg-shaped fruit is widely used in the preparation of compotes to chutneys. A storehouse of vitamins, antioxidants, minerals and phytochemicals, it is no surprise that the fruit is beneficial to your body in a myriad of ways.

Tamarillo is antioxidant, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antifungal, antibacterial and hypoglycaemic in nature [2] . However, the properties of the sweet-tangy fruit are not limited to the aforementioned. In a way, it is surprising to see that a fruit so small in size could embody a profusion of health benefits.

The flesh of the fruit is consumed as it is, and has a variety of culinary uses. Although not toxic, the skin of tamarillo is not consumed due to the bitter taste it has. The high pectin [3] content in the fruit makes it purposive in the preparation of preserves. One of the major benefits pertaining to the fruit is its ability to promote weight loss [4] . So, read on to know more about the benefits offered by the fruit so that you can waste no time to add it to your daily diet, be it to lose weight or to rejuvenate your cells.

Nutritional Value Of Tamarillo

100 grams of tamarillos have 31 calories of energy. They also contain traces of total fat amounting to 0.36 grams, 0.271 milligrams niacin, 0.198 milligrams pyridoxine, 0.043 milligrams thiamine, 0.051 milligrams copper, 0.57 milligrams iron, 0.1 micrograms selenium and 0.15 milligrams zinc.

The remaining nutrients are [5]

  • 3.8 grams carbohydrates
  • 2 grams protein
  • 3.3 grams dietary fibre
  • 4 micrograms folates
  • 189.17 micrograms vitamin A
  • 29.8 milligrams vitamin C
  • 2.09 milligrams vitamin E
  • 1.44 milligrams sodium
  • 321 milligrams potassium
  • 10.7 milligrams calcium
  • 20.6 milligrams magnesium
  • 114 micrograms manganese
  • 38.9 milligrams phosphorus

Health Benefits Of Tamarillo

By now you are marginally aware of the amazing advantages offered by the tomato look-alike for your body and mind. Continue reading to get a clearer and meticulous idea about tamarillo and the benefits of consuming it.

1. Aids in weight loss

As tamarillo has very low-calorie content along with high fibre, the fruit is extremely beneficial, if you are looking forward to losing weight [6] . Your body's need to consume sugary substances can be fulfilled by the fruit due to its sweet flavour. Likewise, the high water content in the fruit will keep you feeling full, thereby, reducing the need to snack constantly. Consume it in the form of juice or just eat it as it is and watch its acidic properties cut down fat cells in your body [7] .

2. Treats diabetes

Fibre is beneficial in regulating the sugar levels in your blood. Tamarillo maintains the bloodstream sugar levels, thereby helping your body from diabetes [8] . The low glycemic index of the fruit does not increase the sugar levels in your blood and is beneficial for type 2 diabetes. The antioxidants in the fruit help by reducing the oxidative stress in the liver and pancreas. Further, the chlorogenic acid [9] aids in promoting insulin sensitivity and limiting the onset of diabetes.

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3. Improves heart health

The soluble fibre, starch, protein, anthocyanins and carotenoids in the fruit can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases[6] . High sodium levels in your body are one of the prime causes leading towards heart diseases, which is balanced by the potassium [9] present in the fruit. Likewise, the magnesium in tamarillo regulates the proper functioning of the cardiovascular system. The fibre content in the fruit is effective in treating the bad cholesterol in your body because the nutrient restrains the absorption of the LDL cholesterol [10] [11] .

4. Manages blood pressure

The mineral and potassium content in tamarillo help in reducing the high levels of blood pressure in your body. Also, the carotenoids [12] in the fruit aids in lowering the risk of coronary heart diseases, that are linked to high levels of blood pressure. Incorporating the fruit into your daily diet in a controlled manner can help you get rid of systolic blood pressure [13] .

5. Promotes longevity

Various studies have been conducted to assess the role played by vitamin C in aiding a longer life. It has been proven to increase life span, which can be pointed out in the study which focused on Werner syndrome [14] (a syndrome causing premature ageing). The application of vitamin C [15] limited the onset of the condition. As the fruit has a high content of vitamin C, it has been pointed out to have a possible impact in promoting longevity [16] .

6. Fights cancer

The antioxidant property possessed by the fruit helps in fighting the free radical cells that cause cancer [17] . The anthocyanins in tamarillo are highly potent antioxidants that will protect your body from damage caused by the oxidative stress. The impact antioxidants have in fighting cancerous cells have been proven by various scientific studies [18] . Therefore, it has been pointed out that the variety of antioxidants such as flavonoids, polyphenols, chlorogenic compounds etc., in the fruit may prevent the onset of cancer, especially of the breast and colon. The anti-inflammatory properties also contribute to this function [19] .

7. Improves metabolism

Foods that are enriched with vitamins and minerals are extremely beneficial for improving the functioning of your body. A well-functioning healthy body is the result of good metabolic activity in the body. The vitamin B6 present in the fruit aids in the production of energy [20] . It helps to convert the calories into useful energy, thereby limiting excessive weight gain as well. The vitamin also contributes towards improving the metabolism of haemoglobin present in your body, easing the transportation of blood. Tamarillo is effective in combating obesity [21] .

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8. Treats tonsillitis

Although tamarillo has a plethora of uses, its impact on curing the inflammation caused in the lymph nodes have been studied extensively. Therefore, it is considered to be one of the prime benefits offered by the fruit. The anti-inflammatory property of the fruit helps in reducing the size of the swelling in the tonsils by killing the bacteria that causes the infection [22] .

9. Improves eyesight

Being a powerhouse of carotenoids and vitamin A, the fruit aids in bettering your vision [23] . Tamarillo is beneficial for your eye health because the nutrients help protect your eye from internal as well as external damages. Regular and controlled consumption of the fruit helps in delaying the development of age-related vision problems such as macular degeneration and cataracts [24] . The beta-carotene in tamarillo is also linked with improved eye health.

10. Boosts immune system

Vitamin C is known for the antioxidant properties it possesses, which is beneficial in treating various ailments[25] . And tamarillo is a good source of the vitamin, assessing that its regular consumption will help your body treat and limit the external as well as internal damages. This helps in strengthening your body and thereby fighting off the elements [26] that can damage your body. However, over-consumption of the fruit will not provide you with a stronger immune system, therefore, it is essential to always consume the fruit in controlled portions [27] .

11. Prevents anaemia

The rich content of iron in tamarillo is increasingly beneficial for curing anaemia[28] . The mineral contributes toward this function by regulating and promoting the production of red blood cells, which effectuates the production of blood in your body. As consuming tamarillo will contribute towards the necessary production of red blood cells, it helps your body overcome the anaemic condition. Tamarillo also helps in fighting off the associated signs such as fatigue, weakness and dizziness [29] .

12. Improves digestive system

The high fibre content in tamarillo is to be thanked for promoting better digestion. Regular consumption of the fruit helps in treating-digestion related issues [30] such as bloating, gas trouble and diarrhoea. Tamarillo also aids in the proper absorption of nutrients, and relieving constipation. It helps promote the growth of the good bacteria [31] in your gut, thereby promoting better digestion and bowel movement.

13. Elevates cognitive function

The presence of anticholinesterase [32] in tamarillo plays a major role in improving your brain functions. This helps in the regulation (breaking down) of acetylcholine, a chemical that acts as the messenger to the brain. Packed with plenty of phytochemicals, tamarillo is beneficial in protecting the brain cells, thereby promoting a healthy nerve function. This property of the fruit can be used in the treatment of cognitive or neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease [33] . The antioxidant property of the fruit is also beneficial in boosting brain health.

14. Improves skin quality

As aforementioned, the fruit tamarillo is tightly packed with vitamin A, C and E which are all equally beneficial in improving the quality of your skin [34] . Likewise, the anthocyanin, phenols and flavonoids present in the fruit act as a protective shield against external pollutants. It also protects your skin from oxidative stress that can cause wrinkles, blemishes, acne and pimples. Being an antioxidant, there is no doubt that the fruit is beneficial against early signs of ageing. It also helps in detoxifying your skin, as well as rejuvenate the cells in your body. Consuming the tomato look-alike will amazingly benefit your skin and help maintain its glow and shine [35] .

15. Improves hair health

Tamarillo, as a whole, has a pivotal role in the arena of cosmetic health. That is, it is extremely beneficial not only for improving the health of your skin but also hair and nails. The polyunsaturated linoleic acid in the fruit is effective in treating dandruff, hair loss, eczema and psoriasis. The essential fatty acids strengthen your hair from its root by rejuvenating your scalp and strengthens your nails, so as to avoid the growth of brittle nails [36] .

Healthy Tamarillo Recipes

1. Tamarillo - apple juice

Ingredients[37]

  • 1½ cups tamarillos, peeled and chopped
  • 1 cup apple juice
  • ½ lemon, freshly juiced
  • 5 ice cubes

Directions

  • In a blender, add the tamarillos, lemon juice and apple juice.
  • Add the ice cubes.
  • Blend until it becomes smooth.

2. Spring tamarillo salad recipe

Ingredients

  • 9 tamarillos, peeled and chopped
  • 2 red onions, diced
  • 7 celery sticks, sliced
  • ½ a red cabbage, sliced
  • 3 spring onions, sliced
  • a handful of Italian parsley

For dressing

  • ¼ tbsp flavourless oil
  • 3 - 4 tbsp honey
  • salt and pepper for taste

Directions

  • Add the salad ingredients together in a bowl and toss gently.
  • Whisk the dressing ingredients.
  • Add the dressing to the salad bowl and gently toss.
  • Garnish with the parsley.

3. Bread roll with tamarillo and brie

Ingredients

  • 1 tamarillo
  • 1 wholemeal bread roll
  • 4 slices brie
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 15 g pine nuts
  • a little bit of rocket lettuce

Directions

  • Remove the peel of the tamarillo and cut it into pieces.
  • Roast the pine nuts till it becomes golden brown.
  • Cut the bread roll lengthwise.
  • First, place the rocket lettuce on it, then put the sliced tamarillo and a slice of brie.
  • You can make 2-3 layers of this.
  • Pour the honey on the top and sprinkle with pine nuts.

Precautions

  • Individuals allergic to tomatoes should not consume the fruit as it can cause respiratory problems and allergic reactions.
  • Avoid the fruit during pregnancy because it may react with certain medications consumed during and after the period.
  • Excessive and uncontrolled consumption of tamarillo can be harmful to the kidney due to the high levels of potassium found in the fruit.

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