WHAT IS IT?
Prune is a dried plum, typically the European variety of plum. The fruit was being associated with wrinkle, old age and sluggish gastrointestinal tract and its other health benefits got overshadowed, To give this fruit its rightful place, FDA officially changed the name from “prunes” to “dried plums” in 2001—- interesting fact isn’t it?
Prunes are nutrient dense fruit. The nutrient richness goes beyond merely helping you stay regular. Prunes are sources of many health promoting compound
CALORIES: Prunes have about 240 calories per 100 grams (67 calories per 1 ounce).
MACRONUTRIENTS: Prunes are rich in carbohydrates. They are also an excellent source of dietary fiber (6.1 grams per 100 grams). Prunes contain very little protein and hardly any fat.
VITAMINS: Good source of vitamin A and vitamin K. Also decent source of B Vitamins and Vitamin C
MINERALS AND TRACE ELEMENTS: Prunes are a good source of potassium, copper, boron and magnesium. Decent source of iron, manganese, phosphorous and zinc
RICH IN CARBS? HOW GOOD CAN THAT BE? GLYCEMIC INDEX
Although rich in simple sugars, prunes do not cause a rapid rise in blood sugar levels, possibly because of their high fiber, fructose, and sorbitol content. Therefore, prunes have a low GI rating of 29. The Glycemic Load (GL) of prunes is 9.57 (low).
1. Helps you remain regular as well as keeps you full for a long period of time, prevent overeating and weight gain.
2. Though relatively high in calories for their size, prunes have a reputation as a dieter’s friend. They add a powerful dose of fiber and some nutrients to your diet that areneeded when you follow a lower-calorie meal plan
LOWERS BLOOD GLUCOSE AND CHOLESTEROL
1. Prunes’ soluble fiber helps normalize blood sugar levels by slowing the rate at which food leaves the stomach and by delaying the absorption of glucose
2. A study published in the Archives of Internal Medicineconfirms that eating high fiber foods, such as prunes, helps prevent heart disease.
3. The intake of dietary fiber helps reducing the levels of LDL cholesterol in the body.
One of the major health benefits of prunes is its ability to prevent anemia. Prunes are good source of iron which can be used as a natural remedy for treating anemia.
A clinical study conducted at Florida State University (FSU) and published in Aging Research Review suggests that dried plums may be able to reverse osteoporosis in post-menopausal women. These health benefits of prunes may be linked to their high concentration of the trace element boron which is postulated to play a role in prevention of osteoporosis and osteopenia. A single serving of prunes (100 grams) fulfills the daily requirement for boron. Also the potassium found in prunes may help support bone health.
REGULARITY-LAXATIVE / REDUCE RISK OF COLON CANCER
In addition to providing bulk ( 100 gm of prunes = 6.1g fiber) and decreasing the transit time of fecal matter, thus decreasing the risk of colon cancer and hemorrhoids, prunes’ insoluble fiber also provides food for the “friendly” bacteria in the large intestine. In addition, prunes and prune juice contain sorbitol (14.7 and 6.1 grams per 100 grams, respectively). Sorbitol a mild colonic stimulant that helps reduce the transit time of stool and consequently the risk of constipation, colorectal cancer and hemorrhoids.
A study conducted by researchers from Tufts University in Boston ranked prunes, or dried plums, as #1 food in terms of antioxidant capacity, the researchers found that prunes had more than twice the antioxidant capacity of other high ranking foods such as blueberries and raisins.
HOW TO ENJOY THIS FRUIT:
1. Eat them dry
2.soak / stew them in hot water for few minutes to enjoy them soft.
I soak them overnight and eat them first thing in the morning J
So don’t just think of prunes as an antidote for constipation. They help weight loss by keeping hunger at bay and potential inches off your waist 🙂