Lanzones or Lansium Paraciticum is an edible fruit found in southern parts of India apart from Thailand, Cambodia, and Malaysia where they are grown abundantly. The fruits grow in clusters and it is a pleasant sight to see yellow or pale brown bunches of fruits hanging from the trees.
These fruits are very nutritious and eating these fruits make a healthy treat. It is an oval shaped fruit with translucent white, very juicy pulp inside. They are somewhat sour and slightly bitter but good to taste. They are eaten raw as well as cooked. One can get them candied or canned in syrup in supermarkets. Lanzones contain vitamin A, also known as carotene a powerful antioxidant. Vitamin A is a fat- soluble vitamin that plays a fundamental role in maintaining healthy skin, teeth, soft and skeletal tissue and mucous membranes. Vitamin A also functions as an eye pigment basically at night or low light situations.
Lanzones contain Vitamin C for good immune system and Vitamin E for cell regeneration and healthy skin.
They contain B vitamins and are especially good source of riboflavin. B vitamins help with the processing of carbohydrates into usable energy and help keep the nervous system function properly. Riboflavin being a water soluble vitamin needs to be consumed on daily basis because the human body can’t store it.
Lanzones are good source of natural antioxidants. In addition to containing vitamin A they also contain polyphenols another natural antioxidant. It is found in a study that Lanzones are found to have antioxidant capabilities similar to other tropical fruits such as bananas and papayas. Antioxidants in foods help our body breakdown damaging free radicals, which are known to increase the rate of aging and cause disease.
Lanzones flesh is a good source of fructose and sucrose that helps in replenishing the body with water and energy.
Lanzones contains vitamin B1, Thiamin is used for breaking down sugar and for treating several nerve conditions. So there is no build up of blood sugar in eating Lanzones.
The fibre in Lanzones is especially helpful for diabetic. Fibre basically helps keep the stomach full thereby reducing the appetite and helping diabetics reduce food intake.
Apart from nutritional value Lanzones help treat diarrhea. They help cool the body because of its moisture content which is perfect for summer.
The resin from the bark of the tree was prescribed for flatulence and for swellings as an antispasmodic. The resin may also be useful in the treatment of inflammation and colic of the gastro- intestinal tract.
The seeds are processed and are useful in de-worming kids and even adults.
The smoke of the dried peel of Lanzones can drive away mosquitoes.
It is good to choose fresh Lanzones over the candied or canned ones to reduce the added sugar you consume. Peel Lanzones before you eat them. Some Lanzones known as wild Lanzones excrete milky latex when they are peeled. In this case dip them into boiling water to reduce the gumminess of the fruit before eating. If the flesh of the Lanzones adheres to the seed it may have bitter taste.
by Nibhanapudi Suguna