Monday, April 12, 2010

Jujube

Green. Egg-shaped. Apple-Wax Apple [=Jambu air] combo taste. Ubiquitous [in Taiwan].  

Glad that i can finally find this fruit's name :). It's called JUJUBE [in English] and zǎozi [棗子] [in Chinese]. Check out this fruit facts [+ my in-red-comments :D] :


Common name: Jujube
Botanical name: Ziziphus jujuba
Family: Rhamnaceae
Origin: China
Avg. Height X Width: 10’ X 10’
Varieties: Green Thornless
Season: December-March

Having the texture and flavor of an apple the jujube are often referred to as manzana or manzanita meaning apple or little apple. It is an important commercial fruit crop in Thailand, Vietnam, and India, and it is grown on smaller scales throughout Malaysia and Australia. The trees are bush-like with a weeping habit, and they will bear fruit at just two to three years of age. Jujubes are known to be extremely prolific producers.

[Source : http://www.tropicalfruitnursery.com]
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Nutrition
# According to a study published in Volume 103 Issue 2 of the journal, Food Chemistry, jujube contains the potassium, phosphorus, manganese and calcium as the major minerals. There are also high amounts of sodium, zinc, iron and copper. Jujube also contains vitamin c, riboflavin and thiamine. It contains 20 times the amount of vitamin C as citrus fruits. The vitamin and mineral content of the fruit helps to soothe the stomach, ease sore throats, suppress the appetite [*wow..nice :p], support cardiovascular health, enhance metabolism and cleanse the blood vessels.

Amino Acids
# The body requires 24 amino acids to function, and the jujube fruit contains 18 of the 24. [*flabbergasted. sugoiiii...] Amino acids help with the maintenance and formation of the bones, skin, muscle, bloods, hormones, neurotransmitters and enzymes in the body. They are also essential to the building of more that 50,000 proteins made by the human body. Amino acids assist the body in healing wounds and diseases.

Liver
# A study was published in the April 21 2009 issue of the Journal of Ethnopharmacology in which the protective effects of jujube fruit on the liver were investigated. It was found that the fruit protected the liver against injury in mice. It also helped to eliminate oxidative stress in the liver [*awesome, eh? this one should be studied even deeper]. Oxidative stress is when free radicals form in the body and interact with cells. Free radicals can lead to many diseases.

Cancer
# The water extract of jujube fruit was studied by the Vaccine and Serum Research Institute in Iran. In the study, which was published in the February 2008 issue of Cytotechnology, it was found that this extract inhibited tumor cells [*i never thought this fruit is very powerful], and may have useful compounds for medicinal use. It was especially useful against Jurkat leukemic cells, which are related to leukemia.

[Source : http://www.ehow.com/about_5336695_health-benefits-jujube-fruit.html]
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P.S : I was just remembered that my mother planted this jujube tree at our backyard. My father called the fruit "apel india" :)). But the one that my mom's planted was mini-jujube. It's oval-shaped, date-sized, yellow, and...tantalizing :D.

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