Karonda fruit, also called Black Currant or Christ’s thorn and scientifically termed Carissa carandas, is a traditional summer produce in India, that is widely utilised in making pickles, jams and preserves. This succulent bounty also confers immense health benefits, such as preventing heart disease, relieving digestive trouble and curing fevers. Locally, it is called “Vaakkai” in Telugu, “Kauli Hannu” in Kannada, “Kilakkai” in Tamil and “Koromcha” in Bengali.
Karonda is an evergreen deciduous shrub, that is believed to have originated in the Himalayas, thus making it an indigenous crop. It is extensively cultivated in the Northern mountains and the Western Ghats in India, as well as in Nepal, Sri Lanka and other South-East Asian countries.
The karonda plant grows up to a height of 2 to 4 m, with a thick grey bark holding branches that contain sharp spines, hence giving it the name of Christ’s thorn. The leaves are oblong and conical in shape, green-brown in colour, from which bloom small white flowers. Upon developing, the unripe karonda fruit, a berry, is globular in shape with tiny seeds within, occurring in clusters of 3 to 10 fruits. The unripe fruits have a tart, sour taste, being greenish-white in colour and once ripened, turn dark red or purple, secreting a tasty liquid content inside with a delicious sweet flavour.
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The nutritional profile of the karonda plant is quite impressive, being rich in vitamin C, the B vitamins and iron, thus effectively flushing out free radicals and rectifying anaemia. Moreover, the karonda fruit is bestowed with myriad antioxidants, such as flavonoids, alkaloids, tannins, carissone and triterpenoids, which offer significant advantages like anti-inflammatory, antipyretic, cardiotonic and analgesic traits. Read on, to gain further insight into the marvelous wellness incentives of the karonda fruit.
Superb Merits Of Adding Karonda Fruit To The Diet, For Overall Health:
Alleviates Abdominal Pain
Rich in fibre, the fruit is extremely beneficial for treating abdominal problems. Dried fruit powder can be mixed with water and consumed to ease the stomach tissues and help eliminate indigestion, gas, and bloating. Also Read: Bloating: Try These Kitchen Wonders To Soothe Bloated Tummy
The presence of pectin in the fruit makes it beneficial for improving digestion. The soluble fibre improves the functioning of digestive system, thereby improving appetite as well and curbing untimely cravings.
With an ample amount of vitamin C present in the fruit, karonda has been used since ages for treating fever. Being rich in antioxidants, the tasty fruit helps in bringing down the fever by fighting off the infections. Consuming ripe or dried fruit vastly helps to manage fevers.
Improves Mental Health
Regular consumption of karonda fruit is asserted to be beneficial for improving one's mental health. The presence of magnesium along with the vitamins and tryptophan help stimulate the production of the neurotransmitter - serotonin - which works towards bettering overall mental well-being.
Strengthens Cardiac Muscles
Drinking the juice of karonda fruit is extremely beneficial for cardiac health. Consume a glass of the fruit juice two or three times a week, to strengthen cardiac muscles, lower the risk of heart diseases like heart attack and hypertension as well as ensure optimal blood circulation to all organs in the body. Also Check Out: 5 Incredible Nuts To Boost Your Heart Health - Infographic
According to numerous scientific studies, karonda fruit can help reduce and treat inflammation. Being anti-inflammatory in nature, consuming the fruit can help suppress the formation of the toxic agents in the body.