This fruit comes from the Malayan peninsula and is very popular in Southeast Asia, but is also famous in Latin America, the Caribbean and southern United States. When is ripe, has yellowish color with sweet and sour taste at the same time. Its taste is sort of combination of apple, pear, grape and citrus taste and some people love this kind of flavor combinations.
Of course, we are talking of carambola fruit, also known as star fruit because of its shape in cross-section.
This is a low calorie fruit, contains only 31 calories in 100g. It is very rich in antioxidants, vitamin C and B, lutein, folate, niacin, riboflavin and minerals such as calcium, manganese, potassium, zinc and iron.
Health benefits of carambola (star fruit)
Improves your sight
Carambola contains vitamin A, which contributes to perfect health of your eyes.
Improves sleep and fights insomnia
This fruit has high amounts of magnesium, which is essential for peaceful and healthy sleep. You should consume more carambola if you have trouble sleeping or suffering from insomnia.
It is good for the skin
Because rich in flavonoids, carambola can help you to get a healthier skin and prevents diseases such as atopic dermatitis and psoriasis. Carambola can also be very beneficial if you have acne problems, because of high amounts of zinc.
Carambola, as any other fruit is rich in fiber, and you all know how beneficial they are for your heart’s health. Fibers can help lowering the bad cholesterol, which is the main cause for clogged arteries, and at the same time increases the good cholesterol, HDL.
Beneficial for fetus developing
Because carambola contains folic acid, also known as vitamin B9, it can be very beneficial for pregnant women and their babies. This substance is essential during the first months of gestation, because it is very important for proper developing of the neural tube and baby’s brain. Also, eating this fruit after delivery is very beneficial because it aids in the formation of breast milk.
Because this fruit has low sugar content, diabetics can eat it without causing sugar spikes. But not only that. Fibers containing this fruit, will prevent fast glucose absorption from the gut, and thus blood sugar level will maintain constant during the day.
The carambola has a low amount of sodium, which is the main enemy of the blood pressure. This fruit not only has low sodium content, but contains a lot of potassium, and this mineral has one of the main roles in blood pressure regulation.
Because of high fiber amounts, carambola fruit can be an excellent choice for those who have digestive problems. The fibers clear the intestines and bound large amounts of water, thereby preventing constipation. Eating this fruit after heavy meals, can help in better digestion.
Strengthens the immune system
This fruit contains large amounts of vitamin C which contributes to super immune system, protecting us from viral diseases such as influenza, common colds, etc.
It has antimicrobial action
Studies have shown that carambola can successfully fight infections caused by E.coli, Klebsiella, Staphylococcus Aureus, Salmonella and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
Because carambola contains high amounts of oxalic acid and caramboxin, it can be harmful for people suffering from kidney diseases, kidney failure or those on kidney dialysis. If consumed, in these patients can cause nausea, vomiting or confusion.
Also, be cautious if you are taking any medications, especially statins, opiates or benzodiazepines. This fruit, like grapefruit contains substances which can interfere with these drugs.