Figs are a unique teardrop-like fruit. It is filled with hundreds of Small Seeds, has an edible purple or green peel. The flesh of the fig fruit is pink in color and has a light sweet taste. The scientific name of the fig is Ficus carica.
Fig – leaves – full of nutrients and a variety of potential health benefits. It promotes healthy digestion, reduces the risk of heart disease, and helps you control blood sugar levels.
This article reviews figs, the nutritional value and benefits of figs, as well as how to add it to your diet.
Nutritional value of figs
Fresh figs are rich in nutrients while relatively low in calories, which makes it a wonderful addition to a healthy diet.
Small fresh figs (40 grams) contain:
Carbohydrates: 8 grams
Copper: 3% of the daily value
Magnesium: 2% of the daily value
Potassium: 2% of the daily value
Riboflavin: 2% of the daily value
Thiamine: 2% of the daily value
Vitamin B6: 3% of the daily value
Vitamin K: 2% of the daily value
Fresh figs contain some calories from natural sugar, but having a little figs is a reasonable low-calorie snack or addition to the meal.
On the other hand, dried figs are rich in sugar and rich in calories, where is concentrated the sugar when drying fruits.
Containing figs also contains small amounts of a variety of nutrients, but particularly rich for vitamin B-6.
Copper, a vital mineral involved in many bodily processes, including metabolism and energy production, in addition to the formation of blood cells, connective tissue and neurotransmitters.
Vitamin B6 is an essential vitamin necessary to help your body break down dietary protein and create new proteins. It also plays an important role in brain health.
Fresh figs are low calories and contains a variety of vitamins and minerals. However, dried figs are high in sugar and calories.
Benefits of figs
Enjoy the figs several benefits, including promoting a healthy digestive system and heart, besides helping to control blood sugar levels.
Promote digestive health
Figs have long been used as a home remedy or an alternative remedy for digestive problems such as constipation.
Figs contain fiber, which may help promote digestive health by softening and adding fiber mass to stool, reducing constipation, and acting as an antibiotic – or a food source for the healthy bacteria that inhabit your gut.
In animal studies, fig fruit extract or paste has helped accelerate the movement of food through the digestive tract, reducing constipation and improving the symptoms of celiac disorders such as ulcerative colitis.
I found a study conducted on 150 people suffering from irritable bowel syndrome with constipation (IBS-C) that those who consumed about 4 Tina dryer (45 g) twice daily hair they will great in the symptoms of the disease – including pain, bloating and constipation.
What's more, I found a similar study conducted with 80 people that eat a dietary supplement about 10 oz (300 grams) of puree fruit figs a day for 8 weeks significantly reduces constipation.
Figs improve blood vessel and heart health
Figs improve blood pressure and blood lipid levels, which may help improve blood vessel health and reduce the risk of heart disease.
One study found that fig extract reduces blood pressure in mice with normal blood pressure, as well as those with elevated levels.
Animal studies have also shown improvements in total cholesterol, good cholesterol (HDL) and triglyceride levels when taking fig leaf extract supplements.
However, in a 5-week study on 83 people with high LDL cholesterol, the researchers noted that those who added about 14 dried figs (120 grams) to their diet daily had no changes in blood lipid levels.
More human studies are needed to better understand the relationship between figs and heart health.
Helps control blood sugar levels
A study dated from 1998 on 10 people with Type 1 diabetes found that eating fig leaf tea with breakfast may have reduced their insulin needs. In the month they received fig leaf tea, their insulin doses decreased by about 12%.
What's more, a newer study found that drinks with high doses of fig fruit extract have a lower glycemic index (GI) than drinks without fig fruit extract, which means these drinks will have a more favorable effect on blood sugar levels.
However, fig fruits – especially dried figs-are rich in sugar and may increase blood sugar levels in the short term. If you have trouble controlling blood sugar levels, you should limit your intake of dried figs.
Benefits of figs for cancer patients
Several promising test tube studies have been conducted on the effects of fig leaves on cancer cells.
Fig leaves and natural latex from fig plants have been shown to show anti-tumor activity against human colon cancer, breast cancer, cervical cancer and liver cancer cells.
However, this does not mean that eating figs or drinking tea of fig leaves will have the same effects. Test tube studies offer a promising starting point, but human studies are needed to assess how eating figs or fig leaves affects cancer growth.
Benefits of figs for the skin
May be one some beneficial effects on the skin, especially when people infected with allergic dermatitis – or dry skin and caused by allergies.
One study of 45 children with dermatitis found that a cream made from dried fig fruit extract twice daily for two weeks was more effective in treating the symptoms of dermatitis than a hydrocortisone cream.
Moreover, a combination of fruit extracts – including fig extract – has been shown to exhibit antioxidant effects on skin cells, reduce collagen breakdown, and improve the appearance of wrinkles as a result of a test conducted in a test tube and a study on animals.
However, it is difficult to determine whether these positive effects come from a fig extract or one of the other extracts being studied. Further research is needed to determine the effects of figs on skin health.
Figs have a variety of potential health benefits. It may improve digestion and reduce constipation, help control blood fat and blood sugar levels, and kill cancer cells. However, more research is needed in humans.
Figs have some possible drawbacks. For example, because they are sometimes used as a home remedy for constipation, it causes fig diarrhea or other digestive problems.
Figs are also fairly rich in vitamin K, which can interfere with blood thinning drugs and make them less effective.
If you use blood thinners , you should keep your intake of figs and other vitamin K-rich foods consistent from day to day to reduce the risk of complications.
Finally, some people may have an allergy to figs. If you are allergic to birch pollen, you may be more likely to have a fig allergy as well. Fig trees also contain natural latex, which some people may be allergic to.
Figs may cause digestive upset or diarrhea due to their anti-constipation effects. May also interfere with blood thinners, and some people may have sensitivity towards it.