Appreciated for its sweet and refreshing flavor, lychee is a tropical fruit native to southern China and grows in tropical and subtropical regions of Asia, including India, Thailand, Vietnam, and Indonesia. Its tree measures 5 to 10 m and sometimes exceeds 15 m in height. Fragile, it is very sensitive to lack of water. This is why it is grown in a humid environment. It is also possible to find this tree and its fruits on Reunion Island. In addition to its delicate taste, lychee is a rich source of nutrients and beneficial to health!
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Lychee: A Fruit With Multiple Health Benefits
Lychee fruit is an important source of essential vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, potassium, and copper. First, vitamin C, an energy source, is an antioxidant that promotes cell renewal and body protection against damage caused by free radicals. Potassium helps regulate blood pressure and heart health, limiting the risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Copper contributes to the immune system’s proper functioning and has antioxidant properties.
In addition, this tropical fruit also contains so-called phytochemicals like flavonoids and proanthocyanidins. The latter, present in lychee seeds, have an antioxidant power that is sometimes more powerful than vitamin E. They also exert antiviral activity on our immune system. As for flavonoids, they have anti-inflammatory properties, improve arterial health, and participate in the fight against cellular aging. Finally, lychee is low in calories. 100 grams of servings of this fruit are worth about 66 calories.
Is lychee Sweet? A Fruit Rich In Carbohydrates
Despite its proven health properties, it is strongly recommended not to consume too much lychee. Indeed, this tropical fruit is particularly rich in sugar. A serving of 100 grams is estimated to have about 17 grams of carbohydrate content. Although this sugar is natural and its low caloric intake is welcomed, this fruit should be consumed in moderation and as part of a balanced and diversified diet.
In excess, however, it can be responsible for hyperglycemia. This is why it is advisable to remain cautious, especially about people with diabetes. Also, ingesting this fruit would have caused the death of many children in Asia, especially in India in the 90s.
Malnourished, the consumption in large quantities has sadly caused them a potentially fatal disease called “lychee syndrome,”: characterized by hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and encephalopathy (brain disease). According to the researchers, this is due to the presence in this fruit of a toxin contained in lychee called methylene cyclopropyl-glycine.
Also Read: 7 Best Fruits To Eat At Night
Lychee: Contraindications And Health Hazards
Beyond its high glucose content, lychee can be dangerous for health.
Risk Of Allergy
This fruit can cause the appearance of allergic reactions in contact with its shell or its seeds. Most often, the symptoms result in itching on the lips, inside the mouth, and throat in the moments following its ingestion. If in doubt, consult your doctor.
Impact On The Digestive System
Its excessive consumption can cause digestive disorders in people with irritable bowel syndrome: diarrhea, bloating, stomach aches, etc. Because it is rich in fiber, it is advisable to adapt one’s digestive tolerance to the absorption of foods that are sources of fiber.
How To Eat lychee? A Gourmet Fruit To Be Consumed In 1000 Ways
In addition to these contraindications, this fruit remains good for health. Delicious, it can be consumed in several ways. The skin of ripe lychees is red and breaks easily. It can also become hard if storage is prolonged or the fruit is harvested too early. We only eat the juicy flesh of this fruit. The core is not edible.
We recommend choosing organic fruits and washing and peeling them well to minimize exposure to pesticide residues and other chemicals. Added to smoothies and fruit salads, it will brighten up your snacks. It also enhances sweet and savory dishes, such as sauces, to accompany meat, fish dishes, or even rice. Be careful when cooking it. Lychee should not be overcooked to prevent it from becoming too hard and more edible.
Our Tips For Properly Storing lychees
Lychee is a fragile fruit. To arrive in France, he will have already traveled a lot. This is why it is particularly advisable to consume it quickly after purchase. The color of their shell indicates their quality. It should be pink to red-brown. You can store them in the refrigerator for about one to two weeks. Or, if you prefer to relieve yourself of these constraints, they are also sold canned.