FIGS NUTRITIONAL VALUE



The knowledge of figs nutritional value will help you to understand its importance in your daily diet. For long, fruits have been part of a healthy diet, the main reason being their remarkable nutritional value. One such fruit that has made headlines in various health magazines due to its ability to keep a number of ailments at bay is fig.

The figs nutritional value is so high that it is often referred to as the 'fitness fruit'. It is a rich source of dietary fiber. It contains a good amount of vitamins and various useful minerals like iron, calcium, magnesium, copper, etc.


FOOD VALUE



Figs are consumed fresh, dried, preserved, candied or canned. Fresh figs are delicious and may be used as desert or for jam. Bulk of the crop is consumed as dried fruit. Better grades of dried figs are used for making fancy packs, while other grades are used for the production of alcohol and wine.


FRESH FIGS NUTRITIONAL VALUE



Fresh fig is a delicious fruit with high nutritive value. It consists of 84% pulp and 16% skin. The chemical composition varies with type. The average composition of the edible part of the fresh fig is as follows (per 100 gm):

• Moisture – 80.8%

• Protein – 1.3%

• Mineral matter – 0.6%

• Carbohydrates – 17.1%

• Calcium – 0.06 mg

• Phosphorus – 0.03 mg

• Iron – 1.2 mg

• B-carotene – 270 I.U.

• Nicotinic acid – 0.6 mg

• Riboflavin (B2) – 50 micro gm

• Ascorbic acid – 2 mg per 100 gm



Figs owe their food value chiefly to their mineral and sugar contents. The total mineral content is 2 to 4 times that of most other fresh foods. Only cheese and a few nuts have higher calcium content than fig. It is richer in iron and copper than nearly all fruits. Traces of zinc are also reported to be present. Both fresh and dried fig contain appreciable quantities of vitamin A and C (30% of the vitamin A activity is lost in drying) and smaller amounts of vitamins of the B-group and other vitamins.

The total sugar content of fresh figs is 13 – 20% and that of dried figs is 42 – 62%. Sugar is present mostly in the form of invert sugar. Analysis of fresh and dried figs showed presence of 15.2 % and 45 – 95% of reducing sugars.

The principal acids in fresh figs are citric acid and acetic acid. Small amounts of malic, boric and oxalic acid are also present. The acid content ranges from 0.1 to 0.44% (as citric acid). Fresh figs also contain gum and mucilage (0.8%) and pentosons (0.83%). A phosphatide with nitrogen: phosphorus ratio at 1:2 and containing palmitic and oleic acids is reported to be present.


DRY FIGS NUTRITIONAL VALUE



This soft, sweet fresh fruit have very little shelf life, and tend to deteriorate easily during transportation. That’s why more often dried variety of figs is preferred. Consuming them fresh or dried, whole or in parts does not change the amount of health benefits one can derive.

Dry figs nutritional value per 100 gm of edible portion is as follows:

• Dietary Fiber: 10 g

• Carbohydrates: 64 g

• Sugars: 48 g

• Protein: 3 g

• Fat: 1gm




The following table gives nutritional value for one cup of uncooked, dried figs, equivalent to 149 gm :

• Water – 44.8 g

• Calories – 371 calories

• Protein – 4.9 g

• Calcium – 241 mg

• Iron – 3.0 mg

• Potassium – 1013 mg

• Magnesium – 101 mg

• Phosphorus – 99.8 mg

• Carbohydrates – 95.2 mg

• Dietary Fiber – 14.62 mg

• Starch – 7.6 g

• Folate – 71.4 g

• Vitamin C – 1.8 mg

• Vitamin K – 23.2 mcg

• Folate – 13.4 mcg




Comparison with other fruits



A comparison of the nutritive index of fig and other fruits is as follows –

Fig – 11

Apple – 9

Date – 6

Pear – 6

It shows that figs nutritional value is greater than the other fruits.


FIG SKIN



Analysis of fig skin gave the following composition (per 100 gm) –

• Moisture – 76.3 %

• Protein – 1.5%

• Fat – 0.5%

• Fiber – 2.3%

• Carbohydrate – 18.7%

• Ash – 0.7%

• Calcium – 162 mg

• Phosphorus – 233 mg

• Sugar – 5.4%

• Gum-mucilage – 2.74%

• Sugar in fig juice – 20.7%




FIG SEEDS



Fig seeds contain both unsaturated and saturated fatty acids such as –

• Oleic acid – 18.99

• Linoleic acid – 33.72

• Linolenic acid – 32.95 (unsaturated)

• Palmitic acid – 5.23

• Stearic acid – 2.18% (saturated acids)





The milk clotting activity of fresh fig latex is reported to be 30 to 100 times rennet prepared from calf stomach mucosa. For preparing the rennet, the latex is collected in the early morning hours when both the yield and the enzyme activity are high. A solid preparation may be obtained from the latex (which contains rennin, proteolytic enzymes, diastase, esterase, lipase, catalase and peroxidase apart from sugar, malic acid etc.) by direct drying in vacuum where a white solid is obtained. One c.c. of latex yields 0.10 to 0.15 gm of the dry powder which retains 90 – 95% of the activity originally present in the latex for several months at room temperature, more if ascorbic acid is added.

Ficus rennet coagulates milk and also milk-like preparations from vegetable seeds.It may be used for the preparation of cheese and junkets, in other food processing industries and in medicine.

Handling of green unripe figs frequently causes severe erythema and vesiculation. The principle responsible for this effect is present in the latex and is soluble in aqueous alcohol.


To know more about this fruit, read:

Figs

Benefits of Fig

Fig Health Benefits - In Detail....

Because of figs nutritional value, there are so many health benefits. It improves your general health and well being.



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