GRAPES



Learn more about the grapes here. Their properties, nutritional values, medicinal uses are discussed here. They are good source of vitamins like vitamin C, biotin (vitamin H) and bio-flavonoids.

Botanical Name: Vitis vinifera

Family Name: Vitiaceae

Description:

Grapes grows on the climbing shrub that has an erect, somewhat contorted stem with dark brown bark that peels off in strips. The branches have a number of tendrils which enable the plant to cling on to supports. The alternate leaves which are opposite the tendrils and carried on a sturdy petiole, are palmate and 3-5 lobed with a glabrous surface. The fruit is berry which varies in color; in the juicy pulp a few pear shaped seeds (pips) are immersed.

Distribution:

Grapes have ancient origin in Europe and North America.

Parts Used:

Fruit, leaves

Properties:

Astringent, Tonic, Cooling, Anti-inflammatory

Forms of Use:

Fruit, Juice, Decoction, Dry fruit

Products – preservation:

1. Wines:

About 80 5 of the fruit production is crushed for wine-making.

2. Raisins:

Berries of selected types are used for canning.

3. Fruit juice:

Colored as well as white grapes are used for making the fruit juice. In the case of colored type, a preliminary heating of the crushed mass at 60- 65 degree Celsius for a few minutes is necessary for extracting the coloring matter. The juice is extracted by crushing these fruits with the help of basket- press, filtered and set aside for some time to remove cream of tartar. The cedar juice is bottled and pasteurized. This is very popular product.




NUTRITIVE VALUE:



More then 50 species of vitis are known today. Of these, vitis vinifera is the most important and is universally cultivated grape-vine.

Analysis of this fruit gave the following composition (100 gm):

Moisture: 85 %

Carbohydrate: 16.5 %

Protein: 0.5%

Fat: 0.3%

Fiber: 3 %

Caloric value: 71

Calcium: 20 mg

Phosphorus: 30 mg

Iron: 0.5 mg

Niacin: 0.7 mg

Vitamin C: 1 mg per 100 gm

Small amount of beta carotene and B-complex are also present. The vitamin content of grapes varies with species. Red or purplish variants are rich in vitamins as compared to white. The vitamin content increases during maturation, except for biotin (vitamin H) which decreases. The content of thiamine increases 3 to 4 fold during maturation. There is a loss of vitamins during the processing of these fruits for making wine.

Fresh fruits contain varying, but small, quantities of vitamin C and small amount of dehydro-ascorbic acid.

They are good sources of bio-flavonoids (vitamin P) which are known to be useful in conditions like purpura, capillary bleeding in diabetes, edema and inflammation from injury, radiation damage and atherosclerosis. The berries also contain enzyme invertase etc.

Depending on the type and the locality in which the vine are cultivated, the total sugar content of the ripe berries generally varies from 9.68 to 18.9 % on fresh weight basis. The major sugars present are glucose and fructose.

The amino acids present are:

Arginine, proline, glycine, leucine, phenylalanine, lysine, histidine, isoleucine, valine, methionine and tryptophan.

These fruits contains large amount of tartaric acid and malic acid. Citric acid is present in small amount. Other acids present are: succinic, fumaric, glyceric, p-coumaric and caffeic acids. It also contains phenol compounds besides others


MEDICINAL USES:



1. Both fresh and dried varieties of this fruit have varied uses in Ayurveda and Unani systems of medicine. Fresh berries are considered laxative, stomachic, diuretic, demulcent and cooling.

2. The juice of the unripe berries is used as an astringent in throat infections.

3. Fruit tartar is used in the treatment of constipation.

4. Dry berries are used as a popular laxative.

5. People with a torpid liver or sluggish biliary function are sometimes advised to undergo a special cure based on eating grapes.





FRUITS and VEGETABLES

CURATIVE JUICES

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