5 Wondrous Nutritional Benefits of Figs

benefits of figs

Considered exotic, figs are the delicious and savory fruit that is being consumed since ages. The sweet and juicy fruit is not only great in taste but has excellent nutrition profile that makes it a healthy choice. Learn about the benefits of figs in this article and include it in your diet to enjoy a healthy life.

What are Figs?

Fig is sweet fruit with soft skin containing many seeds. It belongs to the mulberry family and genus Ficus. It is the native of the Middle East and Western Asia and can be eaten ripe or dried.

Types of Figs

Black Mission Figs (Black figs with pink flesh)

Kadota figs (green figs with purple flesh)

Adriatic Figs (green skin with pink flesh)

Brown turkey (purple skin with red pulp)

Calimyrna figs (greenish-yellow with amber colored flesh)

Figs Nutrition Facts

Figs have high nutritive value with an abundant amount of fiber, essential minerals like magnesium, manganese, calcium, potassium, vitamins like Vitamin B6 and Vitamin K. These are also a good source of Vitamins A, B1, B2, phosphorous, chlorine and iron. Dried figs are comparatively high in vitamins and minerals as compared to fresh figs. Also, please note that the calories in figs are high, about 79 in 100 grams, but owing to their high fiber content, figs are great for your overall health.

Health Benefits of Figs

The chewy figs have a unique taste and texture. Besides being savory, these are loaded with nutrients which make them beneficial for your health. Below mentioned are the benefits of figs:

1. Healthy Digestive System is One of the Prime Benefits of Figs

figs benefits for digestive system

The high amount of dietary fiber found in figs boosts your digestive health.  Those with constipation trouble should consume two figs soaked overnight with honey to get rid of it. The high amount of fiber aids in smooth bowel movement and relieves constipation. Thus eating figs on a regular basis ensures a healthy digestive system.

2. Figs Help in Lowering the Cholesterol Levels

figs help in lowering the cholesterol levels
Image: shutterstock

Regulating healthy cholesterol levels is one of the essential benefits of figs. These contain a soluble fiber known as pectin which helps in reducing the cholesterol levels in your body. Further, these also include Vitamin B6 which stimulates the production of serotonin, a compound known to lower cholesterol and boost your mood.

The high fiber present in figs also helps in clearing cholesterol deposition in the digestive system. Dried figs are high in phytosterols, Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids that reduce the synthesis of cholesterol in the body.

3. Benefits of Figs Include Maintaining Cardiovascular Health

figs benefits for cardiovascular health

Figs can help in keeping your heart healthy. These are known to significantly reduce the number of triglycerides, i.e., fat particles, present in your blood. Further, the high amounts of antioxidants present in figs fight the free radicals which block the coronary arteries, thus reducing the strain on the heart on preventing coronary heart disease. The phenols and Omega-3 fatty acids also aid in preventing heart diseases.

4. Figs Can Effectively Cure Anemia

figs can effectively cure anemia

Add roasted figs to your diet and enjoy a healthy and fit body devoid of any troubles. Benefits of figs also include curing anemia due to the deficiency of iron.  Dried figs contain a considerable amount of iron which is the main component of hemoglobin. Consuming dried figs can replenish the amount of iron in your body improving the hemoglobin levels. Anemia is a common deficiency disease in women and adolescents which can be easily treated with figs.

5. Figs Lower Blood Sugar Level

figs lower blood sugar level

Persons who have Diabetes can benefit from figs as these help in reducing the blood sugar level. Fig leaves are known to contain unusual properties that can control the rise in blood glucose level post a meal.  Consuming tea made using fig leaves or powder made after drying fig leaves can effectively manage the blood sugar levels. It is one of the significant benefits of figs.

Figs Recipes

Wondering how to reap the benefits of figs? Here are some easy fig recipes that you can try easily at home.

Fig Cake

Who doesn’t like cake? And when you add ripe figs to it, the flavor, as well as the nutritional profile of it go way high. Here is the fantastic fig recipe that you must try:

What will you need?

  • Two cups of all-purpose flour
  • Three cups of fresh figs (chopped)
  • One egg
  • A cup of fat-free milk
  • One-fourth cup of water
  • A cup of sugar
  • One-fourth cup of brown sugar
  • Two teaspoons of baking powder
  • One tablespoon of fresh lemon juice
  • One-fourth cup of butter
  • One teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • One-fourth teaspoon of almond extract
  • One-fourth cup of butter
  • Half teaspoon of salt

How to Prepare?

  • Take a bowl and add to it flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix all the ingredients.
  • Preheat your oven to 175 degree Celsius.
  • Line cake pans with vegetable oil.
  • In another bowl, mix butter and sugar.
  • After that, add egg and beat well.
  • Then add the flour mixture, milk, vanilla, and almond extract along with a cup of figs.
  • Mix the ingredients well and pour the batter into the cake pan and bake for around thirty minutes.
  • When the cake has turned fluffy, take it out and let it cool.
  • After that, take a pan and to it add two cups of figs, water, lemon, and brown sugar.
  • Boil it to get a thick paste.
  • Spread the paste evenly on the cake.

Yogurt with Fresh Figs, Honey, and Pine Nuts

Pamper your taste-buds with some excellent flavors of this awesome recipe.

What will you need?

  • 16 fresh figs (cut into half)
  • Three tablespoons of pine nuts
  • Three cups of plain Greek yogurt
  • One-fourth cup of honey
  • Half a teaspoon of rose water

How to Prepare?

  • Take a pan and roast peanuts over medium heat for about four minutes till they get golden brown. Do not add oil.
  • Take another saucepan and add to it rosewater and honey.
  • Heat the mixture on medium flame for a minute to get a runny mixture. Do not boil it.
  • To the yogurt, add figs and top them with the warm honey mixture and roasted pine nuts.

Fig Salad

This fig salad is an excellent recipe for detoxifying your system.

What will you need?

  • Two fresh figs (quartered)
  • 100 grams of buffalo mozzarella
  • Two handfuls of rocket
  • One tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
  • One tablespoon of balsamic vinegar
  • Fresh basil leaves

How to Prepare?

  • Break mozzarella into small bite sized pieces.
  • Add the mozzarella pieces and figs into a bowl.
  • After that add rocket and mix all the ingredients well.
  • For dressing, drizzle over balsamic vinegar and olive oil
  • Garnish with fresh basil leaves

Side-effects of Figs

By now you will be quite impressed by the benefits of figs. But this amazing fruit when consumed in excess can have adverse effects on your health. Hence, it is essential that you should consume it in moderation. Some of the side-effects of excessive consumption of figs are:

  • Figs are heavy on the stomach and can upset it. Drinking cold water immediately after consuming figs can cause stomach related troubles.
  • Figs can hamper the functioning of liver and intestines
  • Figs can cause a deficiency of calcium in the body resulting in weak bones
  • These can lower the blood sugar level
  • Figs can cause allergic reactions like conjunctivitis, etc.
  • Figs being warm can result in retinal bleeding or vaginal bleeding.
  • Figs cause increased sensitivity to sunrays.

Figs are packed with nutrients and boost your health in numerous ways. No matter which variety you chose, what you get is excellent health. To best enjoy the benefits of figs, include them in your daily diet but eat them in moderation. Consuming them on a regular basis helps in keeping you healthy, young and active. So what are you waiting for? Head to the market now and buy the amazing fruit.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Do figs make you poop?

Figs are high on fiber, especially dried figs provide you with around 7.3 grams of fiber along with high amounts of potassium and Vitamin K which are great for your digestive health. Thus, figs help in regulating your bowel movement and are great for constipation.

2. Are figs fattening?

Figs are high on calories. If you include them in your diet without cutting down on other foods, it can cause you to gain weight. To manage your weight, it becomes necessary that you should consume figs in moderation.

3. Can babies eat figs?

Figs are loaded with anti-oxidants, fibers and essential vitamins and minerals which makes them healthy food for babies too. You can introduce fresh figs to your baby in its sixth month. However, dried figs due to their high sugar content are recommended past two years.

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