Tamarillo is a sweet fruit, which exhibits a diverse range of health benefits, and is mostly cultivated in tropical climate nations. The fruit has two colors: yellow and red and yellow. This egg-shaped fruit is orangish from inside and is fleshy with small black seeds. The tamarillo plant consists of distinctive-colored flowers that offer a pleasant and calming fragrance. You can spot numerous fresh tamarillo during May to October across several parts of South America, India, Peru, and Chile.
Tamarillo(1) is a native to South America and is also called the Tree Tomato. It is now cultivated in several other parts of the world. New Zealand is one of the largest cultivators of tamarillo.
In the 1800s, Tamarillo was introduced to New Zealand; however, during World War II, its important grew far and wide because of a worldwide shortage of fruits. And tamarillo became a commercial crop ever since.
What is Tamarillo and Is It Healthy?
Citric, sweet, and juicy, tamarillo is a tiny, oval-shaped fruit. It’s closely associated with other Solanaceae members of fruits and vegetables such as groundcherry, chili peppers, tomato, eggplant, and tomatillo.
Tamarillo is a small-size tree or shrub reaching around 5 to 15 feet in height, featuring hairy branches and stems. Its evergreen leaves are broader as compared to the leaves of tomato. As a well-grown plant, tamarillo bears fleshy small pale-pink impressive flowers in its first year of the plantation, though fruiting is widely discouraged until the tamarillo plant reaches its second or third year.
Tamarillo is a powerhouse of various antioxidants(2), vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients (such as dietary fiber) that help deliver tremendous health benefits.
Primary health benefits of tamarillo include managing diabetes, boosting metabolism, preventing cancer, preventing anemia, supporting eyesight, treating tonsillitis, supporting weight loss, and enhancing cardiovascular health. New health benefits of tamarillo include boosting the immune system, strengthening the skin, and promoting digestive health.
10 Benefits of Tamarillo Over Health and Well-being
While there are numerous health benefits of tamarillo, the following ten stand out to boost your overall health and wellness:
Tamarillo is a powerhouse of vitamins A, C, E as well as pro-vitamin A. Also, it is packed with the goodness of B-complex vitamins such as thiamine, riboflavin, and niacin. Various essential nutrients in tamarillo include calcium, potassium, sodium, carbohydrates, protein, and fat. Presence of the right blend of vitamins helps boost your immunity.
2. Helps Lose Weight
Consumed raw, in the form of salads or sprinkled with herbs, the tamarillo juice acts as a natural detoxifier. Its powerful acidic properties help in cutting down on body weight.
[Also Read: Natural Remedies to Lose Weight]
3. Enhances the Skin
Tamarillo is an excellent source of vitamins A, C, and E, all of which make sure your skin stays radiant and healthy. Also, the flavonoids, anthocyanin, and phenols content in tamarillo protects your skin from pollution and oxidative stress to keep skin allergies and ailments at bay.
4. Helps Control Diabetes
Tamarillo is packed with chlorogenic acid that helps in lowering the blood sugar level in type-II diabetes mellitus. The fruit consists of outstanding antioxidants that work well to lessen oxidative stress in organs like the liver and pancreas.
5. Treats Inflamed Tonsils
In Ecuador, the locals warmed the leaves of tamarillo and swathed them around the neck of people suffering from inflamed tonsils. As such, heat absorption via tamarillo leaves helps in reducing pain.
6. Regulates High Blood Pressure
Consume more tamarillo to lower your blood pressure level. Packed with the goodness of potassium and minerals, this fruit aids in controlling blood pressure.
7. Boosts Heart Health
Potassium is one of the principal constituents of tamarillo that aids in balancing the adverse consequences of high sodium levels in your heart. It offers magnesium for the optimal functioning of your cardiovascular system along with helping you reduce bad cholesterol in your body.
The fruit is also extremely beneficial to maintain healthy vision. It contains Vitamin A that helps restore the moisture of your eye membranes that tends to act as a barrier for viruses and bacteria. Also, it safeguards your eyes against infections, reduces the impairment of eye disorders like macular degeneration and cataract.
Dark tamarillo is rich in anthocyanins that are incredibly potent antioxidants and help destroy free radicals that are warning signs for the occurrence of cancer. Also, these flowers are also rich in anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties that work well to stave off a cancerous outbreak.
10. Boosts Digestion
Tamarillo helps to ease off a wide range of digestive problems(3) such as bloating and diarrhea, thanks to its high composition of dietary fiber. Regular consumption of this fruit also comes handy in relieving constipation and clearing large intestines as well as the colon.
What are the Different Ways to Use Tamarillo and How to Prepare It for Use?
Ripe tamarillo can be eaten along with its peel. However, the tamarillo peel is slightly bitter since it contains cyanidin anthocyanin pigment and, therefore, you may feel like avoiding it. Tamarillo can also be sliced and added to green salads as well as fruit salad, other than being used as a topping on sandwiches, ice crème, and cakes.
Meanwhile, the pulp of this fruit can be blended and pounded to prepare smoothies, relish, jams, chutney, sauces, and jellies.
Medicinally, tamarillo can be used to help improve the symptoms of inflamed tonsils, Ecuador in particular. The leaves of tamarillo can be warmed and moistened in water – and tied to the neck of individuals suffering from inflamed tonsils since the absorption of heat from the leaves of tamarillo can prove beneficial in reducing reduce the pain caused by inflamed tonsils.
DIY Tamarillo Recipes that are Quick and Healthy
Tamarillo Sprout Salad: Serves 1
Ingredients you’ll need:
- Tamarillo – 2 to 3
- Multigrain (optional) – 250 grams
- Cumin seeds – ¼ teaspoon
- Salt to taste
- Oil – 1/2 teaspoon
- Onions -1(diced)
- Green chili-1 small
- The garnishing of your choice
How to prepare:
- Heat oil in a frying pan.
- Add the cumin seeds and sauté for around 1 minute, then add diced onions and again sauté for some 2 to 3 minutes.
- Once it gets slightly tender, you can add multi-grain sprouts and sauté over a high flame.
- Now change the fire from low to high, and sauté for three more minutes.
- Next, sprinkle some water over it and cover properly.
- Steam for 1 minute before removing the lid to add the tamarillos.
- Now sauté over a high flame and add salt to taste.
- Serve with a smile. Feel free to season it with Italian or Indian seasoning.
Green Apple and Tamarillo Chutney: Around 2 cups
Ingredients you’ll need:
- 2 cups chopped, peeled tamarillo
- Three crushed cloves garlic, crushed
- ½ cup green apples, peeled and cut to small sizes
- ½ cup sweet onion
- Curry, a pinch or two
- 2 1/4 tablespoons ginger root, grated
- One teaspoon chili powder
- One tablespoon whole clove
- One teaspoon black peppercorn
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
How to prepare:
- Keep the chopped tamarillo in a pan.
- Add the garlic, curry, ginger, onions, and apples.
- Now, add the peppercorns and cloves, and stir in the honey, salt, and chili powder.
- Bring the mixture to the boil, and stir till it gets well-blended.
- Bring the heat down and simmer for nearly 1 hour or so.
- When it cools, pack the jam-like stuff in a clean jar and seal.
- Enjoy on chicken, fish, or as a topping on your favorite roasted turkey.
Follow these Precautions While Using Tamarillos
While there aren’t several reported cases of an allergic reaction from tamarillo, a study said that one of the participants came up with complain of hives around 12 to 24 hours after the intake of tamarillo.
Like most foods, in case you suspect that you have an adverse reaction, it is recommended that you discontinue the use of tamarillo and consult your health physician immediately.
Tamarillo can genuinely be a delicious and beneficial addition to several dishes while providing numerous health benefits from improving eye health to decreasing the risk of heart diseases and cancer, boosting your metabolism, and offering the substantial benefits of vitamin C to impart longevity.
As a result, it continues to be one of the most preferred and the most researched fruits on the planet. Consider incorporating tamarillo as a delectable, flavorsome, and wholesome flavor to your favorite meals.