(Natural News) A study published in CyTA – Journal of Food has found that jackfruit seeds, which are often discarded in the production process, can be an alternative source of protein. The study, led by a team from the Autonomous University of Nayarit in Mexico, identified a protein isolate that can be derived from jackfruit seeds and used as a novel source of protein.
In their research, the team extracted the protein isolate using an ultrasound treatment; afterward, the isolate was processed further. They also looked at the physical and chemical components of the isolate to determine the active ingredients, as well as its nutritive properties.
The researchers found that the isolate derived from jackfruit to be a moderately good source of essential nutrients. In particular, the proteins were packed with amino acids like tyrosine, threonine, and lysine, with levels meeting the daily requirements set the World Health Organization. According to the researchers, the protein component from jackfruit seeds was higher than those from soy and chickpeas.
They also found that the protein isolate could bind easily with water and oil, making it a great component in making bread and other baked goods, as well as beverages. Its ability to emulsify and foam easily makes it a healthy additive to desserts, foams, and even meats.
“[Jackfruit protein isolate] could be a novel protein source applied in food systems and may be suitable to add to [bread], cakes, toppings, beverages, whipped cream, ice cream, chiffon desserts, salad dressing, sausage, and meat products,” the researchers concluded in their report. (Related: The 12 Awesome Medicinal Properties Of Jackfruits!)
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Enjoying the many health benefits of jackfruit
While the study from Mexico looked at what the body gets from jackfruit seeds, it’s also equally important to note that the fruit also contains multiple health benefits.
The fruit, which is a member of the fig family, is known as a fruit with a wide range of flavors. On its own, it tastes sweet and fruity — like a medley of apples, pineapples, and pears, but it can also be used as a meat substitute, thanks to its texture, which many compare to that of shredded meat.
It’s not just versatile, jackfruits contain a lot of the nutrients that the body needs, such as vitamins A and C, magnesium, potassium, and manganese.
What makes jackfruit different from other fruits, however, is that it has a decent amount of protein. A single serving can contain up to three grams of protein, compared to other fruits like apples and mangoes. It’s also packed with antioxidants that are responsible for its many health benefits. Multiple studies have shown that the fruit can protect cells from inflammation and oxidative stress, which contribute to chronic diseases like heart disease and cancer.
For those looking to curb their sugar intake, the fruit has a low glycemic index, thanks to its fiber content. This makes it a suitable fruit for those with elevated sugar levels and even diabetes.
It’s not just the fruits that have health benefits. In traditional Indian medicine, the roots are used to treat diseases which range from asthma, diarrhea, and even stomach ulcers.
Unlike other types of food that have a caveat, jackfruits are considered safe for most. People who are allergic to birch pollen, however, should seek the advice of a healthcare professional before eating jackfruits as the fruit may trigger an allergic reaction.