lucuma: Properties and benefits of this fruit

lucuma

Lucuma is a fruit that is used above all in Peruvian gastronomy, in the preparation of sweet dishes : ice cream, cakes, tarts… It is the fruit of the tree of the same name, which can reach a height of 15 meters, and is consumed when it is very mature, several days after its fall.

It has a fairly intense flavor and stands out above all for being a natural sweetener . In addition, in recent years it has acquired a more than deserved reputation as a superfood , for all the benefits it brings to health. In this article we will analyze them in depth, so that you know more about this tropical fruit .

Where does this exotic fruit come from?

We know that lucuma is an original and native fruit of the Andean valleys of several Latin American countries : Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia and Chile. However, its origin is a mystery not lacking in myths and legends. The most widespread is an ancient story about a goddess called Rukma (Lucuma) , who rejected any man who proposed to her. One of her suitors was Huatio, known in the ancestral indigenous culture as the father of agriculture, who used to have a very dirty and unkempt appearance.

One afternoon, Lucuma was resting under a tree and a bird left a fruit in her lap . What she did not know was that Huatio had left the fruit impregnated with her “semen”. She ate this fruit and became pregnant. The goddess was very ashamed, because she did not know the father of her child, and so one day she decided to find out. She gathered the men in a square to find out who the father was, where the boy went to Huatio and hugged him. Lucuma, with great shame, left the town and fled to the high mountains, never to return. Be that as it may, the countries that produce the largest amounts of lucuma are Colombia, Ecuador and Peru .

Properties and benefits of this South American fruit

Since ancient times, the nutritional properties of lucuma have been used, a fruit that is very rich, especially in vitamin B3 and iron . In addition, it is a source of other essential vitamins and minerals, such as phosphorus or calcium. Precisely for this reason it is considered a superfood, since thanks to its composition it is capable of providing many health benefits , among which we find the following as the most noteworthy:

  • Protects the skin from the sun’s rays : thanks to its content of vitamin A, a strong natural antioxidant, lucuma can reduce the damage caused by UV rays, one of the main causes of premature aging.
  • It is a natural energizer : this fruit has a lot of vitamin B3, which increases the body’s energy production process. If you are physically or mentally exhausted, consuming lucuma is a good remedy.
  • Reduces cholesterol level : lucuma, also due to its vitamin B3 content, helps reduce cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood.
  • Fights diabetes : in the jungle, lucuma is used as a home remedy against diabetes, since this fruit helps regulate the concentration of glucose in the blood. That is why its consumption is highly recommended for diabetics.
  • Strengthens the immune system : another of the functions of vitamin A is to enhance the immune system, reinforcing defenses and thus protecting people from potential health problems.
  • It can be a remedy against depression : vitamin B3 helps maintain normal functions of the central nervous system, thus avoiding mental disorders.

How can you consume lucuma?

This fruit can be used and eaten in different ways. In the first place, it can be eaten raw without further ado , as if it were a plum. Secondly, lucuma is ideal to combine with milk or fruit juice to make energizing and highly nutritious natural shakes . It is also widely used to make cake or jam fillings, as its flavor is very intense and sweet.

However, and as we have explained before, the most interesting use of this exotic fruit is as a natural sweetener to sweeten foods . In this way, it becomes a substitute product for sugar, and of course much healthier. If you want to surprise your guests, prepare a dessert and use lucuma instead of sugar. You will get a very unusual flavor that they will love

Abbas Jahangir

I am a researcher and writer with a background in food and nutritional science. I am the founder of Foodstrend.com, our reputable online platform offering scientifically-backed articles on health, food, nutrition, kitchen tips, recipes, diet, and fitness. With a commitment to providing accurate and reliable information, we strive to empower our readers to make informed decisions about their health and lifestyle choices. Join us on Foodstrend.com's journey toward a healthier and happier lifestyle.

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