Jackfruit is also known by another name in India such as Katahal, Kathal, jack tree, jakfruit, Kathalai, jack, jak and etc. It belongs to the mulberry family means Moraceae and widely found all over the world. It was first originated in the regions of South and Southeast Asia as well as Indian southwestern rain forests; however it is highly found in the Indian states of Kerala (declared as a state fruit), Maharashtra and coastal Karnataka.
It is widely cultivated in the tropical regions of India since 3000 to 6000 years including other countries like Bangladesh (declared as a national fruit), Thailand and Vietnam (major producer), Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Mauritius, Cambodia, Africa, Indonesia, Philippines, Brazil, Caribbean nations of Jamaica and etc. It is a summer season vegetable widely found during summer season from April to September.
Benefits of Jackfruit (Kathal)
Jackfruit is a gorgeous fruit (used as a fruit when ripened) and vegetable (used as a vegetable when raw) almost liked by all the people. It looks and tastes very nice whether it is used as a fruit or vegetable. It is highly beneficial for the health as it is loaded with the multiple health ingredients such as vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, potassium, thiamine, iron, niacin, riboflavin, selenium, zinc, copper, magnesium, fatty acids, protein and etc. Some of the really amazing health benefits of the jackfruit or Kathal are mentioned below:
Benefits of Jackfruit for Immunity
Boosts Immune System Functioning
- Jackfruit or Kathal is an excellent source of the vitamins like C and A which have antioxidant property and boosts the immune system functioning.
Prevents from Seasonal Diseases
- As it enhances the body immunity, it protects from various seasonal and common diseases such as cold, flu, cough, fever and etc.
Benefits of Jackfruit for Cancer
Prevents from Cancer
- Because of being a rich source of phytonutrients, antioxidants, flavonoids and fatty acids, it is very useful for the cancer prevention.
Rich Source of Antioxidant
- High level of antioxidant compounds makes it able to protect body from the harmful effects of oxygen free radicals thus prevents from various cancers of colon, breast, stomach, lung, prostate, oral cavity and etc.
Prevents from Oxidative Stress and DNA Damage
- Its antioxidant nature prevents from the oxidative stress and DNA damage (which promotes cancer cells development) caused due to the free radicals.
Removes Toxins and Protects from Colon Cancer
- Its richness of dietary fibers cleans out all the toxins from colon which reduces the chance of occurrence of colon cancer.
Protects from Lung and Oral Cavity Cancer
- Vitamin A and carotenes found in it helps in protecting from the lung and oral cavity cancers.
Prevents from Ageing
- It is rich source of some other phytonutrients called isoflavones, lignans, saponins and etc having anti-cancer and anti-aging property thus keeps body away from the cancer and early aging.
Keeps Away from Thyroid Gland Disorders
- Copper mineral found in it actively participate in the thyroid metabolism, production and absorption thus keeps away from the disorders of this gland.
Benefits of Jackfruit for Heart
Maintains Electrolyte Balance
- Kathal helps in maintaining normal blood pressure as it rich source of potassium which is required to maintain the sodium and body fluid level in order to balance the electrolyte level thus reduces the risk of hypertension, stroke, heart failure, heart attack and etc cardiovascular problems.
It is Heart Friendly
- It is very heart friendly as vitamin B6 found in it helps in reducing the blood level of homocysteine.
Lowers Bad Cholesterol Level
- By lowering down the bad cholesterol level in blood it prevents the formation of plaque in the arteries, blockage of arteries and etc.
Benefits of Jackfruit for Digestive System
- Eating kathal on regular basis helps in improving the digestion as it contains high amount of dietary fibers which provides it laxative property.
Prevents Digestive Disorders
- It helps in preventing from the digestive disorders including constipation, piles and etc by regulating the bowel movements.
- It is strong anti-ulcerative in nature which makes it able to cure ulcers as well as various digestive system disorders.
Benefits of Jackfruit for Skin
- It prevents skin from the symptoms of early ageing due to environmental pollution, free radicals, UV rays, oxidative stress, smoke, tension and etc.
- Its antioxidant property helps in nourishing the skin and slows down ageing by destroying free radicals and other causes.
Keeps Skin Hydrated
- It keeps skin hydrated and moisturized as well as protect from various skin diseases.
Maintains Skin Integrity
- It contains vitamin A which helps in maintaining the skin integrity and mucus membranes integrity.
Makes Skin Smooth and Glowing
- Massaging the skin with the pulp of kathal makes skin smooth and glowing as well as provides relief from dryness and pigmentation.
Benefits of Jackfruit for Bone
Strengthens and Promotes Growth of Bones
- Kathal has high amount of calcium and phosphorus which are mostly required by the body to strengthen and promote healthy growth and development of the bone.
Increases Calcium Density of Bone
- It prevents from the bone related health issues such as osteoarthritis, osteoporosis and joints problem by increasing the calcium density of bone.
Benefits of Jackfruit during Pregnancy
Improves Hemoglobin Level
- It prevents a woman from the anemia during pregnancy by maintaining the hemoglobin level.
Rich Source of Vitamins and Minerals
- It is the rich source of bundle of vitamins like A, C, E, K, iron, niacin, folate, pantothenic acid, B6 including minerals such as manganese, copper and magnesium which actively involves in the process of blood formation.
Improves Iron Absorption
- Its high availability of vitamin C enhances the body capacity to absorb required amount of iron in order to fulfill the hemoglobin count as well as prevent and cure anemia.
Maintains Eye Vision and Fetal Development during Pregnancy
- Vitamin A found in it promotes proper cell production, eye vision, fetal development and etc during pregnancy.
Maintains Overall Health
- Vitamin B3 helps in regulating the hormones, boosting immunity level as well as controlling stress level among women during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Other Health Benefits of Jackfruit
- It acts as an energy booster as it provides instant energy because of its richness of high amount of carbohydrate, protein and calorie.
Contains Simple Sugars
- It also contains form of simple sugars such as fructose and sucrose which quickly involves in boosting the body energy.
Prevents from Eye Disorders
- Vitamin A found in it is very beneficial for the eye health as it improves the eye vision as well as protect from various eye disorders like degeneration of retina, cataract, age related macular degeneration and etc.
Prevents from Respiratory Disorders
- It is very beneficial for the person suffering from the asthma and other respiratory disorders.
Prevents from Age Related Degenerative Changes
- It is rich source of flavonoid pigments like beta-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin, xanthin, lutein and etc which have strong antioxidant property and prevents body from age related degenerative changes.
- It slightly involves in the weight loss strategy as it is an excellent source of easily digestible simple sugars and dietary fibers.
Treats Brain Disorders
- It helps in treating some disorders like sleeplessness, anxiety, high blood pressure, neurosis, stress, loss of memory, poor concentration and etc.
Treats Eye Inflammation
- The latex found in the kathal is very useful in treating pharyngitis, dystopia, opthalmities and etc.
Treats Snakebite and Swelling
- The mixture of latex and vinegar helps to treat snakebites, abscesses, glandular swellings and etc.
Natural Remedy for Fever and Diarrhea
- Kathal root is very good home remedy for treating fever, skin diseases, diarrhea and etc.
Benefits of Jackfruit Leaves
Treats Skin Problems
- Jackfruit leaves have been used for years in order to treat skin problems, fever, boils, wounds, diabetes and etc.
- The mixture of ash of jackfruit leaves, corn, coconut shells with coconut oil is very helpful to heal ulcers.
Benefits of Jackfruit Seeds
Jackfruit seeds are yummy tasting loaded with the vitamins and protein which are most important elements of health nourishment. Some of the beneficial aspects of the kathal seeds are mentioned below:
- It actively helps in fighting with the wrinkles on the skin if paste of some jackfruit seeds (dipped in cold milk for sometime) is applied regularly to the wrinkled skin for a month.
Improves Muscle Power
- It helps in enhancing the muscle power because of its richness of high level protein.
- It contains lots of anticancerous nutrients in the form of phytonutrients and helps body to fight cancer.
Prevents from Digestive Disorders
- Consuming jackfruit seed powder provides relief from the indigestion and other digestive disorders.
Provides Glow to Skin
- It helps in providing a glowing complexion to the skin whether it is applied topically or consumed orally.
Prevents from Constipation
- It helps in preventing from the constipation and piles because of its high fiber contents.
Gives Natural Look to Skin
- It gives skin a flawless look if the paste of jackfruit seeds (soaked into milk and honey) is applied to the face for few minutes till it gets dry and then washes off.
Stimulates Hair Growth
- It stimulates hair growth by motivating healthy blood circulation and proper nourishment to the scalp.
Prevents from Hair Loss
- It is the rich source of vitamin A which hair from getting dry, rough, brittle and light.
Prevents Hair Fall
- It helps in keeping healthy digestion thus prevents from unknown hair fall.
Nutritional Benefits of Jackfruit/Kathal per 100 g
(Source: USDA Nutrient Database)
Energy: 95 Kcal
Carbohydrate: 23.5 g
Sugar: 19.08 g
Water: 60 g
Ash: 0.7 g
Protein: 1.72 g
Total Fat: 0.64 g
Saturated Fat: 200 mg
Monounsaturated Fat: 150 mg
Polyunsaturated Fat: 100 mg
Omega-3 Fatty Acids: 75 mg
Omega-6 Fatty Acids: 18 mg
Dietary Fibers: 1.5 g
Thiamine (B1): 0.105 mg
Riboflavin (B2): 0.055 mg
Niacin (B3): 0.920 mg
Pantothenic acid (B5): 0.235 mg
Pyridoxine (B6): 0.329 mg
Vitamin A: 110 IU
Vitamin C: 13.7 mg
Vitamin E: 0.34 mg
Folates: 24 µg
Sodium: 3 mg
Potassium: 303 mg
Calcium: 34 mg
Iron: 0.60 mg
Magnesium: 37 mg
Manganese: 0.197 mg
Phosphorus: 21 mg
Selenium: 0.6 mg
Zinc: 0.42 mg
Copper: 75 mcg
Beta-Carotene: 61 µg
Beta-Crypto-xanthin: 5 µg
Lutein-zeaxanthin: 157 µg
How to Select and Store
If you are buying for cooking purposes as a vegetable then always select fresh, solid, heavy, green, hard thorn projections and intact skinned kathal from the market. If you buying for eating its pulp then buy well ripened, yellowish, having soft thorn projections, heavy and fresh kathal. Avoid buying infected, bruised, spotted, wrinkled and light kathal from the market as they may harm to the health. Raw jackfruit can be stored at room temperature for a week long however in the refrigerator it can be stored for longer time. Ripe jackfruit cannot be stored at room temperature for more than a day however in the refrigerator it can be stored for longer time.
How to Enjoy
It can be enjoyed in both ways, raw as well as ripe. It can be enjoyed through various recipes after cooking the raw kathal. Ripe kathal can be enjoyed by eating its pulp which is very tasty, sweet, yellowish color, smelling very nice and having lots of health benefits. Ripe jackfruit slices can be enjoyed with sprinkled grated coconut, banana slices, honey and etc. It is used to prepare jelly, jam, desserts, fruit salad and etc.
Precautions, Side Effects and Disadvantages
In spite of having number of health benefits, it has some side effects and disadvantages to the health which are mentioned below:
- It causes some allergic reactions to the people sensitive to it and suffering from birch pollen allergies.
- It may enhance the coagulation process among people with blood disorders.
- It may interfere with the glucose tolerance level among diabetic patients.
- It may interfere with the patients undergone tissue transplants or immunosuppression because of its immunostimulative property.
- Generally it should be avoided by the women getting or planning to be pregnant as it may interfere with the sexual arousal, libido, energy level and etc.
- It should be avoided by the person taking medications of blood thinners or aspirin as it causes risk of bleeding.
- It is high calorie and carbohydrate rich vegetable thus should be eaten within limit by the weight conscious people.
- It is considered that it is safe during pregnancy however, should be eaten in less amount or avoided as it may induce miscarriage because of its powerful laxative nature which cause diarrhea.
How Much Jackfruit/Kathal to Eat a Day
As we saw both of the aspects of the jackfruit means positive as well as negative thus it should be eaten within limit and body requirement. Eating how much kathal, whether it is ripe or raw, on daily basis depends on the age, weight and health conditions of the person however, anything within limit is safe for the health.
Find the Benefits of other Similar Vegetables