A Jewel in the Fall

Persimmon is a popular fall fruit in China. It has long been enjoyed in China not only as a delicious fruit, but also for its multitude of health benefits. Persimmons are high in nutrients and can increase the body's metabolism. Ripe persimmons contain 15% sugar, 1.36% protein, 0.57% fat. It is rich in soluble fiber, vitamins A and C, and minerals including calcium, phosphorus, iron and other elements. However, because it's high tannin content, certain rules need be to observed when consuming persimmons.

In Chinese medicine terms, persimmon is:
a) Cool in nature, therefore it can remove excess heat in the body.
b) Sweet and Astringent in property, enters the stomach and spleen meridians. Which means it has the property to generate Yin fluids, dissolve and remove phlegm, stops bleeding.
c) It it suitable to ease the symptoms such as dry cough, sore throat, high blood pressure and cleans the arteries. Therefore, it can benefit chronic illnesses like chronic bronchitis, hypertension, arteriosclerosis, internal and external hemorrhoids.
Although it has many benefits,  there are cautions one needs to be observed when consuming persimmons. Persimmon is high in tannin, an acid that gives it the astringent property. So when eating persimmons, you should avoid certain food.

Through thousands of years of practice, the Chinese people observed a set of rules to allow them enjoy persimmons without potentially being harmed. They are:
1) Do not eat persimmons with an empty stomach. When you are hungry, the stomach has a higher acid content, eating persimmons in an empty stomach can irritate the stomach and may cause minerals to precipitate and cause stones to form in the body.
2) Do not consume a large amount of persimmons in one sitting. Because of its tannin content, consuming large quantities of persimmon can interfere with the body's mineral absorption ability.
3) Peel the persimmons before eating. There is a concentrated amount of tannin in the skin, therefore removing the skin will lessen the chance of consuming too much tannin.
4) Do not eat together with seafood, especially crab. Both persimmon and crab are cool in nature, eating them together will compounding the cooling effect to the body, and can bring on the imbalances of the body. The proteins in shrimp or other sea food could possibly react with the tannic acid, causing discomfort.
5) Do not eat it together with yam or sweat potato. When the starch from yam or potato ferment in the stomach, it could react with persimmon, resulting the fibers and other materials to form settlement that could influence the normal function of the stomach, in severe cases, could result in blocked intestine.

With that in mind, enjoy this unique fruit mother nature has to offer!

No comments: