Like something out of a fantasy novel, many have never encountered the Rambutan fruit before. However, if you live in Southeast Asia, you’re in luck, as you’ve probably had it before since it can be found growing natively here.
Visually, it resembles the Lychee with numerous spiky like structures, or may even remind you of a sea urchin, though beneath its spiky exterior is delicate flesh and a slew of health benefits for you to benefit from.
Wondering what some of its benefits are? Let’s check them out now.
1. Anti-Diabetic Properties
While some studies have shown that rambutan may help to control blood sugar spikes, for this benefit to be observed you would need to also consume the outer peel. For this purpose, extracts made of the outer skin are superior as many people opt to not eat the spiky exterior.
Regardless, an easy way to get these benefits is to boil the fruit and make use of the extract in full.
2. Supports Heart Health
The rambutan contains a significant amount of fiber which can help to reduce the risk of heart disease. It does this in part by helping to ensure that cholesterol levels are kept within a normal range, since fiber binds to cholesterol and promotes its removal.
3. Promotes Skin Health
Rambutan is an excellent source of Vitamin C, a key nutrient in the preservation of healthy skin. For one, Vitamin C can reduce the impact of oxidative stress and damage on the skin, which can diminish the appearance of aging and wrinkles.
In addition, Vitamin C is involved in the synthesis of collagen, a key structural protein which comprises skin and other connective tissue types. Collagen synthesis reduces as we age making it more important to support its levels by getting enough Vitamin C.
4. Promotes Regularity
Rambutan can help to prevent constipation and support regularity owing to its high fiber content as well as its high moisture content. The fiber helps fecal matter to speedily transit through the digestive tract so that it is easily eliminated.
5. Treatment of Anemia
Rambutan is rich is iron, a key mineral in the synthesis of red blood cells. Diets low in dietary iron are associated with an increased frequency on anemia. Combined with the generous amount of Vitamin C naturally contained in Rambutan, it can help to prevent iron deficiency anemia and also address symptoms of an already present deficiency.
Vitamin C helps to improve the uptake and absorption of dietary iron so that it is more efficiently utilized for synthesis of new erythrocytes.
6. May Help Prevent Cancer
Rambutan, like many other antioxidants rich fruits have the potential of helping to prevent cancerous changes from occurring in the body. It contains vitamin C, as previously alluded to, which can help to neutralize the effects of harmful free radicals that can otherwise damage cells and set into motion a cancerous cascade of changes.
It can also help to prevent mutations at the level of DNA, helping to shut down changes in protein expression that can cause accelerated proliferation of cancer cells. There is research being undertaken which shows promise to the fact that rambutan may also help kill precancerous cells, and those in the early stages of mutation.
7. Supports The Immune System
The immune system is constantly bombarded with a range of stressors, both oxidative and pathogenic in nature. Without adequate nutritional support, deficiencies may open up in our defense system, causing infection or other forms of illness.
Rambutan can help support the function of the immune system via numerous mechanisms. For instance, the antioxidant vitamins it contains help to reduce the impact of oxidation and inflammation on cells of the immune system, allowing them to function at peak efficiency.
However, protecting the cells of oxidative damage is just one competent of preserving immune function. Luckily, rambutan also possesses antimicrobial properties which can inhibit the replication of pathogens, and also directly kill them to an extent. This leaves rambutan well poised to ensure the proper functioning of the immune system, to preserve your health.
8. Possesses Aphrodisiac Properties
Rambutan has been consumed for centuries by natives of southeastern Asian countries for its purported aphrodisiac properties, as it is believed to increase the desire to copulate after eating. In fact, it is well-established as a traditional herbal remedy for impotence by natives in those regions, as it is believed to help enhance blood flow throughout the body, and also stimulate the production of testosterone which regulates sexual aggression to a large degree.
Anecdotally it is also said to be able to enhance one’s fertility, likely attributed to the presence of numerous antioxidant vitamins which can help offset stress on sperm and support their motility. This claim has not been verified scientifically, so should not be relied too heavily upon.
9. Can Support Healthy Hair
As the popularity of rambutan grows, its inclusion in several products marketed towards the maintenance of beauty have also been increasing. In particular is its addition in hair care products, where it supports scalp miniaturization and can assist with management of dandruff.
Even though rambutan is a fruit it still possesses amino acids which may be beneficial to the health of hair fibers, helping to prevent thinning, and to an extent, premature aging and greying owing to the presence of copper.
If you have yet to try one of these rambutan enhanced hair care products, you can simply squeeze the juice of the fruit on the scalp, allow it to sit for about 15 minutes then wash off as usual which shampoo.
10. Natural Remedy For Fever
Have you ever wondered how people dealt with fever before the advent of medication designed to do so? They did it with natural plants, which coincidentally is the basis of most available medication today. In particular, the peel of rambutan possesses antipyretic properties which can help to treat fever and associated complications.
If you stop to think of it, rambutan is exceptionally suited for treatment of fevers, as its antimicrobial properties can also help support the immune system in its fight against foreign pathogens which may be the source of fever in the first place.
11. Analgesic Properties
While most of the benefits mentioned so far all related to the actual fruit, many parts of the rambutan fruit tree are also exceptionally useful. For instance, the leaves of the plant contain substances which exert analgesic action and can help to relieve mild to moderate pain.
The leaves can either be ground and consumed, or applied topically to the skin for localized pain relief. To this day people living in regions where rambutan grow natively still using leaves for this purpose.
Conclusion – Benefits Of Rambutan
Though rambutan is unlikely to become as popular as the most well-known fruits today, its wide range of benefits are likely to help you in one way or another. If you are distrustful of synthetic medication, or prefer a natural approach as much as possible, give rambutan a shot and see what it can do for you. The results are bound to surprise!