Prunes are the dried plum of Prunus domestica variety. It is made from the firm fleshed fruit called plum, prunes are dried and they do not ferment during drying and they have high soluble solid contents. They contain energy, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and protein. They also have dietary fibres and phytochemicals in them. You can add them in your diet by eating them as snacks or adding them to your breakfast cereal. They can also be added to baked goods or you can blend them into juice Or puree. Prunes come with multiple health benefits, some of them are listed below.
11 Amazing Prune Health Benefits
Rich In Antioxidants
Prunes are considered to be the powerhouse of antioxidants. They are even higher than blueberries on the antioxidants scale. Prunes contain plant phenolics, manganese and iron that helps in protecting cell membranes from free radical damage by acting as antioxidants. The most active antioxidant found in prunes is Anthocyanin which is a specific type of polyphenol. They are also rich in antioxidants like caffeolyquinic acid.
Improves Heart Health
Potassium ensures proper functioning of the heart and nerve response throughout the body and prunes are high in potassium. Consuming prunes daily helps in lowering blood pressure and also reduces risk of Heart problems, dizziness and heart attack by keeping blood pressure and cholesterol levels in check.
May Slow Down The Ageing Process
Prunes also help in slowing down the aging process and also delay the development of wrinkles. The antioxidants present in the fruit help in repairing the damaged cells hence the cells work properly and prevent any early sign of ageing.
May Have Anti-Inflammatory Properties
Prunes are rich in antioxidants called polyphenols and these antioxidants help in decreasing inflammation while also protecting against DNA damage. According to a report, prunes which are dried at 60 and 85°C may have a higher antioxidant activity as compared to fresh plums.
Aids In Weight Loss
Prunes are the superfood which help in maintaining our appetite by keeping us full for longer period of time as it contains high fibre. They also control the urge for sugary or fried food, all this happens due to the presence of pectin in it. According to a study, regularly eating prunes as a part of your diet resulted in significant weight loss and waist circumference reduction. Prunes raise the glucose levels in the body slowly as they have low glycemic index, this avoids spikes in the blood sugar level which are usually caused by foods with high glycemic index, this keeps the appetite at bay and hence helps in weight loss by preventing overeating.
Helps In Digestion
Prunes have high sorbitol content which makes them act as a laxative, they are also high in fibre which helps in adding bulk to the stools and preventing constipation. The insoluble fibre in prunes helps in keeping the bowel movements regular and the soluble fibre helps in digestion and absorbing nutrients from food. Additionally, sorbitol and chlorogenic acid present in prunes can also increase stool frequency and help you in getting rid of constipation.
Good Source of Iron
Prunes contain high amount of iron which works wonders for people who have anemia and also hairfall problems. Including prunes into your diet can prevent and treat iron deficiency in your body. Prunes also keep your scalp healthy and work in thickening of hair, this prevents hairfall, dull and thin hair and also discoloration of hair. Along with this they also contain vitamin B , vitamin C which helps in hair growth.
High In Vitamins
This dried fruit contains multiple vitamins and minerals which makes it superfood on its own. They contain vitamins like A, K, vitamin B6, riboflavin, niacin and minerals like manganese, copper and magnesium.
High In Potassium
Potassium is an electrolyte which assists in various bodily functions and prunes are a good source of potassium. Potassium helps in maintaining heart rhythm, nerve impulses, digestion, blood pressure and muscle contraction. Eating prunes provides the body with potassium and can save you from potassium deficiencies as the body doesn’t produce potassium naturally on its own.
Helps In Building Bones And Muscles
The mineral Boron in dried prunes helps in building strong bones and muscles, it also helps in building muscle coordination and improving mental acuity. They are also quite essential in fighting bone density loss which occurs due to radiation. According to a 2016 animal study it was seen that dried prunes could reduce radiation’s effect on bone marrow and prevented bone density loss and promoted bone health. Another study showed that prunes could act as a potential treatment for oestoporosis in postmenopausal women as eating prunes prevented loss of bone mass.
Promotes Healthy Skin
Prunes provide you with a healthy and plump skin and the vitamins and minerals present in them help in maintaining healthy skin. Basically it is a sweet snack which can also give you a glowing skin in no time.
SIDE EFFECTS OF PRUNES
Although prunes come with multiple health benefits they could also cause few negative side effects like Gas and bloating and diarrhoea due to insoluble fibre and sorbitol. As they contain sugar, eating too much of prunes could possibly lead to weight gain. If you are someone with disease like ulcerative colitis, prunes could prove harmful for you as they have high fibre in them.
CAN IT BE EATEN DURING PREGNANCY?
Eating prunes during pregnancy helps in building haemoglobin and also prevent anemia. It also promotes good digestion and also helps in managing anxiety and depression, as they contain high amount of potassium in them, they can also combat fatigue.
They are an excellent source of nutrition and are a wonderful source of vitamins and minerals. They are perfect snacks to reduce hunger instantly and can be safely eaten during pregnancy.