Artocarpus lacucha - is the scientific name, which is usually known as Monkey Fruit or Monkey Jack. It's absolutely a tropical fruit from Moraceae family. It is largely seen throughout Southeast Asia and Indian subcontinent, as an evergreen tree species. Wood from tree is valorization. Usually the tree grows up to 30 - 45 feet high and more. Monkey Jack has pretty high medicinal value.
No doubt that it's old home is here in subcontinent. In Bengali it is called, Dewa. Generally from second half of June is the ripe season of Dewa in Bangladesh. It's known as a wild fruit item. Has no example that somewhere this fruit is cultivated. So till now this exceptional fruit got the label of wild fruit, which never find any permanent or regular place to our dining. This sweet-sour-tangy tasted fruit has distinctive flavor along with 7-12 cm of diameter at an undisciplined shape. After cut and release the skin of fruit the inner latex texture seen very similar to Jackfruit. Most of us consider it as the typical fruit of the nation.
Very rare to see in urban fruit-places, but in the rural areas its visibility is available. Whatever the position is holding by Monkey Jack in our menu, but it has some authentic health benefits. Per 100gm fruit contains 0.8 gm Minerals, 13.3gm Carbohydrates, 82 gm Moisture, 2 gm Protein, 67 mg Calcium, o.5 mg Iron, 3 gm Fiber, 25 mg Phosphorus, 348.33 mg Potassium, 135 mg Vitamin C, 0.02 mg Vitamin B1 & 0.15 mg Vitamin B2. Here are some health benefits given bellow-
* Reduce high blood pressure - as Monkey Jack is the very good source of potassium and reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke. Protect against anemia - many analysis have said that monkey jack prevents anemia and helps blood circulation flow throughout the body. It also helps to reduce internal bleeding of the body, because electrolytic functions of its potassium make our blood-cells more active. So that wherever any internal injury occurs abuzz blood cells and body cells make just an integrated circuit to heal the damage quickly.
* Full of Vitamin C, which is very essential for body tissues to have their regular growth, development and repair. Along with this Vitamin C is necessary for many body functions; like: Making collagen, build immune system, Iron integration, injury healing, cartilage patronage, well bone and teeth health.
* Vitamin B complex is available in Monkey Jack. It helps to increase oxygen supply to our body and thus all the body-cells remain fresh enough; which help us to have sound sleep.
* Phosphorus of monkey jack helps to maintain strong bones health. Stimulates body through urination and excretion, as it helps to make perfect pH balance of the body and improve digestion. Confirms strong metabolism and nutrient utilization. Works as the regulator to our energy levels.
* Monkey jack's calcium helps us in many ways. First it helps to have strong bones and teeth. Also helps to have proper functions of our heart, muscles and nerves. It protects our cardiac muscles to contract and relax properly by keeping proper pressure in arteries.
* A large number of minerals are also available in monkey jack. Good health of teeth, nail and hair can confirm by minerals of monkey jack.
* Monkey jack has a smart number of enzymes which break the molecules of our food proteins and thus increase our digesting capability.
From above mentioned nutritional values it's very clear that Monkey jack has rich nutrients. And to have those from this unusual fruit item, we need to consume it with admiration. We need to change the scenario - we need to build a level ground for this rich but disregarded fruit. Only awareness can confirm a respective status for monkey jack and thus someday it would cultivate in farmer's ground.
The writer is working with The Asian Age
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