Jamun | Nutritional Facts | Health Benefits
For children in India, summers are never complete without buying Jamun from farmers’ markets. And eating them sprinkled with black salt, and later showing off their purple tongues to scare everyone.
Jamun, or Indian black plum, is a delicious medicinal fruit that holds a special significance in Indian folklore and Ayurveda owing to its numerous qualities. As a fruit of ancient times, alternative medical practitioners advised using it in its various forms to treat diabetes.
Jamun And Its English Name
Syzygium cumini, or S.jambolana, better known as Jamun, is a fruit native to India and surrounding countries like Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Myanmar.
It was introduced to many parts of the world, like Fiji, the USA, China, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia, Africa, South America, and the Caribbean. It is eaten as a fruit, used medicinally, and for timber. 1https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3609276/
Jamun has many names; a few English ones are black plum, purple plum, Malabar plum, Indian blackberry, jambolan plum, and java plum. Other global names are jambolan, jambu, jambul, jambool, jamblang, naval, java plum, Portuguese plum, and damson plum.
Jamun trees are an integral part of South Asia and are planted near Hindu temples as they were sacred to Lord Krishna. The fruit is very juicy and flavorful; it is sweet, sour, and tart in taste due to gallic acid. It has a very astringent aftertaste.
Indian blackberry or Jamun is a seasonal, perishable, one-seeded berry available to eat fresh from June to August. It is oblong, dark purple in color from the outside because of a compound called anthocyanins, and pinkish-white from the inside.
Jamun producers face massive waste during harvesting and processing because of the fruit’s perishable nature and losses during storage.
Jamun Nutritional Facts
Jamun’s seed bears about 25% of its weight. The fruit pulp and peel have 75% of their total weight. The ripe fruits can be eaten fresh or used in health drinks, squashes, juices, jellies, and wine. The seeds, bark, and leaves are dried and used in various forms to supplement health.
Jamun has many biochemical compounds, including flavonoids, essential oils, gallic acid, oxalic acid, malic acid, and betulinic acid, which can help manage and treat many diseases. Let’s look at the nutrition facts of Jamun. 2https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/168150/nutrients
Jamun Fruit Benefits
The Jamun tree is considered a magic tree as the root, leaves, fruits, and even bark are beneficial due to numerous medicinal qualities. Jamun has a special place in Ayurveda and the Unani system of medicine. 3https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3609276/table/apjtb-02-03-240-t01/?report=objectonly
The bark’s decoction is used as a mouthwash to treat mouth ulcerations due to its astringent effect. Gargling with Jamun bark helps prevent gingivitis. It is also effective against worm infestations in the body as it has anthelmintic (worm-destroying) properties. 4https://www.researchgate.net/publication/277775647_Evalution_of_antidiabetic_and_phytochemical_activity_of_50_methanolic_extract_of_jamun_se
Jamun leaves have anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antidiarrheal effects. The leaves can help cure constipation and gastrointestinal problems. The ash of the leaves can strengthen the teeth and gums. 5https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3625181/#pone.0060269-Chandhuri1
The leaves are also a source of natural colorants and antioxidants. 6https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0308814607003731 Tea prepared from jambolan leaves may have an antihyperglycemic effect (lowers blood sugar levels).
They may treat digestive disorders, diarrhea, dysentery, and piles. Drinking fresh Jamun juice can reduce colds, coughs, and asthma and help in improving the immune system. 7https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3609276/
It is called churan in India, is obtained from crushing jamun’s dried seeds, and is considered highly beneficial in reducing blood sugar levels. 8https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16253452/ The powder may promote better digestion, a healthy heart and liver, and bone health.
Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) causes weight gain and infertility in women. Ayurvedic doctors suggest Jamun powder, tablets, or capsules containing Jamun as an active ingredient to overcome PCOS.
It is prepared from ripe Jamun juice and is a diuretic and an astringent for patients with chronic diarrhea. 9https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3609276/
Health Benefits Of Jamun
Jamun fruit has a low glycemic index of 24 and a glycemic load of 2, making it suitable to eat in moderation, even for diabetic patients. Jamun tree bark extract, Jamun seeds, and Jamun leaves are used in treating diabetes and associated complications.
Related Article: What Is Glycemic Index | Food List With Glycemic Index
Clinical and experimental research suggests different parts of the Jamun, mostly the fruit and seeds, show promising activity against diabetes mellitus. 10https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11091000/ , 11https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11390126/ 12https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3609276/
A recent study in CDRI, Lucknow, India, suggested that the seeds’ dried alcohol extract reduces blood sugar levels. Jamun seed powder contains alkaloids jamboline and jambosine, which might help control starch conversion to sugar.
Jamun may reduce the symptoms of diabetes, like frequent urination and thrush. 13https://www.researchgate.net/publication/307173520_International_Journal_of_Current_Trends_in_Pharmaceutical_Research_A_Brief_Study_on_Syz A study was done to understand the hypoglycemic effect of Jamun seed powder supplementation.
A few diabetic patients between the ages of 51-60 were given 2g of Jamun seed powder per day for 60 days. Mean fasting blood glucose levels decreased remarkably after thirty days of supplementation with Jamun seed powder.
At the end of the sixtieth day, fasting glucose levels had gone down on average from 223.06+80.9 mg/dl to 139.66+61.45 mg/dl. 14https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2221169117307608#bib
A few studies show that Jamun fruit and seeds contain potent antioxidant compounds such as phenolic acids, flavonoids, and anthocyanins. These bioactive compounds help keep harmful free radicals at bay, preventing cholesterol oxidation and plaque formation that can increase heart disease risk.
The studies promote the medicinal use of Jamun extract and its service as a functional food due to its antibacterial and antioxidant properties. 15https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4097971/ , 16https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3625181/
Jamun may possess antibacterial, anti-fungal, antiviral, anti-inflammatory anti-allergic, anticancer, chemo-preventive, antidiarrheal, and anti-diabetic properties that may improve our total. 17health.https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0963996911000949
Optimal Hemoglobin Levels
Jamun has a decent amount of iron and vitamin C that may increase hemoglobin count, purify the blood, and benefit the skin. Jamun’s high Iron content can be beneficial for women during menstruation and for patients suffering from anemia and jaundice.
Jamun is hugely beneficial to keep heart disease at bay as it is high in potassium; 100g of Jamun contains about 55 mg of potassium. Eating Jamun may prevent the hardening of arteries, high blood pressure, stroke, and heart disease.
Chewing and eating Jamun leaves can be useful in treating diarrhea, ulcers, and digestive disorders.
Biochemical and phytochemical substances like polyphenols, ellagic acid, ellagitannins, and anthocyanins in Jamun may reduce cancer risk.
Jamun leaves have astringent and antibacterial properties that may benefit the teeth, gums, and throat.
One must avoid buying Jamun from the roadside as the sellers can contaminate them with lead and heavy metals. In addition, pregnant and breastfeeding women should avoid Jamun or eat it with a physician’s knowledge.
Jamun seed and bark extracts might decrease blood sugar levels. Patients on medication for diabetes and post-surgical procedures, however, need to monitor their sugar levels before eating Jamun.
Although fresh Jamun is not available throughout the year, one can freeze them. One can enjoy Jamun as juice and store the seeds in powdered form to reap their maximum benefits. With loads of health benefits, every part of Jamun fruit is a practical and inexpensive ingredient in many Ayurvedic medicines.
Hopefully, this article will help those looking for alternative and holistic approaches to improving their health. However, one must consult a physician in case of any chronic or underlying condition. And please do not see the information as a substitute for medicine or a doctor’s advice.
What do you think about this article? Have any questions? Let me know in the comments below!
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About Kamini Thakar
Kamini is a very skilled writer/content creator. As a part of Fabulous Body for years, she has authored many articles really proving her prowess in acquiring and presenting knowledge about various health & nutrition topics.