Figs seem to be a popular addition to many seasonal dishes around the holidays; however, they are an amazingly healthy option to include in a diet at any time of the year. Their firm flesh and succulent flavor are a true taste treat when fresh and dried they have a denser and sweet consistency. Many people are unaware of the wonderful health benefits to eating figs including weight loss.
Here are seven health benefits to eating figs:
- Weight Control. Figs are a fantastic way to maintain a healthy weight and they are also a stellar source of good fiber. Consuming a fig or two before a meal will help a person feel fuller as a little under four ounces of figs are a mere 75 calories.
- Blood Pressure Regulation. Figs are a sodium-free food and a rich in potassium and these two elements make them ideal for a diet directed at reducing high blood pressure.
- Bone Strength. Calcium can be found in abundance in figs which can help prevent osteoporosis and the potassium - in addition to helping to lower blood pressure - will help maintain bone density.
- Improvement in Digestion. The fiber-rich fig encourages regular bowel movements and alleviates constipation. However, it's best to be moderate about consuming them so that the body doesn't react with excessive bowel movements.
- Better Vision. More than 9 million people over the age of 40 suffer from macular dgeneration in the eyes according to The National Eye Institute. Figs are a rich source of vitamin A which is believe to help maintain good eyesight.
- Possible Benefits in Breast Health. A recent study of more than 50,000 women that were post-menopausal had them increase the amount of fiber such as the type found in figs. The results were a 34 percent reduction in cancer risk over those that had consumed less.
- Improve Brain Health. The regular consumption of figs can help alleviate fatigue and improve brain memory function.
Figs are fantastically rich in beta-carotene which is another high-nutrient content and they contain vitamins A, C, E and K in addition to minerals such as calcium, copper, and iron.
There is a rich variety of figs to choose from with the most well known being the Black Mission Fig which is sweet with a dark purple skin. Other fig varieties include Brown Turkey, Adriatic, Calimyrna, and Kadota.
Figs - like all fruits and vegetables - are best in an organic state and may be consumed fresh or dried.