Tamarind: Nutritional composition and health benefits

What is Tamarind fruit? What do you usually use them for? What points should be kept in mind when using? Ways to create delicious dishes but still ensure nutrition? How to keep food fresh? Let's follow SignsSymptomsList to follow the analyzed article below!


1. What do you know about tamarind?

Tamarind: Nutritional composition and health benefits

  • Tamarind is a tropical fruit. They are used in many cuisines around the world, and may even have medicinal properties.
  • Tamarind is native to Africa but also grows in India, Pakistan and many other tropical regions.
  • The tree produces pea-like fruits filled with seeds surrounded by a fibrous pulp.
  • The pulp of the young fruit is green and sour. When ripe, the juicy pulp becomes paste-like and has a sweeter and sour taste.

2. Nutritional composition of tamarind fruit

There are many nutrients in tamarind fruit. One cup of 120 g can hold

  • Magnesium: 28% of the RDI.
  • Potassium: 22% of the RDI.
  • Iron: 19% of the RDI.
  • Calcium: 9% of the RDI.
  • Phosphorus: 14% of the RDI.
  • Vitamin B1 (thiamine): 34% of the RDI.
  • Vitamin B2 (riboflavin): 11% of the RDI.
  • Vitamin B3 (niacin): 12% of the RDI.
  • Monitor your intake of vitamin C, vitamin K, vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), folate, vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid), copper, and selenium.

In addition, tamarind also contains 6 grams of fiber, 3 grams of protein and 1 gram of fat.

In fact, one cup of tamarind contains 69 grams of carbs in the form of sugar, which is equivalent to 17.5 teaspoons of sugar.

Despite its sugar content, tamarind is considered a fruit, not an added sugar – the kind that has been linked to metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. 

However, tamarind is quite high in calories compared to many other fruits, which can be problematic for those trying to control their sugar intake.

Tamarind also contains polyphenols. These are natural plant compounds with health benefits. 

3. Benefits of Tamarind

3.1. Antioxidants may boost heart health

Tamarind: Nutritional composition and health benefits

  • This fruit may promote heart health in a number of different ways
  • Tamarind contains polyphenols like flavonoids, some of which can help regulate cholesterol levels.
  • Not only that, but a study in hamsters with high cholesterol found that tamarind extract reduced total cholesterol, LDL (“bad”) cholesterol, and triglycerides. 
  • The antioxidants in this fruit may help reduce oxidative damage to LDL cholesterol, which is a major cause of heart disease. 

3.2. Contains many beneficial magnesium

  • Tamarind also contains relatively high levels of magnesium
  • A 28-gram serving or less than 1/4 cup of pulp, provides 6% of the RDI 
  • Magnesium has many health benefits and plays a role in more than 600 body functions. In addition, tamarind can also help lower blood pressure and have anti-inflammatory and anti-diabetic effects.
  • Therefore, tamarind contains a good amount of magnesium, an important mineral that plays a role in more than 600 functions in the body.

3.3. May have anti-fungal, antiviral and antibacterial effects

  • Tamarind extract contains natural compounds with antibacterial effects 
  • In fact, studies show this plant may have antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial activities.
  • Tamarind has also been used in traditional medicine to treat diseases such as malaria 
  • A compound called lupeol is believed to have the antibacterial effects of tamarind
  • Due to increasing antibiotic resistance, researchers are particularly interested in using medicinal plants to fight bacteria.

4. Dishes made from tamarind fruit

Tamarind: Nutritional composition and health benefits

4.1. Different forms of me

Tamarind is available in processed form, such as candy and sweet syrup.

In addition, whole fruit can also be found in three main forms:

  • Raw skin: These tamarind are the least processed form of tamarind. That is, they are still intact and can be easily opened to remove the pulp.
  • Pressed Blocks: To make them, the skins and seeds are removed and the pulp is compressed into a mass. 
  • Concentrate: the concentrate of tamarind is the pulp that has been boiled. Preservatives may also be added.

4.2. Use tamarind to cook

  • Tamarind pulp is widely used for cooking in South and Southeast Asia, Mexico, the Middle East and the Caribbean. 
  • The seeds and leaves are also edible.
  • In addition, tamarind can be used in sauces, marinades, chutneys, drinks and desserts. It is also one of the ingredients in Worcestershire sauce.

5. Points to note when using

  • Pregnant and lactating women
    + There isn't enough reliable information to know if tamarind is safe to use during pregnancy or breast-feeding.
    + Therefore, it is necessary to use caution when using to ensure safety and closely monitor the amount of food.
  • Diabetes
    + Tamarind seeds can lower blood sugar.
    However, there is a concern that it may interfere with blood sugar control.
    If you have diabetes and use tamarind, closely monitor your blood sugar. The dose of diabetes medication may need to be adjusted.
  • Surgery
    + Tamarind seeds can lower blood sugar.
    However, there is concern that it may interfere with blood sugar control during and after surgery.
    Stop using tamarind at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

6. Conclusion

  • Tamarind is a sweet and sour fruit that is widely used around the world. 
  • Although it has many beneficial nutrients, it also contains a lot of sugar. 
  • Therefore, when using me, you must also pay attention to a special object and case

In addition to the many health benefits mentioned above, tamarind fruit also has many other great uses. However, if anything unusual appears, it is  necessary to  take the patient to the nearest hospital for emergency treatment and timely treatment.

Pharmacist Nguyen Ngoc Cam Tien