The wood apple or Indian bael fruit, is actuality a herb with the botanical name of ‘Limonia acidissima’. Indian bael fruit has many other names like the wood apple, elephant apple and even monkey fruit. In some parts, this fruit is known as elephant apple because it is considered as a favorite food of the elephants, while in other areas, it got the name of wood apple because of its hard wooden shell. It is also considered sacred by the Hindus, and is cultivated and eaten widely in India.
This wooden apple tree is basically native to India, but can also be found in Sri Lanka, Thailand, and many other regions of the southern part of Asia. The tree can also grow up to the height of 30 feet, and the fruits are at least of five to nine cm in the diameter. The shells are tough, and inside is the brownish pulp and some small white seeds. You can eat the pulp even raw, but it is also popularly scooped out and is frozen, or made into a jam. It can be mixed with the coconut milk for a delicious, health beverage, or also frozen in an ice cream.
The major health benefits of the bael fruit or Wood Apple includes its ability to give relief from the constipation, peptic ulcer, indigestion, respiratory problems, piles, diarrhea, as well as dysentery. It can boost the immune system, fight the bacterial and viral infections, reduce the inflammation and many other inflammatory conditions, prevent from cancer, increases the milk production for the nursing mothers, can cure diabetes, increases the ocular health, and help to prevent various dysfunctions.
Indian Bael For Healthy Living
a. Good for Digestion: Indian bael is a great fruit for the digestion because it can help to destroy the worms in the intestine, and is a good remedy for any of the digestive disorders. It is also recommended as a remedy for chronic dysentery. The trunk and branches of tree contain a gum-like substance known as ‘Feronia gum’. It is commonly used to cure diarrhea as well as dysentery. Indian Bael fruit is recommended for the people who have peptic ulcer or piles since bael contain tannin, which is known for its ability to reduce inflammation. The laxative property in the wood apple can also help to avoid the constipation and subsequent, the pain and discomfort with the associated health risks of the condition.
b. Blood Cleanser: As little as 50 mg of Indian bael fruit juice that is mixed with warm water as well as sugar is recommended for blood purification and removal of toxins which cause an extensive damage to your body. This also reduce the strain on the liver as well as kidney, which are also the normal line of defense against all the toxins.
d. Prevention from Scurvy: The deficiency of vitamin C can cause scurvy and Indian Bael fruit is quite very rich in vitamin C, so it can guarantee that you don’t develop scurvy, a life-threatening condition. This high level of vitamin C can also increase the strength as well as potency of the immune system, thereby protecting the people who consume the wood apples from a variety of microbial as well as viral infections.
e. Good for Diabetic Patients: The presence of ‘Feronia gum’, in the trunk and branches of this Indian bael tree, can counteract diabetes by reducing the severity of the conditions and help to manage the flow, as well as balance of sugar in the bloodstream. By managing the insulin and the glucose level, it is possible to prevent spikes and plunges which are dangerous to diabetic patients.
f. Relief from Respiratory Problems: Leaves of the Indian Bael tree can help some people to avoid the chronic or even recurring cold as well as related respiratory conditions. They can help to cure sore throat as well as treat chronic cough due to the function of it as an expectorant. It can loosen the phlegm and help to eliminate the buildup in the respiratory system.
g. Energy Booster: Hundred grams of Bael fruit pulp can provide at least 140 calories, and the basic nutrients are found that can help to boost the organ activity and metabolic speed. This all can result in additional energy and reserve in the body. The high protein content mean that the body can heal fast and muscles can grow strong, further boosting the energy reserves.
h. Good for Kidney Conditions: By regular consumption of wood apple is recommended for the people who have kidney complaints. Considering the powers of detoxify in the wood apples, the kidney and liver can be protected if the exact organic compound from the wood apple are kept at a healthy level.
i. Liver Health: Wood apples are considered as a good source of beta-carotene, which can cure liver problems. They contain thiamine as well as riboflavin, both of which are known as the liver booster, this fruit can function as an ingredient in the cardiac tonics.
j. Leucoderma: The presence of Psoralen in the pulp of Indian bael fruit can boost the threshold of sunlight which can assists the maintenance of the skin color. It is therefore is utilized in the management of the leucoderma.
k. Protection Against Malaria: The pulp of Indian bael fruit has always been used in the cosmetic component by the women in Thai-Myanmar border areas. This area is being frequently affected by the dengue as well as malaria, but some research studies have suggested that by applying the mixture of the pulp as a repellent on the skin of the pregnant women can be beneficial to protect them against the malaria.
Apart from the sensation of warming up, upon the application of the mix, the repellents are considered neutral as well as non-irritating.
Indian Bael – How to Select and Consume:
Indian Bael fruits can be easily consumed as a ripe fruit or in a juice-form. The ripe Indian bael is sweet and can be used to making tasty drinks that is known as the wood apple milk. The ripe fruit is consumed with custard, sugar or honey in certain cultures. The raw Indian bael is basically sour to taste and is used to make the chutney, while the leaves of the Indian bael tree is used in salad ingredients.
Like any of the other food / fruits, we do have to take some of the precautions when consuming the Indian bael fruit. Excessive consumption of the Bael fruit can cause flatulence in the abdomen, so people who have gastric troubles must always be careful.