Lychee, also known as Chinese cherry, is the fruit of a tree belonging to the Sapindaceae family, whose cultivation is native to China and other Asian countries such as Vietnam. This delicacy, which is attributed with important nutritional properties beneficial to the body, grows optimally in subtropical regions.
This fruit is characterized by its shape and its reddish colored skin, its rough skin and the white gelatinous pulp that combines sweet and sour flavors. But, what is the best way to consume it?
It is advisable to consume it fresh to obtain all its nutrients although it can be eaten in syrup, in preserves, salads, cakes and even accompanying main dishes such as meat and fish.
The interest in its cultivation has grown during the last years due to its high nutritional value and for having beneficial compounds for health that include antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities.This fruit is an excellent source of sugar, protein, fiber, vitamins B1, B2 and C, calcium, potassium, phosphorus and magnesium.
In this way, its effects on health have been related mainly by its high content in micronutrients, higher than in other tropical fruits, such as the vitamins of the group B, C, carotenoids, polyphenols and minerals such as potassium, according to a study published in the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI).
In fact, its high content of vitamin C, about 60 mg for every 100 grams consumed, gives it important antioxidant properties essential to neutralize the harmful action of free radicals in the body.Lychee is mainly composed of water (82.7 g) and carbohydrates (14.6 g).
It also contains an outstanding amount of fiber (1.3 g) and its levels of saturated fat and sodium are relatively low. Therefore, this tropical fruit contributes to maintain the muscular, nervous and immunological system and its nutritional contribution makes it possible to be used in cases of hypertension, anemia or before an increase of the cholesterol in blood.