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Once again, vitamin A shows itself to be a powerhouse in nutrition, offering 55% of the daily value in the persimmon. Vitamin C runs a close second with 21%, plus excellent amounts of manganese, a co-factor for the enzyme superoxide dismutase, for healthy mucous membranes and skin, as well as a known protectant against lung and mouth cancers.
Persimmons are an excellent source of fiber, which helps keep the body regulated. B-complex vitamins are present to stabilize the metabolic system, along with copper and phosphorus.
Low in calories and fats, this little fruit contains all kinds of phytonutrients, flavonoids, and antioxidants, such as catechins (known to have antibiotic and anti-inflammatory properties, and for protecting small blood vessels from bleeding) as well as gallocatechins and betulinic acid, a tumor inhibitor. Other powerful antioxidants found in persimmons include beta-carotene, lycopene, lutein, and cryptoxanthin. The zeaxanthin content absorbs into the eyes and helps filter light.
Persimmons are one of a few foods associated with killing breast cancer cells without harming normal breast cells, according to one new study. Scientists attributed this to the flavonoid fisetin, present in several fruits and vegetables, but in persimmons specifically. Fisetin also has been named as a significant contributor in the programmed eradication of colon and prostate cancer cells1.
Diospyros peregrina (Indian persimmon)
Indian persimmon (Diospyros peregrina) is a slow growing tree, native to coastal West Bengal. The fruit is green and turns yellow when ripe. It is relatively small with an unremarkable flavor and is better known for uses in folk medicine rather than culinary applications.