Figs seem to have originated from Egypt, around 9200 BC and were used in the nutrition for a long time. Fresh figs can be found for only a short period of the year, but you can buy dried figs in any store or supermarket in the world, and you can use it to replace sugar in many recipes for delicious cookies. Fig is a fruit that contains 80% water, but also contains a lot of sugar in it. That makes it a fruit that provides a lot of energy that stimulates brain function, concentration and memory. In ancient times the fig tree was considered as a holy fruit, so people grew it and consumed it regularly. In ancient times were known about 30 species of figs, today are known more than 600, all equally delicious and healthy.
Figs contain large amounts of calcium and potassium, minerals that are important for bone health, skin and for the proper function of many organs. Because of that figs are recommended, especially for the older population. They also boost metabolism as they are rich with organic fibers. They are also excellent for cleansing the blood vessels. Figs don’t have many calories; 100 grams of fresh figs have only 74 calories. Dried figs are an excellent source of minerals, vitamins and antioxidants. 100 grams of dried figs have 249 calories. Dry figs contain more calcium than cow’s milk.
Here are seven healthy reasons why you should add figs to your healthy diet:
- Figs can help you build stronger bones. This might be a surprise for you, but they contain high amounts of the bone building trio: magnesium, calcium and Vitamin K2. We call it trio, because they can’t work efficiently without each other. Calcium is inert without magnesium, and without Vitamin K2, calcium strays away from the bone matter into the blood stream. It’s possible to cause calcifying of the blood vessel inner linings.
- They are also good for maintaining good heart health. We mentioned earlier about its ability to minimize calcium deposits in your blood stream. And if we add the high amounts of magnesium and potassium in figs, it makes them the proper fruit for maintaining good heart health and keeps your blood pressure low.
- Another good thing about figs is that they are high in fiber – soluble and insoluble. The insoluble fiber helps with cleaning the waste from the colon. In that way it helps with reducing constipation. Both types of fiber are a great combination for regulating the body weight. Soluble fiber helps you to slow down the digestion rate and makes you feel fuller for a longer time. Also, it helps you regulate your blood sugar levels.
- Figs can help you in reducing the level of serum triglycerides in your blood stream. Triglycerides are considered as relevant markers in the diagnosis of heart disease, obesity and cholesterol.
- We can also say that dried figs contain high amounts of the phenol antioxidant. This antioxidant has been proven as an extremely efficient tool for the eyesight improvement, especially at older people and even more efficient than some antioxidants that are found in vegetables, such as carrots.
- We can add figs to the high-alkaline foods group, and this is why they are helping the body to achieve and maintain its optimum 7.0-7.4 pH value.
- Figs contain a high percentage of iron, a mineral that helps creating red blood cells and prevent anemia. That’s why pregnant women should throw away the pickles and chocolates, and add some dry figs in their healthy diet.
As we mentioned before in this article, dried figs are higher in sugar and calories than fresh figs. But, the main problem is that you can’t find fresh figs in the supermarkets or bazaars throughout the whole year, and they don’t stay fresh for a long time either. If you suffer from diabetes and you are concerned about the sugar content of the dried figs, you should consider fig leaves as an alternative. Fig leaves have repeatedly demonstrated anti-diabetic abilities. A study that was conducted by group of scientists has shown that diabetics who ate fig leaves for breakfast showed that they require less insulin injections throughout the rest of the day.