The Nutritional Benefits Of Figs

Isolated figs on a white background
Figs - great benefits. Copyright: margouillat / 123RF Stock Photo

Figs are nutritionally rich in many compounds especially flavonoids and polyphenols. These are responsible for strong antioxidant properties that help prevent various of oxidative stress-related medical conditions, such as liver and neurodegenerative issues.

You probably associate figs with the extremely popular fig newton, which if we’re being perfectly honest is not the healthiest of options. But while I don’t recommend eating those packaged fig goodies, figs nutrition actually have a superb amount of health benefits.

Of course, when I say figs nutrition, I mean the fruit superstar. Figs have a long, interesting past and a number of great health benefits. So what makes figs nutrition so valuable ?

If you are keen to grow these fantastic fruits, please see the article of their cultivation.

Figs Nutrition Facts

Common figs grow on the ficus tree (ficus carica), which is a member of the mulberry family. Originally from Western Asia and the Middle East, they’re now grown in temperate climates around the world.

Figs can be consumed either raw or dried, which affects the nutritional value. Thus, 100 grams of raw figs contains about: (1)

  • 74 calories
  • 19 grams carbohydrates
  • 0.7 grams protein
  • 0.3 grams fat
  • 3 grams fiber
  • 232 milligrams potassium (7 percent DV)
  • o.1 milligram manganese (6 percent DV)
  • 4.7 micrograms vitamin K (6 percent DV)
  • 0.1 milligram vitamin B6 (6 percent DV)
  • 17 milligrams magnesium (4 percent DV)
  • 35 milligrams calcium (4 percent DV)
  • 0.1 milligram thiamine (4 percent DV)
  • 142 IU vitamin A (3 percent DV)
  • 2 milligrams vitamin C (3 percent DV)

A small 40g fresh fig contains the following:

  • Calories: 30
  • Protein: 0 grams
  • Fat: 0 grams
  • Carbs: 8 grams
  • Fiber: 1 gram
  • Copper: 3% of the Daily Value (DV)
  • Magnesium: 2% of the DV
  • Potassium: 2% of the DV
  • Riboflavin: 2% of the DV
  • Thiamine: 2% of the DV
  • Vitamin B6: 3% of the DV
  • Vitamin K: 2% of the DV

When dried, the health benefits of figs increase — thus, 100 grams of dried figs contain about: 

  • 249 calories
  • 63.9 grams carbohydrates
  • 3.3 grams protein
  • 0.9 gram fat
  • 9.8 grams fiber
  • 0.5 milligram manganese (26 percent DV)
  • 15.6 micrograms vitamin K (19 percent DV)
  • 680 milligrams potassium (19 percent DV)
  • 68 milligrams magnesium (17 percent DV)
  • 162 milligrams calcium (16 percent DV)
  • 0.3 milligrams copper (14 percent DV)
  • 2 milligrams iron (11 percent DV)
  • 67 milligrams phosphorus (7 percent DV)
  • 0.1 milligrams vitamin B6 (6 percent DV)
  • 0.1 milligrams thiamine (6 percent DV)
  • 0.1 mg riboflavin (5 percent DV)
  • 0.5 milligram zinc (4 percent DV)

Health Benefits Of Figs

Intestinal Benefits Of Figs

Figs have long been known throughout history for being one of the foods to keep the intestines and the gut generally as healthy as possible for a food. They contain a natural protease for a start which helps break down proteins in meat for example. Syrup of figs is a laxative !

Fresh figs have a high potassium content which means they balance any deficiencies in this important mineral. it also means figs offer a balance to high sodium levels and in so doing helps reduce blood pressure (hypertension).

Figs contain plenty of calcium which is mineral needed for increasing and maintaining bone density. the high potassium content means that urinary excretion of calcium is minimised when high salt diets are consumed. Keeping calcium in the body means that osteoporosis is minimised.

Figs contain plenty of natural fibre. This a useful food for weight loss or weight maintenance. High fibre foods are known for increasing feelings of satiety and reducing hunger and cravings. They also contain prebiotic compounds which support the good gut bacteria which in turn promotes wellness. 


 

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