Kiwi | Kiwifruit | What is Kiwifruit | Health Benefits of Kiwifruit | Varieties of Kiwifruit | Uses of Kiwifruit and its Juice | Nutritional Value of Kiwifruit
The kiwifruit, often shortened to kiwi in some parts of the world, is the edible berry of a cultivar group of the woody vine Actinidia deliciosa and hybrids between this and other species in the genus Actinidia. The Actinidia is native to South of China.
Kiwifruit is often referred to as the exotic fruit owing to the exquisiteness in its appearance., it is a fruit that holds great surprises. Actinidia deliciosa, commonly known as Hayward kiwi is the most commonly found variety of kiwi.
The flesh of this fruit has a creamy consistency and a splendid taste, which reminds us of a mixture of bananas and strawberries. It has a distinct sweet taste of its own. With the growing awareness about the fruit more and more varieties are now available in the market.
The most common cultivars of kiwifruit are oval, about the size of a large hen’s egg (5–8 cm / 2–3 in long and 4.5–5.5 cm / 1¾–2 in diameter). It has a fibrous, dull brown-green skin and bright green or golden flesh with rows of tiny, black, edible seeds. The fruit has a soft texture and a unique flavour, and today is a commercial crop in several countries, mainly in Italy, China, and New Zealand.
Also known as the Chinese gooseberry, the fruit was renamed for export marketing reasons in the 1950s; briefly to melonette, and then by New Zealand exporters to kiwifruit. This latter name comes from the kiwi — a flightless bird and New Zealand’s national symbol, and also a colloquial name for the New Zealand people.
Varieties of Kiwifruit (Chinese)
* ‘Zhong Hua’: This variety is also referred to as the Chinese gooseberry. It is oval to oblate in shape, and is the most commonly grown variety. An average fruit of this variety weighs from 30g-40g approximately. The flesh colour may be either yellow or yellow-green or green.
* ‘Jing Li’: It is also called the northern pear gooseberry, with green flesh. It has an elongated oval shape. The leaves of this variety are usually hairless.
* ‘Ruan Zao’: Also known as the Soft date gooseberry, it is small, with green flesh and is quite sweet. It is ideal for manufacturing jams, and is grown extensively in the hills.
* ‘Mao Hua’: This variety is loose haired and has a green sweet flesh. The leaves of this variety are relatively broad and thick.
* ‘Huang Yan’: It has yellow-white flesh and is often cylindrical in shape.This variety is fine textured and has a rich flavour. This variety ripens in May.
Kiwifruit Varieties (New Zealand)
* ‘Abbott’: Medium sized fruit, which is oblong and has a brownish skin, with long, soft hair. The flesh of the fruit is light green in colour and is good to taste.
* ‘Allison’: This variety is slightly broader than the Abbot, and has dense hair, brown skin and a light green colour flesh. This variety is a of good keeping quality. It was one of the most popular varieties of the Kiwifruit, but has lost its ground to the Hayward variety.
* ‘Bruno’: It is a long fruit, and the shape can be termed as elongated cylindrical. It is the broadest at the top, and has a more dark skin, as compared to the other cultivars. The flesh is light green in colour and has a rich flavour.
* ‘Hayward’: It is an exceptionally large variety, has a broad oval shape and has slightly flattened sides. The flesh of this variety is light green in colour and has an exceptional flavour. The fruit is of good keeping quality.
* ‘Monty’: The fruit of this variety is oblong and a little angular. Medium in size, it is widest at the top. It has brown skin and dense hair. The flesh is light-green in colour.
* ‘Greensill’: It is a more recent variety. The fruit is more cylindrical of all varieties, and is flattened on both ends. It is slightly wider at the base than at the top. The flesh is light green in colour and has good taste.
Health Benefits of Kiwifruit and Kiwifruit Juice:
Kiwifruit is a fruit rich in nutrients, and has the highest density of vitamin C, as compared to any fruit. It is also an excellent source of fiber, and possesses more potassium content than a banana. It is also a good source of vitamin E and potassium. It is extremely low in fat content and contains absolutely no cholesterol.
* Kiwifruit contains an antimutagenic component, which helps in preventing the mutations of genes that may initiate the cancer process. The presence of glutathione in the fruit also reduces the chances of cancer in the body.
* The fruit contains ample amounts of Inositol, which, as studies indicate is an excellent way of treating depression.
Nutritional Value of Kiwifruit:
|Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)|
|Energy||255 kJ (61 kcal)|
|Dietary fiber||3.0 g|
|lutein and zeaxanthin||122 μg|
|Thiamine (Vit. B1)||0.027 mg (2%)|
|Riboflavin (Vit. B2)||0.025 mg (2%)|
|Niacin (Vit. B3)||0.341 mg (2%)|
|Vitamin B6||0.63 mg (48%)|
|Folate (Vit. B9)||25 μg (6%)|
|Vitamin C||92.7 mg (155%)|
|Vitamin E||1.5 mg (10%)|
|Vitamin K||40.3 μg (38%)|
|Calcium||34 mg (3%)|
|Iron||0.31 mg (2%)|
|Magnesium||17 mg (5%|
|Phosphorus||34 mg (5%)|
|Potassium||312 mg (7%)|
|Zinc||0.14 mg (1%)|
* Inositol, is a sugar alcohol, which is a naturally occurring substance in in kiwifruit. It plays a substantial role in regulating diabetes. Inositol supplements.
* Inositol also plays a key role in intracellular responses to hormones and neurotransmitters. It acts as a second messenger in cell signaling processes.
* Regular consumption of kiwifruit ensures good Eye Health prevents Macular Degeneration.
* Many scientists believe that the Sodium-to-potassium ratio is critical for heart health. This ratio is extremely favorable in kiwifruit.
* The high content of Vitamin C in the fruit makes it an effective immunity booster.
* Kiwifruit contains the amino acid arginine, a well-known vasodilator that has been used to treat impotency in men.
* Kiwifruit contains a wide range of minerals (electrolytes) essential for replenishing those lost during exercise, especially during hot weather.
* Serotonin causes a calming effect in most individuals, the Kiwifruit contains a relatively high level of serotonin.
* Kiwifruit has the best balance of nutrients per calorie, and thus, is the best fruit to opt for, when on a weight management diet.
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