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The Health Benefits of Chikoo or Sapodilla Fruit

Rajan is a botany and chemistry major. He has an interest in home remedies.

All about Manilkara zapota, also known as sapodilla, sapota, or chikoo

All about Manilkara zapota, also known as sapodilla, sapota, or chikoo

About the Chikoo Tree

There are several names for the fruit of the chikoo tree.

  • Latin name: Manilkara zapota
  • English: Sapodilla, noseberry, and mudapples
  • Spanish: Zapote and nispero
  • Hindi: Chikoo and sapota

The chikoo tree is native to Southern Mexico, Central America, and the islands of the Caribbean. It is a moderately tall tree, growing to between 30 and 50 feet in height with widely branching branches and stems. These trees need a tropical climate to grow and cannot survive freezing temperatures. They take from 5 to 8 years to mature and yield fruit twice a year.

Chikoo is widely cultivated in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Thailand, Vietnam, the Maldives, and Indonesia, but they are also fairly common in Florida.

How to Eat Chikoo Fruit

The fruit is a large, brown-colored berry with 2–5 big, shiny, black-colored seeds. The flesh is pale brown, smooth, and buttery in texture with an exceptionally sweet flavor.

The raw fruit has a high latex content, and a bit of latex remains even in the ripe fruit. The raw fruit skin is rough and leathery, and it becomes smooth when it ripens. An overripe fruit tastes mushy and fermented.

It is healthier to eat chikoo along with the skin; the fruit is normally eaten raw, with the skin intact. It can be used to make milkshakes, smoothies, and ice cream, etc. In some countries, it is crushed and boiled to make syrup.

Chikoo Nutrient Highlights

  • Chikoo is a good source of dietary fiber.
  • Chikoo contains a number of minerals, including iron, magnesium, calcium, phosphorus, copper, and potassium.
  • It contains vitamins A and C, thiamine, pantothenic acid, and folate.
  • Chikoo is high in calories, with about 83 calories per 100 grams.

Chikoo Nutrition Facts Per 100g

Source: USDA National Nutrient database

NutrientValuePercent of RDA

Carbohydrates

19.9 g

15%

Protein

0.44 g

<1%

Total Fat

1.10 g

3.50%

Cholesterol

0 mg

0%

Dietary Fiber

5.3 g

14%

Folates

14 mcg

3.50%

Niacin

0.200 mg

1%

Pantothenic acid

0.252 mg

5%

Pyridoxine

0.037 mg

3%

Riboflavin

0.020 mg

1.50%

Thiamin

0.058 mg

5%

Vitamin A

60 IU

2%

Vitamin C

14.7 mg

24.50%

Sodium

12 mg

1%

Potassium

193 mg

4%

Calcium

21 mg

2%

Copper

0.086 mg

9%

Iron

0.80 mg

10%

Magnesium

12 mg

3%

Phosphorous

12 mg

2%

Selenium

0.6 mcg

1%

Zinc

0.10 mg

1%

Calories

83

Health Benefits of Chikoo Fruit

  1. The dietary fiber aids with constipation.
  2. It was found to induce cancer cell death and inhibit tumor growth in mice with cancer, as well as increasing their life span by 50%.
  3. The fruit has tannins, which studies have found may have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties; however, more research is needed to better understand their benefits.
  4. Vitamins C and A help to keep the mucous membranes and skin healthy. Vitamin C also boosts immunity, can help to prevent infections, and scavenges free radicals.
  5. The magnesium, calcium, and phosphorus help keep bones strong, while the magnesium benefits the heart and blood vessels.
  6. Potassium helps to regulate blood pressure and promotes healthy circulation.
  7. Folate and iron help to prevent anemia caused by folate or iron deficiency.
  8. In folk medicine, the ground seeds are applied as a paste to alleviate stings and bites.
  9. Tea made of young fruits and flowers is used to treat dysentery, diarrhea, and pulmonary diseases in Ayurvedic medicine, while the leaves are used to treat cough, colds, and diarrhea.

Works Cited

Ansari, S. F., Khan, A. U., Qazi, N. G., Shah, F. A., & Naeem, K. (2019). In Vivo, Proteomic, and In Silico Investigation of Sapodilla for Therapeutic Potential in Gastrointestinal Disorders. BioMed research international, 2019, 4921086.

Cathcart RF 3rd. Vitamin C: the nontoxic, nonrate-limited, antioxidant free radical scavenger. Med Hypotheses. 1985 Sep;18(1):61-77.

Kirtikar, K. R. & Basu, B. D. Indian Medicinal Plants. 2nd volume. Vol. 2 (International Book Distributors publication, 2006).

Ma, J. et al. Bioactive novel polyphenols from the fruit of Manilkara zapota (Sapodilla). J Nat Prod 66, 983–986, 10.1021/np020576x (2003).

Morton, J. 1987. Sapodilla. p. 393–398. In: Fruits of warm climates. Julia F. Morton, Miami, FL.

Orwa, C., et al. (2009). Agroforestree Database: A tree reference and selection guide (Version 4.0).

Serrano, J, Puupponen-Pimiä R, Dauer A, Aura AM, Saura-Calixto F. Tannins: current knowledge of food sources, intake, bioavailability and biological effects. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2009 Sep;53 Suppl 2:S310-29.

Srivastava, M., Hegde, M., Chiruvella, K. et al. Sapodilla Plum (Achras sapota) Induces Apoptosis in Cancer Cell Lines and Inhibits Tumor Progression in Mice. Sci Rep 4, 6147 (2014).

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2013 Rajan Singh Jolly

Comments

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on November 02, 2018:

I'm glad this information has been so helpful. Thank you Nimisha for your feedback.

Nimisha on November 02, 2018:

it very helpful

to me to do my homework I love it

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on September 19, 2018:

Thank you Manja pn.

Manja pn on September 17, 2018:

Good information available

Clementnjau on January 16, 2018:

Just tasted it on my first visit to India. How do you grow it? I would like to try it in Kenya.

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on December 03, 2017:

Glad you like the write up. Thanks for visiting Jan.

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on December 03, 2017:

You're welcome Liza. Thank you for stopping by.

Jan on November 29, 2017:

Nice fact

Liza on November 28, 2017:

Thanks for the info

Michael Friedman on April 12, 2017:

Very interesting video clip !

NOTE: This chikoo milkshake is NOT recommended for Diabetics !

Violet in ATL. on February 03, 2017:

I grew up eating lots of this fruit in Jamaica and I loved it.Didn't know all the benefits.Thanks for the info.

shanaz on February 10, 2015:

I like it

Melissa Orourke from Roatán, Islas De La Bahia, Honduras on February 08, 2015:

Thank you,

We are living in Honduras and I am going to look for it!

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on December 15, 2014:

Thanks for the effusive praise of this fruit.

Good to know you like Chickoo and are fortunate enough to have a tree growing at home as well.

Time was, and it still is, a poor man's fruit as it is not so expensive here. As a kid we had vendors selling this fruit even in local railway trains in Mumbai. Around Mumbai this fruit was in plenty and having spent all my childhood and growing years in Mumbai I had a chance to savor the buttery taste and sweet aroma of this delicious fruit almost everyday.

Thanks for stopping by, Eliza.

Eliza on December 15, 2014:

Stumbled across this and enjoyed your post!!

I love this fruit! When I was a little girl it was a favorite falling in line with mango, star apples (aka caimito), sugar apples (aka custard apples or atis), soursop and jackfruit. To me, the chiku tastes like a fruit made or sweetened with lots of brown sugar. I would tell people it was "a little juicy, brown sugar fruit" in attempts to describe it's flavor. I have a tree here in Southern California but still waiting for it to mature enough so it will fruit. I cannot wait. ;) went to Hawaii last year and had freshly picked chiku from the trees. Yummmm... South Florida has tons of them too, especially in Miami. There is a popular fruit stand in Homestead, FL owned by a man named Robert that has plenty of chiku and Mamey type plus many more fruits that may be exotic to others who have not had the fortune to live in the tropics.

Thanks for writing this. Excellent read!

nilam patel on September 13, 2014:

Hi rajan i am from india and i have chiku farm also we r dealing in wholesale of chiku so if any company where chiku is to be used as a ingradients then we r ready to supply . Plz mail me meetpatel2012patel@gmail.com

bs yadav on August 16, 2014:

Sir

I have a tree of cheeku. Can you suggest me any medicine for growing.

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on March 31, 2014:

Thanks Shadaan, also for the share.

Shadaan Alam from India on September 08, 2013:

loved reading it, and i love eating it too, shared hub

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on September 07, 2013:

Thanks, Paul. It's nice to learn this information has been useful. I appreciate the votes and sharing too.

Paul Richard Kuehn from Udorn City, Thailand on September 07, 2013:

rajan,

This is a very interesting and useful hub. Now I know the name for that strange kiwi look a like which I have occasionally been eating here in Thailand. I have learned a lot and thank you for sharing this information. Voted up and sharing with followers and on Facebook. Also Pinning and Tweeting.

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on April 28, 2013:

Hi Peggy,

I have a hunch you might just find them in the Asian market. Thanks for pinning it. Much appreciated.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on April 28, 2013:

Hi again Rajan,

We do have a rather large Asian market that is near a Costco that we frequent. Will take a look and see if they have Chikoo or Sapodilla fruits for sale there. Will pin this to my Fruits board on Pinterest. I would really like to taste this fruit from your description of it.

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on April 21, 2013:

Did you try looking for them in the Asian market. You might come across them. Thanks for stopping by, GTF.

Claudia Mitchell on April 20, 2013:

These look good. Too bad I have never seen them here in the States. I love trying new fruits and vegetables.

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on April 11, 2013:

@Peggy-The taste is unlike any other fruit. Just sweet and the color externally is like a kiwi. Thanks.

@Ruchira-thanks for stopping by.

Ruchira from United States on April 10, 2013:

This is one fruit which is dearly missed. It's health benefits are awesome!

Thank you Rajan for a wonderful/interestinghub.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on April 10, 2013:

Hi Rajan,

This is a fruit that I have never heard of nor seen in our grocery stores. We do get kiwis which you said look similar. If they grow in Florida, I would think that they might also grow in South Texas, but I have never seen such a tree. How would you best describe their taste besides being buttery, smooth and sweet? Is it similar to any other well known fruit? Rating this up, useful and interesting. Will also share.

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on April 07, 2013:

@ Rasma - thanks and glad you like this info.

@ sweetie - thanks for coming by.

sweetie1 from India on April 07, 2013:

very useful.. voted up.

Gypsy Rose Lee from Daytona Beach, Florida on April 07, 2013:

Another great and informative hub. This was fascinating as I've never heard of the fruit. Passing this on.

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on April 05, 2013:

@ Joe - chickoo looks like a kiwi but when cut is totally different in looks and taste. You might just find it in Hawaii. Thanks for looking this up, my friend.

@ Bill - we are always learning! Always good to see yoy.

@ Bill - I'm sure you'll be able to locate it in Florida. Thanks for reading and sharing.

Bill De Giulio from Massachusetts on April 05, 2013:

Hi rajan. I have never heard of the Chikoo fruit or tree? How interesting. I will have to look for this next time we are in Florida. It's amazing how many interesting and healthy different fruits you come across. Another great job. Voting, sharing, etc.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on April 05, 2013:

And once again you have named a fruit I have never heard of. It is a big world my friend, and so much I do not know. Thank you for the introduction and education, and have a great weekend.

Hawaiian Odysseus from Southeast Washington state on April 05, 2013:

Good morning, Rajan!

This is yet another wonderful moment when I can say that I've learned something new. I have never heard of this fruit. However, because I have not lived for an extended amount of time in Hawai'i since the age of 18, I will ask my family if perhaps this fruit is now thriving there. If it is or has been there, and we just knew it by a different name, I'll be sure to get back to you. I'll have to see if it's sold in our grocery stores here...if not the fruit, then perhaps a derivative of it. Thanks for sharing, Rajan!

Joe

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on April 05, 2013:

@ Rumana - yes chickoo is a very loved fruit. Thanks for stopping by.

@ Jo - Thanks for the thumbs up. It is very popular in my country.

@ Girish - We still eat a lot of chiku. Thanks for the vote up.

@ Carol - I think they grow in Florida. Thanks for being so supportive of these hubs,

carol stanley from Arizona on April 05, 2013:

I love reading about all these different fruits...I am still concerned where to get them. Do they have them in the states and where. Thanks again for a great hub. Voting up and pinning.

Girish puri from NCR , INDIA on April 05, 2013:

Great share about Chikoo. I remember when i was very young, when ever i was having fever, my parents used to give me chikoo as meal, this is so powerful. thanks for the useful hub. God bless.

Jo Alexis-Hagues from Lincolnshire, U.K on April 05, 2013:

A delicious little fruit, loved it as a child but I haven't seen it lately, must remember to look out for it. Another gem. Up and sharing.

Rumana from Sharjah, UAE on April 05, 2013:

"Sapodilla" word is new for me. We just know it by chickoo .

I just love chickoo Milkshake. But I think chickoo is not found in all Countries (I didn't found it in Australia)

Your hub is very informative.

Voted up Useful!