Plantain fufu is a classic meal made from plantain, which is an unripe green plant. Before it can be used, this unripe plantain is primarily processed into a paste. It is commonly referred to as “swallow” in West Africa due to its firm texture.
Plantain fufu or plantain amala is one of the most healthy Nigerian staple meals. It is made with unripe plantains, which are known to be low in sugar. Because of its great nutritional value, diabetologists highly recommend plantain fufu for diabetic patients. It can also be served with your favorite traditional soup.
Plantain fufu’s nutritional benefits cannot be overstated. As a result, we’ll look at the numerous nutritional value and health benefits of plantain fufu.
Nutritional Value in Plantain Fufu
Plantain fufu is a high-carb food that is also rich in fiber. The calories in one cup of plantain fufu is about 350, which is low compared to other Nigerian swallows.
Furthermore, they are an excellent source of fiber, vitamins A, C, and B-6, and the minerals magnesium and potassium.
7 Health Benefits of Plantain Fufu
The health benefits of plantain fufu are discussed below.
1. Beneficial to the digestive system
The fiber in plantain fufu helps to avoid constipation and allows for easier digestion. It is also a good source of insoluble fiber, which helps add bulk to your stool and lowers your risk for constipation.
2. Rich in antioxidants
Vitamin C, found in plantain fufu, is a powerful antioxidant. This aids in the immune system’s improvement. In one medical study, it was discovered that unripe plantains exhibited antioxidant activities, which destroyed free cell-damaging radicals.
3. Promotes a healthy heart
Potassium is high in plantain fufu, which is essential for cell and body fluid maintenance. It also regulates your blood pressure and heart rate. It also has a low cholesterol content, which helps to keep the heart healthy. In addition, the high fiber content in plantains also helps lower your cholesterol, which in turn keeps your heart performing at its best.
4. Good for weight management
A lot of Nigerian swallows are not necessarily ideal for weight loss or weight management. They are often high in carbohydrates, starch and low in fiber, but plantain fufu is different. Although it is high in carbs, the fiber and starch found in plantains are complex carbs, which are less processed and more slowly digested than the simple carbs found in other swallows.
Thus, plantain fufu keeps you fuller and more satisfied for a longer period of time, which prevents unhealthy snacking. It is also very delicious and can be eaten with any soup.
5. Improves eye health
Unripe plantain is equally an amazing source of vitamin A. In fact, 100 grams of unripe plantain contains about 360 mcg of vitamin A, which is about 40% of the required daily value. One of the main functions of vitamin A is its role in improving vision and eye health. It helps protect and maintain the cornea and the conjunctiva in the eye.
6. Good source of magnesium
Magnesium is very vital for your brain and body. It has a lot important functions such as regulating blood sugar levels to boosting athletic performance, converting food into energy, and strengthening the muscles. Plantain fufu is a decent source of magnesium.
7. Low glycemic index (GI)
The average glycemic index for unripe plantains is 45. When compared to other swallows like eba and semo, plantain amala contains minimal sugar and carbs, which reduces a spike in blood sugar. The glycemic index measures how much a particular food can affect your blood sugar levels. Foods with a low glycemic index like plantain fufu are good for managing your blood sugar levels.
How to Preserve Plantain Fufu
If you have any leftover plantain fufu and would like to preserve it, here’s what to do:
Wrap the leftover plantain fufu in clean nylon and store it in the refrigerator. If you leave it open, it will get strong and even impossible to swallow.
Gone are those days when we had limited traditional swallows such as eba, amala, etc. Now you have access to varieties of swallow, including plantain fufu. These health benefits of plantain fufu should convince you to eat it regularly. Also, plantain fufu is very easy to make and absolutely delicious.