Plums-Health-Benefits

Plums

by Chelsea Fisher on October 11, 2015

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Just Plum Perfect

By Chelsea Fisher

Plums, among the sweetest of the stone fruits, pack a surprisingly high antioxidant punch. They’re full of phenols, the antioxidants found in plants — so full that a 2009 study by Texas AgriLife Research at Texas A&M University found that the antioxidant content in plums matched or even exceeded that of blueberries, famed for their antioxidant power.

The purple fruits are a great source of dietary fiber, which is important for maintaining normal digestion. They also provide potent doses of vitamin C, which the American Cancer Society reports is important for skin, tendons, ligaments, bones, cartilage, blood vessels, and a healthy immune system.

Dried plums, otherwise known as prunes, also provide all that plum power, but make sure to partake in moderation. The antioxidants are concentrated in the dried fruit, and so are the natural sugars and calories.

 

 

Ann’s Tips

Look for plums without any obvious skin breaks or discolorations. Some plums have a naturally occurring white film on their skins. This is caused by naturally-occurring yeast, the presence of which may indicate that the plum has not been damaged or over-handled in transport. If plums are not ready at the market they will ripen on your kitchen counter. Dried plums, or prunes, should be plump and shiny, not too leathery or dry looking.  Try making our simple Stewed Prunes.

Recipe Tips

Plums are great in jams, jellies, cakes, tarts, and cobblers, and they can even make a sweet complement to savory food, like in our Chicken and Butternut Squash Tagine. Or try adding chopped, grilled plums to a salad with fresh greens, goat cheese, and walnuts. Boost your morning’s antioxidant power with a plum on top of our Healthy Fruity Oatmeal or cereal.

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