Historically, This fruit can also be found in some West African countries such as Ghana where it is known as Yoyi, Sierra Leone and Senegal. Also scientifically called Dialium guineense Wild, the black velvet tamarind is potentially a great source of nutrients for human food.
However, Pulp fruit is edible and sweet, rich in vitamin C, sodium, iron, magnesium and potassium. It is used as flavor in snacks and non alcoholic beverages, According to Nutrition, here are a few health benefits of this ‘potent’ fruit…
1. Treats Ulcer and Prevents Hypertension
The leave extract of velvet tamarind has the ability to increase gastric mucus secretion. Therefore, a decoction of the leave can be a remedy for gastric ulcer. The leaves are also highly diuretic-promotes the production of urine, making it easier for the heart to pump blood hence, reducing the risk of hypertension.
According to research, the leave extract inhibits the growth of plasmodium falciparum which causes malaria therefore; taking a decoction can cure malaria.
3. Improves Oral hygiene and cures Tooth ache
The stem used as chewing stick (indigenous tooth brush) contains saponin which adds cleaning effect to the teeth and at the same time removes plaques and caries on the teeth of users. The stem bark decoction is also used to treat tooth ache.
4. Anti-inflammatory and Anti-microbial Properties
The fruit pulp contains abundant vitamin C which fights against microbial infections. The stem bark has the ability to reduce inflammation in bronchial tubes that arises due to bronchitis.
5. Jaundice and Diabetes Management
A decoction of velvet tamarind leaves is used in preparing medicinal solution for curing jaundice. It also lowers blood sugar and increases insulin sensitivity hence, can be used to treat diabetes.
6. Reliefs Menstrual Cramp and stops Diarrhoea
The stem bark extract has significant analgesic property hence, can be used to reduce menstrual pain. You can take it along with papaya leaf, salt and water to work effectively. It can also stop diarrhoea.
7. Hemorrhoids (pile)
Piles are swollen veins in the anal canal caused by too much pressure in the pelvic and rectal areas and while not life threatening, these veins can be very painful. A study performed on ethanolic leaves extract of velvet tamarind showed it to be beneficial for pile treatment.
8. Treats Scurvy and Wounds
The fruit pulp has high ascorbic acid content which is an anti-scurvy vitamin hence used as food supplement. Tender leaves of velvet tamarind, when squeezed and applied on wounds, stimulates the growth of healthy skin and protects the wounds against germs and moisture.
9. Improves lactation and checks genital infections
A review of several studies has concluded that chewing the fruit pulp increase secretion of milk as well as check infections.
10. Increases the Antioxidant Capacity of the body oxidative damage which involves free radicals – highly reactive molecules with unpaired electrons, is believed to be one of the mechanisms behind ageing and many diseases. The abundance of antioxidants in the leaves helps protect the human body from damage caused by these free radicals when taken.