Amazing Benefits of Plums for Skin, Hair and Health – Plums are one of the rarely available fruits in India, and if you manage to get hold of them, then consider yourself lucky! The reason being, there are amazing benefits of plums for our health and beauty. Plums are delicious juicy fruit and available in a variety of color. We call it plum when the fruit is fresh, and prunes when it is dried. But both types are full of nutrients. Plums are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. They are loaded with Vitamin A, C, K, B1, B2, B3, as well as Vitamin E. Also, the fruit comes with minerals, such as potassium, calcium, zinc, etc. Also, plums are low in calorie but high in dietary fiber.
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Before we start exploring the benefits of plums for skin, hair and health, lets first introduce ourselves to this amazing fruit.
What are Plums
Plums are juicy and delicious fruit that belongs to the genus Prunas domestica of the Rosaceae family that also include peaches, apricots, almonds and nectarine. There are 2000 different varieties of plums which are available in different colors and shapes. In general, plums are divided in three categories – European-Asian Plums, Japanese Plums and Damson plums. The first two varieties are commercially more important than the last one.
Plums grow in small shrubs, which is grown all across the globe, specially in China, Japan, US and Europe. The trees normally grow to a height of 10-15 meters. Plums are a type of stone fruit with a smooth pit and the pulp inside varies in color from creamy yellow to crimson red. The outer skin of the fruit also varies in color and can be yellow, dark red, purple or black in color.
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China is the leading nation in plum harvesting. Within the US, California is the place where most of the production happens. India is not a major harvester of plums. There are 12 varieties of plums available in India with Himachal Pradesh, Punjab and Jammu and Kashmir being the major producer.
Nutritional Value of Plums
Plums are 87% water, 11% carbohydrates, 1% protein and less than 1% fat. A 100 gm of raw plum can provide 46 calories. It also contains a significant amount of Vitamin C. Along with that, there are more than 80 nutrients found in plums. Here is a list of some –
Protein – 1.5 g, 3%
Total Carbohydrate – 20.7 g, 7%
Dietary Fiber – 3.6 g 15%
Sugars – 14.0 g
Vitamin A – 408IU 8%
Vitamin C – 97.5 mg 163%
Thiamin 0.1mg – 7%
Vitamin E (Alpha Tocopherol) – 0.2 mg 1%
Vitamin K – 0.0 mcg 0%
Riboflavin – 0.1 mg 5%
Niacin – 0.7 mg 4%
Vitamin B6 – 0.1 mg 7%
Folate – 56.1 mcg 14%
Vitamin B12 – 0.0 mcg 0%
Pantothenic Acid – 0.4 mg 4%
Choline -13.9 mg
Betaine – 0.2 mg
Total Fat – 0.2g 0%
Omega-3 fatty acids – 14.8 mg
Omega-6 fatty acids – 38.0 mg
Calcium 71.0 mg 7%
Iron 0.2 mg 1%
Plums in Different Languages –
- Aloo Bukhara in Hindi
- Alpagoda Pandu in Telugu
- Alpakoda in Tamil
- Onagida Draakshe in Kannada
Benefits of Plums for Skin, Hair and Health
Lets get started with the list of all the benefits of plums for our skin, hair and health. We will begin our list with the plum benefits for our skin.
1. Anti Aging Benefits of Plums
Plum has anti aging properties for our skin. It is very effective in reducing the appearances of aging signs, such as wrinkles, fine lines, age spots, etc. Plum is super beneficial to prevent premature aging, because of its anti oxidant components. It contains Vitamin C, E as well as beta-carotene which fights off the free radicals and protect our body cells from oxidative damage. This way, plum works to keep aging signs at bay. Furthermore, the anti inflammatory benefits of plums play a vital role in promoting the elasticity of our skin. It boosts blood circulation in our skin as well as reduces inflammation.
How to use plums for anti aging
Take 1-2 plums and take out the pulp. Mash the pulp and then mix it with either rose water or cucumber juice. Apply the resultant mixture all over the face. Allow it to sit for 15-20 minutes. Wash off with normal water. Repeat regularly.
2. Improves Skin Texture
One of the major benefits of plums for our skin is that it has the ability to improve firmness of our skin, and also improves skin tone. This can be attributed to the high amount of Vitamin C in plum. Vitamin C is a strong anti oxidant that boosts the collagen production. It does the job by increasing the production of hydroxyproline and hydroxylysine in our body. These are two compounds which are needed for binding the molecules that produce collagen. And collagen, as we already know, is a type of protein that plays a vital role in production and texture of our skin, hair etc. Lack of collagen can lead to dull, saggy and lifeless skin.
How to use plum to improve skin texture
Drinking plum juice on daily basis is very helpful in enhancing the collagen production and thus rejuvenates the skin.
3. Complexion Booster
Next comes this one on our list of best benefits of plums for skin. Plums work as natural complexion booster. This benefit can be attributed to its vitamin C content. Vitamin C is well known for its ability to lighten scars and marks and brighten complexion over time. Plums contain a high amount of vitamin C, which is why it is considered beneficial to treat dark spots, skin discoloration as well as age spots. Also plum can improve blood flow in the skin, which also helps in minimizing the appearances of marks and scars.
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How to use plum to boost complexion
- Mash two to three ripe plums in a bowl and apply the pulp directly to your face and neck. Let it sit for 15-20 minutes. Rinse off with luke warm water. Repeat regularly for best results.
- Alternatively, prepare plum pulp by following the directions mentioned above. Add two tbsp of honey to that and mix both of them nicely. Apply the mixture on your face and neck and massage for few minutes in circular motions. Let it sit for another 10-12 minutes and wash off with fresh, cold water.
4. Cures Acne
If you are suffering from acne and pimples and looking for a natural solution, then plums can be your best bet. Plums contain high amount of vitamin C, which is quite effective in treating acne. Vitamin C is a powerful anti oxidant, which prevent our skin from the inflammation and scarring related to acne. It also boosts collagen production and collagen is extremely important for healthy skin. It also helps to bring down the redness associated with acne. Plums also come with vitamin A in them, which is another important nutrient to fight acne and acne scars. It promotes healthy skin cell production which is important in acne treatment.
How to use plums to treat acne
Take 1-2 plums and take out the pulp. Mash the pulp and mix it with fresh cucumber juice. Apply the mixture on the face, specially on the affected parts. Keep it on for 15-20 minutes and then wash off with fresh water.
5. Treats Sun Damage
Since summer is already here, so you must know about this benefits of plums. Plums can be really effective in treating sun damage. The reason being, plums are loaded with anti oxidant like vitamin C and vitamin E. These anti oxidants fight off free radicals, boost new cell growth, preserves the youthfulness of our skin as well as prevent the skin from getting rough and wrinkled due to severe sun damage.
How to use plums to treat sun damage
- First boil a few plums and take out the extracts. Add a tsp yogurt and blend together. Apply the resultant mixture on to the face and neck. Allow it to sit for 15-20 minutes and wash it off with fresh cold water.
- Eating plums on regular basis is also very effective in protecting our skin from the harmful UV rays of sun.
6. Reduces Puffy Eyes
Plums are also very effective in treating under eye puffiness. This fruit can boost blood flow in the skin and as a result, reduces the puffiness under the eyes. Also plums contain vitamin C, which helps in brightening the under eye area and rejuvenating the same.
How to use plums to treat under eye puffiness
Take a plum and cut it into thin slices. Put them over the eyes and keep them for around 10-15 minutes. Remove the slices and splash some fresh water on the eyes. Pat dry and then apply an eye cream. Do this regularly to see noticeable result.
Benefits of Plums for Hair
We have seen the major benefits of plums for our skin, now lets find out benefits of plums for our hair.
7. Cures Dandruff
We are starting our list of best benefits of plums for hair with this one. Dandruff is a stubborn problem and it is quite difficult to find an ideal solution. Plums can also help you to get rid of dandruff. They are rich in vitamin C, which plays a vital role in controlling dandruff effectively. Plums can also fight off the bacteria on our scalp and soothes the irritated scalp. Dandruff, if not treated timely, results in clogged hair follicles and thus it damages the follicles and stops hair growth. Plums help to get rid of the dandruff, unclog the follicles and encourage hair growth. Also plums can improve blood circulation in the scalp, which lead to healthy scalp and nourished hair follicles.
8. Treats Hair Loss
Here comes another major benefits of plums for our hair. Hair loss is something that make us lose our sleep over it. And most of the times the treatments are quite expensive. If you are looking for a natural alternative, then keep on reading. Plums can reverse adrenal gland fatigue. This is very important to stop hair loss and encourage new hair growth, because adrenal glands are super important to maintain the proper hormonal balance in our body. If the hormonal balance gets disrupted, it can lead to several health problems including hair loss.
9. Strong and Healthy Hair
Plums can give us stronger and healthier hair. We have already seen that this fruit is loaded with vitamin C and vitamin E. Both of these are powerful anti oxidants, which fight off the free radicals and prevent them from doing any damage to our hair follicles and scalp. This way plum ensures that our hair doesn’t become weak and brittle. Vitamin E in plum strengthens the cell membranes and also stops the free radicals from making any damage to the hair follicles. Plums come with high amount of iron which improves the blood circulation as well as repairs the capillaries and leads to stronger, thicker and healthier hair.
10. Prevents Premature Greying
Next comes this one on our list of top benefits of plums for hair. Premature greying of hair is a very common problem this days. However, this is quite embarrassing as well. Plums are one of those few fruits which can help you to prevent premature greying of hair. It is a highly pigmented fruit that helps in retaining the natural color of the hair. Plums are very nutritious and rich in anti oxidants, which combat the free radicals and protect our hair cells from oxidative stress.
How to use Plums for Hair Care
Eating plums on regular basis is a great way to enjoy all the hair benefits of plums. Also there are couple of DIY hair masks made of plum that can also be quite beneficial in treating hair problems. Check them out below –
- Squeeze out juice from couple of plums. Mix the fresh plum juice with one whisked egg. Once the hair mask is ready, apply this on the scalp and massage the hair roots. Let it sit for an hour and then wash off with a mild shampoo.
- Take 1-2 plums and take out the pulp. Mash the pulp and mix it with equal quantity of lemon juice and fresh yogurt. Once it forms a smooth paste, apply this all over the hair from roots to the tips. Let it sit for an hour and wash off using a mild shampoo. Repeat once or twice in a week.
Benefits of Plums for Health
After discussing all the plum benefits for skin and hair, now we will find out benefits of plums for health.
11. Rich in Anti Oxidants
This is one of the major plum benefits for health. Plums contain vitamin C and few phyto nutrients such as lutein, cryptoxanthin, zeaxanthin, neochlorogenic and chlorogenic acid. All these components have anti oxidant properties, which help in preventing the damage caused by destructive oxygen radicals known as superoxide anion radicals. This way plums help protecting our body cells from oxidative stress. Plums also contain phenols, which protects the essential fats present in the neurons and cell membranes against any injuries due to oxidative stress. The anti oxidant benefits of plums also help in improving our memory by neutralizing the cell damaging free radicals. Furthermore, zeaxanthin present in plums protect us from the harmful effects of UV rays.
12. Treats Obesity
Plums can detoxify our body and prevent constipation. Also it can boost our metabolism and thus help in losing weight naturally. The fiber and anti oxidants present in plums help in proper digestion. Studies have shown that plums can boost metabolism rate, which means burning calories at a higher rate. Also the citric acid present in the plum can prevent tiredness and muscle cramps during a workout session. This way plums ensure you enjoy a smooth workout session. It also improves our liver function and helps in detoxifying our body. All these together aid in weight loss.
13. Control Diabetes
This is one of the major health benefits of plums. Plums are quite low in glycemic index, which is why they are considered good for those suffering from diabetes, specially type 2. It helps in controlling blood sugar level. Also the phyto nutrients present in plums can control the blood glucose level and reduce triglyceride levels in our body. Studies have also proved that the flavonoids present in plum have protective effects against insulin resistance in our body. That’s why it is recommended that diabetic patients must incorporate plums in their diet.
14. Aids in Digestion
Plums are good for our digestive system. They are a good source of dietary fiber as well as couple of components known as sorbitol and isatin. They help in regulating our digestive system. Sorbitol and isatin have laxative effect and they encourage fluid secretion in the bowels and promote flushing of toxins through our colon. Researches have proved that dried plums or prunes are even more effective in treating digestive disorders such as constipation.
15. Improves Bone Health
Studies have shown that eating plums on regular basis has positive effect on our bone health, specially in post-menopausal women. The rich amount of phenolic and flavonoid compounds present in plums help in reversing bone loss. It also contains boron, which is beneficial in preserving our bone density and overall improvement in our bone health.
16. Boosts Heart Health
Consuming plums on regular basis is quite beneficial for our heart. The anti oxidant benefits of plum can effectively destroy the free radicals and thus, prevents oxidation of cholesterol. When the cholesterol gets oxidized, it gets accumulated in the arteries which further can lead to various heart problems, like high cholesterol and strokes. Also, plums contain potassium, which is an important mineral that maintain proper blood pressure level and controls heart rate. Furthermore, plums are also beneficial for preventing platelet clotting, which can otherwise lead to various diseases like arthrosclerosis, stroke, high blood pressure as well as coronary heart disease. The presence of Vitamin B6 in plums increases the amount of homocysteine and aids in reducing the risk of heart attack. Also plums contain Vitamin C which is extremely helpful for controlling heart diseases in those suffering from diabetes.
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17. Prevents Cancer
This is one of the major plum benefits for our health. Studies have proved that plums are quite beneficial in preventing breast, gastrointestinal and respiratory tract cancers. Plum is particularly beneficial in treating breast cancer. The antioxidant properties of plum prevents spreading of cancerous cells without doing any harm to the healthy cells. Also, the vitamin A present in plums are known to be effective against oral and cavity cancer.
18. Good for Pregnant Ladies
Plums are considered very useful during pregnancy. The rich amount of vitamins and minerals present in plums are vital for eye-sight, development of bones and tissues as well as cellular health for the mother and the growing baby. What’s more, plums are rich in fiber. This fiber content helps in better digestion and also prevents constipation. Regular consumption of plum as a part of a healthy and balanced diet helps in fighting various infections and also maintains the overall health.
How to Select and Store Plums?
Plums are generally available from May to September. While buying plums, go for the ones that are rich in color and have slight whitish bloom. This is a indication that the plums have not been over handled. Try to avoid the overly ripe and soft ones. The slightly unripe plums can be kept in the room temperature for a couple of days until they turn ripe. The ripe ones should be placed in the fridge and dried plums or prunes can be kept at room temperature for a few days.
Side Effects of Plum
- Plums contain oxalic acid. It is a naturally occurring substance that can accumulate or crystallize as oxalate stones and lead to health complications, such as kidney or gallbladder stones. People who are suffering from such health conditions should avoid eating plums.
- Prunes or dried plums are treated with sulfites to prevent the oxidation of phenols in the prunes as it can darken the fruit and turn it brown. People who have sensitivity towards sulfites should be careful about their intake of plums.
These were 18 best benefits of plums for our skin, hair and health. Do you love eating plums? Share your story with us in the comment box below 🙂