Figs or anjeer are seasonal fruits belonging to the mulberry family. This fruit is available in several colors like purple, red, yellow, black and green. It has a smooth skin and succulent flesh with small and crunchy seeds. Figs or anjeer have several health benefits as well as side effects when taken in excess. Read on further for knowing the various health benefits and side effects of figs or anjeer.
Health Benefits of Fig or Anjeer:
The presence of vitamins, minerals, and fiber in figs or anjeer along with the beneficial nutrients like vitamin A, Vitamin B1, vitamin B2, iron, calcium, phosphorus, sodium, manganese, chlorine and potassium; make the fruit a beneficial food with lots of health benefits.
Among all the noted health benefits of figs or anjeer are the benefits in treating constipation, piles, indigestion, diabetes, bronchitis, cough and asthma. Apart from all these, the fruit is also beneficial in weight loss. Let us know more about the health benefits of figs or anjeer in the following section.
Weight Loss Benefits of Fig or Anjeer:
The fiber content present in figs or anjeer aids in reducing weight and is thus mostly recommended for obese people. However it must be noted that their high calorie count can also lead to weight gain, especially when consumed with milk. So, you can eat few figs and not consume them in excess.
Hair Health Benefits of Figs or Anjeer:
- Figs are most popular natural ingredients used to create hair conditioners and masks. The extracts from figs or anjeer condition the hair and prevent breakage. Fig oil is also known to soothe out dry and damaged hair. You just need to add a few drops of the oil to your hair mask and apply it on the hair and scalp and wash it after an hour for getting silky and healthy hair.
- Figs or anjeer also aids in promoting healthy hair growth because of the nutrients like magnesium, Vitamin A, Vitamin C and Vitamin E, essential for maintaining healthy hair. These nutrients help in proper blood circulation in the scalp and thus accelerate the hair growth.
- High amount of Vitamin C present in figs or anjeer contribute to formation of collagen or a protein which makes the majority of our hair and scalp. This aids in thwarting loss of hair caused due to breakage and hair fall.
- Figs or anjeer are highly beneficial for maintaining the natural hair color. Copper content present in the fruit prevents premature greying
Skin Health Benefits of Figs or Anjeer:
- There are a lot of skin-friendly minerals and vitamins, such as copper, phosphorus, vitamin A, C and Vitamin E which help in getting a rejuvenated and refreshed skin.
- High amount of omega 3 fatty acids present in figs aid to keep the skin moisturized and well conditioned. You need to apply fig paste on the lips so as to treat cracked and dry lips.
- Figs or anjeer aids to treat skin conditions such as skin inflammations, abscess and boils. It is also beneficial in treating pimples. You need to apply fig paste on the skin for controlling control excess sebum secretion.
- Figs contain high water content which aids in flushing out the toxins and wastes from the body, treats pimples, eczema, and gives healthy and glowing skin. You can prepare a face pack by combining fig paste and yogurt and apply it on face and massage for few minutes. You can then wash after 15 minutes with lukewarm water.
- The rich amount of vitamin C in present in figs can help to lighten and even out your skin tone. You can prepare face mask by using fig paste, oatmeal powder and dried ginger powder and add few drops of bergamot oil and stir for forming a smooth paste. You can use this face mask 3-4 times in a week.
- The peels of figs act as an exfoliating agent to remove the dead cells from the skin. Presence of several active enzymes in the fruit makes it a source for natural exfoliation.
Benefits in Lowering Cholesterol:
One of the most known health benefits of figs or anjeer is that they help in lowering cholesterol. Figs or anjeer contain a soluble fiber namely Pectin. When fiber moves through the digestive system, it basically mops up excess clumps of cholesterol and also carries them to the excretory system of the body to be eliminated out of the body.
Figs or Anjeer are Beneficial in Preventing Coronary Heart Diseases:
Dried figs contain fatty acids like Omega-3, Omega-6, Phenol etc. which aid in reducing the risk of coronary heart disease. Apart from this, the leaves of figs or anjeer have been known to be effective in managing levels of triglycerides in an individual's system. Fig or anjeer leaves have an inhibitory effect on triglycerides and drops the overall number of triglycerides. It must be mentioned that triglycerides are among the major factors behind several heart diseases.
As mentioned earlier, fig or anjeer comprises of fiber and that aids in promoting healthy, regular bowel function and also prevents constipation. Fiber content present in the fruit works to add bulk and mass to bowel movement; and thus it not only prevents constipation, but also eliminated diarrhea and irregular bowel movements.
Prevents Colon Cancer:
The presence of high fiber content in figs or anjeer aids in stimulating the elimination of free radicals and other cancer causing substances; especially in the colon; as fiber increases the healthy bowel movements.
Figs or Anjeer Helps Manage Hypertension:
Most people generally take in sodium in form of salt, but fail to take high potassium content; and a low potassium and high sodium level may cause hypertension. Figs or anjeer being rich in potassium and low in sodium, they fight against the effects of hypertension. Thus, figs are a relaxing food for people with hypertension.
Benefits of Figs or Anjeer for Diabetic Patients:
As per The American Diabetes Association, it is recommended that figs or anjeer comprising a high fiber content and thus aids in promoting functional control of diabetes. Fig leaves reduce the amount of insulin required by diabetic patients who have to take insulin injections on a daily basis. Figs being rich in potassium, aids in regulating the amount of sugar which is absorbed in to the body after meals. So, diabetic patients can live a much normal life by taking figs or anjeer regularly.
Prevents Post-Menopausal Breast Cancer:
It is known that the fiber content present in figs is effective in protecting against breast cancer and post-menopausal breast cancer.
One more health benefit of figs or anjeer is that they help in treating bronchitis. The natural chemicals present in the leaves of figs make it an ideal component for a tea base. Fig leaf tea is popularly used to treat respiratory conditions like bronchitis and is also used to lessen the symptoms of asthma.
Benefits of Fig or Anjeer in Correcting Sexual Dysfunction:
Figs or anjeer have been known to be used in correcting sexual dysfunction such as sterility, erectile dysfunction or endurance. You need to soak 2-3 figs in milk overnight and eat them in the morning to enhance your sexual abilities.
Benefits in Treating Venereal Diseases:
Figs or anjeer have been traditionally used as a calming salve for venereal diseases. You can go for topical application or ingestion for relieving sexually transmitted diseases. However, it is essential for further research to be done on this.
Prevents Macular Degeneration:
Macular degeneration usually leads to vision loss in older people. Fruits including figs or anjeer are specially good at helping your avoid macular degeneration and vision loss due to aging.
For Throat Infection:
It is known that figs or anjeer are beneficial in healing and protecting sore throats. The high content of mucilage present in the fruit helps to fight against throat infection. The soothing nature of figs or anjeer and their juices can relieve pain and stress on the vocal chords. Whooping cough and asthma symptoms can also be treated by figs.
Health Benefits of figs or anjeer in urinary calcium loss:
Individual who take high sodium diet may be affected by increased urinary calcium loss. The high potassium content present in figs or anjeer aids to avoid that condition and regulates the content of waste in your urine. It minimizes the calcium you lose, while increasing the amount of uric acid and various other harmful toxins which you want to get out of your body.
Figs or anjeer are loaded with calcium which is one of the most important components of strengthening bones and reducing the risk of osteoporosis. It is also loaded with phosphorus which encourages bone formation and spurs re-growth if there is any damage or degradation to bones.
Side Effects of Fig or Anjeer:
Increases Risk of Calcium Deficiency:
Eating excess of figs or anjeer is harmful for bones due to the presence of oxalates in them. These oxalates interfere the absorption of calcium in the body and thus lead to calcium deficiency. Calcium deficiency can make our bones weak and brittle and also increase the risk of osteoporosis and hypocalcemia. Memory loss, muscle spasms, depression, hallucinations, numbness and tingling sensation in feet, hands and face are some of the symptoms of calcium deficiency.
Harmful For Liver and Intestine:
One of the most dangerous side effects of figs or anjeer is their ability to harm intestines and liver. They are harmful for intestine because their seeds are very hard and do not get digested easily and these seeds can cause obstruction in the intestine and harm them
Increases Skin Sensitivity to Sun:
Figs are known to be beneficial for skin because of the presence of antioxidants in them. However, figs or anjeer is not so good for the skin as it increase the sensitivity of the skin to the sun. UV rays from the sun are extremely harmful to our skin and by increasing the sensitivity of the skin towards the sun, figs increase the risk of several conditions such as premature ageing, skin cancer and melanoma. Sometimes, this can also result in skin rashes. So, if you are consuming a lot of figs then you need to avoid prolonged exposure to the sun, else limit the amount of figs or anjeer to intake regularly.
Excess of Fig or Anjeer Can Cause Gas or Bloating:
Side effects of stomach ache along with other stomach problems like bloating, gas, loose stools etc can be caused by excessive consumption of figs. So, it is essential for you to take controlled amount of figs or anjeer.
Retinal, Rectal and Vaginal Bleeding:
One more side effects of eating too much of figs or anjeer is that it may cause retinal bleeding, rectal and a slight vaginal bleeding too because of its warm nature. In certain cases, it may also cause hemolytic anemia or anaemia caused by abnormal breakdown of RBCs. The best way to keep away from this side effect is to eat figs in limited quantity. Make sure to reach your doctor in case you are suffering from retinal, rectal or vaginal bleeding due to excessive figs consumption
Increases risk of Hypoglycemia:
Eating figs is highly beneficial for the people suffering from diabetes because of their ability to lower blood sugar levels in the body. However this may be a disadvantage for those individuals who are already suffering from low blood sugar level.
It is essential for you to note that you must avoid figs if you are suffering from diabetes or already taking medication for lowering the blood sugar level. This can result in symptoms like blurred vision, sudden nervousness, hunger, headache, rapid heartbeat, pale skin, trouble focusing etc.
Excess of Fig or Anjeer can cause Allergic reactions:
It is very true that figs are good for health. However, not each one of us enjoy the benefits. Some individuals suffer from allergic reactions after eating figs. Some major side effects or allergic reactions caused by excess of figs or anjeer in some people include rhinitis, conjunctivitis, anaphylactic shock etc. so, in case you are allergic to figs, do avoid the fruit.
Side Effects of Figs or Anjeer in Patients with Kidney and Gall Bladder Problems:
It must be noted that figs are not at all suitable for people who are suffering from kidney or gall bladder problems and diseases. This is because figs contain oxalates and consuming figs contain oxalates and consuming excess of figs while suffering from kidney and gall bladder problem can worsen the situation. Apart from this, figs can also harm the spleen and harm our immune system.
Figs or Anjeer can be harmful for Pregnant and Breast Feeding Women:
It can be problematic for pregnant and breastfeeding women if a lot of figs are consumed. Small consumption of fresh or dried figs or anjeer during pregnancy or breastfeeding phase is safe; however a large amount of the fruit during this stage may affect the pregnant and breastfeeding mothers. It is better to avoid more of figs or to consult with doctor about the same
Figs or anjeer are harmful for patients who have to undergo surgery:
Figs may be harmful for people who have to undergo surgery. Eating figs or anjeer can lower the blood sugar level in the body. This is a point of concern as the fruit may interfere with the blood sugar control during and after surgery. This is the reason it is advised to stop consuming figs at least 14 days prior to and after scheduled surgery.
It is now known that figs or anjeer have a lot of health benefits as well as excessive intake of figs can cause several side effects to the body. So, it is best to consume figs only in limited amount and keep away from the fruit if you are having any medical condition that doesn't permit taking figs or if you are allergic to figs or anjeer.