Durian is one the local favorite fruits in South East Asia countries, especially in Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore and Indonesia. In fact, it is called “King of Fruits”. Most westerners are turned off by the strong pungest odor. That is why most high class hotels and airlines ban the fruits. Despite the smell, durian lovers have hundred reasons eating the fruit.
One of MunFitnessBlog.com readers recently sent an e-mail asking whether it is true that Durian has high cholesterol. He is a fan of durian, but due to his high blood pressure, he worries that the fruit does more harm than good.
The truth is that durian does NOT contain any cholesterol. Having said that, if you are diabetic or overweight, you may not want to overeat durian despite it is a fruit.
Every 100 gram of durian (just the pulp, without the seed) has about 150 calories. For comparison, 100 gram of banana has about 90 calories and 100 gram of apple has about 50 calories. So, how many seeds of durian made up of 100 gram? It should be about 6 to 9 seeds, depending on the pulp thickness.
Also, for 100 gram of durian, it has about 3.5 grams of fat, which is considered high among other fruits (apart from avocado which has significant amount of fat too).
Chinese believe that after eating durian, it gives you a feeling of “heatiness”. Is it true? Yes, in a way. Our metabolism increases during digestion of durian which our body temperature may increase slightly. This change takes place because durian is so dense in calories, demanding greater digestive effort. If you are eating 2 or 3 seeds, you will not feel any difference. But, if you eat many and not drinking enough water, you may feel the “heat”.
To counteract this heat, you can eat mangosteens after eating durian as it is considered to have the “cooling” effect. Some will drink salt water as a remedy to cool down. Others will pout water into the empty husk of durian and then drink the water from there. Just bear in mind that all these remedies have no scientific backup.
There is another story saying that if consuming durian and alcohol or coffee together may cause death. I spent some time trying to confirm this belief, but cannot find any. However, I do not mean that you should go and try it. Alcohol causes fast hydrolysis process which will break down water from your body, causing dehydration. So, with the “heat” by eating many seeds of durian and drinking lots of hard liquor, you are creating much stress to your body. If you are weak and cannot stand for the sudden change, who knows, you may be the casualty.
Durian is not a bad thing. It has higher level of antioxidant than other Asian fruits such as mangosteen, lychee and mango. Just like any other food, take it in moderation.
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