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Fruits & Vegetables

Feijoa

Botanical Name: Acca sellowiana
Family: Myrtaceae
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Myrtales
Genus: Acca
Species: A. sellowiana

Synonyms:
*Feijoa sellowiana (O.Berg) O.Berg
*Orthostemon sellowianus O.Berg

Common Names: Common names include Feijoa, Pineapple guava and Guavasteen, although it is not a true guava. It has been nicknamed “Pineapple guava”, “Brazilian guava”, “Fig guava” or “Guavasteen”

Habitat: Feijoa is native to the highlands of southern Brazil, eastern Paraguay, Uruguay, northern Argentina, and Colombia.

Description:
Fejioa is an evergreen, perennial shrub or small tree, 1–7 metres (3.3–23.0 ft) in height. tree which is much branched growing from 1 to 5 meters high having reddish grey bark and cylindrical trunk which appears to be rough and flaky. The tree bears elliptical to ovate leaves which are shortly petiolate, opposite having entire margin and obtuse apex rounded at base. Leaves measures 3 to 8 cm long, 2 to 4 cm wide. Upper surface is glossy and dark green and lower surface is tomentose and silvery white. The tree bears attractive flowers in pinkish red color. Flowers are solitary in lowest two or four leaf axils and measures 3 to 4 cm across. Petals are broad elliptic to spoon shaped, reflexed and whitish having red center. There are numerous stamens measuring 2.5 cm long having yellow anthers. Flowers are then replaced by oblong to ovoid fruit measuring 5 to 8 cm by 3 to 6 cm diameter. The texture of the skin differs from smooth to rough enclosing a thick and white, sweet to subacid flesh. The translucent pulp is enclosed with numerous small seeds in oblong shape. The climate preferred by Fejioa tree is mild summers and cool winters to bear fruit.

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Fruit: Fruit measuring 5 to 8 cm long by 3 to 6 cm diameter, is oblong to ovoid in shape having persistent calyx segments complied to apex. It has waxy skin in blue or grayish green or dull blue to green color. The texture of the skin varies from rough to smooth. The fruit possess long lasting perfume. Flesh of the fruit is white, thick, granular and translucent which is enclosed with seeds. The taste resembles the combination of guava and pineapple or strawberry and pineapple. There are about 20 to 40 small seeds in oblong shape which is hardly noticeable.

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The fruit matures in autumn, is green, ellipsoid, and about the size of a chicken egg. It has a sweet, aromatic flavour, which tastes like pineapple, apple and mint. The flesh is juicy and is divided into a clear, gelatinous seed pulp and a firmer, slightly granular, opaque flesh nearer the skin. The fruit falls to the ground when ripe and at its fullest flavour, but it may be picked from the tree prior to falling to prevent bruising.

Edible Uses:
Due to the impressive supply of nutrients and unique flavor, it is used for various culinary applications and also used as an ingredient in desserts, smoothies, chutneys, cocktails and stewed fruit dishes. Although the skin is edible, the fruit usually is eaten by cutting it in half, then scooping out the pulp with a spoon. The fruit has a juicy, sweet seed pulp and slightly gritty flesh nearer the skin. Feijoa may be torn or bitten in half and the contents squeezed out and consumed. An alternative method is to bite the end off and then tear the fruit in half length-wise, exposing a larger surface with less curvature and using one’s teeth to scrape the pulp out closer to the skin.

The fruit pulp resembles the closely related guava, having a gritty texture. The feijoa pulp is used in some natural cosmetic products as an exfoliant. Feijoa fruit has a distinctive, potent smell that resembles that of a fine perfume. The aroma is due to the ester methyl benzoate and related compounds that exist in the fruit.

A feijoa may be used as an interesting addition to a fruit smoothie and may be used to make wine or cider and feijoa-infused vodka. The flavour is aromatic, strong and complex, inviting comparison with guava, strawberry, pineapple, and often containing a faint wintergreen-like aftertaste. It also is possible to buy feijoa yogurt, fruit drinks, jam, ice cream, and such in New Zealand. It also may be cooked and used in dishes where one would use stewed fruit. It is a popular ingredient in chutney. The very strong, complex flavour can make using feijoas, in combination with other fruits or vegetables, a creative and complex undertaking.

The flower petals are edible, with a slightly sweet flavor with hints of cinnamon. The most common use is as an addition to salads.

Health Benefits:
Feijoa provides numerous health benefits such as improvement in digestion, assist weight loss, boost immune system, lower cholesterol levels, decrease blood pressure, increase bone strength, balance metabolism, optimize uptake of nutrients, regulate blood sugar levels and stimulate cognitive function.

Medicinal Uses:
*Treat inflammatory bowel disease
*Prevent bacteria
*Lower inflammation
*Prevents Cancer
*Prevents constipation
*Improves heart health
*Mood enhancer
*Improve immunity
*Regulation of blood pressure

Other Uses: They are regularly consumed by birds. Besides its sweet fruit, it is also cultivated for ornamental purposes.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acca_sellowiana
https://www.healthbenefitstimes.com/feijoa/

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