Sweet, juicy stone fruits are the best way to describe summer. From peaches and cherries to plums and mangoes, these fruits will make any meal taste sweeter. The best part is that you can feel good about eating them because they have a lot of good nutrients.
In fact, stone fruits are full of phytonutrients that help fight inflammation. These can protect your health and even help fight the signs of ageing. They also give stone fruits their bright yellow, orange, red, or purple colours.
Stone fruits are called that because they all have a pit or stone in the middle. Another interesting fact is that the stone isn't a seed. The seed of the fruit is inside the stone.
What is stone fruit?
A stone fruit, which is also called a drupe, is a kind of fruit with a big stone or pit in the middle. Most of these fruits come from the Prunus genus and have thin skins and soft insides.
Unlike most other fruits, stone fruits stop ripening as soon as they are picked. This makes the stone fruit season a bit short. But different kinds ripen at different times, so it's easy to find a lot of different kinds all year long.
Botanically, there are a lot of different kinds of stone fruits, from common ones like peaches, plums, and raspberries to less common ones like green almonds, which are a type of stone fruit with a fuzzy hull.
Fruits on the list of stone fruits are full of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, just like other kinds of fruit. These nutrients could help improve bone health, help you lose weight, boost your immune system, and more.
Which fruit classifies as a stone fruit?
Officially, they are fruits with a fleshy outside called the mesocarp (which is covered by a skin called the exocarp) and a stone or pit inside called the pit (the shell of which is a hardened endocarp with a seed inside). Peaches, plums, apricots, cherries, nectarines, and pluots are all in this group, which is also called "drupes."
Is mango a stone fruit?
A mango is a drupe, which means it has a thin outer layer, a solid middle layer, and a hard outer layer. Endocarp is the hard, stone-like layer on the inside of a mango. This layer is what makes a mango a stone-like fruit.
Top 12 varieties of stone fruit:
Health benefits of stone fruit:
Stone fruits can help your body fight off sickness
Stone fruits are full of antioxidants like vitamin C, which can help you build a strong immune system and make summer colds less severe and last less long. This "wonder vitamin" makes more white blood cells, which fight infections and help keep viruses from getting into the body.
Stone Fruits can help make collagen
Vitamin C is also important for making collagen, a protein that keeps your skin healthy, strong, and flexible. About a quarter of your daily vitamin C needs can be found in one cup of sliced plums or apricots. Hello, firm, young skin!
Stone Fruits keep nerves and muscles in good shape
Potassium is important for keeping your nerves and muscles in good shape. If you don't get enough potassium, you may feel tired, irritable, and have high blood pressure. Most people eat bananas when they need potassium, but stone fruits are also great sources. A medium banana has the same amount of potassium as two small peaches.
Stone Fruits fight obesity and diabetes
Recent research has found that nectarines, plums, and peaches contain a unique mix of compounds that may help fight metabolic syndrome, a condition in which obesity and inflammation lead to serious health problems like diabetes and heart disease.
Stone Fruits make your vision better
Carotenoids are a type of antioxidant that can help strengthen your eyesight, skin membranes, and immune system. This is why apricots, peaches, and nectarines have such a bright orange colour. When the fruit is cooked, the body can use these miracle pigments even more. For a healthy dessert, try poached peaches or baked apricots.
Stone Fruits helps in digestion
Stone fruits are a great source of fibre, which helps your body break down food quickly and easily. This makes you feel full for longer. Fibre has also been shown to help people with diabetes, high cholesterol levels in the blood, and keeping their weight down.
Stone Fruits make bones and teeth stronger
Vitamin K is often overlooked, but it's important for keeping your bones and teeth healthy and lowering your risk of tooth decay and diseases like osteoporosis and osteoarthritis. Plums are the best source of vitamin K. Two of these plump, purple fruits give you about one tenth of the vitamin K you need every day.
How to include stone fruits in your diet?
- Cook them on the grill: Put oil or cooking spray on your grill and place your favourite stone fruit with the cut side down for 3 to 4 minutes. Before serving, sprinkle some brown sugar on top or drizzle on your favourite glaze.
- Freeze them: You can cut up some peaches, cherries, or mangoes and keep them in the freezer so that you can make a tasty smoothie in the morning.
- Can them: Canned peaches make a quick and tasty dessert or topping for oatmeal.
- Blend them: Instead of OJ in the morning, try cherry juice, which can help with inflammation, or prune juice, which can help with digestion. Or, keep some apricot or peach nectar in the fridge to add to teas, gravies, and glazes.
- Eat the dried ones: You can add dried cherries or apricots to muffins, pancakes, scones, and trail mix.