The Star Fruit is also known as Carambola. It is of oriental origin despite its Spanish sounding name. It has distinctive ridges running on the sides. When crossed sectioned it resembles a star and thus it derived its name. The whole fruit is edible. It is crunchy and juicy. It is light green or yellow in color. The pulpy fruit may be either sweet or sour depending on the amount of oxalic acid content. The ripe ones may have a few seeds which are also edible.
The calorie content of a starfruit is very less. One large fruit of about 4 1/2” long has 39 calories. Calories gained from fat content in starfruit are 4%. Total Fat is 0.4g with no saturated fat or monosaturated fat content. No Cholesterol is present in this fruit. It has 3mg of Sodium, total Carbohydrates of 8.5g, Dietary Fiber 3.6g, Sugars 5.1g and Protein 1.3g. It is a good source of Vitamin C with 73% content, Vitamin A 2%, Iron 1% but 0% Calcium. The total amount of carbohydrates in a starfruit is 79%, while 12 % is fat. It is not correct to say that this is a fat free fruit, but if consumed in limited amount, the other health benefits of starfruit can be derived.
This fruit has many health benefits like it is a rich source of antioxidants, potassium and vitamin C. It is low in sugar and sodium. Starfruit is also a good source of B-Complex Vitamins such as riboflavin, folates and pyridoxine. The juice of a starfruit is used as a diuretic in many cultures. The fruit contains oxalic acid which is harmful for people suffering from kidney stones, or kidney failure or those undergoing dialysis. The fruit is used differently in different cultures, the Chinese use it with fish; the Australians use it for pickles, or jams and also as a vegetable.