Fruits are formed from flowers and they are the ripened ovary or ovaries of a flowering plant together with the adjacent tissues. Most fruits are fleshy and pulpy or juicy and are pleasantly sweet and have a distinct appealing flavour when ripe. Fruits provide several health benefits and eating the recommended amount of fruit every day can reduce the risk of chronic diseases.
Fruits contain high amount of moisture hence they are highly perishable. They are also good sources of fibre. Apples, pears, cherries, grapes and citrus fruits contain flavonoids which act as antioxidants.
Fruits particularly citrus varieties and guava are a good source of vitamin
Gooseberry is the richest source of vitamin C.
Yellow fruits like mango and papaya contain β carotene. Banana is a good source of carbohydrate and energy. Fruits are a poor source of protein and fat with the exception of avocado.
Fruits also contain fibre and minerals such as sodium, potassium and magnesium. They are not a good source of calcium. Dry fruits and Seetha phal and (custard apple) contribute appreciable amounts of iron.
Fruits can be classified as:
Berries: Strawberries, gooseberries, blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, cranberries
Citrus fruits: Sweet limes, oranges, tangerines, sour oranges, lime, lemon, grape fruit.
Drupes: Apricot, sweet cherry, peach, plums
Grapes: Green grapes, black grapes, seedless grapes
Melons: Musk melon, water melon
Pomes: Apples, pears
Tropical and Subtropical fruits: Gooseberry, avacado, banana, dates, guava, jack fruit, mango, jambu fruit, papaya, passion fruit, pineapple, pomegranate, sapota, Seetha phal (custard apple).