Lucuma is a tropical fruit native to the cool highlands of coastal valleys in Peru. Its tasty flavour and aroma are hard to describe or compare to any other. Some may say it tastes like caramel custard and others a bit like pumpkin. The tree is long lived, evergreen, and belongs to the Sapotaceae family and it is similar to the canistel and sapote. It is enriched in B complex vitamins, iron, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, fibre, carbohydrates and beta carotene and makes a delicious addition to shakes, smoothies and protein drinks and is an ideal sugar substitute in desserts and cakes. The Lucuma fruit was termed “egg fruit”, by the Europeans who discovered it in the 1500’s.
The reason for this is that the yellow-orange flesh has the texture of a hard-boiled egg yolk and this fruit offers numerous health benefits. Lucuma is valued both nutritionally and as a symbol of fertility by the Peruvian people. It is commonly used by the poor communities of the area as a significant component of their basic diet. Lucuma can be found in the form of powder outside of Peru and is used as an ingredient in some foods like ice-cream and cakes.
Lucuma fruit powder has a distinctively sweet and fragrant taste that provides a natural sweetening to desserts without increasing your blood sugar levels, unlike many sweeteners that offer empty calories. A healthy alternative to sugar, lucuma powder may be useful for diabetics and people with other health issues. It also curbs cravings, curb appetite, ease digestion and this wonderful fruit also has long been said to aid in fertility. The flesh of the lucuma fruit is a common source of natural healing and medicines among the native South American people where the fruit grows.
Lucuma is said to reduce inflammation, boost the immune system, lower blood pressure, and protect against some forms of cancer. Lucuma is generally considered safe when consumed as a food. But, due to a lack of research, however, little is known about the safety of long-term use of lucuma powder.