BE CAREFUL. Jackfruit is one of the few trends we SHOULDN’T follow!
The humble jackfruit has exploded in popularity amongst the clean-eating world. This, thus, poses the question, is jackfruit keto-friendly? We’re going to tell you what YOU should do with regards to jackfruit in a keto diet!
Jackfruit comes across as light and fluffy when cooked correctly, melting in our mouths. This may convince you that it is low carb.
In vegetarian and vegan keto communities, jackfruit has become a staple meat replacement for everyday cooking. What’s better is that it is completely natural, unlike many other meatless products in the markets.
So, what about jackfruit for us who follow the low carb or keto diet? Can we have jackfruit?
In this article, we’re going to discuss the benefits of jackfruit and its application to the low carb and keto diet. So don’t leave!
- What Is Jackfruit?
- The Nutritional Content Of Jackfruit
- Benefits Of Eating Jackfruit
- Is Jackfruit Keto-Friendly?
- Downfall Of Eating Jackfruit
- Jackfruit Keto Alternatives
What Is Jackfruit?
You’ve been out for dinner with your friends, and you wonder why they would go for the jackfruit curry. What is jackfruit?
Jackfruit is a huge fruit that is native to certain parts of southern Asia. It is green and oblong in nature but can be found a more orange tinge if it is riper.
Jackfruit has been making headlines in most healthy-living and wellness-based articles. Vegetarian and vegan keto dieters refer to the inside of the fruit as the unprocessed, natural ‘meat,’ giving its close resemblance of texture to slow-cooked meat.
Jackfruit has risen in popularity due to its ability to keep the flavor and thus is now used in a variety of curries and sauce-based dishes. This is because of its porous texture.
The Nutritional Content Of Jackfruit
In addition to the impressive and extensive nutrition content of jackfruit, it also contains a large amount of fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants, which all help with a health boost.
Below you’ll find a list of the nutritional benefit of one serving size (165 g) of raw jackfruit as per the USDA:
- 157 calories
- 2.84 g of protein
- 1.1 g of total fat
- 3.3 mg of sodium
- 739 mg of potassium
- 38 g of total net carbs
- – 2.5 g fiber
- – 31 g of net carbs
From a micronutrient standpoint, a serving size one cup also contains, in terms of Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA):
- 18% RDA Vitamin C
- 10% RDA Vitamin A
- 16% RDA Manganese
- 14% RDA Potassium
- 15% RDA Magnesium
- 11% RDA Riboflavin
As you can tell, one of the world’s largest fruit comes with some of the most significant nutrient profiles. From here, we are going to expand on its benefits and begin to answer the question, ‘is jackfruit keto-friendly?’.
Benefits Of Eating Jackfruit
The health benefits of jackfruit have not been recently discovered. Since ancient days jackfruit has been used as natural medicine.
We’re going to touch upon these for you quickly.
When the pulp of the jackfruit is unripe and green, it has a similar consistency to pulled chicken or pulled pork, which helps to make jackfruit an incredible replacement in meals.
Jackfruit is the ultimately vegan meat-free replacement in the current markets. It has allowed vegetarian and vegan keto dieters to consume meat-containing dishes without the guilt of eating meat.
Better yet, one serving of jackfruit contains a significant amount of nutrients which is sure to provide a boost of energy!
Heart Health And Cholesterol
A build-up of LDL cholesterol is directly linked to heart disease and heart attacks.
A study has shown, in animals, that if they had jackfruit, their levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol were reduced. (*)
As mentioned in the above nutrition profile of jackfruit, it contains a lot of potassium per serving. Potassium acts in opposition to sodium (salt) in our blood, which therefore helps with reducing blood pressure.
According to the American Heart Association, an adult should consume approximately 4,700 mg of potassium per day. One cup of jackfruit contains 739 mg. (*).
Just be cautious before you over-indulge in jackfruit and other potassium-containing foods, as they could harm your kidneys.
Jackfruit and jackfruit seeds are fantastic providers of fiber. Fiber aids gut motility and help push the food along our digestive system.
Medically reviewed research has also suggested that fiber can help reduce LDL cholesterol and help reduce the risk of certain diseases such as diabetes and colon cancer. (*)
If you’d like to know how much fiber to eat in one day on the keto diet, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics has suggested a total daily figure of 25 g – 30 g of fiber for men and women. (*)
Most Importantly For Us On The Low Carb, Keto Diet: Blood Sugar
Many foods in markets have a glycemic index on the label. This is a rating system to show how these foods affect a person’s blood sugar levels.
Jackfruit’s glycemic index is intermediate. However, a study suggests that certain parts of the fruit can help treat people with type 2 diabetes. (*,*)
Research has been conducted on the bark of a jackfruit tree, which has been shown to contain an enzyme that stops the processes of breaking down carbohydrates into sugar. This, in turn, can help treat type 2 diabetes. (*)
Is Jackfruit Keto-Friendly?
As we know, fruits are a fickle thing when it comes to keto diets. Although they contain a tremendous amount of vitamins and nutrients, the significantly high net carb count in the majority renders them unavailable for the keto diet.
When it comes to low-carb diets such as keto, you need to be careful as to which jackfruit you purchase, as you don’t want to get accidentally kicked out of ketosis.
The first and most popular variety is called the sweet ripe jackfruit. This is the most commonly found in southern Asia and is bright orange. As its name – sweet – indicates, this jackfruit contains a higher amount of net carbs and sugars.
You’ll instead want to look for the brighter, green-colored jackfruit, which has not yet ripened. This fruit is the one that has a meat-like consistency and is used in many vegan and vegetarian meals.
Let us look at the macronutrients once more and compare them with what we are allowed in keto:
As you can see, the macronutrient profile of jackfruit simply doesn’t coincide with the macronutrient profile we need to stick to on the keto diet strictly.
So, To Answer The Question ‘Is Jackfruit Keto-Friendly?’
The answer is, unfortunately, no. Jackfruit is not the most keto-friendly fruit out there.
Remember, to stay in ketosis; you must keep your net carb intake at a minimal, or between the range of 20-30 g.
Downfall Of Eating Jackfruit
While jackfruit does come with an extensive list of health and nutritional benefits, it still has certain drawbacks.
Jackfruit contains latex-like proteins in the skin of the fruit. This may lead to an allergic reaction with those sensitive to latex, as observed in one study that has confirmed a woman’s anaphylactic shock to jackfruit. (*)
The jackfruit shipment areas are usually around birch trees. Therefore, jackfruits tend to be contaminated with birch pollen which may spark up allergic reactions.
If you are on heart medication for a variety of conditions, you should read your medication leaflet. And consult with your local pharmacist before you decide to add jackfruit to your diet. This is because research has concluded that jackfruit has anticoagulant (blood-thinning) agents. (*)
Jackfruit Keto Alternatives
Okay, okay, we are sorry if we have put a downer on your evening if you were looking forward to your jackfruit-based meal.
But don’t be alarmed.
There are plenty of meat-free and vegan keto-friendly alternatives out there!
Lightlife Smart Bacon
This meat-free bacon is perfect for both a standard and vegan keto diet. With 0 g of net carbs (yes, ZERO), you may add this to any meal to give you an extra added crunch!
These guys have created a large amount of meat-free products for our consumption. Better yet? The majority of which contain such a small amount of net carbs, such as the beefy crumbles, which only have 1 g of net carb.
Chicken Scallop By
A perfect meat-free chicken scallop. It tastes absolutely sublime and contains only 1g of net carbs, making it ideal for a keto-friendly meal.
Despite the high net carb content of jackfruit, health experts say that it is okay to incorporate jackfruit into the low-carb keto diet because of its health benefits.
Jackfruit is a safe and nutritious addition to anyone’s diet unless they have an allergy to latex or birch pollen. If so, do not be afraid to venture onto using other vegan-friendly keto-friendly meat replacements.
Jackfruit is a fantastic and suitable natural meal replacement for those who are vegan or vegetarian.
Although not keto-friendly, you may incorporate jackfruit into the keto diet occasionally if you make sure to pick out only the young green variety and use it moderately.