As a member of the plant family Solanaceae, eggplant can be seen as a relative of tomatoes, potatoes and bell pepper.
Even though there is a wide range of eggplant types which differ from each other in texture and taste, this ingredient, in general, possesses a bitter taste.
China is the first place where the cultivation of eggplant began.
The introduction of eggplant to Africa happened before the Middle Ages.
And in the 14th century, eggplant appeared in Italy, where it became prevalent.
Eggplant soon became common in other European countries after that.
Nowadays, Italy exceeds other countries in the productivity of growing eggplant, followed by Turkey, Egypt and China.
In spite of the fact that it appeared in the wild very long time ago, eggplant’s popularity is not always the same.
For a long period of time in the history, eggplant was not popular in European cuisines due to its bitter taste.
And the elimination of eggplant from the diet made them suffer from cancer and insanity more often.
To understand how important eggplant is, let’s examine further eggplant nutrition facts.
Water makes up for a considerable proportion in eggplant’s content with more than 92 percent (1).
Eggplant is actually a low calorie food when 100 grams of it gives only 25 kcal.
When scientists made further examinations on eggplant nutrition, they found out that it is an abundant source of fiber.
Meanwhile, protein and carbs in eggplant are not substantial.
In addition to fiber, you will find great amounts of vitamins and minerals that are necessary for human health, such as vitamin B6, C, K, magnesium, potassium or folic acid…
Health Benefits of Eggplant
A quick review of eggplant nutrition facts will help you understand better eggplant health benefits.
In fact, these benefits have been generally practised since old times.
Here are top 10 health benefits of eggplant which you should know to erase the fear of its bitter taste.
1. Weight Loss
Because of its low calorie nature, it is undeniable that one of the best benefits of eggplant is to support weight loss.
The fact is that this ingredient provides almost no fat in its content. Per 100 grams of serving, raw eggplant contains only 0.18 gram of fat.
Furthermore, eggplant’s richness of fiber also contributes to this benefit.
When the level of ghrelin declines, we will feel less eager to consume foods. Therefore, it is easier to make weight loss more efficient.
Bottom Line: Thanks to its low-calorie and no-fat quality as well as richness of fiber, eggplant is a good choice to help obese people lose weight.
2. Bone Health
Some information on eggplant nutrition might help you understand benefits of eggplant on the bone health.
Containing some phenolic compounds, eggplant may help enhance the bone density quickly (7).
Other important elements in eggplant nutrition to support the bones are calcium, potassium and iron.
There is no doubt about the importance of calcium to our bones. The interesting point here is the participation of potassium to support the calcium uptake (10).
Bottom Line: Eggplant is a helpful ingredient to strengthen the bone health in general and prevent osteoporosis.
Among top health benefits of eggplant, it is hard to ignore its effects on the cognitive function and our brain.
This quality comes from the fact that eggplant contains many phytonutrients.
These substances can have protective effects on the brain and body from harmful toxins and free radicals.
Moreover, phytonutrients result in an improvement in the blood circulation to your brain, which is beneficial for memory (11).
Potassium also make great contributions to boosting the brain (12).
Bottom Line: Eggplant can serve as a brain food thanks to its abundance of phytonutrients and minerals.
4. Digestive System
Vegetables are an indispensable part of daily diet if you want to gain nutritional balance to stay away from digestive problems.
It is because vegetables are usually rich providers of dietary fiber.
Fortunately, eggplant is one of them. And digestion improvement is one of top eggplant health benefits.
Fiber present in eggplant is sufficient to maintain gastrointestinal health and guarantee that the bowel movements are smooth (13).
As a result, foods will hardly have difficulty passing in your body.
This can help you prevent a lot of problems, from mild to complicated ones, such as constipation or bloating.
Bottom Line: The remarkable amount of fiber in eggplant makes this plant one of the best foods for the digestive system.
With such number of antioxidants in eggplant nutrition, there is no denying that one of top benefits of eggplant is to improve the protection against cancer.
And there is a close connection between the existence of antioxidants and the prevention against cancer (16).
For example, manganese, which is both an antioxidant and an essential mineral, is present much in eggplant.
It helps to fight against bad influences of free radicals that trigger the abnormal growth of cancer cells.
Bottom Line: Bringing eggplant into your daily diet will help you lower the risk of cancer, thanks to its antioxidants.
The deficiency of some minerals in diet might cause you to suffer from health problems.
One of the most common examples is the lack of iron that leads to anemia.
Anemia often accompanies with fatigue, headaches, anxiety or even cognitive malfunction (19).
Once we have found out its causes, it is simpler to come up with the solution. In order to prevent anemia and its following symptoms, you had better take in enough iron.
And eggplant is a great recommendation because of its high content of iron. In other words, one of the best benefits of eggplant is to treat anemia.
Bottom Line: Eggplant provides you with enough essential minerals, say, copper and iron, to prevent anemia.
7. Cardiovascular Health
Fiber never stops surprising us in different benefits of eggplant. Once again, it is fundamental to eggplant health benefits on our heart.
Many studies have pointed out that fiber can be beneficial for lowering bad cholesterol and increasing good cholesterol (22).
This maintains a healthy balance of cholesterol in the body. As a result, people can get rid of a series of problems, from strokes to heart attacks.
Plus, eggplants contain bioflavonoids which are the key for lowering blood pressure (23).
Another important advantage of fiber is to support the treatment for diabetes.
And this is also one of top benefits of eggplant as it can efficiently regulate the activities of insulin and glucose.
Everyone needs folates in their diet, but folic acid seems more necessary for pregnant women.
Thanks to folic acid, infants will be safe from neural tube defects (24).
This acid also contributes to the development of infants’ brain at early months.
Thus, the recommendation is that pregnant women should include eggplants regularly in their diet.
Last but not least, bioflavonoids and vitamin K from eggplant can aid the prevention against blood clots (25).
At the same time, they are effective to enhance the blood vessels.
The last among top benefits of eggplant is to foster the flow of blood inside your body.
With eggplant nutrition facts and top 10 amazing health benefits of eggplant, you might be marvelled.
Nevertheless, there are many things to pay attention to when it comes to eggplant. This plant may cause some unwanted effects if you do not know how to use it right.
Like tomatoes and potatoes, there is solanine in eggplants. A number of people have allergy to this substance. When they consume eggplant without recognizing its danger, the stake might be very high.
The problems you will face due to allergy include nausea, swelling or itchiness.
Thus, the suggestion is not to consume raw eggplants immediately. If you have any problems after the consumption, help from doctors is necessary.
Disclaim: The effectiveness from using these foods on certain problems and diseases will be depended on the body condition of the applicant.