08 July, 2011
Hog Plum Health Benefits
Hog plum is the generic name for all fruits from the hog plum tree, which belongs to the Spondias genus. Hog plums are native to Latin America and widely eaten in Southeast Asia. They are also called mombins, gully plums or Spanish plums and are often yellow or purple. Wild American plums (Prunus americana) are also colloquially called hog plums, although they are not true hog plums.
Yellow hog plums have around 35 calories per 100-gram serving, while purple hog plums have varying caloric content because the ripeness of the fruit changes it so much. While both colors of hog plum contain dietary fiber, yellow hog plums are a better source of dietary fiber than purple ones as they have 1.17 grams per 100-gram serving, compared to 0.5 gram for purple hog plums. Both purple and yellow hog plums contain minimal amounts of protein and fat, although yellow hog plums have more of both nutrients.
Rich in Natural Antioxidants
Hog plums contain vitamins A and C. Yellow plums have 71 international units per 100-gram serving of the first and 46 milligrams of the second. Purple plums contain between 26 and 73 milligrams of vitamin C per serving, and only trace amounts of vitamin A. Both vitamins are natural antioxidants, protecting your body from damage from free radicals. Vitamin C is needed to maintain skin, ligaments, hair and tendons, while also providing support for your body’s immune system. Vitamin A is needed for eye health and also provides support to your immune system.
Other Vitamins and Minerals
Both yellow and purple hog plums contain small amounts of vitamin B, which helps your body use and make energy. Yellow hog plums have 2.8 milligrams of iron per serving, and purple hog plums have an average of 0.66 milligram per serving. This means yellow hog plums provide 15.5 to 35 percent of the recommended intake of iron, while purple hog plums provide 3.7 to 8.3 percent per serving.
What to Do With Hog Plums
Both purple and yellow hog plums are commonly eaten raw as a snack. In Latin America, the fruits are eaten primarily for hydration purposes. Purple and yellow hog plums are also pickled with chili peppers to make a spicy condiment, and they can be processed into a juice and made into jams. Purple hog plums are commonly stewed in sugar and served whole and pitted as a dessert.
- Purdue University: Yellow Mombin
- Purdue University: Purple Mombin
- University of Maryland Medical Center: Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid)
- Linus Pauling Institute: Vitamin A
- MedlinePlus: Antioxidants
- MedlinePlus: B Vitamins
- MedlinePlus: Iron in Diet
- U.S. Department of Agriculture: Plants -- Wild Plum, Prunus Americana Marsh
- jantroyka/iStock/Getty Images