Foundation for Diet and Health

The best perspective for your health

The best perspective for your health

The best perspective for your health

The best perspective for your health

Peach

People like peaches for their refreshing flavor and high water content. The stone fruit comes in a number of varieties, such as Saturn peaches and nectarines.
89/09/02  LA:ALA
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Peaches can be eaten raw, cooked, or dried. They work well in fruit salads and desserts. Unripe peaches are also used externally to treat watery eyes, gout, and headaches. Peaches are grown primarily in China, Spain, and Italy.

General information:

From Wikipedia: “The peach (Prunus persica) is a deciduous tree native to the region of Northwest China between the Tarim Basin and the north slopes of the Kunlun Shan mountains, where it was first domesticated and cultivated. It bears an edible juicy fruit called a peach or a nectarine. ...

Peach and nectarines are the same species, even though they are regarded commercially as different fruits. In contrast to peaches, whose fruits present the characteristic fuzz on the skin, nectarines are characterized by the absence of fruit-skin trichomes (fuzz-less fruit); genetic studies suggest nectarines are produced due to a recessive allele, whereas peaches are produced from a dominant allele for fuzzy skin.”

Nutritional information:

“A 100-gram peach consists of up to 87 % water and 0.1 % fat. Peaches contain the minerals potassium, calcium, and magnesium as well as a considerable amount of vitamin C.*”

Uses:

“The large marjority of peaches grown are marketed and sold as fresh fruit. Peach halves or wedges are one of the common types of canned fruit sold. The pits are ground and used to make persipan and flavor liquors.

There are also some descriptions of the medicinal uses of peaches. For example, Hildegard von Bingen recommended that the immature fruit, including the pits, leaves, roots, resin, and skin, be used externally to treat watery eyes, headaches, and gout. In large amounts, the seeds can be toxic as they contain 6.5 % hydrocyanic acid, which is the product of decomposed amygdalin. The leaves contain a related type of hydrocyanic acid glycoside.

In some regions, the sticky juice was used as glue before synthetic glue was readily available.*”

Storage:

“Peaches and nectarines are best stored at temperatures of 0°C (32°F) and high humidity. They are highly perishable, and typically consumed or canned within two weeks of harvest. Peaches are climacteric fruits and continue to ripen after being picked from the tree.”

Production:

“In 2013, China produced 55% of the world total of 21.6 million tonnes, with four other countries producing at least 0.7 million tonnes (table, including nectarines).

In the United States, the three largest-producing states were California, South Carolina and Georgia. The U.S. state of Georgia is known as the "Peach State" due to its significant production of peaches as early as 1571, with exports to other states occurring around 1858.”

Cultivars:

“Hundreds of peach and nectarine cultivars are known. These are classified into two categories—the freestones and the clingstones. Freestones are those whose flesh separates readily from the pit. Clingstones are those whose flesh clings tightly to the pit. Some cultivars are partially freestone and clingstone, so are called semifree. Freestone types are preferred for eating fresh, while clingstone types are for canning. The fruit flesh may be creamy white to deep yellow; the hue and shade of the color depends on the cultivar. ...

The variety P. persica var. nucipersica (or var. nectarina), commonly called nectarine, has a smooth skin. It is on occasion referred to as a "shaved peach" or "fuzzless peach", due to its lack of fuzz or short hairs. Though fuzzy peaches and nectarines are regarded commercially as different fruits, with nectarines often erroneously believed to be a crossbreed between peaches and plums, or a "peach with a plum skin", nectarines belong to the same species as peaches.”

Interesting facts:

“Peach kernels (桃仁 táo rén) are a common ingredient used in traditional Chinese medicine to dispel blood stasis, counter inflammation and reduce allergies.”

Note (italics): * = Translation from a German Wikipedia entry


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