Nigerian avocado pears have excellent nutritus values!
NIGERIAN AVOCADO PEARS
NIGERIAN AVOCADO PEARS (Persea amairicana)HAVE NOT ONLY EXCELLENT NUTRITIONAL VALUES BUT ARE SOME TIMES SUBSTITUTED FOR BUTTER AND MARGARINE WHEN EATING LOAVES OF BREAD.
Nigerian avocado pear was unheard of in the village where I grew up. The only pears my people and I knew then were different from the avocado pears and they are called (Ube) in Igbo language! To some extent, they look buttery when roasted or put in boiled water. Ube,are normally eaten roasted in fire,or boiled and can be eaten with roasted, boiled corn or maize!
Ube is equally a seasonal fruit as much as avocado pears. An average Ube tree, can bear up to 2000-3000 fruits and can only be eaten when the fruits become dark or black complexioned.
The Ube tree starts to bear cream and pink coloured fruits from March and by early May,the fruits become bigger and start to turn black. The act of turning black show that it is then getting ready to be plucked and eaten. While other fruits ripe, and turn red or yellow, Ube fruits turn into black pigmentation and that is nature's way of making them ready for consumption.
MY PERSONAL STORY ABOUT AVOCADO PEARS OR THE BUTTER PEAR(persea amaricana).
I must admit that I never knew anything called Avocado pears until I went to Cameroon. Even while I lived in Cameroon (Kumba) a town in the then Southern Cameroon, I never came by the fruits until my colleagues and I went to another prominent town in Cameroon called (Bamenda!)
'Man-o-war-bay' in those days in Southern part of Cameroon is every young man's ambition to be there and participate in the life changing activities being held at the centre. Even young men from all parts of the country including Nigerians dreamt dreams of being a part of this institution or organisation.
The Nigerian Federal Government usually give some able-bodied young Nigerians some scholarships for them to undertake the training being conducted there. To be sincere, it is more or less a "Boot camp" Those who are lucky to be accepted undergo three months sort of military training. It is a Leadership training centre founded by the Germans and the British during and after the second World war!
One Friday afternoon, my friends and I about 6 of us decided to go to Bamenda "Man-o-war-bay" centre to seek enrollment into the camp. It was a hell of journey but we got there that Friday night. The following day, we reported at the centre and we completed some enrollment forms.
We were told we would be interviewed the following Monday. But to pass the time, three of the white men and about 10 Cameroonian boys took us on some mystery adventure tours or trips. We were taken to so many exciting and terrifying places including valleys and and hills.
MY FIRST SIGHT OF ELEPHANTS AND AVOCADO PEARS
Eventually, we were taken to forests where we saw about 12 Elephants. We watched them strolling in the bushes and feeding on the plant and tree leaves. It was the most spectacular sight of my life! Then we were taken to another part of the bushes or forests or some kind of plantations where we saw what they described or called "Avocado pears!"
There were several fruits on the ground and the white men and the Cameroons asked us to help in collecting as many as possible. The Cameroonians climbed the trees and plucked as many fresh fruits as possible too. We eventually, returned to the camp with 15 baskets full of the fruits.
We ate so many at the foot of the trees and it tasted like our usual Ube but the difference was that we ate them raw instead of roasting them in the fire as we do in Ube.
THE NUTRITIVE VALUES OF FRUITS AND SEEDS USUALLY EATEN RAW IN NIGERIA.
The nutritive values of fruits and seeds usually eaten raw in Nigeria have been studied by eminent scholars in Nigeria. Among the fruits studied include, Avocado pears, coconuts, paw paw, Ube and bananas to mention a few. It is alleged that the fruits showed appreciable amount of moisture and "only avocado pears and coconuts had high fat content with values of 30.27+1.20% respectively on a dry weight basis"
The result of the various studies show that the fruits and seeds eaten raw are good sources of essential nutrients particularly Vitamin C which is destroyed by high temperature during cooking or preparation.
MANY YEARS LATER, I FOUND AVOCADO PEARS GROWN AND BEING GROWN PROFUSELY IN NIGERIA.
Originally, Avocado pears are generally grown in the tropical parts of the world including countries in South America, central America West Indies, Caribbean and Mexico and now including Cameroon Nigeria and Ghana to mention a few.
Avocadopear has come to be a very versatile kind of fruit that it can be used not only for eating but also for medicinal purposes.It is as good as Brazil nuts because it contains such stuff as Glutathione which literally acts as antioxidant and assists in neutralizing free radicals that can cause cell damage and lead to diseases.
Avocado pears are one of the wonderful fruits God in his infinite wisdom and mercy gave to mankind. I can't forget the first time I ate bread with avocado pear.
It was so delicious and nutritious that I saved a lot of money from buying butter and margarine. Avocado pear is equally rich in Vitamins C and E and both vitamins are said to contain once again antioxidant mineral which helps in slowing down aging process and maintaining healthy skins.
The dictionary defines "Avocado" as "A tropical American
tree (persea amaricana) cultivated for its edible fruit. It went further, 'The oval or pear-shaped fruit of this tree, having a large seed, and bland,greenish-yellow pulp. It is also called "Alligator Pear" It is equally a kind of berry with hard seed casing.Some people call it the Butter pear!
Nigerian researchers foud Avocado pear fruits very helpful in many healing and treatment processes such as relieving pains and maintaing healthy skins.
These fruits are regarded in many Nigerian villages right now as "Ogbu nna Oria!" That means a panacea for numerous kinds of illness including malaria, cancer, burns, scalds,etc. There is no family in Nigeria that will not have these fruits grown in their gardens.
It is an economic fruit universally and commercially cultivated in many countries of the world today. They are great fruits exported to Europe and many other countries that do not grow them.
People all over the world have not only found its uses as one of the healthy eating fruits which can be eaten as many times as possible in a day, but can be eaten for weeks or months! Over eating of the fruits have no known harmful effects on mankind compared with some other fruits.
Apart from its medicinal properties, it is one of the most important economic crops or fruits grown today in Nigeria. The beauty of it all is the fact that Nigeria grows assorted species and most of the fruits are so large and buttery that one can hardly eat one alone.
People have formed the habits of eating avocado pears with rice, with moi moi, salad, yam; bread, boiled ripped and unripened plantains,and roasted yam. In fact, avocado pear goes well with any healthy eating habit you have or about to adopt and that is the reason why many Nigerians nickname the fruit as "Ogbu nna Oria!"
The great thing about avocado pear is its versatility. Apart form having Vitamins C and E, it equally possess Vitamins B and K, potassium and as good as eating banana and spinach.
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