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Ice Cream Bean

Introduction of IceCream Bean

            Scientific name - Inga edulis

Indigenous to South America, Inga Edulis is widely grown, particularly by local Amazonians for a wide range of reasons namely for shade, timber, food and medicine. It is also known for the production of the Alcoholic beverage cachiri. Popular by other names in different regions, the word “Inga” is derived from its name with the Tupi people of South America. Some of the other regions that know the value of the tree include Peru, Ecuador, Pernambuco-Brazil and Colombia. The pods of Inga have been a favorite snack. It is because of the sweet flavor and smooth texture of the pulp, they are called as "ice-cream beans" in English.

The structure of the tree grows to a great extent, with a branching from below 3 m (9.8 ft); mature trees of Inga Edulis can reach 30 m (98 ft) high and 60 cm (2.0 ft) diameter at breast height.

IceCream Bean 2

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Nutritional Value of Ice Cream Bean

A 100gms will provide you with the following nutrients:

Calories 118
Moisture 63.3%
Protein 10.7 g
Fat 0.7 g
Total carbohydrate 24.0 g
Fiber 1.6 g
Ash 1.3 g

The Pulp contains:

Calories 60
Moisture 83.0%
Protein 1.0 g
Fat 0.1 g
Total carbohydrate 15.5 g
Fiber 1.2 g
Ash 0.4 g

The seeds of Inga when dried contains: per 100 g, 339 calories, 12.6% moisture, 18.9 g protein, 2.1 g fat, 62.9 g total carbohydrate, 3.4 g fiber, 3.5 g ash.

Munched as a sweet snack, the white pulp in the seed pod is consumed raw. Compared to the black seeds, the pulp is not that nutritious. The seeds are cooked and eaten as a vegetable. Toxic compounds present in the seed are destroyed by means of cooking which is called as trypsin inhibitors and also chymotrypsin inhibitors. There are quite a few nutritional benefits.

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Health Benefits of Ice Cream Bean

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arrow Seeds or bark is used to treat dysentery, prevent from rheumatism.

arrow Leaves help to cure headaches and nerve problem.

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The process of propagation takes place naturally by seeds in the forest. With the seedlings grown in nursery, they are planted and then set so as to give maximum shade to coffee, tea or cacao plants grown.

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The fruits of Ice-cream bean are harvested when it’s full ripe as the pulp is needed. No big amount of fruit is harvested at once. The tree is said to provide shade, for many years over the under crop of coffee, tea or cacao.

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