We are crazy in love with fresh figs right now. After a recent "farm-to-table" dinner where our salad had a couple of small, fresh, incredibly delicious figs from a nearby farm that had just two fig trees, we were hooked. Fresh figs are sweet but not too sweet. They are a great source of fiber, with approximately 2 grams of fiber in one fig. Figs are naturally rich in potassium, which may help control blood pressure. Figs also contain vitamin B6 and the mineral manganese.
Vitamin B6 helps promote healthy immunity and cellular function in the body. It is essential for energy and for a healthy nervous system. Vitamin B6 also helps keep inflammation at bay and is an important component in the body's production of hemoglobin.
Manganese is a lesser known mineral that plays an important role in bone health, thyroid function, sex hormone function, blood sugar regulation, metabolism, and immune function. Although it is considered at trace mineral, its impact should not be overlooked.
Perhaps one of the most impressive qualities of fresh figs from a health standpoint is their fiber content. The fiber in figs is thought to help decrease the risk for type II diabetes. We tend to get too little fiber in our diets and adding fresh figs to salads or yogurt or oatmeal is so easy, but only during a few months can we really take advantage of tasty fresh figs.
Figs are usually a late June - late September fruit in North America, so take advantage of the short season and don't be afraid of the brown or green exterior. The entire fruit is edible.