Shristi Gupta, Rukhsana Rahman and Jaspreet Kaur
A large number of underutilized fruit species have originated in Indian subcontinent. Many of these fruits or their plants parts have been used in folk, Ayurvedic and Unani medicines since time immemorial. Several fruits were introduced in India during colonial period. Most of them adapted to climatic conditions of India but remains underutilized crops. These fruits also have several medicinal properties and were used by the native people of their respective origin of centres. Some the fruits such as bael, aonla, jamun, tamarind, karonda, wood apple, kokum etc were known for their use in Indian pharmacopeia. The exotic fruits such as sour sop, rambutan, mangosteen, avocado, water apple, durian, passion fruit, carambola etc. have been reported for their different medicinal importance. Many underutilised fruit species originated in the Indian subcontinent. Many of these fruits or the parts of their plants have been used for a very long time in conventional, Ayurvedic, and Unani treatments. Several fruits were introduced to India during the colonial era. Despite being neglected crops, the bulk of them have adapted to the Indian climate. Since these fruits also have a lot of medical properties, the native people of their various origin regions used them. Indian pharmacopoeia was well renowned for using fruits like bael, aonla, jamun, tamarind, karonda, wood apple, and kokum, among others. Exotic fruits like sour sop, rambutan, mangosteen, avocado, water apple, durian, passion fruit, and carambola offer a number of recognised health advantages. Numerous chemical compounds, including flavonoids, quinolizidine, alkaloids, tritepenes, stilbenes, tannins, steroids, coumarin, saponins, triterpenoids, glycosides, taraxerone, cryptoxanthin, and taraxerol, among others, are present in these fruits. These displayed a range of biological actions, including anti-inflammatory, analgesic, diabetic prevention, antipyretic, antioxidant, hypoglycemic, hepatoprotective, and anti-cancerous. There has been a lot of research done on these fruits as the focus on plant-based therapies has shifted in recent years. Thus, an effort has been made to consolidate the information about the underutilised fruits in this article.
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