The stench of the durian fruit stands in direct contrast to the smooth, creamy taste of its flesh. Often called the "King of Fruit" in Asian countries, the tropical durian is not a common find on United States grocery store shelves. You might be able to find it in specialty ethnic markets, however. And if you can get past the smell of durian -- described by some as similar to rotting garbage or moldy cheese, according to March 2007 article in "The New York Times" -- you will have access to a fruit high in vitamins and minerals.
Calories and Fat
A 1-cup serving of durian fruit contains 357 calories. If you are concerned about calories, durian might not be the best choice. It also contains quite a bit of fat -- 13 g per serving, accounting for 33 percent of the calories. Limit your fat intake to 20 percent to 35 percent of your daily calories.
Carbohydrates and Fiber
One cup of durian satisfies approximately half the recommended amount of 130 g of carbohydrates per day. If you include durian in your meal plan, carefully monitor your carbohydrate consumption: Too many carbs can increase your risk of weight gain just as easily as too much fat in your diet. A serving of durian contributes a significant amount of fiber to your eating plan: 9.2 g. Include 25 to 38 g of fiber in your diet every day to help ward off constipation, diarrhea and diverticulitis.
A serving of durian provides you with 3.6 g of protein, or 6.4 percent to 7.8 percent of the daily recommended intake of 46 to 56 g. A study published in the May 2010 issue of the “American Journal of Gastroenterology” indicates that protein from meat and fish may result in increased risk of irritable bowel syndrome, so getting your protein from fruit, vegetables and other sources may be wise if you are at risk of this condition.
Vitamins and Minerals
Eat a 1-cup serving of durian, and you will get 80 percent of the vitamin C you need each day, as well as 61 percent of the thiamine. Durian also serves as a rich source of vitamin B-6 and potassium, containing 38 percent of the B-6 and 30 percent of the potassium your body requires daily. You will also get approximately 25 percent of the daily recommended intake of riboflavin and copper.
In an effort to make durian palatable to a wider range of people, Thai researchers engineered a fruit with a more pleasant odor in 2007. This breed, called the Chantaburi No. 1, raised an outcry among durian lovers, and confusion among residents of Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia, where durians are priced higher when the smell is at its most foul. According to a March 2007 article in "The New York Times," another new variety of the fruit won't begin to stink until after three days, which lets shipping merchants distribute fruit without the odor -- but giving durian fans the smelly fruit they prize.
- "The New York Times"; Odorless Durian Raises a Stink; Thomas Fuller; March 30, 2007
- FitBit: Durian, Raw or Frozen
- MayoClinic.com: Healthy Diet: End the Guesswork With These Health Guidelines
- Institute of Medicine: Dietary Reference Intakes
- "Diabetes Health" magazine; Why Eating Too Many Carbs Makes You Fat; Barry Groves, Ph.D.; April 24, 2007
- MayoClinic.com: Dietary Fiber: Essential for a Healthy Diet