September 3, 2007

Rambutan Fruits Nutrition

Rambutan is exotic fruit of Southeast Asia. Rambutan, Nephelium lappaceum, is a fruit considered exotic to people outside of its native range. To people of Malaysia, Thailand, the Phillippines, Vietnam, Borneo, and other countries of this region, the rambutan is a relatively common fruit the same way an apple is common to many people in cooler climates. This may change for the rambutan over time as availability and distribution improve.

This web site aims to familiarize the public with the qualities that make the rambutan such a wonderful, delicious and nutritious fruit. The word "rambut" in the fruit name 'rambutan' is Malay for 'hairy,' and this refers to the spiky rind. Indeed, without the soft spines on the rind, the rambutan would resemble the lychee (or litchee) which is in the same botanical family. The structure internally is quite similar, with a single central inedible seed and edible white flesh wrapped around it but the skin is the part that makes the rambutan so distinctive in appearance. Other members of the same botanical family, the Sapindaceae, include the longan (Dimocarpus longan), the canepa or mamoncillo (Melicoccus bijugatus), the pulasan (Nephelium mutabile), and guaranĂ¡ (Paullinia cupana.

Nutritional Analysis

The following information pertains specifically to the rambutan grown in Puerto Rico. Other regions of the world where this fruit is grown have differences in soils, climate, fertilizer, irrigation water and rain chemistry, humidity, wind and the amount and intensity of sunlight which may have a significant impact on the nutritional values posted below.

I mention this because these nutritional values may not be the same outside of Puerto Rico. For that matter, even within Puerto Rico, there are so many microclimates, soil types and pH variations, these results may be viewed only as an example of the nutritional profile of just one of the island's rambutan fruit growers . And then there is the seasonal variation from one crop to the next. The test results included herein were from a particularly sweet crop and there should be some variability of these values each season. Generally speaking, however, the vitamin content and minerals found on this page should help people with concerns about the nutritional value of the rambutan. It does not just taste great, it is good for you as well!

Specific attention is drawn to the sugar content in this sample because the level is high. This may have resulted from water loss before testing which might have raised the concentration of sugar somewhat. This is possibly a more accurate reflection of how the rambutan are at the consumer level. From the tree to the table, usually a few days have elapsed and during this time the water loss from the rind of the rambutan is a steady process.

Rambutan Nutritional Analysis


The values above show that the rambutan is a valuable contributor to your daily nutritional needs. The calcium, magnesium and potassium are all important essential elements in a balanced diet. The acidity or pH of 4.66 combines with the relatively high sugar levels to give the fruit great intensity of flavor. This is a natural sweet and sour effect as the acids play against the sugars to great effect.