Essay: Bael Fruit

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Bael Fruit (Aegle marmelos L. Correa) is an indigenous fruit known in India from prehistoric times. The bael fruit is native to india, but most commonly found throughout the Indian peninsula (Rahman and Pravin 20014). Bael also grows in Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Burma, Thailand and most of the southeastern countries (Rakesh et al., 2005). It is a very hardy subtropical, deciduous tree that can thrive well in different soil-climatic conditions (from swampy to dry soils) and can tolerate alkaline soil. Bael is growing wild in Sub-Himalayan tracts from Jhelum eastwards to West Bengal; as well as in central and south India (Tandon and Gupta 2004). Bael tree is up to 15 m tall with bark, short trunk, thick, soft and spiky branches. The bael fruit has a smooth, woody shell with a gray, green or yellow peel. It takes about 11 months to ripen on the tree and can get in touch with the size of a large grape fruit and some are even larger (Boning (2006). Different parts of plant are used in Unani and Ayurveda medicine for the treatment of different diseases such as dysentery, diarrhea and dyspeptic symptoms (Satyavati et al., 1976; Jauhari et al.,1969). All parts of the tree have medicinal qualities (Chanda et al., 2008). All parts of the tree i.e., stem, bark, leaves, fruits, and roots are found effective as ethno medicines against various human ailments (Badam et al., 2002). There are no standardized names of bael cultivars. They are named after the name of the locality where they are most easily available. Its main cultivated varieties in India are Kagzi Etawah, Kagzi Banarsi, Mirzapuri, Kagzi, Gonda, Narendra Bael-1, Narendra Bael-2, Narendra Bael-5 and Narendra Bael-9.
Table : Scientific classification of Bael.
Kingdom Plantae
Order Sapindales
Family Rutaceae
Genus Aegle Corrêa
Species Aegle Marmelos
Binomial name Aegle marmelos (L.) Corr. Serr.
The ripe fruit of bael is nutritious, sweet aromatic and very pleasant being highly esteemed and eaten by all classes of people (Charoensiddhi and Anuprung 2008). The fruit has excellent odor which is not affected even during processing, thus there is unused potential for processing bael into various products (Singh et al., 2014). The fully mature fruit is not much used in medicines. Half mature fruit are mostly used in medicine (Kumar et al., 2012). The marmelosin content which is found in this fruit is known as “universal remedy of stomach ailments”. The following constituents are reported to be present in this fruit: marmelosin, psoralen, aegelin, scoparone, alloimperatorin, imperatorin, Scopoletin, tannic acid, xanthotoxol, Umbelliferone (Kamalakkannan and Prince 2005).
Table: Nutritional Composition of bael fruit
Nutrient Amount
Moisture (g) 61.0
Protein (g) 1.6
Fat (g) 0.2
Mineral (g) 1.9
Fibre (g) 2.9
Calcium (mg) 80
Phosphorous (mg) 52
Iron (mg) 0.5
Carotene(µg) 55
Thiamine (mg) 0.12
Niacin (mg) 1.0
Vitamin C (mg) 8
Potassium (mg) 610
Copper (mg) 0.20
SOURCE: *Singh et al., (2014)
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