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Dragon Fruit In Jamaica?
The Health Benefits of The Top 10 Superfood

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Jamaican Dragon FruitJamaican Dragon Fruit

by Sheree-Anita Shearer | Associate Writer

Over recent years, the lesser known fruits have been receiving some well-needed and deserved attention. You might hasten to assume that Jamaica only supplies us with the more popular fruits but there are truly some gems hidden here. The black sapote is one such fruit we looked at before, have you tried it yet?


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We now turn our attention to dragon fruit and no better person to guide our gastronomic experience than the Dragon Fruit Guru himself! Sheldon knows quite a lot about the fruit and lucky for us he was more than happy to share.

Sheldon got very interested in dragon fruit after reading about 10 Superfoods. He then realised this fruit is actually already in Jamaica!

With more research and a few connections, he was able to get himself one suckling. The fruit he explains comes from the bright yellow flowers that the tree produces.

Though the tree looks entirely harmless at first glance, upon closer inspection, you’ll notice some thorns on the long leaves of the tree, so when picking, be careful.

Dragon Fruit TreeDragon Fruit Tree

History Of The Dragon Fruit

Although Vietnam is the world’s leading exporter of Dragon fruit, it is rumoured to have been brought for Central America to the country by the French. Back then, it was grown in Vietnam to be eaten by the royals and affluent persons in society. Why this was chosen over a mango, is probably down to its colour and the “exotic” look of it all.

No one is really sure how it got to Jamaica, but with Jamaica being a colony back in the day, there were plenty of opportunities for it to have been brought here. There are hundreds of varieties of fruit, a number of which can be found on the island.

The striking magenta-coloured fruit, the physical graffiti variety, with its bright pink flesh is the most common on the island. Some persons may know it locally as Sky Okra or God Okra. Other common variations are the American beauty and the palora. The Palora is one of the most sought-after variations as it is a bright yellow with a more demure white flesh.

How To Eat Dragon Fruit

Dragon Fruit SlicedDragon Fruit Sliced

It can be cut and eaten right from the tree. Just remove the inedible bracks (the long stem-like things growing of the dragon fruit). Then just slice it in two with your knife. If you can, refrigerate it for some time and then try it. The flesh is the main part that’s eaten but the skin or rind can be had if it is processed into a powder.

What Can Be Made From Dragon Fruit?

  • Drinks
  • Teas
  • Food Colouring
  • Cocktails
  • Fruit Skewers
  • Stir-Fry

What Does It Taste like?

The flavour, (for me), is very subtle, not at all what I imagined from the appearance of the fruit. Sheldon’s very descriptive assessment of the Dragon Fruit was that when sliced, it looks similar to watermelon and is just as refreshing. The fruit though has subtle similarities to a kiwi or grape and some floral notes at the end. Can’t you just taste it?

Watch Video! Jamaican Dragon Fruit

Health Benefits of Dragon Fruit

  • The seeds are rich in omega-three, fatty acids a far cry from the misconception that the seeds are poisonous! They are completely editable and nutritious at that

  • Rich in iron (blood), potassium (heart) and vitamin C (immune system)

  • It is rich in calcium which means it is great for bones and hair growth

  • Rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals

  • High in fibre

  • And regulate blood sugar, which makes it healthy for diabetics

  • Aids weight loss

  • Has very few calories

  • Has anti-constipation properties

Can it be refrigerated?

Yes, it can! In fact, it is recommended. Refrigeration makes the fruit even more refreshing and lengthens the shelf life of the delicate fruit.

Can you have this food every day?

Well, yes you can but its high dietary fibre and water content makes it a mild laxative.

Contact Information For The Dragon Fruit Guru

  • Facebook: Sheldon Dryden
  • Instagram: drag_on_nation
  • WhatsApp/Phone: +1 876-487-2475
  • Jamaica Dragon Fruit Growers Community

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Watch Video! By the way, here is another interestign fruit to try, the BLACK SAPOTE!

Return to Jamaican Fruits from Jamaican Dragon Fruit
Return to My Island Jamaica Homepage from Jamaican Dragon Fruit

References & Sources For Jamaican Dragon Fruit

  1. The DRAGON FRUIT? What's That? 😲 🍈 | Mystery Fruit In Jamaica, https://youtu.be/WzYUc2KbEY0
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