Health Benefits and Uses of Chico (Tsiko, Sapodilla)

Chico, Manilkara zapota L., is very good fro making wine. Can processed to a variety of products like beverages, spreads cakes. Leaf shoots are eaten raw or steamed with rice. Must be wash to eliminate sticky sap. However, I rarely see chico trees nowadays.

Fruit Composition (Purdue University, analysis done in Mexico). I cannot find any documentation about specific nutrient contents. Any contributions will be appreciated.
– Moisture ranged from 69.0 to 75.7%;
– Ascorbic acid from 8.9 to 41.4 mg/100 g;
– Total acid, 0.09 to 0.15%; pH, 5.0 to 5.3;
– Total soluble solids, 17.4º to 23.7º Brix;
– Glucose ranged from 5.84 to 9.23%
– Fructose, 4.47 to 7.13%,
– Sucrose, 1.48 to 8.75%,
– Total sugars, 11.14 to 20.43%
– Starch, 2.98 to 6.40%.
– Tannin, 3.16 to 6.45%.


Gum chicle, the principal substance derived from the milky juice of the bark is used in the manufacture of chewing gum. It contain 15% rubber and 38% resin.

The seeds are known to be a mild laxative (or stimulates evacuation of the bowels) and diuretic. Be cautious, the seed kernel has 1% saponin and 0.08% of a bitter substance, sapotinin. Ingestion of more than 6 seeds causes abdominal pain and vomiting.

The bark is reputed to be tonic and febrifuge – medicine that lowers body temperature to prevent or alleviate fever.

The fruit soaked in melted butter all night and eaten in the morning, is considered to be an excellent preventive against biliousness and fever attacks. Biliousness – gastric distress caused by a disorder of the liver or gall bladder.

The astringent fruit is recommended for dysentery.

The decocted bark is given for diarrhea and fever.

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