Its september in San Diego and figs are in season! Get your figs! They can be eaten raw and whole, seeds and skin! They are purplish in color, and have a sweet flavor. I like putting them in my cereal mixture or throwing them in a smoothie, although they are often dried. They can also be baked, made into jam or vinegar.

Figs are uniquely nutritious, containing the highest amount of calcium of any fruit. Figs are an excellent source of dietary fiber, a good source of iron, magnesium, potassium, B vitamins, as well as vitamin K. Figs contain antioxidants and some studies have shown them to raise antioxidant activity. Antioxidants bind free radicals, meaning they no longer become a threat; as free radicals may contribute to the development of cancer, heart disease and the visible signs of aging by damaging DNA and other systems in the body. The riper the fig, the more antioxidants it contains.

Fig leaves are also surprisingly healthy. Various cultures use the leaves in cooking, particularly to wrap meats and fish. I’m always skeptical of research, but some studies have shown that an extract of fig leaves will increase insulin sensitivity, which may play a role in preventing diabetes. Other studies have shown fig leaves to reduce the likelihood of heart disease and possibly kill cancer cells!

Try a Fig Smoothie:
1/2 cup ice
1/2 cup greek yogurt
1/2 cup aloe water
1/2 cup raw figs
1 tbsp almond butter and/or sunflower butter