Are lychees detrimental to health?

June 10, 2024 | 06:53 pm PT
Many people believe that lychees can harm our liver, reducing the body’s ability to detoxify. Is this true? (Linh, 22, Hanoi)


Lychees are often linked with causing "internal heat" and harm liver function according to traditional beliefs. However, they do not directly impair the liver or decrease the liver’s ability to detoxify, contrary to some speculations.

Lychees contribute positively to health, being rich in water, glucose, protein, and fat. They contain high levels of fiber and are low in calories, which aids digestion and supports weight management. Additionally, the antioxidants and vitamin C present in lychees promote skin health by helping to reduce dark spots, prevent signs of aging, and enhance immunity.

Lychees on a wooden plate. Illustration photo by Pexels

Lychees on a wooden plate. Illustration photo by Pexels

Nevertheless, excessive consumption of lychees is not recommended. With about 15.2 grams of sugar per 100 grams, lychees can raise blood sugar levels and impact glucose metabolism. Due to their high sugar content, overindulgence can result in inflammatory conditions such as itching, heat rash, and acne.

It is suggested to limit intake to about five to six lychees on warm days. Diabetic individuals should be particularly cautious and restrict their consumption to no more than six lychees daily.

Children are often fond of the sweet flavor of lychees, but it is essential to monitor their consumption to prevent issues like overweight and heat rash. Pregnant women should also moderate their intake and limit their consumption of this fruit. Additionally, it is recommended to avoid consuming lychees on an empty stomach.

Dr. Bui Dac Sang

Oriental Traditional Medicine Association of Hanoi

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