THE Government will request relevant research teams to conduct detailed studies into claims that durians have aphrodisiac value, said Agriculture and Agro-based Resources Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek.
“A friend told me that there were studies before this claiming durians had aphrodisiac value and said to be good for men.
“We will ask the relevant people to conduct more research into this matter,” he said to a question by Datuk Dr Noor Azmi Ghazali (BN-Bagan Serai).
Dr Noor Azmi had asked on whether a comprehensive study will be done on health-related pros and cons that could arise due to frequent durian consumption.
Ahmad Shabery said previous research had shown that durian was “one of the smelliest yet most nutritious fruits in the world”.
“For instance, research done in Thailand showed that durian is higher in antioxidants than other tropical fruits, and has polysaccharide gel that helps stimulate immune systems to reduce cholesterol.
“A study from China showed durian skin has analgesic and antibiotic properties that helped relieve cough symptoms, and a study from Singapore said durian has high levels of potassium which helps to reduce high blood pressure,” he said.
Other studies, he said, also showed that the durian has anti-aging properties and contributed to the body’s production of serotonin.
“According to these experts, it is really true that durian is the key to our happiness,” he said.
Asked to comment on claims that some durians in the market had been coated with chemicals to get them to ripen faster, Ahmad Shabery said the claims will be investigated.
“On the possibility of durian causing diabetes, I must say that like most other foods, durian is not bad for health provided it is eaten in moderation,” he said.
On a supplementary question from Siti Zailah Mohd Yusof (PAS-Rantau Panjang) on storing and exporting durians out-of-season, Ahmad Shabery said the Government will study the feasibilities.
“We do already possess the technology to preserve and store durians if there is an excess after the season is over.
“We use a freeze method that is infused with collagen so the flavour and texture of durian are not affected, but I cannot provide specific details on the technique,” he said.