It’s not very often that scientific articles about durian get published. The fruit is not the easiest subject to work with.
It’s glove-piercing thorns and distinct odor present some initial challenges. The fleshy interior goes through a change of state during ripening, from rubbery and unyielding to a slippery and flaccid yet flavorful fruit. Imagine opening 50 durians for research and resisting consuming them all… if I were behind the bench, I might be in the dangerous position of only doing research on the durians unworthy of consumption.
Several friends have asked me before if eating durian yields any benefit for health. Yes, I say. It contains a tremendous amount of fibre, protein and carbohydrates. Eating a whole durian is a meal. Just make sure you drink lots of water.
We can refer to the several publications on durian that have quantified these important nutritional constituents.
In this review article, the authors cite the proportions in the following order:
1) carbohydrates 27%
2) dietary fat 5.33%
3) fibres 3.1%
4) proteins 1.47%
Then there are the vitamins and minerals like vitamin C, folic acid, niacin, vitamin A, potassium, iron, calcium, magnesium, zinc etc.
I’m not sure how much of these minerals and vitamins is contained in durian (in terms of the RDA) but I wouldn’t recommend eating durian for every meal... mostly because very few people would want to hang out with you!
My recommendation is to have it seasonally and only pick the best, make each bite or lick count.