Bored of your normal salami? Try some healthy plant-based Greek fig salamis.
If you haven’t seen figs before, they’re teardrop-shaped and purple on the outside. The flesh tastes slightly sweet, making it a popular snack in the Mediterranean region. They can be dried and prepared in a salami format.
Read on to learn more about the history, health benefits and ways to enjoy fig salamis.
History of figs and fig salamis
Figs are not native to Greece but quickly spread in popularity. Greek goddess Demeter supposedly introduced the figs to fellow Greeks and held them as a symbol of peace and prosperity.
Since then, Greece has become one of the largest producers of figs due to its perfect growing conditions. Fresh fruits were hard to preserve, so Greeks often dried them to keep them around in the off-seasons.
Health benefits of figs
These fruits are highly nutritious, whether in a fresh or salami form. When you eat figs, you’ll be reaping many health benefits:
- They contain many essential vitamins and minerals such as copper, magnesium, potassium, riboflavin, thiamine, vitamin B6 and vitamin K. 
- With only 20 calories per fig, they make a low-calorie snack that can help you maintain or achieve a healthy weight. 
- Since they’re high in dietary fiber, they may support digestion and have been used to help treat digestive problems.  They can also help support the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome. 
- Figs are high in antioxidants. Whether you’re looking for clearer skin or looking to prevent chronic disease, these fruits are a great choice.
- They may help you better manage blood sugar levels. Figs are low on the glycemic index, meaning that they may keep your blood glucose well-controlled. A study on glycemic responses in healthy adults helped confirm this. 
How to choose the perfect fig salami
Now you know how nutritious figs are, but what if you can’t readily buy them at the store where you live? Good news — you can get Greek fig salamis.
When choosing a fig salami, ask the following questions as you examine the label:
- Is it 100% plant-based or vegan?
- Does it contain no added sugar?
- Does it contain no artificial ingredients? High-quality fig salami should be made with natural ingredients including spices, figs, nuts and other fruits.
If you can answer no to all the above questions, you’ve chosen a good fig salami!
How to incorporate into your diet
Fig salamis are a delicious part of the Mediterranean diet and can help you incorporate more fruit into your diet! You could consider these different ways to enjoy fig salami:
- Serve as perfect companions for cheese or meat-based salamis.
- If you’re following a plant-based diet, you can easily replace meat salamis with fig salami and pair them with crackers, nuts and dried fruits.
- Eat a couple of slices in the mid-afternoon as a standalone snack.
The bottom line
Figs are low-calorie, highly nutritious and tasty fruits to incorporate into your diet. Fig salamis are prepared with fresh figs and other spices, citrus and nuts for taste. If you’re bored with your cheese or cracker tray, try adding some fig salamis to your life!
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- FoodData Central (usda.gov): Figs
- Ficus carica L. (Moraceae): Phytochemistry, Traditional Uses and Biological Activities – PubMed (nih.gov)
- Comparison and Assessment of Flixweed and Fig Effects on Irritable Bowel Syndrome with Predominant Constipation: A Single-Blind Randomized Clinical Trial – PubMed (nih.gov)
- Abscisic Acid Standardized Fig ( Ficus carica) Extracts Ameliorate Postprandial Glycemic and Insulinemic Responses in Healthy Adults – PubMed (nih.gov)
About the author
Chrissy Arsenault, MBA, RDN, LD, is a registered dietitian nutritionist and licensed dietitian based in Indianapolis. She obtained her bachelor of science in nutritional science at Cornell University and her MBA at Indiana University Kelley School of Business. She is the founder and CEO of a nutrition communications firm called Pink Pamplemousse LLC, where she creates engaging nutrition and wellness content for clients. She has also coached clients on various health conditions including heart disease, obesity, digestive issues and diabetes over the last seven years. Visit Chrissy’s website.
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