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The 10 Healthiest Indian Ingredients

The 10 Healthiest Indian Ingredients

Add these to your cooking repertoire to give your health an instant boost.

The 10 Healthiest Indian Ingredients

Add these to your cooking repertoire to give your health an instant boost.

In India, the food can vary depending on the specific area it comes from, but in general it uses a lot of vegetable proteins such as beans and lentils, whole grains and fermented foods including yogurt.

Many ingredients common to Indian cuisine, including millet (a whole grain), lentils, spices, and vegetables, are not as common in other cuisines. It is not surprising that Indian food contains so many good ingredients, because Ayurveda, India's classical medicinal system, is rooted in the idea that food has both nutritional and medicinal value.

The ingredients below are some of the healthiest you will find in Indian cooking, but can be used in other recipes as well.

1 Turmeric

This golden yellow spice has been used in India for thousands of years, both in food and for its medicinal benefits. The active chemical compound, curcumin, has been shown to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, according to a study published in Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology.

While much of the research on curcumin to date has only been done in animals, a human trial of 60 participants indicated that taking a curcumin supplement may be a safe and effective treatment for major depressive disorder.

Turmeric is usually added to most vegetables, beans, lentils and other Indian dishes.

Using it in combination with other spices may help, and not just from a flavor perspective: Adding black pepper to a dish containing turmeric can improve curcumin absorption by 2,000 percent, according to a study published in October 2017 in the journal food. You can also try mixing some of the spice with warm milk to make a golden latte.


2 Chickpeas (Chana)

People who regularly eat these legumes have been shown to have higher intakes of essential nutrients — including dietary fiber, healthy fats, folate, magnesium, potassium, iron and vitamins A, E and C — compared to those who don't eat chickpeas. according to a study published in Nutrients in December 2016.

And while chickpeas are often associated with hummus, they are used in various ways in Indian cooking: whole chickpeas are soaked and cooked with spices, dry-roasted chickpeas are eaten as a snack, and dry-roasted chickpea flour is used to make pancakes, dumplings and candies. .

Because chickpeas are high in protein and fiber (half a cup has more than 7 grams of protein and more than 6 grams of fiber, according to USDA data), they can help you feel full for longer and control your overall calorie intake. .

Try the Indian dish chana masala or have dry roasted chickpeas as a snack. If you've never used chickpea flour, give it a try to make pancakes or pancakes.


3 Mung beans

These little green beans aren't very common in western cooking, but they should be.

Half a cup is a good source of both protein and fiber, with about 7 grams of each, according to USDA data. These beans are also rich in antioxidants and minerals that have been linked to positive health benefits, according to research published in the Journal of Food Science.

And unlike many other beans, the carbohydrates in mung beans seem to be easier to digest, so eating them doesn't cause the usual digestive side effects, according to a study published in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture.

In Indian cuisine, mung beans are prepared in different ways. Traditionally, they are made into soup with garlic, ginger and spices to enjoy with rice, or served as a salad with chopped vegetables.

Try mung beans in place of other lentils in a recipe or add sprouted mung beans to your salads for extra protein and fiber.


4 Kidney beans (Rajma)

Research has shown that consuming these organ-shaped red beans is linked to a lower incidence of chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer, obesity and coronary heart disease.

They typically contain fewer carbohydrates than some other beans, according to a study published in November 2017 in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences. Kidney beans contain resistant starch, a fibrous substance that resists digestion, and research published in Diabetic Medicine shows it may help improve insulin sensitivity and have a potentially beneficial effect on gut health, according to a study published in the Sept. 2017 issue of mBio magazine.

Rajma masala is a common Indian dish of cooked red kidney beans in a spiced sauce with onions and tomatoes. You can also mix kidney beans into salads, add them to soup and chili, or use them in place of meat in curries or tacos.


5 Lentils (Daal)

These flat, disc-shaped seeds come in a variety of colors and flavors and are a great source of plant-based protein.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, more than a quarter of the calories in lentils come from protein, and they're also a good plant source of iron, with more than 3 grams per half cup, according to USDA data.

Lentils are rich in soluble fiber, which can lower LDL ("bad") cholesterol and aid in glycemic control, according to Today's Dietitian. And you can feel extra good when you eat them because it is an ecologically sustainable crop.

In Indian cuisine, lentils are usually prepared with spices and served with rice or roti. You can also add lentils to soup and salads, mix them into veggie burgers, or puree them for a dip.


6 Ginger (Adrak)

One of the main active ingredients in this spicy root is gingerol, which has been studied for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.

A systematic review published in January 2020 in Nutrients found evidence to support the use of ginger to ease nausea and digestive discomfort. And a review published in May 2020 in Phytotherapy Research examined ginger's effectiveness in reducing pain across a variety of uses and found that it showed promise orally, topically, and even as an aromatherapy for reducing menstrual, migraine and knee pain. and even muscle aches.

Ginger is also a very low-calorie way to add flavor to foods of all kinds, according to USDA data.

Fresh or dried ginger root is added to many traditional Indian dishes as part of the seasonings. It is also added to chai (Indian tea). Try ginger in your vegetable dishes or make chai with fresh ginger or ginger powder.


7 Cinnamon (Dalchini)

This herb is actually the ground bark of a particular tree, and its pleasantly spicy aromatic scent comes with numerous health benefits.

Research published in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine has identified antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and cancer-fighting properties in the herb.

Cinnamon has also been linked to improvements in blood glucose, which may help with insulin sensitivity and lower fasting blood sugars.

While cinnamon is often considered a baking spice in the West, in India it is commonly used in both savory and sweet dishes. Whole sticks can be added to simmering sauces, and cinnamon powder is a key ingredient in the popular spice mixture, garam masala.

Try adding cinnamon to your next savory meal.


8 Cumin (Jeera)

This versatile herb has been studied as a weight loss aid.

In a study published in Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice of 88 overweight or obese women, supplementing their diets with cumin for three months resulted in significant reductions in weight, body mass index, waist circumference and body fat.

According to USDA data, 1 teaspoon of ground cumin can provide nearly 6 percent of the recommended daily intake of iron — a significant amount for a spice.

Cumin is available as seeds or in powder form, and both are used in Indian cooking. Use it in your spice mixes or add it to vegetables, beans or chili.


9 Fenugreek (Methi)

Several studies have suggested that this herb may help lower blood sugar levels in people with diabetes or prediabetes, and it has also been recommended as a supplement to increase milk production in breastfeeding women.

According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, while more research is needed, there is some early evidence supporting both uses.

Fenugreek leaves and seeds (which are said to taste sweet, like maple syrup) are used in Indian cooking.

The leaves are used as a side dish or added to flatbreads, and the seeds are used in a variety of dishes.

Try adding fenugreek seeds or powder to a side dish as part of the cooking process. You can also boil the seeds in water, strain and enjoy them as an herbal tea.


10 Bitter Melon (Karela)

This Asian vegetable is related to pumpkin and zucchini, and has a slightly bitter taste.

Like those other vegetables, it's low in calories and provides some fiber, but perhaps most importantly, it's high in vitamin C.

According to USDA data, half a cup has 46 percent of your daily value of this all-important antioxidant. And vitamin C is known for its role in boosting immune function, according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

If you can't find this bumpy green vegetable in your usual supermarket, look for it in an Indian or Asian supermarket. Try it sautéed with onion, garlic and tomatoes or stir-fry.

 

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Source: www.everydayhealth.com

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Voor 15.00 besteld vandaag verzonden
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