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Food combinations and cooking methods, asparagus
The edible parts of asparagus, scientific name Asparagus officinalis of the Liliaceae family, are its young shoots. These vegetables bring important healthy substances, such as rutin, with a protective action on the heart, brain and blood vessels, quercetin, an anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer and antioxidant substance, but also fibers, beneficial for the gut, vitamins A, B, C, K and E, zinc and folic acid, namely vitamin B9, (Nishimuro et al, Nutrients, Apr 2015 - Ganeshpurkar et al, Saudi Pharm,...
Health and beauty, the remedies of the spring
During winter the lymph of the trees doesn’t reach the branches but tends to go down along the trunk towards the roots to avoid that the cold may freeze it. In spring the lymph starts again to flow. In our body happens something very similar, during winter all the processes slow down and then, with warm weather, vitality and energy come back. It is important, in this seasons change that welcomes spring, sun and warmer weather to help the body remove the accumulated toxins, to purify it but also ...
Wintersweet, scientific name Chimonanthus praecox, is a plant native to China. The shrub is very resistant to cold and is characterized by yellow, very scented flowers that bloom in the middle of winter until march and appear as a prelude to spring. It is precisely for this reason that the name of wintersweet is chimonantus, from the Greek cheimon winter and anthos flower, the winter flower. However, the wintersweet does not only have a beautiful ornamental role, but it also has interesting heal...
Ancient Aztecs and Maya called them cacahuat and considered them as coins, we are speaking about cocoa beans, the seeds of the cocoa tree, Theobroma cacao. The cocoa plant is native to South America and is characterized by elongated fruits with an orange-red color. Inside these fruits there are the cocoa beans that are the raw material of cocoa powder and chocolate that everybody knows. Actually, also the cocoa beans can be eaten after a natural fermentation process. You can find them in special...
Macadamia nuts are the oily fruit of the Macadamia tree, also called the Queensland nut tree, belonging to the Proteaceae family and native to Australia. These nuts are round, very similar to hazelnuts and are enclosed in a hard shell, just like the common nuts. Since the shell is really very hard, these nuts are usually sold already shelled. Macadamia nuts provide vitamins, such as E and group B, and mineral salts, such as magnesium, potassium, calcium, iron, zinc and copper (Moodley et al, J E...
Honeydew honey differs from nectar honey for the raw material used by bees to produce honey. In nectar honey in fact the bees use, as its name suggests, the nectar of the flowers that is then transformed with bees’ enzymes in honey. But in wooded areas there are not always flowers to get nectar from, hence the solution is given by honeydew, captured by bees and then converted into honey. The honeydew is secreted by the plants themselves or by insects that feed on the sap of trees such as silver ...
The Isabella grape derives from the Vitis labrusca plant and is characterized by a pulp with a sweet taste and a strawberry-like scent. This type of grape is native to North America but it is also widespread in Europe. Isabella grape is not only interesting for its taste, it also has important healthy properties. In fact, it brings vitamins, including A, C and group B, and mineral salts, such as iron, copper, potassium and manganese. Moreover, thanks to scientific studies that have analyzed its ...
Butter is a largely debated topic, some people use it everywhere, also to prepare a simple tomato sauce, and some people avoid it because they consider butter a junk food. The truth, actually, is in the middle. Butter is derived from milk and is presented as a stick of a light yellow color. And here is the first problem, the good and high quality butter is that produced from milk cream through churning, it tends to easily go rancid but its fats are only unsaturated fats, also called good fats (F...
Peaches are the fruits of summer, juicy, scented and also really healthy. Peaches are classified on the basis of their flesh color, white, the original color of the fruit, and yellow, that has occurred as a consequence of mutations of a gene, CCD4. This gene, according to a scientific study performed by researchers of Udine University (Falchi et al, Plant J, 2013), is responsible of the degradation of carotenoids, the pigments that give the red and yellow color. In white peach the gene works pro...
The jackfruity, or jack tree or jack, scientific name Artocarpus heterophyllus, is a plant that belongs to the Moraceae family that includes also the fig, it is native to the southern slopes of the Himalayas but nowadays is widespread in Australia, Brazil and Africa, too. Its fruits are characterized by a really remarkable size, they can indeed reach 40 cm in diameter and 30 kg of weight. These fruits are a high calorie food, in fact they bring about 90 kcal per 100 g, are energizing but low in ...
Ghee, or clarified butter, is a type of butter where the proteins and the water have been removed. Ghee is an ingredient of traditional Indian cuisine and is used in place of butter and oil for cooking and frying because it is characterized by a high smoke point, comparable with that of olive oil, it doesn’t burn and resists at high temperatures. But ghee has also an interesting therapeutic use thanks to the revitalizing and digestive properties, in addition to this is considered to act against ...
Common hornbeam, plant
The common hornbeam, scientific name Carpinus betulus, is a tree belonging to the Betulaceae family, characterized by oblong leaves and able to reach 15-20 meters in height. Thanks to its leaves, rich in gallic acid, an antioxidant substance, and to its buds, rich in biostimulants that are substances that regulate the development of embryonic tissue and therefore with all the strength of the plant, the common hornbeam is widely used in herbal medicine. In addition to the glycerin macerate, usefu...
Rye, scientific name secale cereale, is an ancient cereal grain already cultivated more than 2000 years ago in Asia Minor. Nowadays rye flour, obtained through the grinding of the rye grains, is used to prepare a tasty black bread, rich in mineral salts, such as potassium, phosphorus and calcium and able to bring a high quality fiber, useful to support the digestive processes, the intestinal transit by counteracting constipation and helpful to keep under control the levels of cholesterol and bl...
Bertholletia excelsa is known as Brazil nut and it is a tree belonging to the Lecythidaceae family that can be up to 50 meters height. The fruits are woody capsules that have inside the seeds that, in their turn, are protected by a hard shell. This shell should be broken and the Brazil nuts are obtained, well known and eaten all over the world. These nuts are a high protein food and contain mineral salts, such as magnesium, phosphorus, that plays an important role in a wide range of processes f...
Raisin has Greek or Turkish origins and is the result of the drying process in the sun or in special dryers of a variety of grapes, small and sweet. Raisins are an ideal snack because the drying process has made the nutrients more concentrated, it is a source of vitamins, particularly those of group B, which are important for the functioning of the nervous system and to fight tiredness and loss of memory, and mineral salts, such as potassium, calcium, copper and iron. It is energizing because it...
Robinia pseudoacacia, commonly known as black locust or false acacia, is a tree that belongs to the Fabaceae family. Thanks to this plant one of the best known and well appreciated honey is obtained. This honey is characterized by a light yellow color and a liquid consistency, it has a delicate taste and it also very versatile, it is highly digestible and energizing and for this reason it is the ideal choice for a breakfast or snack for sporty people or for those people who are going through a v...
Beetroot, also known as garden beet or red beet, scientific name Beta vulgaris, is a plant that belongs to the Chenopodiaceae family and is characterized by an edible root with interesting healthy and nutritional properties. Beetroot indeed, especially if you eat it raw, is very rich in folate, has mineral salts such as iron, potassium, phosphorus, calcium and magnesium, vitamins of groups B and C and water, very useful to counteract water retention. Thanks to these characteristics the beetroot ...
Bulgur is a cereal food obtained from durum wheat that, after steaming, is air dried and then coarsely milled. It has a very ancient origin, it seems indeed that bulgur was appreciated already by Babylonians and Hittites. It has the same characteristics as whole grain wheat, contains mineral salts such as potassium, iron and phosphorus, vitamins such as E, group B and PP, and fibers, useful for the proper intestinal functioning and to counteract constipation. Moreover, bulgur is a high energy f...
The Cashew tree is an evergreen tree belonging to the Anacardiaceae family, it is very appreciated thanks to its fruits that contain a seed, the cashew nut, considered a type of dry fruit. The cashew nuts, characterized by a sweet taste, are rich in mineral salts such as potassium and magnesium, useful to control the blood pressure and to protect the health of the nervous system, iron, copper, calcium, zinc and selenium, and vitamins such as group B, K and E. The cashew nuts are high in fat, aro...
The Kola nut is the fruit of several species of plants belonging to the genus Cola but it is also the ingredient of a famous drink known all over the world, the cola, although nowadays can be replaced by artificial flavors. The Kola nut is characterized by interesting properties, is indeed rich in tannins, caffeine and theobromine, substances that are released gradually and that are able to stimulate the nervous system, improve blood flow but also boost the metabolism. Therefore, the kola nut pr...
The Budwig Cream is a basic preparation of the Kousmine method, developed by a Russian doctor, Catherine Kousmine, who, in order to understand the progressive spread of degenerative diseases, studied the effect of nutrition on health. The Kousmine method was born thanks to these studies and, even though it is not scientifically recognized, it has the merit of putting on the same level diet and health that we know nowadays are intimately related. To understand this connection we recommend, among ...
Cassava, also known as yuca, manioc or Brazilian arrowroot, scientific name Manihot esculenta, belongs to the Euphorbiaceae family and is native to Central and South America. The Cassava root has a rough and brown peel and inside an edible white pulp, it can be cooked like a potato, boiled, steamed and served in the form of mashed potatoes. The important thing is that it has to be cooked, it is in fact not advised the consumption of raw cassava, with the exception of certain varieties, due to th...
Corn, also known as maize, scientific name Zea mays, is a plant belonging to the Graminaceae family native to central America. Incas and Aztecs adored this plant, that was considered sacred because it was a source of livelihood. Corn contains folic acid, mineral salts such as iron, potassium, manganese, magnesium and zinc, and vitamins of group B and A. Maize is also a source of fibers, important for a proper intestinal function, against constipation and to keep the levels of cholesterol under ...
Wheat grass is obtained by sprouting common wheat as well as spelt and barley, after about two weeks the newborn grass is cut and squeezed, thus obtaining an unique natural remedy, rich in vitamins such as A, C, E and group B, mineral salts such as calcium, potassium, magnesium, zinc, iron and phosphorus, amino acids and antioxidants such as chlorophyll. Thanks to these characteristics, wheat grass is useful in fighting free radicals and aging processes, improves the health of skin and hair, cle...
The fruit of the common fig tree, or Ficus Carica, is the fig. It can be eaten fresh or dry. For what concerns the calories, the fresh fruit provides about 50 kcal per 100 grams while in the dried fruit the calories increase and are about 250 kcal per 100 grams. Figs are a source of fiber and therefore help in case of constipation, contain prebiotics that are substances that support the intestinal bacterial flora and improve the digestive processes, figs bring also energy and for this reason the...
Cordyceps sinensis is a parasitic fungus of a moth, usually Hepialis armoricanus, it belongs to the Cordycipitaceae family and is very rare, so much that in ancient times it was reserved only to noble families. Nowadays, it has been found how to produce it in controlled cultivation so that the remedy can be purchased all around the world. Well known and appreciated by traditional Chinese medicine, cordyceps, also called the caterpillar fungus, is considered an elixir for the body, able to reinvi...
The buckwheat, scientific name Fagopyrum esculentum, belongs to the Poligonaceae family, but is considered, from a commercial point of view, a cereal, although it doesn’t belong to the family of the Graminaceae. Buckwheat contains B-group vitamins, mineral salts such as magnesium, potassium, more than all other cereals, manganese, iron and copper, and valuable antioxidants. It is easily digestible, brings proteins and a sense of satiety and, for this reason, it can be inserted into the diets of ...
Sulfur is a chemical element with important beneficial properties. This mineral was already known in ancient times as a method to purify the environments. It is the sulfur that Ulysses, in the Odyssey of Homer, uses to purify the house before he meets Penelope after the massacre of the suitors. Today we know that sulfur has an energetic action since it has a role in converting carbohydrates into energy, but it has also a detoxifying action by promoting the elimination of toxins that accumulate i...
The seeds of peanut, or Arachis hypogaea, which is a plant of the Fabaceae family, are also called groundnut or goober. They are used to extract peanut oil, a very light oil that is used to prepare mayonnaise, or can be consumed as a delicious snack or in the form of food paste, the famous peanut butter. Peanuts are rich in mineral salts such as magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc, calcium, phosphorus, selenium and manganese, vitamins such as B, E and J, fibers, folate and proteins. Peanuts are ver...
The fruit of Lupinus plant belonging to the Fabaceae family is a pulse which seeds are called lupines. Well known since the time of ancient Greeks and Romans, nowadays the lupines are becoming more and more popular thanks to scientific studies that have highlighted their healthful properties. The lupines are rich indeed in plant-based proteins and fibers and result, for this reason, nutritious, with a satiating power and useful to improve the bowel functionalities. Lupines are also rich in vita...
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