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Pasta, joy for the palate and source of health and energy for the body
How many of us do feel relieved over a nice plate of spaghetti seasoned with tomato sauce? Pasta is nowadays known and appreciated all over the world, in ten years indeed its consumption has doubled reaching the incredible figure of 15 million tons per year. The strength of pasta is that, in addition to being tasty and lending itself to recipes with practically endless combinations, it can also be an important source of health. So let's try to understand the properties of pasta and some pieces o...
Peanut butter is a delicious, nutritious and satiating food, obtained by grinding peanuts until smooth. The result is a paste, perfect for spreading on slices of bread or for making cakes and sweets yummier. In the post of today we will talk about the properties of pure peanut butter, obtained only from peanuts. In fact, unfortunately, many products that are found on the market contain, instead, added sugars, oils and saturated fats that modify the nutritional profile of the butter that becomes ...
Ginger, scientific name Zingiber officinale, is a plant of the Zingiberaceae family native to the Far East but nowadays widely known all over the world. The part of ginger that we use is the fleshy and fragrant rhizome, fresh, sliced or grated, in the dried form as a powder or even in the form of candied fruit. Ginger is a spice used to flavor sweet and savory dishes, but also to prepare healthy herbal teas. In fact, ginger is characterized by beneficial properties, which we are now going to see...
The chickpea, scientific name Cicer arietinum of the Fabaceae family, is a plant cultivated and appreciated above all for its edible seeds, the chickpeas. Among the many uses of chickpeas, these can be dried and ground to obtain a flour that is very tasty, nutritious, energizing and with interesting healthy properties. Chickpea flour, properties - This flour is, in fact, considered an excellent source of proteins and amino acids such as lysine. It is this characteristic that makes chickpea flo...
Maple, herbal medicine
The maple, scientific name acer campestre, is a tree of the Aceraceae family. From its buds a herbal remedy is obtained, the glycerine macerate of maple, with interesting healthy properties, let's see them! Maple glycerine macerate, properties - The glycerine macerate of maple is antiviral, anti-inflammatory and protects the cardiovascular system, the liver and the biliary tract. In fact, this remedy helps to reduce cholesterol levels, has a protective action on blood vessels by helping to cou...
What a wonderful fruit the pomegranate is! With a rounded shape and a hard rind, the fruit of the Punica granatum tree, or pomegranate, is a berry that contains inside its seeds of a beautiful deep red color, juicy and sweet with a slight bitter note. Pomegranate seeds are edible, can be added to yogurt or salads, pasta recipes or desserts, but they can also be used to obtain a fragrant and really healthy juice! Today we are talking about the properties of pomegranate juice. Pomegranate juice,...
Grapes are the fruit of the grape vine, vitis vinifera, juicy, sweet and tasty, have been a part of human life for thousands of years. There are different types of grapes, sweeter or more sour, smaller or bigger and of different colors. Today we will talk about black grapes. Black grapes, properties and benefits - Black grapes, more than other varieties, are an exceptional source of polyphenols, which are powerful antioxidants. Polyphenols are mainly found in grape skin and, in case of catechi...
The auricularia auricula judae, also known as wood ear or jelly ear, is an edible mushroom characterized by a particular ear-like elongated shape. This fungus grows on tree trunks, especially elder, and has been used since ancient times in China as a food and herbal remedy (Balakrishnan et al, International Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Jan 2015). From the auricularia fungus a supplement is obtained with important medicinal properties, useful for the well-being of the organism...
Hemp seeds are considered, nowadays and thanks to the numerous scientific researches that have studied their properties, real supplements. Hemp seeds, properties - These seeds, technically considered nuts, are completely devoid of psychotropic substances and are precious sources of omega 3 and omega 6 essential fatty acids in the ratio 1-2, which is considered optimal for the health of the human body (Callaway et al, Euphytica, 2004). Among these fatty acids we can find, mainly, linoleic acid,...
Fish oil pearls
Fish oil is the oil that is obtained from fish such as tuna, cod, salmon, anchovies, herring and mackerel. It is sold in the form of pearls and, today, is one of the most popular supplements used for its beneficial properties. Let's see better in detail! Fish oil, properties - Fish oil contains long chain Omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acids of the EPA type, or eicosapentaenoic acid, and DHA, or docosahexaenoic acid. Scientific studies have shown that the intake of fish oil has a protective eff...
Evening primrose oil, for oral use and topical applications
Through cold pressing of the seeds of the plant oenothera biennis, known as evening primrose and belonging to the Onagraceae family, a powerful beauty oil is obtained. This oil is suitable for very sensitive skin and eye contour. You can find evening primrose oil in herbalist’s and chemist’s shops, both for oral use in the form of pearls and for topical applications in bottles. But let’s see better the properties. Evening primrose oil, its beauty properties - This product is soothing and prote...
Bay tree, or bay laurel, scientific name laurus nobilis, is a plant belonging to the Lauraceae family. The leaves of this plant are often used in cooking to flavor meat dishes or soups, but the properties of the laurel do not end there. Indeed, bay leaf has important healthy properties, it helps keep at bay blood sugar and cholesterol levels, it has also an anti cancer action, it is healing in case of wounds and improves digestion. Bay leaf, diabetes, blood sugar and cholesterol - On the basis...
Curry leaves, health and beauty
Curry leaves … no, we are not speaking about the famous spice to season rice and sauces but about real leaves of a plant called curry, scientific name Murraya koenigii. The plant belongs to the Rutaceae family, the same as bergamot, oranges, lemons and rue, and is native to India where it is a very appreciated culinary ingredient but also the basis of various Ayurveda medicinal remedies. Nowadays you can buy curry leaves in well-stocked and online herbalists’s shops. But let's have a look at the...
Pecan, scientific name Carya illinoinensis of the Juglandaceae family, is a tree native to Mexico and America whose fruits are drupes containing an edible seed. It is precisely this seed that is called Pecan nut and that, nowadays, can be bought in all shops and supermarkets. Pecan nuts, widely used in cooking to prepare tasty desserts but also as a snack, alone or in a mixture with other dry fruits, are characterized by interesting healthy properties. Pecan nuts, properties - First of all, pe...
Muesli is a mix of cereal flakes, such as oat, spelt, amaranth or barley, dry fruit, especially raisins but also apples, dried berries and bananas, and seeds, including pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, almonds and hazelnuts. Muesli is eaten for breakfast or as a snack added to yogurt or milk. Muesli, properties - Because of its composition, muesli is an energy food, rich in fiber but also vitamins and mineral salts. In addition to this, scientific studies indicate that the consumption of muesli...
Food combinations and cooking methods, the mushrooms
In June the mushrooms start growing in the woods. The mushrooms, even if they are vegetables, aren’t constituted by cellulose, such as salads or fruits, but by nitrogenous substances, carbohydrates, low fat and, in particular, proteins. And it is thanks to this characteristic that mushrooms have been nicknamed the plant based meat. But the mushrooms are also a precious source of mineral salts such as iron, zinc, magnesium and selenium that give anticancer and antioxidant properties. Mushrooms co...
Aronia, scientific name aronia melanocarpa, is a bush belonging to the Rosaceae family. Its fruits, called aronia berries or chokeberries, are berries that, for what concerns their appearance, remind the blueberries but the taste is a bit sourer. Aronia berries can be found in the form of dried berries or in the form of juices. Chokeberries, properties – As for the properties, aronia berries are a source of vitamin K, useful for the health of bones and the proper blood clotting, vitamin C, gro...
Orange, red, green or blue, how wonderful the fruit’s and vegetable’s colors are! But these colors aren’t just joyful and fascinating but reflect also the presence of antioxidant compounds that, in addition to giving the color, determine also the healthy properties of the food. We are speaking about carotenoids, anthocyanins and flavonoids, substances that counteract the aging processes and that we can take by varying the type, and therefore the color, of fruit and vegetables that we serve on th...
Mung beans and their sprouts
Mung bean, also called green gram or moong, scientific name Vigna radiata, is a plant of the Fabaceae or Leguminosae family. The fruits of this plant are pods that contain edible seeds characterized by a peel of an intense green color. These seeds can be found on the market both in the dried form, in this case they should be soaked in water and then cooked, or in the form of sprouts, the famous mung bean sprouts, that can also be self-produced at home. Mung beans are the most used seeds in the w...
The lemon, scientific name Citrus limoni, is a plant of the Rutaceae family, the same as tangerine, orange and bergamot. The term lemon also refers to the fruit of this plant, of a beautiful intense yellow color and characterized by a rounded shape. Lemon is known and appreciated for its juice, drunk as a purifying and refreshing drink, used to dress salads or to marinate fish, meat or even fruit. But science is also interested in another part of the lemon, less used except for giving flavor to ...
Safflower oil, food use
From the cold pressing of the seeds of the safflower, Carthamus tinctorius, we obtain an oil rich in benefits for the skin, for the hair but also for the body. In the previous post we saw the use of safflower oil as a powerful natural cosmetic, useful in case of dry skin, with wrinkles but also in case of acne and, above all, dark skin spots. Today we see the properties of safflower oil for internal use, for example, when used cold to season salads and vegetables. This plant based oil is rich in...
Indian chai tea is not just a modern trend but it is a healthy aromatic drink with a very ancient tradition, dating back more than 5000 years ago. This tea is made with black tea, milk and a mixture of spices, including ginger, cardamom, pepper and cinnamon, which make it a digestive, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant drink, able to stimulate the metabolism. Properties - Scientific studies (Azimi et al, Rev Diabet Stud, Feb 2015) have shown that a drink prepared with black tea and 3 grams of s...
Food combinations and cooking methods, ginger Part 2
Ginger, scientific name Zingiber officinale, is a root with important beneficial properties. It is in fact anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and digestive, protects the heart and the immune system. But how can ginger be taken to maximize these properties? In today's post we see the most important food combinations and healthy preparations with ginger. Fresh, candied or herbal tea - Natural or candied ginger is an excellent ally against nausea. Moreover, if grated fresh on foods, such as fish, veg...
Food combinations and cooking methods, ginger Part 1
Ginger is a plant, scientific name Zingiber officinale family of Zinziberaceae, whose rhizome, also called root, is used to cook, thanks to its fresh aroma, and to prepare herbal remedies. Ginger is rich indeed in active substances, such as zingiberene, gingerol and shogaol, resins and mucilage. Thanks to these characteristics, ginger shows anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, anti-cancer and antioxidant properties. In addition, ginger is also able to keep at bay blood sugar, triglycerides and chol...
Artichoke, herbal remedy
Cynara scolymus is the scientific name of the artichoke, the vegetable that we use for cooking. The artichoke belongs to the Composite family and it isn’t just a yummy ingredient but it may become also a herbal remedy. From its leaves, indeed, a mother tincture is obtained rich in phenol compounds such as cynarin, cinaropicrin and caffeic acid. Thanks to these substances the remedy has antioxidant and diuretic properties and is able to protect the liver and the cardiovascular system (Kurt et al,...
Food combinations and cooking methods, onion First Part
The onion, belonging to the Liliaceae family, is well known, appreciated and eaten for millennia. The first signs of its usage go back to the Chaldeans, 4000 years ago, but also the ancient Egyptians used onions a lot, while during Middle Ages the onions were considered a so precious food that they were used as coins. Nowadays, thanks to scientific studies, we know that this edible bulb isn’t just tasty but also rich in antibiotic, antiseptic, expectorant, anti-inflammatory, diuretic, thus usefu...
Food combinations Part 5, the best ways to eat artichokes
The artichoke is the flower bud of the plant Cynara scolymus. The artichoke is rich in iron, potassium, magnesium, cynarine, an alkaloid able to protect the liver and to lower the cholesterol, inulin, a prebiotic that protects and stimulates the bacterial flora of the gut, antioxidants such as tannins (Rondanelli et al, Monladi Arch Chest Dis, Mar 2013 – Lopez-Molina et al, Phytochemistry, Jun 2005). However, the properties of the artichoke depend on the ways of cooking and on the foods served t...
Nori seaweed, scientific name Porphyra umbilicalis, is one of the most famous red algae in the world. It is indeed one of the ingredients of sushi, the typical Japanese dish based on rice, fish or vegetables. But nori seaweed is appreciated not only for its culinary use, it has also important healthy properties. First of all, nori seaweed is an important source of proteins, all highly digestible (Cian et al, Mar Drugs, Aug 2015). Moreover, this amazing seaweed also contains iodine, but to a less...
Annurca is an apple native to Campania, a region of South Italy, and is also considered the queen of all the apples. Why is it so important? Because this apple is characterized by powerful and interesting properties on health and beauty, all well demonstrated by scientific researches. Annurca apple contains indeed high quantities of polyphenols and results able to keep under control the levels of cholesterol. According indeed to a study published in 2017 on the Journal of the science of food a...
Fat burning diet Part 7, the herbal teas green tea and Java tea
In the latest posts we have focused the attention on the fat burning foods because, according to scientific researches, the adipose tissue, especially if localized on the waistline, may result a problem for health since it has been shown to worsen the chronic inflammations (You et al, Curr Diabetes Review, Feb 2006). A condition of chronic inflammation of the body in the long period may cause several illnesses such as cardiovascular problems, auto immune diseases, cancer but also depression (Lop...
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