Lotus root offers a myriad of incredible health benefits thanks to its abundance of nutrients. It is capable of maintaining proper enzymatic activity in the body, increasing the blood circulation,and balancing mood, preventing various cancer forms, boosting the immune system, lowering blood pressure, reducing cholesterol, and improving digestion.
What is Lotus Root?
As the name suggests, lotus root refers to the root of an aquatic plant thatto the family of Nelumbonaceae known as the lotus flower. For many years, the lotus flower continues as a great element of several countries in Asia. It symbolizes divine beauty, purity, and sexual innocence. A lot of religions and cultural practices consider it as a significant element.
The roots of the stunning and ever beautiful lotus flower are embedded in the bottom of the river, stream, lake, etc. On the other hand, on top of the water is its emerging flower and its pad floating. The lotus flower is an aquatic perennial plant, and its seeds are able to germinate long after a period of dormancy. Believe it or not, there was a 1,300 years old lotus flower seed that was once revived and blossomed in a laboratory.
The rhizome or the lotus root is the long and woody part of the lotus flower attaching to the bottom of the flower’s pad. It can grow and extend up to 4 feet. In Asian cuisines, washing, slicing and then preparing lotus roots as a vegetable make a great addition to soups. Also, there are lots of ways to enjoy lotus roots like deep-frying, braising, stir-frying, or cooking it in interesting ways. In traditional herbal medicine, the rhizome of a lotus flower also comes handy in its powdered or natural form.
Usually pickled as snacks, lotus roots are also great salad toppings or addition to prawn recipes due to the slightly sweet and tangy taste, especially after picking it. Without any added flavorings, it tastes a bit like coconuts, and its texture comes similar to that of a potato.
Nutrition Facts of Lotus Root
Lotus roots offer various amazing health benefits and are also a healthy treat thanks to its nutrient abundance. It is a composition of beneficial phytonutrients,, and minerals. Manganese, , , iron, and phosphorous are the beneficial minerals present in lotus roots. It is also abundant in vitamins such as vitamin C, , , pantothenic acid, and thiamin. The lotus root also contains a high fiber content and is a decent protein source.
Health Benefits Of Lotus Root
The nutrients found abundant in lotus root benefits the body in various ways, and below are the details of its many health benefits.
1. Provides Vitamin A
Lotus roots contain another important vitamin, which is vitamin A. By the way, vitamin A boosts eye health, skin health, and hair health. As an antioxidant, vitamin A can inhibit ocular conditions such as macular degeneration, cataract, and more. It helps in treating skin inflammations and conditions and hastens wound healing as well.
2. Stimulates Blood Circulation
The root of the lotus flower can increase energy levels and organ functionality and oxygenation by stimulating blood circulation. Itsignificant copper and iron content, which are essential in the production of red blood cells. Thus, lotus root helps to increase blood flow and vitality and reduce the risk of developing symptoms of anemia.
3. Discourages Overeating and Controls Obesity
Lotus roots also make an excellent food choice for those who want to control their weight. Low-calorie, nutrient-dense, and fibrous foods like lotus root can provide satiation and all the necessary nutrients. Thus, it helps in managing obesity and discouraging overeating.
4. Gives Peace & Lessens Stress
Pyridoxine is a B-complex vitamin, which, fortunately, is also present in lotus root. The brain has neural receptors that areby pyridoxine and are capable of influencing mental states and the mood. The pyridoxine found in lotus root can contribute to managing stress levels, irritability, and headaches.
Lotus flowers sometimes have something to do with tranquility and peace, but lotus root is what actually helps people achieve the peace they seek!
5. Boosts Heart Health
The dietary fiber present in it helps in reducing cholesterol. Lotus root also contains pyridoxine, which manages the blood’s homocysteine, which has a direct connection to a heart attack. Lotus root contains potassium, which acts as a vasodilator to relax the blood vessels. With all these benefits, lotus root, therefore, can boost heart health.
6. Manages Blood Pressure
Lotus root is rich in potassium, which helps in balancing body fluids properly. Potassium also neutralizes‘s effects in the bloodstream. Not to mention, it is also a vasodilator; thus, it is able to relax the blood vessels. In other words, by reducing rigidity and contraction, it boosts blood flow and relieves the cardiovascular system of strain.
In addition, potassium is a vital component of the passage of blood and fluid in the brain and neural activity.
7. Provides Vitamin C
Speaking of the lotus root’s nutrient content, vitamin C perhaps comes the most notable. People can73% of the daily required vitamin C for every 100 grams of lotus root. The potent antioxidant vitamin C is also a vital collagen component. It stimulates the immune system and maintains the strength and integrity of the , organs, and blood vessels.
Moreover, vitamin C also protects the body against free radicals, which are harmful by-products of the metabolism of cells. By the way, free radicals contribute to the onset of heart diseases and cancer.
8. Boosts Digestion
Lotus root has acontent of dietary fiber, which is also responsible for making the stool bulky and expediting bowel movements. It facilitates regular and smooth bowel movement by stimulating the intestine’s peristaltic motion and increasing the release of gastric and digestive juices. Thus, it optimizes the absorption of nutrients, and at the same time reduces constipation symptoms as well.
Lotus root is safe to use; however, there are people who consume its raw form, which can contribute to spreading bacterial infections and parasites. Therefore, it is advisable to cook lotus roots always before incorporating them into a diet or eating them.