About the benefits and dangers of Jerusalem artichoke tubers for the human body
Tall Jerusalem artichoke plants visible from afar are hard to miss at their summer cottage. Not only are the tubers of this culture not inferior to potatoes in nutritional properties, the benefits of Jerusalem artichoke and the harm from ill-considered use of the product have long been well studied..
The native American species at home was cultivated several thousand years ago by local tribes. Jerusalem artichoke provided essential food, durable fiber for mats and clothing. Today the value of the plant has been preserved. Juicy, sweetish, starchy tubers weighing from 20 to 100 grams are perfectly stored and can serve as a complete food product from autumn until the next harvest.
The useful properties of Jerusalem artichoke are not limited to the ability to prepare delicious culinary dishes. One of the main advantages of culture is the incredible healing power of tubers..
Composition and useful properties of Jerusalem artichoke
If for centuries it was possible to talk about the therapeutic effect only on the basis of observations and on a whim, today scientists have taken the side of doctors. The biochemical analysis of Jerusalem artichoke showed that the modest tubers, which taste like cabbage stump, contain a record number of active substances and compounds..
How is Jerusalem artichoke useful? What substances do folk and official medicine pay close attention to??
Fresh tubers are a source of ascorbic acid, vitamins B1, B2, B6, A and PP. Jerusalem artichoke is rightfully considered the leader among root crops and tubers in terms of the content of an element extremely important for humans – iron. Regular consumption of tubers helps to meet the needs for potassium and calcium, phosphorus and sodium, magnesium and silicon. All these micro- and macroelements are contained in sufficiently large quantities, which determines the active effect of the product on human well-being..
Therefore, the useful properties of Jerusalem artichoke or earthen pear, as the plant is often called by summer residents and adherents of a healthy lifestyle, are in demand with a deficiency of certain elements in the body:
- Systematic potassium deficiency, for example, can lead to the development of neuralgia.
- Losing calcium, teeth and bones begin to decay.
- Magnesium is indispensable for the work and development of the heart muscle, maintaining active nervous activity.
- Sodium is responsible for metabolic processes, and its deficiency leads to disorders of the digestion and genitourinary system, to seizures and other negative consequences..
- Manganese, which influences growth, blood formation function, activity of the gonads.
- Iron deficiency leads to changes in the quality of blood and to a deterioration in its supply of oxygen.
- The intake of silicon prevents the development of atherosclerosis and other ailments associated with metabolic processes.
In addition, fiber, pectins, proteins, organic acids, sugars and valuable amino acids that have antioxidant properties enter the body with tubers and dishes from them..
Passing through the digestive tract, fiber, like a brush, cleans the intestinal walls, taking with it not only toxins, but also excess cholesterol harmful to the body. As a result of regular consumption of tubers, the risk of atherosclerosis is reduced, and the process of defecation is getting better..
Due to the ability of Jerusalem artichoke to have a beneficial effect on the intestinal microflora, we can talk about the effectiveness of the medicinal properties of Jerusalem artichoke for dysbiosis, dyspepsia and other digestive disorders.
Tuber dishes can be included in the diet to prevent exacerbations of gastritis and pancreatitis. Jerusalem artichoke not only helps harmful substances to leave the body in time, it suppresses the vital activity of such types of microflora as staphylococci, salmonella and enterococci.
A kind of “star” in Jerusalem artichoke is inulin, a plant substance very similar in properties to insulin. The presence of a compound, the content of which in dry matter reaches 20%, determines the active use of Jerusalem artichoke in diabetes mellitus, but the interest of doctors is not limited only to inulin.
The long list of amino acids present in tubers deserves close attention. Among them there are more than a dozen bioactive compounds that affect:
- aging and metabolic processes;
- on the neuropsychic state;
- muscle tone;
- on the state of immunity
- on the rate of tissue regeneration.
It is interesting that the compounds contained in the tubers form natural combinations that make it possible to use the medicinal properties of Jerusalem artichoke for a variety of ailments and painful conditions, for example, for the prevention of such formidable diseases as heart attack, stroke, with gout and weakened natural defenses of the body.
Dishes and medicines from Jerusalem artichoke: recipes, benefits and harms
Jerusalem artichoke is eaten raw, boiled, fried and baked. On the basis of tubers are prepared:
- dietary soups, puree;
- original side dishes for exquisite poultry and vegetable dishes;
- toppings for pies;
Jerusalem artichoke flour, similar to potato starch, is added to bakery products, and for patients with diabetes, Jerusalem artichoke recipes are a real find that allows you to significantly diversify the menu even previously unavailable, and at the same time, safe confectionery.
With the great benefits of Jerusalem artichoke, there is practically no harm from its inclusion in the diet. If the tubers have undergone heat treatment, especially baking and boiling, in moderation they will be extremely useful. Jerusalem artichoke is recommended to be included in the diet menu:
- with gout;
- with anemia;
- with gastritis with high acidity;
- with pancreatitis;
- with atherosclerosis;
- with hypertension;
- with the formation of kidney stones and bladder;
- with overweight and obesity.
A useful product will not be superfluous if a person works in hazardous industries or lives in a region with an unfavorable environmental situation. However, studying the recipes for the preparation of Jerusalem artichoke, the benefits and harms of the uncontrolled use of tubers, you need to remember that there are much more active substances in fresh plant raw materials. But the caution when taking in this case should be more. It is safer to add raw Jerusalem artichoke slices to salads and vegetable snacks. If you do this regularly, the risk of heart and vascular diseases, thrombophlebitis, atherosclerosis and hypertension is dramatically reduced.
For the treatment of the above diseases, it is advised to take a decoction of root vegetables, which is also effective against urolithiasis and heartburn..
There are recipes for the preparation of Jerusalem artichoke, with benefit and without harm to help cope with external skin problems. Masks and lotions based on crushed tuber relieve irritation, soothe the skin after burns, prolonged exposure to the sun or eczema.
Natural organic acids in combination with mineral salts and starch help to cope with the manifestations of acne, increase skin tone, whiten and dry. Baths with a decoction of Jerusalem artichoke leaves relieve gout, arthritis and osteochondrosis.
Contraindications to the use of Jerusalem artichoke
The medicinal properties of Jerusalem artichoke and contraindications, which can be heard from doctors, are of the same nature. It is a high biochemical activity of plant materials..
In order not to inadvertently harm your health, you need to make a decision about using Jerusalem artichoke to treat a disease only after consulting a doctor. The physician will be able to accurately assess the existing risks based on diagnosed acute and chronic diseases and the feasibility of such therapy.
Nutritionists and gastroenterologists advise against overusing raw tubers. It is especially important to remember this for gastritis with low acidity and sluggish digestion. Boiled, baked or added tubers to soup or stew will perfectly satisfy hunger and safely replenish the body with everything that amazing Jerusalem artichoke is rich in..