Great artichoke benefits for our health and beauty that many of us do not know. Artichoke is a vegetable that should not be underestimated and forgotten because it really offers us many benefits that we should use more often.
Artichoke is a perennial plant with purple flowers. Although artichoke is considered a vegetable, the edible part is essentially an unopened flower bud. Artichoke leaves and root are used as a remedy for some ailments, from irritable bowel syndrome to hangover prevention. Cynara scolymus is the botanical name for artichoke.
According to mythology, the Greek god Zeus fell in love with the beautiful woman Cynara, turned her into a goddess, and took her to live with him.
Cynara did not like her new home and wanted to return to earth. This angered Zeus and he returned her to the earth turned into an artichoke.
Cynara is the first artichoke plant and belongs to the group Asteraceae that grows in Mediterranean countries and southern Europe, northern Africa, and the Canary Islands. The ancient peoples used artichokes both as food and as medicine.
The Greeks and Romans considered artichoke a delicacy and used it in the treatment of digestive problems and also as an aphrodisiac. Ancient Greeks still believed that women who used artichokes would have male children.
There are more than 50 views of artichoke. The only species grown in the United States is the green globe artichoke.
Spanish settlers brought artichokes to the New World during the 1880s, and 80% of the green globe is grown in Castroville, California.
As a food, artichoke contains 25 calories and 3 grams of fiber, vitamin C, folate, and magnesium. Artichoke leaves contain cynarin, an ingredient that helps lower cholesterol.
The artichoke was used in folk medicine as an aphrodisiac, but also for other conditions, such as anemia, arthritis, gallstones, itching, and snake bites.
More recently, artichokes have been used as a remedy for irritable bowel syndrome, cholesterol, and hangovers, as well as for digestive problems and loss of appetite. Artichoke is thought to improve bile secretion and thus aid in digestive problems.
Artichoke leaves are approved for some of these conditions by the German EMonographs Commission, a guide to herbal remedies such as liver and gallbladder diseases, and decreased appetite.
In the United States, artichoke is advertised as a dietary supplement because it is not approved by the FDA (United States Food and Drug Administration), and thus its safety and efficacy and recommended dosage have not been established.
Composition of artichoke
This vegetable is a rich source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals. The energy value of artichoke is very small – it contains only 47 calories per 100 grams, and most of it consists of carbohydrates, then protein, and very little fat.
It is an excellent food for weight loss, which is why it is especially appreciated and is an integral part of the menu of many diets. Also contains vitamin C, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, folic acid, vitamin B-6, B-12, A, E, D, and vitamin K.
It also provides minerals such as calcium, iron, zinc, sodium, potassium, manganese, phosphorus, and zinc. Artichokes contain bioactive ingredients called apigenin and luteolin.
The total antioxidant capacity of artichoke flower heads is among the highest when it comes to vegetables.
Cynarin rine is also a chemical component of artichoke, and most cinnabar is found in the pulp of the leaves, although it is also found in the dried leaves and stems of this plant. Inhibits taste receptors, making water, as well as other foods and beverages, look sweet.
Artichoke leaves contain many phenolic acids, flavonoids (rutin, luteolin)cynarin, and sesquiterpenes (especially caryophyllene and beta-selenium); and also contain tannins, sugars, inulin, mucous substances, phytosterols (taraxasterol), essential oil, provitamin A, and several enzymes.
Sources include USDA Amount Per 100 grams:
- Calories 47 %
- Total Fat 0.2 g
- Saturated fat 0 g
- Polyunsaturated fat 0.1 g
- Monounsaturated fat 0 g
- Cholesterol 0 mg0%
- Sodium 94 mg3%
- Potassium 370 mg10%
- Total Carbohydrate 11 g3%
- Dietary fiber 5 g20%
- Sugar 1 g
- Protein 3.3 g6%
- Vitamin A0 %
- Vitamin C19%
- Vitamin D0%
- Vitamin B-65%
10 benefits of artichoke for our health
The health benefits of the artichoke are really great, in today’s article we can use artichoke for the benefit of our health.
Artichoke benefits for low cholesterol
Artichoke lowers high cholesterol by lowering “bad” LDL cholesterol and increasing “good” HDL cholesterol.
This is a result of its choleretic action, ie through increased secretion of bile, due to which the liver is able to convert cholesterol into bile acids.
In this way, the body copes with excess cholesterol and reduces the level of triglycerides.
Artichoke is the guardian of your heart
Artichoke, as we have already said, effectively lowers bad cholesterol and increases good cholesterol.
It contributes to and protects our heart and its health.
Unlike drugs, from the group of statins, artichoke does not reduce the synthesis of cholesterol but increases its breakdown.
Cinnatin and sesquiterpene – artichoke lactone are responsible for its beneficial effects on the heart and blood vessels.
They prevent vascular disease, angina pectoris, myocardial infarction, and stroke.
Artichoke benefits as a natural remedy for gallstones
Leaf extract stimulates bile, which is key to breaking down fat and cholesterol, which can lead to gallstones.
Artichoke cinnamon is so effective that it is used in some European countries as part of gallstone treatment.
Detoxification and cleansing of the body
Artichoke has long been used for spring cleansing of the body.
This treatment is still used today and is especially recommended for people who have been taking drugs for a long time, people exposed to toxic substances in the workplace, as well as people suffering from various types of allergies.
It helps the elderly in case of azotemia – toxin poisoning of the body caused by impaired kidney function or urinary retention.
Better digestion of artichoke food
Thanks to the high content of dietary fiber, lutein, and prebiotic inulin, artichoke reduces the risk of cancer, while preparations based on this plant improve appetite.
Artichoke drops also help in the case of indigestion, including bloating, nausea, abdominal pain, intestinal cramps, constipation.
Artichoke tea for liver and yolk
When it comes to vegetables, according to the results of several studies conducted in recent years, artichoke is among the first in terms of beneficial effects on the liver.
And because of this, it can be measured with certain medicinal plants.
It has been confirmed that:
- Artichoke extract repairs tissue damaged by hepatitis and other diseases.
- Lowers blood cholesterol and fat levels.
- Reduces the harmful effects of alcohol.
In addition, if artichoke drops and tea are used regularly, it will also have a preventive effect, ie. can prevent liver damage. They improve function and accelerate its regeneration.
Because of these properties, artichoke is often called “liver balm”. It is very useful in the treatment of hepatitis of various origins due to the presence of antioxidants.
They reduce inflammatory reactions, improve regeneration, and accelerate the regeneration process of damaged hepatocytes.
It should be emphasized that for treatment, primarily artichoke leaves are used, from which tea or tincture can be made.
The beneficial ingredients of the plant also stimulate the flow of bile and prevent the appearance of gallstones.
As already mentioned, this useful plant protects the liver from infections and inflammation and is also useful in the treatment of hepatitis.
An excellent artichoke benefits for weight loss and diabetes
Artichoke is a portion of great diet food. It is rich in inulin, which is partially digestible, so it does not affect blood glucose, suitable for diabetics.
It also improves insulin sensitivity, thereby leading to better glucose control. Artichoke is low in calories and rich in fiber.
Therefore, it is especially recommended for people prone to weight gain. Artichoke drops are especially appreciated.
What can artichoke leaf extract do for the scalp and hair?
Artichoke has antioxidant compounds such as silymarin, caffeic acid, and ferulic acids that help the body protect itself from the harmful agents of free radicals.
This slows down the aging process of the skin, scalp, and hair by blocking these harmful agents.
UV rays inherently damage the melanin and protein components in the follicle, but these changes can be reversed when treated with artichoke extract.
Artichoke is a rich source of minerals such as copper, iron, potassium, manganese, and phosphorus are vital for healthy hair.
Copper aids hair growth by increasing cell follicle proliferation and reducing programmed cell follicle death. Iron plays an important role in nourishing and oxygenating the hair roots.
Potassium deficiency is one of the main causes of hair loss in both men and women, and manganese deficiency can lead to weaker hair.
These minerals along with calcium and phosphorus replenish dry, damaged, dull, and lifeless fibers, improving the strength, appearance, feel, and overall quality of hair.
Vitamin C in artichoke is good for scalp inflammation and even for some mild infections or scalp diseases like dandruff.
To benefit from artichokes for both your hair and the rest of your body, add them to your list and include them in your diet.
If artichoke is not your favorite, then take a look at these five products that use the goodness of artichoke in their formulas. It is believed that vegetables can help with hair loss.
A similar action is associated with freshly squeezed juice, which should be pushed into the scalp.
Artichokes benefits for relieving a hangover
To do this, use artichoke leaves that need to be poured over boiling water. The prepared infusion is taken in small sips. This plant is also known to have pronounced aphrodisiac properties.
Harmful properties of artichoke
Although this plant has many beneficial properties, and it itself has a pleasant taste, not everyone can eat it.
First of all, we are not talking about those who have health problems:
- high blood pressure;
- gallstone disease;
Those who have individual intolerance to this plant or the substances contained in it should also refuse the use of artichoke.
Also if it is necessary to exclude artichokes from the diet of those people who have been diagnosed with renal failure, high acidity, and diseases of the gastrointestinal tract.
Breastfeeding mothers should refuse to use artichokes, as this vegetable negatively affects the rate of secretion of breast milk.
Also, this vegetable should not be given to children under 12 years of age. The use of artichoke for people suffering from cholecystitis should be only after consulting a doctor.
Unlike many other vegetables, the damage that artichokes can cause can vary. To notice this, look at the size of the vegetables.
Usually, its use in raw form does not lead to poor health. You need to be more careful with large and ripe vegetables: you can eat them only after heat treatment.
In addition, it is necessary to take into account the storage periods of artichokes. In the fresh form, you can eat only vegetables that are harvested no later than one week.
Remember in the future, you can only eat this vegetable if you cook it first.
It is recommended to store artichokes in a dry place, away from products with a persistent odor, because this vegetable can absorb not only that but also moisture.
Artichoke benefits and its use in the kitchen
Artichoke is popular not only for its beneficial properties but also for its pleasant taste.
It is therefore widely used in cooking, and some find it enjoyable. Its taste practically does not change, regardless of the form in which it is used.
However, it should be borne in mind that artichokes, when placed in boiling water, lose many of their flavors and healing properties.
It is often used in the preparation of some exotic salads, sauces, and is also used as a side dish. Most of the possibilities for using this vegetable exist in Italian cuisine.
Artichokes can be subjected to various types of heat treatment:
It can also be used in the preparation of various pies, where it can act as a delicious filling.
Artichoke bread is not only delicious but also very useful.
How to prepare artichokes at home
We will first turn your attention to how to choose the highest quality vegetables and how to store them at home:
Always choose a green, firm, and compact artichoke specimens whose inner leaves are firmly attached to the center of the plant.
If you do not prepare it immediately, spray it with water and put it in a plastic bag, and then in the refrigerator, in the part intended for storing vegetables, where it can be stored for a maximum of three days.
Artichoke is also suitable for freezing, but it should be blanched a few minutes before – in water with a little lemon juice. When it cools, put it in a plastic bag and put it in the freezer.