Amaranth is an important plant in the diet and culture of pre-Columbian American Indian tribes. They were widely used in the diet of the ancient Latinos. This plant is characterized not only by its high nutritional properties, but also by its ability to lower cholesterol levels – this is due to the high quality of the protein that makes up amaranth. This writes the Brazilian edition of Onortao.
Studies by Brazilian scientists have proven that amaranth helps lower blood cholesterol levels.
A study conducted by the Laboratory of Biochemistry and Functional Properties of Foods at the University of São Paulo (USP) showed that amaranth is a unique plant that was popularly used among the ancient tribes inhabiting Latin American lands. Amaranth blossoms
Scientists have found that amaranth has a high nutritional value, nutritional value, in its composition a large amount:
- trace elements;
- other necessary human body substances.
But the most important result of research by Brazilian scientists is the fact that high quality vegetable protein can fight high cholesterol in the human body. When digested, this protein inhibits the enzyme responsible for the accumulation of cholesterol in the body.
Brazilian researcher JOSE ALFREDO GOMES AREAS and his colleagues began to study amaranth in the distant 1996. Their goal is to understand how the plant lowers cholesterol.
How amaranth was tested on rabbits and what came of it
After inducing elevated levels of total cholesterol and LDL (the so-called bad cholesterol) in rabbits, through foods rich in saturated fatty acids and other compounds, the researchers administered a diet containing amaranth.
Studies have shown that the amaranth protein fraction is responsible for lowering cholesterol, because proteins that are “altered” when digested by the body become small chains of amino acids that can inhibit the enzyme responsible for cholesterol accumulation. São Paulo, Brazil, Amaranth
But the mechanism of such a change and transformation has not yet been fully elucidated, and the team continues its research.
In partnership with the Heart Institute (InCor) in São Paulo, studies were conducted involving patients whose blood cholesterol levels were quite high.
The use of amaranth in food, even in small quantities, along with statins, has significantly reduced the level of bad cholesterol in the blood of patients.
José Alfredo Gomez Areas says that more research is needed to understand how much amaranth actually reduces total cholesterol, since the number of patients tested was small. In addition, at this moment they used some medication.
What substances were still found during research amaranth
In addition to the proven effectiveness in combating cholesterol in animals, one should also highlight the positive value of amaranth, such as the high biological value of its protein and the presence of other unique compounds. For example, some amino acids are present only in amaranth, but they are not found in any other plants! In addition, amaranth is a great source:
- bioavailable fibers;
At the same time, all these substances are ready for absorption by the body – it is well absorbed and processed, providing the body and organs with maximum benefit.
In addition, Brazilian researchers focus on the fact that amaranth also does not contain gluten or other allergenic substances. This makes it an excellent option for people suffering from celiac disease – gluten intolerance.
How Brazil explores amaranth consumption
The team at the University of São Paulo are looking for the most effective and rational ways of consuming amaranth in order to find the best option to get the most out of it.
The good news is the fact that virtually everything is edible in amaranth – leaves, stems, seeds. Therefore, amaranth can and will be an important part of the Brazilian food culture.
The seeds of amaranth are also called pseudo-mids. When heated, they explode like popcorn – this is due to the fact that their shell is too dense, and therefore when heated, the moisture from them does not evaporate, but boils inside, which leads to an explosion.
Amaranth seeds are ideal for producing various products – muesli, bars, smoothies. They are used in the preparation of cereals and salads. They make the flour, from which it turns out delicious pastries.
The idea of the team of Jose Alfredo Gomez Areas is to introduce seeds into products that are familiar to Brazilians. Make amaranth part of the already traditional Brazilian culture dishes. As once was done with soy.
As a result of the introduction of amaranth, according to Brazilian scientists, it will be possible to significantly improve the quality of the diet of the population. That will prevent the spread of various diseases that provoke cholesterol. Fortunately, there are all possibilities for this, given that amaranth can be used in different dishes, and its taste properties are beyond doubt.