The seed of amaranth has been prized since ancient times. It is added to food, used to obtain the most valuable product – an oil rich in squalene, an organic compound necessary for the body to provide oxygen. Today amaranth is also valued because of its ability to help people who suffer from this or that type of allergy.
Grain as a source of substances for maintaining health and healing diseases
People have learned to use amaranth completely: the stem is consumed as a vegetable, the leaf is used for making stews. However, the most used part is the grain with its high nutrient content. Especially important is the presence in the grain of this culture a unique set of proteins: the composition of amaranth contains up to 16% of natural protein. Among its components a special place belongs to lysine – a protein that we need at least 1.5 g per day. This amino acid in the body is not synthesized and must come from food in the composition of plant proteins, and one of its properties is the ability to have an antiviral effect. A lack of lysine causes immunodeficiency, leads to fatigue, fatigue and weakness, loss of appetite, growth and weight loss, inability to concentrate, irritability, bleeding in the eyeball, hair loss, and reproductive problems. It can be noted that synthetic lysine is used to enrich animal feed.
The amaranth contains a large amount of vitamins and biologically active compounds of natural origin. You can see that among the vitamins dominated by the group B, and its representatives:
- normalize the work of the nervous and cardiovascular systems;
- improve intestinal function, skin condition;
- support emotional health, help to cope with stress, depression, increased emotional stress;
- participate in cell growth, energy exchange, and muscle function;
- strengthen the immune system and increase the body’s resistance to various diseases.
The grain of amaranth also contains vitamins C, K, A, and a large amount of minerals needed by the body (zinc, selenium, copper, manganese, iron, phosphorus, sodium, magnesium, calcium, potassium). In addition, this culture contains saturated fatty acids, and by their amount it is superior to wheat.
The value of amaranth grain is also in the fact that there is no gluten in it, and gluten intolerance, as shown by medical studies, affects about 1% of all people. According to some statements, gluten intolerance or celiac disease is nothing more than an allergy. However, in people with such a diagnosis, digestion is seriously impaired, as the villi of the small intestine are damaged by the action of gluten. As a result, nutrient absorption is impaired, leading to diarrhea, abdominal pain, exhaustion, mood deterioration, depression, and may even lead to the development of diabetes, intestinal cancer.
Food against diseases
Many diseases can be prevented and even won thanks to nutrition with amaranth. So, as a result of research, it has been proved that amaranth has the unique ability to excrete radionuclides from the body, prevent and stop the formation of cancer cells, block tumors and foci of various diseases. Substances contained in this culture are able to increase and strengthen the immune system, and this is an excellent help in the prevention and treatment of various diseases. With the help of amaranth, the fight against diabetes, neuralgia, asthma, arthrosis and osteochondrosis is more successful, it is possible to normalize blood pressure, improve the functioning of the heart, liver and kidneys.
Amaranth is beneficial for pulmonary, colds, cardiovascular diseases, rheumatism, polyarthritis, anemia, vitamin deficiency, obesity, diabetes. With the help of food on the basis of amaranth, it is possible to reduce the level of cholesterol in the blood, thereby preventing atherosclerosis, and to protect the body against all diseases associated with unfavorable ecological conditions.
Amaranth is used directly for medicinal purposes. So, tea from broth of amaranth with seeds is successfully treated for urinary incontinence in children, anemia, diseases of the kidneys, liver, hemorrhoids.
The presence of a large amount of starch and the most valuable dietary fiber makes amaranth an indispensable dietary product and is recommended for obesity in order to normalize the metabolism and rapid weight loss without drugs and exhausting diets.
Amaranth grain is also valuable for its high oil content, known for one of its valuable components – squalene, of which there is a record amount (8%). Squalene is a natural unsaturated hydrocarbon, and for its main functions it is also called the “oxygen vitamin”, since it saturates all the cells and tissues of the body with oxygen. This compound fights cancer cells, preserves youth, supports immunity, improves the functioning of the heart and hormones. In addition, squalene does not happen much: it is safe in any concentration.
Choosing dishes for a healthy menu
Amaranth and amaranth products are very revered in Mexico. In Mexico City, the Olive and Amaranth Fair is held annually, where the Mexican Indians present all sorts of products from amaranth or with its addition. Here you can see flakes, cereals, muesli, flour, biscuits, muffins, soups. Sweet soft drinks, amaranth with chocolate (shokoamaranth) are also popular, and of course, traditional and well-known “alegria” – amaranth bars with honey, in which raisins and peanuts are added. Mexicans and tourists also like chili, stuffed with amaranth, and steak breaded with amaranth, with olive sauce.
Some Mexican dishes can be cooked by yourself.
Healthy Amaranth Salad
- 1 ½ glasses of water;
- 1/2 cup of amaranth grain;
- 1 cucumber;
- 1 celery sticks;
- 1/2 onion;
- 1/4 tsp mint and the same amount of cilantro;
- 1/4 hl coriander;
- 1 teaspoon crushed lemon peel;
- 1/4 hl salt;
- 1/4 hl pepper;
- 1/2 cup of peas and the same nut;
- Chees Feta;
- olive oil for dressing.
Bring water to a boil, add amaranth, reduce the heat and cover the dishes with amaranth with a lid, and then cook over low heat for about 20 minutes. During this time, amaranth must completely absorb the liquid. While it is boiled, peel the cucumber and cut it into medium pieces. Do the same with celery sticks. Finely chop the onion, add the mint and cilantro. Mix all the ingredients in a deep bowl, then add the nuts and pre-cooked peas. When the amaranth is ready, drain the water and rinse it with cold water, let it drain all the liquid. Mix amaranth and a mixture of vegetables with nuts, season with lemon peel, olive oil, salt, pepper. If necessary, add a little salt and pepper. Finally, add the chopped or chopped feta cheese into small pieces. The dish can be served with a small amount of lemon juice or lemon slices – this will give it a more fresh flavor.
Whole rice with amaranth
- 200 grams of boiled brown rice;
- 100 grams of fried amaranth seeds;
- 3 large chopped hard boiled eggs;
- raw red pepper (cut into pieces of medium size);
- green vegetables (asparagus, beans or zucchini).
Mix 200 grams of boiled brown rice with 100 grams of fried amaranth seeds, three hard-boiled eggs, red raw pepper, cut into medium pieces, and green vegetables. To make rice super digestive, you can add raw zucchini, seasoned with salt and cold-pressed olive oil. Add a small zucchini, cut into cubes. The dish can be sprinkled with a small amount of onion, cilantro or parsley.
Zucchini with cheese and amaranth
- 20 rectangular pieces of pumpkin (medium size);
- low fat grated cheese;
- 100 grams of chia seeds;
- 100 grams of amaranth seeds;
- 3 eggs;
- 200 grams of bread crumbs;
- salt, pepper and herbs to taste.
You will also need wide toothpicks.
Roast amaranth seeds, add chia seeds, with a thin knife in each piece of pumpkin make small grooves and send the seeds there. Separately mix eggs and seasonings in a bowl, dip each piece of pumpkin with seeds into this mixture (this can be done with wide toothpicks), sprinkle with grated cheese and spread into a baked baking dish. When laying grated cheese should be on top of each piece. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes.