Amaranth is the most famous plant all over the world, and this glory gives it not only useful properties, but also numerous bans to cultivation, as well as impressive figures of research and institutes specializing in the ways of introducing this product into the food industry, medicine, cosmetology and other industries. Amaranth has been on the ear since ancient times, as evidenced by the seeds found during excavations in Mexico, which are over 5000 years old, as well as historical artifacts indicating the use of amaranth crumbs by Indian leaders in their mysterious and numerous rituals for expelling evil spirits from the human body . In world biology, the plant is known as the “Discovery of the Century”, “Protein Storage” or “The Culture of the Future and the Present.” Where does all this information come from, what other secrets are hidden in the amaranth plant?
Features and varieties
Before turning to the history of occurrence, as well as determine the reasons that led to the removal from the use and cultivation of this plant, you should consider the types and characteristics of the ancient “food of the Gods”, called amaranth:
- Tailed amaranth (Caudatus L. Amaranthus) is a plant with crimson, yellowish, dark red inflorescences and elongated purple, green leaves.
- Tailed amaranth grows in Africa, South America, Asia. The plant is characterized by powerful upright stems, whose height reaches 100-150 cm. Known since 1568.
- Dark amaranth (Hypochondriacus L. Amaranthus) is a plant that is not very popular, but it has been known in culture since 1548. Dark amaranth has purple-green leaves, inflorescences of a blood-red shade hanging down to the ground. The height of the straight-standing stems reaches 150 cm. The plant has few branches and one-year.
- Tricolor Amaranth (Tricolor L. Amaranthus) is a plant that pleases with its blooms from the beginning of June until the first frosts. The tricolor amaranth occurs from the Indo-Malay region and is distinguished by a special coloring of the inflorescences of green, red, and yellow shades, effectively underlined with purple elongated leaves and erect stems. The height of the stems does not reach above 150 cm.
- Crimson or panicled amaranth (Amaranthus cruentus, Amaranthus paniculatus) is a plant that has appeared in the culture since 1798, its birthplace is West and East Asia. A distinctive feature of this species of amaranth in the presence of several forms, characterized by the height of the stems (from 25-150 cm), the direction of the inflorescences (the most prevalent drooping final inflorescences are saturated with red color). Flowering begins in June and pleases contrast shades to the first frost.
Amaranth is characterized by resistance to various temperature and atmospheric changes, adapts to heat, drought lasting several days and other conditions unbearable for other green plants. Today, more than 850 species and 65 genera of the amaranth family are known, which are widespread and widely used in the food and cosmetic industries, as well as in the cultural and spiritual life of man throughout the world, including China, the mountains of India and the Himalayas.
Facts and historical information
Today, amaranth of various species is grown in all US states, in addition, in 23 Canadian institutions, funded by the government, special programs are being developed for the further use of this plant in various areas of culture and industry. According to experts, the meat of animals grown on feed from amaranth differs in price by 25% higher than usual, and in more than 30 products on the shelves with dietary nutrition you can see the presence of amaranth in the composition. However, do not forget about the origins, because even in antiquity, knowing all the beneficial qualities of amaranth seeds, it was added to food, medicines and first cosmetics.
Do you know that the word AMARANT, according to the scriptures of the ancient Aztec and Rus, is conventionally divided into two – MARA with the prefix A, which means the death goddess with denial. This interpretation makes it possible to judge that the plant has healing power and helps protect itself from death, prolonging life and restoring health.
The structure of amaranth includes squalene, which was first discovered by the doctor of biology Mitstsumaro Tsujimoto from Japan. The scientist discovered squalene in the liver of a deep-sea shark, and after numerous studies it was discovered in amaranth. This element is vital for sharks, because it is a natural unsaturated hydrocarbon, which confirms its ability to combine with water and transformation into oxygen to saturate all the systems of the body as a whole. This ability allows sharks to grow and live in the depths of the depths. Returning to people, it becomes clear that squalene as a fungicidal, anticarcinogenic and antimicrobial agent is necessary for a person, since it allows to avoid premature aging and the development of tumor formation due to lack of oxygen. Squalene contained in amaranth, penetrating into the body nourishes the cells with oxygen, increases their immune defense, which makes the body stronger, more stable, stronger and more durable.
Some of the historical reports of interest include:
- Christina, the mighty Queen of Sweden (1653) founded the Amaranth Special Order, while distinguishing the representatives of the cavalier from the ordinary people the image of enamel amaranth on clothes and other attributes. The emblem combined the long inflorescences of the bushes, located somewhere near the bushes or on the side of the path.
- Amaranth decorative, characterized by wide popularity in Europe, was introduced in 1563 from the East Indies, as various historical writings still testify.
- In Mexico, seeds were discovered that are over 5,000 years old. This confirms the information from the remaining tribute lists that over the year more than 70 thousand gallons of amaranth and 100 thousand gallons of corn were imported into the capital of Mexico. Why were such volumes necessary? According to eyewitness reports and stories from antiquity, amaranth in combination with corn, agave juice and honey was used to build figures that were destroyed during rituals at the Aztec festival dedicated to the gods. After the celebration, the remnants of this mixture were distributed to all believers and participants. During this period, it was strictly forbidden to eat other foods. As a result, a rumor about the “hell potion” crept in, which led to conquistadors’ large-scale burning out of the Bledo, Huatli, Ki-Ak (amaranth) crops. This led to the complete disappearance of the plant from the land of Central America.
- After such a story and a number of legends, amaranth is reborn again, but already in the 20s, when in 1972, John Downton found that the seed of a given plant had a protein content higher than its level in corn, wheat, and similar cereals. This discovery gives new impetus to the research and cultivation of amaranth plantations.
- Having passed a thorny and long way to fame and popularity, amaranth occupies an honorable place among popular cultures all over the world. This is due to the special chemical composition of the plant: purple amaranth
The composition of amaranth includes phytosterols, which provoke the active elimination of free radicals, cholesterol and tocopherol, which significantly affects the overall physical and emotional health of a person.
The active composition of amaranth includes vitamin D, retinol, potassium, magnesium and sodium, as well as a huge list of beneficial trace elements that activate the body’s metabolic processes, which leads to nutrition and cell regeneration.
Amaranth is enriched with protein and lysine, characterized by usefulness and nutritional value for the cells of the body.
The composition of amaranth, as mentioned above, contains an element – squalene (5-8%), which enriches the organs and cells with oxygen, has a wound-healing, anti-bacterial and regenerating effect.