Did you ever hear of tiger nuts? Even though known as a nut, tiger nuts are really a small tuber (just like a potato) which is treated like a weed in several places because of their fast development. Until recently, no one truly knew much in regards to the potential health advantages of the ancient food.
Tiger nuts are mainly seen in West Africa. In Europe, this particular food has been available since 4,000 BC, when it was grown in Egypt. As time passes tiger nuts have been known as numerous names —the scientific name “cyperus esculentus”, Zulu nut, aya, yellow grass nut, ground almond, edible rush, rush nut and, obviously, tiger nut. The nut become popular in Spain, recognized there as “chufa”.There’s two types of tiger nuts — yellow as well as brown — and both could be consumed raw, dried and ground into flour, pressed to create a juice, squeezed because of its heart healthy oils as well as utilized as food for hogs. Tiger nuts are usually considered to be a sweet, nutty flavor which is often used to flavor sweets and also ice cream!However, not well-known in several nations, tiger nuts have got a historical existence in certain cultures. In Egypt, tiger nuts were an essential crop, even represented in hieroglyphics and found in tombs dating back to 4000 BC. The tuber was supposedly utilized to make sweets, roasted or even boiled in beer.
Tiger nuts were also utilized medicinally and as an air freshener or even perfume to make homes and clothes smell nice. In Spain, tiger nuts are still utilized in a drink referred to as “horchata de chufa”. Food historians believe that tiger nuts might have arrived to the Valencia region in Spain through the Arab or North African invasion.
Nowadays, tiger nuts may also been present in Chile, Brazil, USA, Ghana, Sierra Leon, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Northern Cameroon and Mali. In some of those countries it really is utilized only like a simple side dish and hogs feed. In others it is really an integral part of the culture. In Ghana it really is made into a well-known drink known as “atadwe milk”. Ghanaians also make in a paste and then use it to flavor ice cream as well as in place of almonds for baking.
In China the juice obtained from tiger nuts is utilized like a liver strengthening medication, a heart stimulant, to prevent stomach pains, medication to manage menstruation in females, a cure for mouth as well as gum sores and also just as one aphrodisiac to enhance sexual function!
Health benefits of Tigernut
Up to now, nobody really knew much in regards to the possible health benefits of the ancient food. Tiger nuts are extremely healthy, they are able to assist to avoid heart attacks, thrombosis and stimulate the circulation of blood. Because of the higher contents of disolveable glucose they may also assist in preventing cancer as well as recently some investigators found that they are able to help in reducing the chance of suffering colon cancer. The very high fiber content coupled with a tasty taste, make sure they are well suited for healthy eating.
Here’s the list of top confirmed main reasons why tiger nuts really are a superfood:
1. Tiger Nuts Can Help Control Your Blood Pressure
As we previously discussed, tiger nuts are loaded with amino acids. Even though there are different types of amino acids contained in tiger nuts, arginine is regarded as the plentiful.
The Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research names arginine as a precursor to nitric oxide, which will keep our blood vessels wide enough to help keep blood flow normal. Arginine is shown to assist in conditions that are caused or made worse by restricted blood vessels, like chest pain, blocked arteries, heart failure or even disease, erectile dysfunction, muscle cramps, artery diseases not affecting the heart or the brain (peripheral vascular disease) and headaches induced by swollen blood vessels.
2. Tiger nuts can help fight malnutrition in under-developed nations
Tiger nuts might be an essential, locally grown food source for fighting malnutrition in places just like Africa. Tiger nuts are recognized to include higher amounts of starch (295/kg) (greater than potatoes as well as sweet potatoes), a high fat content (30%), good fiber content, be rich in calcium, chromium, sodium, phosphorous, magnesium, manganese, iron, copper and zinc, and also have a higher vitamin E and C content. Aside from all of these advantageous components, they also contain all of the amino acids and some of the B-complex vitamins. They’re ideal for diabetics and could be consumed raw, roasted or dried.
3. They help regulate blood sugar levels
Another one of great health advantages of tiger nuts is they assist manage blood glucose levels. The insoluble fibre present in tiger nuts could be of great help to diabetics. Insoluble fibre is essential to diabetics, simply because, unlike other carbohydrates, it doesn’t result in peaks and troughs within the blood glucose levels.
4. They contain the healthy fats
Another one of health benefits of tiger nuts is that they include the healthy oils which are much like olive oil. The oil obtained from tiger nuts includes around 80% unsaturated fats and just 18% of the cholesterol leading to saturated fat.
5. They are a good source of vitamins
Recent reports have discovered that tiger nuts are packed with minerals and vitamins. They’re an excellent source of Vitamins C and E and also the minerals, like potassium and phosphorus. A few yoghurt is now being made out of added tiger nut milk, to improve their nutritional content.
6. Tiger Nuts May Help Protect You from Cancer and Cardiovascular Disease
Tiger nuts are full of Vitamin E. In accordance with the Office of Dietary Supplements of the National Institute of Health, “Vitamin E” actually is a catch-all reference to a group of fat-soluble compounds along with distinctive antioxidant qualities. Antioxidants assist the body safeguard itself from free radicals, molecules that have an unshared electron. The unshared electron can interact with oxygen to create reactive oxygen species, that are damaging to the bodies.
Vitamin E safeguards us by suppressing the development of these reactive oxygen species . Vitamin E along with higher levels of oleic acid, two components of tiger nuts, has additionally been proven to prevent coronary heart disease.
7. Boosts ‘Good’ (HDL) Cholesterol
Tiger nuts include a fair amount of oleic acid. Oleic acid is a MUFA (monounsaturated fatty acid) that can help enhance your body’s HDL cholesterol .
Tiger nuts have numerous nutritional as well as health benefits, which will make them an incredible food for anybody. Typically, tiger nuts were utilised to deal with stomach upsets, irritable bowels, along with other digestive issues. They’ve been utilized in folk medication like a cure for many health conditions, which includes flatulence and diarrhea .
9. High in Fiber
Research has shown that tigernuts are higher in fiber compared to generally recommended foods like oats, apples, and carrots. This really is considerable just because a diet rich in fiber helps prevent constipation, as well as keeps you full for a longer time, therefore decreasing the possibility of overeating and enhancing the possibility of weight loss. Moreover, fiber has been shown to avoid colon cancer, coronary disease, obesity as well as diabetes.
10. High in Calcium
Tigernuts could be ground in a lactose-free milk which is loaded with calcium. Moreover, the vitamins E and C in tigernuts provides additional benefits not present in cow’s milk. A survey recommended that tigernut milk holds up nutritionally in addition to soybean like a milk substitute. It may even be combined with cow’s milk in yogurts without effecting taste or even texture, while upping the nutritional value.
11. High in Iron
Vegetarian as well as vegan diets tend to be more efficient whenever iron intake just isn’t diminished. Including tigernuts in your diet will make sure that you simply optimize your overall health, simply because this little vegetable root comes complete with iron. In reality, tigernuts even consist of more iron than cow’s milk, and as much as red meat or even liver. Snacking on tigernuts, baking along with tigernut flour – it all adds vitamins and minerals in your diet, and enables you to have all the good with none of the bad. Instead of compromising you diet and iron intake, you are able to strengthen it.
12. Disease Prevention
The existence of amino acids, namely arginine, causes it to be an effective way to help keep heart diseases away. Arginine has additionally been attributed along with decreasing the chance of blocked arteries, erectile dysfunction, as well as muscle cramps. Meanwhile, the existence of vitamin E tends to make this paleo snack much more likely to avoid heart disease, as well as cancers. As a resistant starch food, tigernuts protect especially well against colon cancer by feeding the friendly bacteria that are largely passed over by other foods. resistant starch has also been recognized to assist in the improvement of the digestive system, as well as insulin sensitivity.
13. Tiger Nuts Are a Good Non-meat Source of Protein
Protein is an important accessory for anyone’s diet. The United States Department of Agriculture names protein as having a role in building bone, cartilage, muscle, blood and skin in addition to functioning like a building block for enzymes, hormones as well as vitamins within our body. Protein additionally supplies us along with energy to get us throughout the day. Protein also often goes hand-in-hand with iron, that, while essential for everyone, is particularly essential for teenage girls and women in the course of menstruation.
In a 2007 study from the University of Ibadan in Ibadan, Nigeria, researchers discovered that tiger nut, particularly the brown variety, is an excellent method of obtaining protein from plant matter (9.7%) and is also nearly equal to whole wheat flour (9.8%) in this regard.
Different Uses of Tigernuts
Dried tiger nut features a smooth sensitive, sweet as well as nutty taste. It may be consumed raw, roasted, dried, baked or as tiger nut milk or oil.
1. Use as food
The tubers are edible, with a somewhat sweet, nutty flavor, when compared to more bitter-tasting tuber of the related Cyperus rotundus (purple nutsedge). They are really hard and are usually soaked in water just before they may be eaten, therefore causing them to be considerably softer and providing them a much better texture.
They have numerous uses; particularly, they are utilised in Spain to help make horchata. “Horchata” is actually a nonalcoholic beverage of milky appearance created from the tubers of the tiger nut plant combined with sugar and water. It features a excellent economic impact within the Valencian region of Spain.
Flour of roasted tiger nut is oftentimes included with biscuits along with other bakery products along with making oil, soap, and starch extracts. It’s also utilized for the creation of nougat, jam, beer, and also as a flavoring agent in ice cream as well as in the preparation of kunnu (a local beverage in Nigeria).Kunnu is actually a nonalcoholic drink prepared mainly from cereals (like millet or sorghum) by heating as well as mixing along with spices (dandelion, alligator pepper, ginger, licorice) and sugar. To help make up for the poor nutritional value of kunnu prepared from cereals, tiger nut was discovered to be a great replacement for cereal grains. Tiger nut oil may be used naturally along with salads or even for deep frying. It is regarded as a top quality oil. Tiger nut “milk” have been tried as a substitute source of milk in fermented products, like yogurt production, along with other fermented products common in some African countries and may therefore be appropriate replacing milk within the diet of people intolerant to lactose to a certain extent.
Tiger nuts ought to be consumed in just average quantities at any one time. Consumption of 300 gms of the fibrous dehydrated nuts, chewed without being rehydrated, is known to result in rectal impaction.
2. Use as oil
There is a global search for substitute sources of fuel that could be cheaper, safer and most importantly, eco-friendly in comparison to traditionally used burning fuels. Since the tubers of C. esculentus contain 20-36% oil, it’s been recommended as potential oil crop for the manufacture of biodiesel. One study discovered that chufa produced 1.5 metric tonnes of oil per hectare (174 gallons/acre) based on a tuber yield of 5.67 t/ha as well as an oil content of 26.4%. A similar 6-year study found tuber yields which range from 4.02 to 6.75 t/ha, with the average oil content of 26.5% and an average oil yield of 1.47 t/ha.
3. Use in medicine and cosmetic industry
As a source of oils, the tubers were utilized in pharmacy under the Latin name bulbuli thrasi beginning no later than the end of Eighteenth century. In ayurvedic medicine tiger nuts are utilized within the management of flatulence, diarrhoea, dysentery, debility and indigestion. Tiger nut oil may be used within the cosmetic industry. Since it is antidioxide (due to its high-content in vitamin E) it will help reduce the ageing of the body cells. It favors the elasticity of the skin as well as decreases skin wrinkles.
4. Use as fishing bait
The boiled nuts are utilized in the UK like a bait for carp. The nuts have to be prepared in the prescribed manner to avoid harm to the fish. The nuts are soaked in water for 24 hours after which boiled for 20 minutes or longer till completely expanded. Several anglers then leave the boiled nuts to ferment for 24-48 hours, which could boost their effectiveness. In case the nuts usually are not effectively prepared, however, they may be extremely toxic to the carp. It was originally considered to have been the main cause of death of Benson, an extremely large and incredibly famous carp. The 54-lb. fish was discovered floating dead in the fishing lake, with a bag of unprepared tiger nuts lying close by, empty, on the shore. An examination of the fish by the taxidermist determined tiger nut poisoning was not, in the end, the main cause of death.