Deliciously tangy and one of the most highly prized natural foods in India, tamarind or imli or Tamarindus Indicus is popular for its exceptionally unique flavour. Its tart-sweet taste is loved by Indians of all ages and has carved a special place for itself in millions of households across the country. Used as a spice or condiment, trust this delight to instantly add a tangy zest to any food it is paired with. But did you know that tamarind also has several noteworthy health benefits? Not many know that this sweet-sour fruit has a long history of medicinal usage thanks to the presence of phytonutrients that help maintain a healthful body.
According to Delhi based Nutritionist Lokendra Tomar, “Tamrarind has long been used in medicine. This tart-sweet spice is packed with tartaric acid, which is a powerful antioxidant that inhibits the growth of free radicals (responsible for damaging body cells) in the body.”
Here are some important health benefits that tamarind has to offer-
1. Maintains digestive health
Tamarind has long been touted as a natural laxative that stimulates your metabolism and further keeps your digestive system strong. Fibre helps smoothen the process of moving the stool easily through your intestinal tract. Tamarind also stimulates the activity of bile that helps dissolve the food quickly speeding up digestion.
2. Improves blood circulation
The presence of potassium in tamarind helps control the blood pressure and heart rate by maintaining normal fluid balance in the body. It also contains iron that plays a vital role in the normal production and development of red blood cells, further keeping the blood circulation smooth.
3. Induces weight loss
Tamarind has one of the most important compounds known as hydroxycitric acid (HCA) which is connected to weight loss as it inhibits an enzyme in the body that specifically helps store fat. Considering it has a good amount of fiber present, it helps to keep you full for longer, stopping you from eating junk or high calorie foods.
4. Boosts immunity
Tamarind is a rich source for vitamin C as well as other antioxidants that helps in boosting the immune system, further inhibiting the growth of microbial and fungal infections. It antiseptic properties help the body to heal any infection.
5. Has anti-inflammatory properties
Its anti-inflammatory properties are known to reduce problems like arthritis, joint pain, rheumatic conditions and gout. It is mostly used in herbal remedies for curing inflammation.
6. Improves your eye health
Tamarind is loaded with vitamin A, which is essential for maintaining your eye health and further lowers the risk of macular degeneration and age-related cataracts. It has compounds that protect your eye against dry eyes. Drinking a decoction made by boiling tamarind in water may prevent you from eye inflammation.
This wonder condiment is surely helpful in the longer run, however, in case of chronic diseases or severe health issues, please refer to your doctor before consuming it.