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Lotus Root (Kamal Kakdi): Health Benefits, Nutrition And Recipe

Lotus root, also known as Kamal Kakdi, is the edible rhizome of Nelumbo nucifera plant, commonly known as Indian Lotus. The root is popularly used in cuisines of China, Korea, India, and Japan. Lotus root has great importance in Ayurveda as it is used in treating several diseases related to skin, stomach, lungs and others.

Lotus root is high in fibre and low in calories[1] . If consumed for long, it can help in maintaining our health due to the essential nutrients present in it. Let's take a look at its benefits, side effects, and a healthy lotus curry recipe which will surely entice your tastebuds.

Nutritional Value Of Lotus Root

100 g of raw lotus root contains 79.10 g water and 74 kcal energy. Other essential nutrients in lotus root are as follows:

  • 2.60 g protein
  • 17.23 g carbohydrate
  • 4.9 g dietary fibre
  • 45 mg calcium
  • 1.16 mg iron
  • 23 mg magnesium
  • 100 mg phosphorus
  • 556 mg potassium
  • 450 mg sodium
  • 0.39 mg zinc
  • 44 mg vitamin C
  • 0.25 mg vitamin B6

Health Benefits Of Lotus Root

1. Improves digestion

Lotus root is abundant in dietary fibre [1] . It adds bulk to the stool and soothe the symptoms of constipation by improving the bowel movement. It is also beneficial in treating diarrhoea.

2. Regulates blood pressure

Potassium present in lotus root relaxes the blood vessels and improves the blood flow through it [2] . It ensures a balance between fluids in our body and prevents the effect of sodium in the blood thus, maintaining normal blood pressure.

3. Strengthens immunity

Vitamin C present in lotus root helps in the production of white blood cells, which act as a defence system against multiple diseases thus, strengthening our body's immune system [3] .

4. Promotes heart health

Lotus root contains pyridoxine that helps in lowering the homocysteine level. A high level of homocysteine is related to the risk of a heart attack [3] . Also, potassium and dietary fibre help in removing cholesterol from the bloodstream.

5. Reduces stress

Vitamin B6 present in lotus root helps in the production of two happy hormones named serotonin and dopamine [4] . These hormones affect the brain positively and help improve the mood by reducing stress.

6. Solves skin and hair problems

Vitamin B and C present in lotus root help to make the skin glow and hair smooth [5] . These vitamins trigger the production of collagen in the body which help to improve the health of the skin and make you look younger.

7. Prevents macular degeneration

The antioxidant property of lotus root helps to prevent macular degeneration [6] . Including lotus root in our diet is beneficial in treating all types of ocular and inflammation problems.

8. Helps in weight management

Lotus root is high in fibre and essential nutrients [1] . It helps to keep the stomach full for longer and manage unnecessary hunger urges thus, keeping weight under control and preventing obesity.

9. Improves brain's health

Lotus root contains vitamin B6 which helps in maintaining good mental health by regulating the mood of a person [4] . It also helps in keeping stress and headache under control.

10. Can help in cancer prevention

Vitamin C present in lotus root helps preserve DNA structure and lowers the abnormalities associated with mutated cells which result in cancer [7] . Thus, consuming lotus root somehow helps in preventing cancer.

Side Effects Of Lotus Root

Lotus root has all the beneficial nutrients which one needs to stay fit and healthy. However, medical experts advise not to use it as a traditional medicine substitute. Also, avoid eating it raw as it may contain some harmful parasites [8] .

Healthy Lotus Root Curry Recipes

  • Cook time: 30 min
  • Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 500 g lotus stem
  • 500 g yoghurt
  • 25 g ginger powder
  • 50 g fennel powder or sauph
  • 5 g asafoetida or heeng
  • 25 g cardamom powder
  • 100 g ghee
  • 1-2 bay leaves
  • Salt as taste

Method

  • Slash lotus roots into half and boil it for 10 minutes
  • Pour all the ingredients in a pan along with boiled lotus roots and whipped yoghurt
  • Stir the mixture until it becomes creamy
  • Serve it hot with rice.
View Article References
  1. [1] Ham, Y. K., Hwang, K. E., Song, D. H., Kim, Y. J., Shin, D. J., Kim, K. I., … Kim, C. J. (2017). Lotus (Nelumbo nucifera) Rhizome as an Antioxidant Dietary Fiber in Cooked Sausage: Effects on Physicochemical and Sensory Characteristics. Korean journal for food science of animal resources, 37(2), 219–227. doi:10.5851/kosfa.2017.37.2.219
  2. [2] Peng, S. U. N., Kai, Z. H. U., Cun, W. A. N. G., Wei-Wei, L. I. U., De-Guang, P. E. N. G., & Xin, Z. H. A. O. (2016). Prophylactic effects of alkaloids from Ba lotus seeds on L-NNA-induced hypertension in mice. Chinese journal of natural medicines, 14(11), 835-843.
  3. [3] Du, H., Zhao, X., You, J. S., Park, J. Y., Kim, S. H., & Chang, K. J. (2010). Antioxidant and hepatic protective effects of lotus root hot water extract with taurine supplementation in rats fed a high fat diet. Journal of biomedical science, 17 Suppl 1(Suppl 1), S39. doi:10.1186/1423-0127-17-S1-S39
  4. [4] Parra, M., Stahl, S., & Hellmann, H. (2018). Vitamin B₆ and Its Role in Cell Metabolism and Physiology. Cells, 7(7), 84. doi:10.3390/cells7070084
  5. [5] Kim, S. Y., & Moon, G. S. (2015). Photoprotective Effect of Lotus (Nelumbo nucifera Gaertn.) Seed Tea against UVB Irradiation. Preventive nutrition and food science, 20(3), 162–168. doi:10.3746/pnf.2015.20.3.162
  6. [6] Yi, Y., Sun, J., Xie, J., Min, T., Wang, L. M., & Wang, H. X. (2016). Phenolic Profiles and Antioxidant Activity of Lotus Root Varieties. Molecules (Basel, Switzerland), 21(7), 863. doi:10.3390/molecules21070863
  7. [7] Zhao, X., Feng, X., Wang, C., Peng, D., Zhu, K., & Song, J. L. (2017). Anticancer activity of Nelumbo nucifera stamen extract in human colon cancer HCT-116 cells in vitro. Oncology letters, 13(3), 1470–1478. doi:10.3892/ol.2016.5547
  8. [8] Li, S., Li, X., Lamikanra, O., Luo, Q., Liu, Z., & Yang, J. (2017). Effect of cooking on physicochemical properties and volatile compounds in lotus root (Nelumbo nucifera Gaertn). Food chemistry, 216, 316-323.

Story first published: Saturday, August 24, 2019, 14:54 [IST]
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