Roots that heal your body
Ancient Ayurveda and other natural medicine branches always took help from nature to heal illnesses and boost the immunity of the body. Every single part of a plant or a tree was used to prepare potions, oils, ointments or pills and was given to the sick. Seeds, flowers, fruits, leaves, bark and the roots were all equally important for medicinal purposes. Roots and tubers are always available all through the year across all the seasons. A few of them are used for everyday cooking but there are other magical roots too that are stuffed with healing properties when consumed. Since they grow deep within the earth’s crust, they tend to absorb all earthly minerals and become strong. Take a look at all these roots and their health benefits for the mankind.
1. Ginger – One of the oldest roots ever found on the planet is ginger. Used as a major spice across the Asian continents, ginger is full of goodness and healing properties. When mixed with honey or basil leaves, ginger works extremely well on pulmonary diseases. Common cold, cough, lung infections, sore throat and sinus swelling can all be healed with this pungent root. In babies with colic problems, ginger extract is used to treat their stomach because of the carminative nature of this rhizome.
2. Galangal – Popularly called as the cousin of ginger, this root originated in Indonesia and was always a part of every dish because of its numerous good properties. Galangal is mainly used in soups and salads and those with arthritis and inflammation of the internal organs must make it a part of their diet. If you are travelling in a ship or a boat, carry galangal to beat nausea and motion sickness. Some of us suffer from chronic indigestion and nothing on the planet seems to solve that problem. Trust galangal to heal your digestive system and provide relief from constipation. The tea of this root induces gastric juices and also helps in peristalsis, the smooth movement of food from one section to the other in the digestive system.
3. Turmeric – A holy root that is highly popular for its antiseptic properties, the turmeric is a part of every Indian home. Apart from adding flavour to a dish, it also acts as a preservative in pickles and curries. When taken along with a little warm milk, it acts as an expectorant and treats common cold too. Dab a little turmeric on acne or on cuts and wounds and let its magic work on your skin. It is also a very powerful anticancer food, preventing cancerous cells from growing in the body. Liver detoxification is another major duty of good old turmeric.
4. Black ginger – A typical folk medicinal root, the black ginger is famous and also widely grown in the North East parts of India. The only thing that makes black ginger inedible is its disagreeable taste. Extremely bitter but full of antioxidants and iron. It was also found to be antibacterial and antifungal in nature, killing micro-organisms that come in its way. A strong tea of black ginger (if you can consume it ignoring the bitterness) is very good for viral fevers and cold bouts.
5. Stone leek – This root is called the little sister of onion and garlic since they all belong to the same family. A powerhouse of sulphur compounds, stone leek is popular for its anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties. Soups and stews are incomplete without stone leek. Hot stone leek soup is just perfect for monsoon rains and chilly winters in keeping seasonal illnesses at bay. It was also found that those who consume stone leek, garlics and onions in generous quantities are usually away from all kinds of cancers, majorly those belonging to the stomach. The compound called Allicin, kills free radicals as and when found in the body.
6. Nannari – Who wouldn’t have tasted nannari sherbet? Indian Sarsaparilla or fondly called Nannari is a super summer drink that not only dehydrates the body but also improves digestion and blood circulation. People with low blood counts can consume the drink made out of these roots to shoot up their haemoglobin levels and also to purify their blood. All across India, nannari sherbet is a popular summer drink that is made by street vendors. If the roots are available, you can make the drink at home too.
7. White radish – An important part of sambar that is made extensively in South India, the white radish is an excellent food for your tummy. Though the smell is not so good, the taste of this root enhances any kind of dish, mostly soups and stews. Rich in vitamin C, radish is beneficial for the gut because of its antibacterial properties. When crushed and applied on the skin, it can effectively treat insect bites and bee stings, reducing pain and itching.