Talking about whats healthy – here’s Basil Seeds!

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In this health conscious world where internet is loaded with all the countless details for keeping hale and hearty, where details about all the nutritious food items, comparisons between diet plans and discussions on the importance of keeping healthy are all the talks these days. I too in my previous blogs emphasized on ways of adopting a healthy life style whether one is working or stays at home. Certain things i.e. practices, food items or routine are often seen recurring. One such is the much spread talks about Basil Seeds!

Basil Seeds much like chia seeds are chock full of nutrients and are considered by some to be a super food. One difference is that the basil seeds plump up in minutes, whereas the chia seeds may take hours.

Few facts:
– These seeds are also called Tukham Malanga in urdu, sabja seeds, Arabic falooda seeds, Thai holy basil (which is apparently different from holy basil), Tulsi, selashi and turmaria. And are best known around the world for being the main ingredient in many sweet Asian drinks.
– They are often used in Ayurvedic and Siddha medicine in India and also Chinese medicine.
– They plump up just like chia seeds and can be used interchangeably in most recipes. I even throw them in my morning smoothies. Like chia seeds they don’t have much flavor which also makes the versatile.

Health benefits:
– Cooling – they are cooling, which is why they are added to many cool drinks like falooda, roohafza, nimbupani and sherbets.
– Colds etc. – they are good for sore throats, cold and respiratory disorders.
– Digestion – they can aid in digestion and relieve constipation.
– Stress relief – they can have a calming effect and can uplift your mood.
– Skin relief – they are good for skin infections.
– Weight loss – they can curb your appetite if you consume them in a gelatinous drink before a meal.

Nutritional Benefits of basil seeds:
– Basil contains many polyphenolic flavonoids especially Orientin and Vicenin. These provide the antioxidant benefits.
– Basil leaves are rich in many essential oils like eugenol, citronellol, linalool, limonene, citral and terpineol. These provide antibacterial and anti inflammatory benefits.
– Low in calories and free of cholesterol.
– High levels of beta carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin, Vitamin A and Vitamin K.
– Contains good amounts of minerals like potassium, manganese, copper, calcium and magnesium, and vitamins C and folates.
– Excellent source of iron at 40 percent RDA per 100 grams.

How to prepare basil seeds
Add 2 tsp. of dried basil seeds to ½ to 1 cup of a warm (not hot) liquid of your choice (water or juice). After the seeds swell, you can choose to drain the extra liquid or include it. As the seeds plump up, they will begin to release their antioxidants and digestive enzymes. Let the seeds stand in the liquid for at least 2 minutes, and watch them transform into a gelatinous-tapioca like texture. They will be ready to include in your favorite recipe. You are only limited by your imagination.

Lemony Basil Seed Drink

Refreshing and nutritious!
Serves 1
Ingredients
1 lemon
2 c. water
1 t basil seeds (sabja)
5 T honey
Pinch of salt

Instructions
In a bowl combine basil seeds with ½ c water and let stand for 10-15 mins.
Add the rest of the ingredients to a pitcher and mix.

Have fun trying the yummy drink and start using Basil seeds, its beneficial as well as trendy; very rarely do we come across such a combination! Stay Blessed.

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