Kasini keerai/Chicory leaves/Cichorium intybus






Chicory leaves/Cichorium Intybus
OVERVIEW
Chicory leaves are also called as kasini keerai in tamil.  The botanical name for chicory leaves are Cichorium intybus.  The roots of the plant that are grown under the ground is used to make coffee more tastier and adds more flavor to the drink.  The summer and spring seasons are the best time to purchase this plant.  The plant above the ground, i.e leaves, stem etc are added in medicinal supplements.  The baby leaves are used in salads while the matured leaves are used in cooking with vegetables and meat.  The taste of the leaves are bitter but it works better in case of severe pains.  The roots of this herb is roasted and powdered to make the chicory coffee powder that can be used as a drink by adding one cup of powder with one cup of water for the best flavored coffee.  Beta carotene is the wonder agent that acts as a medicine for most of the  ill effects in the body.  It adds more flavor to the food by using it in any form. 

NUTRITIONAL VALUES

Chicory leaves has the following nutritional values which contribute more health benefits to human body.  The vitamins, minerals and other nutrition values are mentioned.  The calcium content in this variety of spinach has 10%, 4 to 5g of dietary fiber, vitamin A is around 36%, 283% of vitamin K, Vitamin B6, vitamin E, vitamin C are present in chicory leaves.  The minerals present in this variety are Iron, Magnesium, Manganese, Zinc, Potassium, Phosphorus, Niacin, and riboflavin.  The energy level is very high in kasini keerai.  Low saturated fat and absence of cholesterol levels increases the demand of taking this spinach for good health.    Very less amount of protein, sugar, thiamine, Pantothenic acid, and sodium adds valuable gains to human body parts. 

HEALTH BENEFITS


To maintain healthy structure of the body and strong teeth, calcium is more essential.  This mineral can be obtained by taking chicory leaves.  The content present in this variety helps to observe calcium required by the body.  The fibers called as raftilin inulin and raftilose oligofructose are fermented by large intestine with the help of bacteria to increase the absorption of calcium.

Inflammation is the main cause of major diseases.  Inflammation should be controlled to prevent the attack of these diseases and swellings in hands, knees and legs (gout) can be treated by using this herb.  The juice of these leaves are applied over the affected area to get quicker relief.  It’s the most recommended medicine for headache, arthritic pains.    

To alleviate (reduce pain) during the premenstrual syndrome in women, the roots of the chicory leaves are used in the form of tonic for balancing the hormonal levels and reduce the causes associated with this condition.

Cichorium intybus major function is to prevent the growth fungus that causes infection in the thrush (Candida).  The bitterness of the herb kills the fungus and prevent infection developed in throat and mouth.  it reduces body heat and maintain a healthy function of kidneys  

Chicory leaves are used in medicinal supplements to increase appetite, reduce rheumatic pains, dyspepsia, constipation and digestive disorders.  A small amount of chicory leaves were given to children to make their digestive system strong and healthy. 

Apart from promoting the healthy function of the digestive system, kasini keerai makes the urinary system functions well by detoxifying process.  Jaundice can be cured by adding this herb in the diet thus preventing from liver damage

Nerves are most important to make the human body function properly.  Chicory leaves supplies energy to the nervous system and promote the healthy function of brain, heart and other parts of the body.

Diabetic patients are highly recommended to add this herb for weight loss and reduce the bad cholesterol, there by protecting the heart from cardiovascular disease and maintain the sugar level. 

INDIVIDUAL CONCERN

Sensitive skinned people should take extra preventive measure before applying on the surface of the skin.  Most of the adults are not allergenic to this herb while they are adding in to their diet.  Pregnant women should avoid chicory leaves because this might cause a miscarriage. For breast feeding mothers, it is always better to avoid kasini keerai even though there is no proof of unsafe reports. Person who are suffering with gallstones should take the advice from their family doctor before adding this variety in their food.  It is always safe to consult a doctor before taking kasini keerai to avoid very serious consequences.  

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