Health Benefits of Curry Leaves
Curry leaves, which look similar to bay leaves with their dark green color, are commonly used in Indian and Asian cooking. Usually, they are used in combination with other ingredients and rarely consumed on their own. Whole leaves are not the same as curry powder, which is actually a blend of spices. Most often sold dried, curry leaves may have a number of health benefits.
1. Oxidative Stress Study
A study concluded that extracts from curry leaves reduce oxidative stress, especially in the pancreas. High levels of oxidative stress can damage tissues and are often an indicator of arthritis, atherosclerosis and diabetes. Curry leaf extract, when consumed regularly, helps to prevent and reverse the damage done by oxidative stress in the pancreas of diabetics.
2. Potential Anti-Carcinogen
In a study found that curry leaves are naturally high in antioxidants. These are substances that help protect cells from damage or death as a result of exposure to free radicals or toxins. This study found that curry leaf extract helped reduce the effects of dimethylhydrazine hydrochloride, a known carcinogen.
3. Anti-Inflammatory Benefits
Scientists published a study in which curry leaves were shown to have powerful anti-inflammatory abilities. This study found that curry leaf extract significantly reduces swelling in cancer. The extract also greatly reduces the number and weight of tumours.
4. Nutritional Content and Use
Curry leaves contain trace amounts of a number of vitamins and minerals, including B vitamins and vitamin A. It is also a source of protein, amino acids and alkaloids. Because curry leaves are used in small quantities and in tandem with other ingredients, such as vegetables, meat and legumes, its nutritional role in a finished dish is slight.
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Dietitian Vinita Jaiswal