Curry leaves (Kadipatta)
As Indians, we use a lot of curry leaves in our cooking, especially to temper food. Unfortunately, most of us have definitely picked out these leaves from our sambhar or upma and done away with them, blissfully unaware of the rich iron content that they have.
– Curry leaves have plenty of vitamin A, vitamin C, phosphorous and calcium. Hence they help to improve eyesight and strengthen the bones, teeth and nails.
– They contain good amounts of iron and prevent iron deficiency anemia.
– They also contain folic acid which is responsible for ensuring the proper production of RBC’s and preventing folic acid deficiency anemia.
– The leaves tend to excite the taste buds.
– They are a good source of dietary fibre and help reduce cholesterol levels and improve lipid profile.
– Niacin, found in curry leaves, is needed for the proper functioning of the adrenal glands.
– Ulcers caused due to excessive acid secretion in the stomach, diarrhoea , nausea, vomiting and other such problems can be reversed by the use of curry leaves.
– They are very effective in treating premature greying of hair, dandruff and hairfall.
– Boil 10 curry leaves and a pinch of turmeric powder in 200 ml of milk and drink this to get relief from heat rash that occurs in summer.
– Beta-carotene, found in curry leaves, prevents night blindness and also helps increase immunity.
– These leaves improve pancreatic health and insulin production. So if you are diabetic, make curry leaves a regular part of your diet.
– They also help to balance hormones….I regularly recommend them as a part of my spice mixes for women with PCOD and patients with thyroid issues.
– They are a good source of lutein which prevents arterial clogging, improves overall immune function and protects the eyes from infection.
– In the first trimester of pregnancy, curry leaves help reduce the discomfort associated with morning sickness.
– They also aid in weight loss by preventing the excessive deposition of fat in the body.
Use fresh curry leaves whenever possible. The plant is sturdy and does not need much care…so grow one in your kitchen window sill or balcony. Alternatively you can dry the leaves and powder them. Store the powdered leaves in an airtight container and use them in your juices, smoothies, spiced buttermilk, chutneys, dals, sambhars, rasams and curries. Remember…curry powder does not contain curry leaves…unfortunately !!!