One of the most useful plants with a beautiful Italian name. It is popular not only in Italy but also in many other countries. Read about all the benefits and harms of arugula in our article.
Arugula has a large set of useful properties. It contains many vitamins and trace elements. But, in some situations, it can be harmful to health. Let’s look more specifically at the benefits and harms of this plant for humans.
Back in the days of Julius Caesar, arugula was very popular. The Romans called it “mustard grass”. Moreover, Julius Caesar himself asked cooks to add it to a lot of dishes. The emperor believed that this plant increased “manhood” by increasing sexual desire.
In the Asian region, especially around the Mediterranean Sea, arugula was especially popular. There it became famous as an excellent remedy for infertility. It was also used to treat skin diseases and gastrointestinal problems. And the Hindus made oil from arugula for hair and scalp care.
As for its beautiful name, the Italians gave it to the plant. They use arugula as a culinary ingredient. It was added to pesto sauce, risotto, and various salads. The neighboring French also made extensive use of the herb in summer salads. The Egyptians added it to bean snacks and used it as a decoration for seafood.
At the same time, in many countries arugula has long been considered a weed. It was mainly fed to cows, goats, and sheep. Only recently have people begun to use it as food.
Composition and calories of the plant
100 grams contains:
- Calorie count – 26 kcal
- Protein content – 2,7 g
- Fat content – 0,6 g
- Carbohydrate content – 2,3 g
Arugula has a rich vitamin set and many micronutrients:
- Vitamin A, B, C, E, K
This plant improves the function of the stomach and digestive system. It is excellent against viral diseases and harmful germs. Rucola also greatly strengthens the immune system. The substances available strengthen the blood vessels, making them stronger. Plus it actively burns cholesterol in the blood and increases hemoglobin. In addition, it removes excess salts from the body. Note one more property, which is a sedative effect on the nervous system. The medics also note the diuretic properties of the herb.
The harm of arugula
The main disadvantage of the plant is its high sugar content. Because of this, we do not recommend it for diabetics. Also, people with sick stomachs should be careful to introduce it to the menu. And if a patient has a high level of acid in the stomach – it is better to refuse at all.
However, you should not exclude the individual characteristics of the body. If you have an allergic reaction to cabbage or turnip – perhaps arugula is not suitable for you.
Due to the fact that the herb has few calories – it is ideal for weight loss. This plant can be a base for various diets.
Rucola is a beneficial herb that contains substances that protect you from cancer. The sulforaphane’s and glucosinolates in the herb fight the development of cancerous tumors. It’s also great against viruses. Vitamin B group – works with the nervous system to strengthen it, plus improve brain activity. Arugula’s Vitamin K content – promotes rapid healing of cuts and wounds. Vitamin A is good for your eyesight. It also strengthens mucous membranes. If you are overweight, arugula is ideal as a dietary staple. Because it is rich in fiber – a person is satiated quickly. In addition, it goes well with meat. Products that form acid in the body are perfectly “killed” by arugula. It removes excess salts and uric acid. It is recommended to eat it for the prevention of gout.
But remember, if you suffer from gastrointestinal diseases – it is better not to eat this plant.
Rucola has a tangy and unusual taste. It will give any dish a pleasant flavor of greenery. This plant is added to salads. It goes well with vegetables. And Italians often decorate pasta with it. It is also popular as a seasoning for meat. In pizzerias, the herb is often used as an ingredient for pizza. Plus it is an ingredient in pesto sauce.
Selecting and storing
When buying pay attention to the leaves – they should be whole and without defects. The fresh products can be easily distinguished by the color of the leaves – they should be a good green color.
Also, pay attention to the size of the leaves. Remember that the larger the leaf, the less bitter it is. Small leaves on the contrary – bitter.
If they have yellow leaves and are over 25-30cm long then don’t take them. This is a sign that they have a minimum of useful substances.
And you can store our heroine in the refrigerator. We recommend putting it in a small bowl with water. In this form, it will easily survive for 5-7 days. If you need longer storage – put it in the freezer.
It is unique in its taste. The leaves have a sour and slightly bitter taste. Some varieties allow you to taste nutty or mustardy notes. Rucola is a great flavoring for many foods. That is why it is one of the main components of many salads.
In nature, the plant is native to the areola of the Mediterranean Sea. Often the plant can be found in the south of the European continent. Accordingly, it is also abundant in the northern part of the African coast. At the same time, the plant can also be found in the Central Asian region up to Hindustan. If we talk about home growing – it is possible. Rucola grows perfectly at home as well. The main condition is a lot of light and heat.