Water chestnut is also referred to as eleocharis dulcis or chinese water chestnut. It is a grass-like sedge native to Asia, Africa, and Oceania. The water chestnut is not a nut. It is an aquatic vegetable that grows in marshes, underwater, and in the mud.
They are harvested when the corm, or bulb, turns a dark brown color. This vegetable is consumed raw, slightly boiled, grilled, or often pickled or tinned. Usually, water chestnut is confused with water caltrops. Water caltrops are shaped like bats or buffalo heads and taste similar to yams or potatoes.
Nutritional Profile Of Water Chestnuts
Water chestnuts are full of nutrients. 100-gram serving of raw water chestnuts provides:
- Calories: 95
- Fat: 0.1 g
- Carbs: 23 g
- Fiber: 3 g
- Protein: 2 g
- Potassium: 15%
- Manganese: 15%
- Copper: 15%
- Vitamin B6: 16%
- Riboflavin: 10%
Health Benefits Of Water Chestnuts
1. Improved digestion
Water chestnut is a good source of dietary fiber. According to research fiber plays a crucial role in maintaining a healthy digestive system. It adds bulk to the stool and promotes regular bowel movements. While the fiber present in water chestnut acts as a prebiotic, providing nourishment for beneficial gut bacteria. Adequate fiber intake can help prevent constipation and promote overall digestive health.
2. Hydrate the body
Water chestnuts contain 70% of water. This water content makes it an excellent natural source of hydration. This vegetable contains essential electrolytes such as potassium. As per the study, electrolytes play a crucial role in maintaining fluid balance in the body. While potassium helps regulate the distribution of fluids in cells and supports proper hydration. However, water chestnuts can contribute to your daily fluid intake. And help to prevent dehydration and support energy levels during physical activities.
3. Reduce the risk of diseases
Water chestnuts have high antioxidant content that can lower the risk of some diseases. The free radicals that build in the body can reduce the body’s natural defenses from functioning properly, that result in oxidative stress. As per studies, oxidative stress has been related to an increased risk of chronic illnesses such as heart disease, and many malignancies.
4. Control blood sugar
This vegetable contains a low glycemic index. That means it measures how quickly food raises blood sugar levels. Foods with a low glycemic index are digested and absorbed more slowly that result in a slow and gradual increase in blood sugar levels.
This can be effective or good for an individual with diabetes or for one who wants to manage their blood sugar levels. Water chestnuts have dietary fiber. Fibre helps slow down the digestion and absorption of carbohydrates in the digestive tract, leading to a more gradual release of glucose into the bloodstream. This prevents rapid spikes in blood sugar levels after a meal and promotes better blood sugar control.
5. Good for the hair
Research says that water chestnuts can improve the health of hair. As this fruit contains important nutrients that are beneficial for the hair, such as vitamin B, vitamin E, zinc, and potassium.
6. Promote weight loss
Water chestnuts have a low-calorie count. That can be helpful for dieters and to manage weight. The higher fiber content in water chestnuts makes individual satiety and make them feel fuller for longer. Without significantly increasing your calorie intake, they aid in satiety.