Have you heard of, seen, or even tried horseradish before? It is a popular condiment widely used all over the world. While horseradish actually tastes hot, it doesn’t have any lingering aftertaste. Originally from southeastern Europe, this particular condiment actually provides various essential nutrients which are all beneficial to your overall health. If you want to know more about this condiment, keep reading this article. You will learn a lot, that’s for sure!
Horseradish: What is It?
Horseradish is a member of the Brassicaceae plant family, which just means that it is a close relative of broccoli, cabbage, mustard and wasabi. In fact, it has almost the same application as wasabi and mustard. When you slice the thick, white root or its active ingredient, the cessation of these so-called plant cells discharges enzymes, which break down the sinigrin that is present in the roots. This then releases mustard oil, a pungent and irritating chemical which may affect the eyes and sinuses of those who try to smell it. For this reason, horseradish is famously used to add a spicy burst of flavor in various dishes or as condiment on various steaks.
More specifically, horseradish is originally from Western Asia and Southern Europe, where it has been referenced throughout history. The importance and prowess of horseradish has already been popular for thousands of years! In this day and age, it is not that hard to find, growing best in cool climates with good sunlit conditions. Generally, the root sections of the horseradish are planted in the spring and are harvested the autumn, measuring about 6 to 12 inches long.
While horseradish is mainly used in various culinary practices, it has various medical applications, too. In fact, it’s the plant’s health benefits that attract people to give it a try. Ironically, the horseradish is, in fact, poisonous to horses.
Nutritional Content of Horseradish
Typically, horseradish is fresh when people consume it. It may be grated from fresh roots or may be prepared as a condiment.
Its health benefits are mainly attributed to all of its nutrients and minerals including manganese, zinc, magnesium, calcium, potassium, folate, vitamin C and dietary fiber. It also has various organic chemical compositions of oils and enzymes, such as Sinigrin, a powerful glucosinolate. These components work together in order to provide the health benefits of horseradish.
Please refer to the table below to learn more about the different essential nutrients found in horseradish:
|Principle||Amount||% Daily Value|
|Total Fat||0.69 grams||3%|
|Dietary Fiber||3.3 grams||9%|
|Pantothenic acid||0.093 milligrams||2%|
|Vitamin A||2 IU||<1%|
|Vitamin C||24.9 milligrams||41%|
Health Benefits of Horseradish
Here are some of the most startling health benefits of horseradish:
- Helps boost metabolism. Horseradish is rich in proteins, minerals and vitamins, but it lacks calories and fats. This just means that the proteins in it may metabolize directly into essential energy.
- Helps in pregnancy. The high amount of folate in horseradish is essential in protecting both mother and infant from complications during pregnancy. Not only that, but it also helps stimulate the development of the fetus, thus eliminating the chances of neural tube defects. However, excessive consumption of horseradish may be dangerous for pregnant women.
- Helps improve bone health. Horseradish contains a modest amount of calcium, which forms an important part of bone health, repair and growth. Adding a good amount of calcium to your diet may help keep you stronger and much younger.
- Helps improve digestion. Some of the elements present in horseradish may act as gastric stimulants.
- Helps lower blood pressure. The potassium in horseradish is beneficial in regulating the flow of cellular fluids, as well as tension in the blood vessels.
- Aids in weight loss. Horseradish has a low calorie content, but is simultaneously high in fiber and protein, two elements which are beneficial in stimulating the feeling of fullness. When you reduce overeating, it’ll be much easier to lose weight.
- Helps boosting immunity and prevent cancer. There are phytochemicals and essential nutrients in horseradish which are beneficial in giving an additional boost in immunity. Furthermore, it also contains sinigrin and isothiocyanate, which are essential in preventing cancer. This is one of the best health benefits of horseradish.