Makhana also called as fox nuts or phool makhana are lite weight, starchy and edible white seeds that are grown on the flowering plant Euryale ferox, usually found in wetlands and ponds. Though often confused with lotus seeds, Makhana is entirely different when it comes to taste, texture and nutrition.
While lotus seeds are derived from Nelumbo nucifera (Indian Lotus) makhana is obtained from Euryale ferox. Largely grown in Bihar in our country and few southern parts of Asia, these seeds are offered to the God and a must-have fasting food during Dasara Navratri.
Makhana seeds can be consumed raw, roasted or soaked in water and can be incorporated in a variety of dishes - soups, salads, snacks, curries and kheer. These seeds are extremely delicious, easy to make and yet nutritious.
Traditionally, these seeds are used extensively in Chinese medicine and it also holds an incredible place in the Ayurvedic medicine as well, for treating severe fatigue, manage diabetes and to improve sperm count.
The rich array of nutrients in makhana include good amounts of protein, carbohydrate, fibre and the essential minerals magnesium, iron, zinc, potassium and phosphorus. Being high in fibre and low on calories, it aids in losing weight. In addition, it also contains an anti-ageing enzyme which helps in repairing worn-out cells.
Health Benefits Of Makhana
The powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of makhana help in lowering the risk of heart diseases. It also contains good amounts of sodium and magnesium for promoting blood circulation, control blood pressure and improve the overall function of the heart.
Sustains Weight Loss
Makhana is an ideal snack for fitness enthusiasts. Being low in calories, glycemic index and high fibre content, these seeds keep you satiated and curb the appetite. Furthermore, being gluten-free and protein-rich, it makes a perfect evening snack to control hunger pangs and for promoting weight loss.
Makhana being low on the glycemic index and high in fibre prevents sudden blood-sugar spike and maintains blood sugar levels. The blend of essential nutrients in makhana including protein, magnesium, fibre and complex carbohydrates slow down the gastric emptying time and keep you satiated.
Slow Down Premature Ageing
The goodness of natural flavonoid kaempferol in makhana seeds assist in delaying premature ageing. The antioxidants packed seeds are potent to fight free radical damage of cells and repairs the worn-out cells. Wrinkles, grey hair, hair loss and fine line are all signs of ageing that could be remarkably controlled by the addition of makhana in your diet.
Adding this humble seed in your regimen is a natural way to trigger fertility. It facilitates the sperm quality and improves the sperm count in men while in women it promotes the functioning of the female reproductive system.