Foodies in Southeast Asia are familiar with the tasty goodness of tamarind, the secret ingredient in some of our region’s favourite dishes. But did you know that tamarind is good for more than just spicing up food?
These are just a few reasons why we love tamarind as a tasty – and healthy – ingredient.
Lots of nutrients
The humble tamarind fruit is packed with nutrition,1 including calcium, protein, potassium and magnesium. It’s also a rich source of vitamins, containing vitamins A, B, C, E and K.
Some say that based on its vitamin A & C contents which have antioxidant properties, tamarind may help to build a stronger immune system.
Good for heart health
According to studies,3 the fibre content in tamarind can help to reduce cholesterol – while its potassium content may reduce blood pressure. These, together with tamarind’s high vitamin C content, has led this fruit to develop a reputation as an ingredient that’s good for heart health.
Pain relief from joint inflammation
Tamarind is said to have anti-inflammatory properties,4 helping to reduce joint pain related to inflammation, gout and arthritis. This belief is one reason why tamarind is used as an ingredient in a number of traditional anti-inflammation remedies.
Studies have shown that potassium and magnesium contribute to building better bone density. And because tamarind contains magnesium,5 it’s been said that this ingredient contributes to stronger and healthier bones.
Weight loss companion
While tamarind certainly isn’t a weight loss supplement, it may be useful for health-conscious diners looking to shed a few inches off their tummy. Why? Because tamarind contains a compound called hydroxycritric acid (HCA),6 which stops a particular enzyme in the body from storing fat. What’s more, tamarind also helps to supress appetite.
Remedies involving tamarind
Whether or not you choose to believe in the effectiveness of these remedies, these are some interesting traditional remedies that use tamarind’s natural qualities to treat a variety of issues.
Some cultures believe that this natural cellulite scrub can reduce the visibility of cellulite. Here’s how to create
- Mix 2 teaspoons of tamarind extract, 1 teaspoon of sugar and 1 teaspoon of lemon juice
- Apply gently on the areas of the skin with cellulite in circular motions.
Inflammation reduction paste
To reduce inflammation and swelling on the skin, you can give this traditional remedy a try. As a bonus, this recipe also supposedly moisturises the
- Mix tamarind extract, turmeric powder and yoghurt into a
- Apply to the skin for 10 to 15
- Clean skin thoroughly with water.
Some people claim that this mixture removes dead cells and leaves the skin on their face healthy and glowing. As with any face care solution, we recommend testing this on a small area of your skin first to check for any possible
- Mix 1 tablespoon of tamarind extract, some rock salt and 1 tablespoon of honey
- Apply the mixture on your face in a circular
- Leave the paste on until it dries in about 3 to 5 minutes.
- Clean your face thoroughly with water.
1Tamarindus indica L. – A review of traditional uses, phytochemistry and pharmacology [Read]
2The Benefits of Sweet Tamarind [Read]
3Hypolipemic and antioxidant activities from Tamarindus indica L. pulp fruit extract in hypercholesterolemic hamsters [Read]
4Anti-inflammatory action of Tamarind seeds reduces hyperglycemic excursion by repressing pancreatic β-cell damage and normalizing SREBP-1c concentration [Read]
5Top 10 fruit sources of magnesium [Read]
6What Is Garcinia Cambogia? [Read]