Chicory is a woody and herbaceous plant that contains a wealth of health benefits. Also, it is a natural sedative that can protect against kidney stones. This small plant is a known powerful addition to any diet.
Chicory roots’ are used extensively to make medicines and cure a number of health issues. Its roots are found to be more useful in its extracted form and as as a natural food additive.
Chicory root extract, which is more commonly known as Inulin, is prepared by removing the insoluble component of the plant’s root after being dried and powdered root is mixed with water.
Health Benefits of Chicory Root Extract:
1. Heart Health
Inulin has been shown to help in reducing the levels of “bad” cholesterol in the body. This LDL cholesterol is one of the main factors behind high blood pressure and atherosclerosis, because it somewhat blocks the flow of blood when it binds to veins and arteries. Also, it can contribute to the risk of heart attack and strokes.
Chicory is also packed with plant phenols, which have been widely studied as anti-arrhythmic and anti-thrombotic agents. These are considered antioxidants, and researches have reported that chicory-based coffee as compared to normal coffee, can help significantly improve the balance of plasma and blood in your body, which reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease.
2. Liver Health
The ability of chicory root extract in protecting against chemical-induced free radicals and possible toxicity to the liver was reviewed in a 2015 medical review. Participants were divided into four groups, according to levels of free radical damage, antioxidants and treatment type, were reviewed during the process.
Pretreatment with chicory extract prevented cell damage and significantly reduced oxidative stress, ultimately improving liver conditions due to toxicity.
Results showed that chicory extract is filled with natural antioxidants and able to scavenge reactive free radicals. Also, it boosts the defense system of your body and also cleanse the liver.
3. Relieves Constipation
Chicory root has been reported to help in relieving constipation due to its inulin role. Research which was published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition studied the impact of daily consumption of 15 grams of chicory on elderly constipated participants. The double-blind and placebo-controlled study took place over 28 days.
The study reported that “participants in the inulin group reported reduced defecation difficulties during the supplementation and increased satisfaction on digestion. Daily supplementation using 15 grams inulin improves constipation and quality of life in an elderly population with constipation.
4. Reduce Arthritis Pain
Chicory root extract has been used traditionally in the treatment of arthritis. It contains a significant amount of anti-inflammatory properties, that can help in reducing the pain caused by conditions like osteoarthritis.
Patients who have been treated using chicory root extract have reported a considerable improvement in the pain associated with their osteoarthritic condition. Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, chicory root extract can also be used for muscle aches, pains and joint soreness as a general anti-inflammatory agent.
5. Reduce Stress Levels
Chicory root extract contains sedative qualities that can help in lowering anxiety levels and calming the mind. It can also be taken as a sleep inducing agent, and is healthier than all the other conventional and commercial sleeping pills.
Once your body’s stress level is in check, the risks of mental illnesses, heart disease, premature aging and hormonal imbalance are drastically reduced.
Chicory Root Nutrition:
Just 1 raw chicory root, which is approximately 60 grams, contains
- 44 calories
- 10.5 grams carbohydrates
- 0.1 gram fat
- 0.9 gram fiber
- 0.8 gram protein
- 0.1 milligram manganese (7 percent DV)
- 74 milligrams potassium (5 percent DV)
- 0.1 milligram vitamin B6 (7 percent DV)
- 3.0 milligrams vitamin C (5 percent DV)