Plants are undeniably the main source of food and nutrients for the entire world. They are simply priceless thus the need for us to appreciate all the benefits they offer. Besides, they are easily available, reasonably inexpensive and can be used for several valuable purposes. One of such important plants is tomatillo!
Tomatillo, which is also known as Mexican husk tomato, Mexican groundcherry, Jamberry, jumbo husk tomato, purple tomatillo, green or green-purple fruit is botanically known as Physalis philadelphica. It belongs to the nightshade family and bear small, greenish roundish fruits.
Tomatillo has a similar appearance with small green tomato but it is totally different from tomato. It is also closely related to cape gooseberry and comes from the same family of tomatoes, eggplant and potatoes. Tomatillo is originally from Mexico and makes a staple Mexican dish. The plant measures approximately 1 meter in height and can grow uprightly, densely populated or horizontally on the ground.
The leaves have a smooth, sawlike appearance while the fruit is normally covered with paper-like cellulose husk that has the shape of a small green lantern hanging down from the plant. The firm plumpy tomatillos are usually gathered green but they tend to turn into yellow colour when fully ripened.
Nutritional Values of Tomatillo
Tomatillos are packed with numerous nutrients, minerals, vitamins and organic compounds and this suggests why this fruit is essential for our wellbeing. Tomatillo is an excellent source of manganese, iron, potassium, dietary fiber, niacin, vitamin C, vitamin K, magnesium, copper, phosphorus, withanolides, vitamin A, vitamin K, and flavonoids such as beta carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin.
10 Exceptional Benefits of Tomatillo
1. Culinary Purposes
Tomatillo can be eaten raw or used for preparing assorted dishes especially in Mexican cuisines. Dishes such as tomatillo salsas, salad, jams, tomatillo soups, enchiladas verde, tomatillo chutneys, sauces and chilis can be prepared with this fruit. The green tomatillos are distinguished by their tart flavourful aroma while the purple and yellow ripening ones are slightly sweet.
2. Prevents Cancer Attacks
Tomatillo is an excellent source of an antioxidant known as withanolides, which possess anti-cancer properties. These antioxidants are essential for removing any potentially damaging oxidizing agents and free radicals from the body. These dangerous free radicals can possibly mutate or kill healthy cells thereby converting them into cancerous cells.
3. Aids Easy Digestion
Being an excellent source of dietary fiber, tomatillos can be included in your diets to aid easy digestion of food. The dietary fiber speeds up the passage of food through the digestive systems thus preventing bloating, constipation, colon cancer, excessive gas, bloating, gastric ulcers, cramping.
4. Regulates the Blood Sugar Level
The dietary fiber in tomatillo helps to regulate the release of simple sugars into the bloodstream thus regulating the blood sugar levels. It also helps to control the insulin and glucose levels. As a result, tomatillo is very essential for people suffering from diabetes.
5. Boosts the Energy Level
Tomatillo is an excellent source of niacin, which is an essential element that aids enzymatic processes. It also facilitates the breakdown of complex molecules and food substances into usable energy for the human body. As a result, the intake of niacin present in tomatillo can help to boost our energy level when consumed.
6. Good Vision
Tomatillo is a rich source of Vitamin A and beta carotene thus it is highly recommended for individuals suffering from poor vision. Tomatillo also helps to prevent cataract and macular degeneration.
7. Boosts the Immune System
Tomatillo is an excellent source of vitamin C and as such very effective for boosting the immune system. Its ability to boost our immune systems is attributed to its ability to stimulate the production of white blood cells, which are the body’s major defensive agents against foreign bodies and pathogens.
8. Dermatological Care
The rich presence of Vitamin C in tomatillo makes it effective for producing collagen that supports the production of skin cells and tissues.
9. Regulates the Blood Pressure
The presence of potassium and sodium in tomatillo helps to balance the blood pressure. Studies reveal that potassium is a vasodilator and as such helps to widen the blood vessels while concurrently relaxing them.
10. Weight Management
Tomatillo is a high dietary fiber, low-calorie vegetable thus essential for maintaining a balanced weight. To reduce excess weight, eat more tomatillos!
This post is for enlightenment purposes only and should not be used as a replacement for professional diagnosis and treatments. Remember to always consult your healthcare provider before making any health-related decisions or for counselling, guidance and treatment about a specific medical condition.
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