The Indian dish daal not only tastes good, but it’s good for you. Discover the health benefits of daal.
If you haven’t been to an Indian restaurant lately, you may not have had the opportunity to try the popular side Indian dish known as daal. Daal is a side dish made of lentils that have been split – although dried beans are sometimes used in place of the lentils for a different variation. The split lentils are usually cooked with tumeric along with other spices – making a tasty dish that’s traditionally eaten with rice. Not only is daal filling, but it’s quite healthy and nutritious. What are the health benefits of daal?
Health Benefits of Daal: The Lentils
The lentils used to make daal are rich in fiber which makes them quite filling and satisfying. Lentils contain both soluble fiber – which lowers the risk of heart disease – and insoluble fiber which helps to keep the digestive tract healthy. Lentils are low in calories and slowly absorbed by the digestive tract, so they won’t cause rapid rises in blood sugar levels ‘” making them a good choice for diabetics. They’re also a good vegetarian source of iron and protein – which most non-meat eaters don’t get enough of. On top of that, they’re rich in folate and thiamine – two B vitamins that important for metabolizing carbohydrates and making red blood cells. Lentils are an all around superfood.
Health Benefits of Daal: The Spices
Daal is usually prepared using a variety of spices – many of which have health benefits. One spice commonly used to make daal is tumeric – a spice that’s being increasingly noted for its health properties. Tumeric is a natural anti-inflammatory – thanks to the yellow pigment that gives it its color called curcumin. Some studies show tumeric helps to relieve inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease. It also shows promise for the prevention of certain types of cancer – particularly colon cancer. In addition, it also protects against Alzheimer’s and other degenerative brain diseases in animal studies. Coriander, black pepper, cumin, and cardoman are also frequently added to daal – all of which have their own unique health benefits. Daal is made with spices most Americans don’t get enough of.
How to Enjoy the Health Benefits of Daal
A piping hot bowl of daal is as near as your closest Indian restaurant, but you can find lots of recipes for making this tasty and nutritious dish online. Why not expand your culinary horizons a little and give daal a try?