Yes, Bamboo Shoots are Paleo!
What Are Bamboo Shoots?
Bamboo shoots or bamboo sprouts are the largest and tallest edible shoots that came from the grass family of plants. They are the freshly erupting edible culms of a bamboo plant. Bamboo shoots have interesting texture with a very distinct, mild flavor. They are crispy and crunchy too. The outside part of the bamboo shoots features layers of tough casing of leaves that wraps the cream white flesh.
Bamboo shoots are native to Asia particularly in Japan, China, Taiwan and other South East Asian countries. They have been seasonal delicacies for centuries.-East Asian countries. Several species of bamboo plants employed in the bamboo shoot farming.
Available in either fresh or canned varieties, fresh bamboo shoots can last up to two weeks when properly refrigerated.
Health Benefits of Bamboo Shoots
As a plant, bamboo shoots are very healthy and they are known because of their outstanding health benefits. The reasons why bamboo shoots should be incorporated in your diet are outlined below:
- Bamboo shoots contain vitamins such as vitamin A, B6, E, niacin, folate, riboflavin, pantothenic acid and thiamine. Minerals include calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, sodium, zinc, copper, manganese, selenium and iron. These vitamins, minerals and antioxidants are vital in keeping the immune system healthy and for optimal cellular enzymatic and metabolic functions.
- The low caloric and low sugar content of bamboo makes it a good choice as staple food. The carbohydrates found in bamboo shoots does not go over 4 grams per 100 gram serving. This is beneficial to people who are trying to lose or maintain weight. The amounts of sugar in bamboo shoots are even lower compared to some fruits and vegetables.
- Bamboo shoots are good source of dietary fiber. Fiber helps in lowering cholesterol and stabilizing blood sugar. It also helps in regulating digestion, improving bowel movements.
- The high potassium content of bamboo shoots help in regulating the blood pressure.
- Phytosterols or plant sterols are steroid compounds found in plants. It is essential in dissolving harmful LDL cholesterol allowing smooth supply of blood throughout the body. This lowers the risk of having heart diseases.
- Flavanone, amylase and chlorophyll are all present in bamboo shoots. These phytosterols have anti-cancer properties
- Bamboo shoots have anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties that aid in healing ulcers and preventing other autoimmune diseases.
- In Ayurvedic medicine, bamboo shoots are known to have anti-venom properties that are useful for snake and scorpion bites.
Other Names for Bamboo Shoots
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photo credit: Young Bamboo Shoot