Medicinal values of the plantain stem


Traditional plantain stem recipes are fast disappearing from our tables. But the tender, edible stem offers plenty of medicinal benefits against kidney stones, UTI, high blood pressure, acidity and may even help with weight loss. It is time to bring the plantain stem back on the menu.

Traditional plantain stem recipes are fast disappearing from our tables. But the tender, edible stem offers plenty of medicinal benefits against kidney stones, UTI, high blood pressure, acidity and may even help with weight loss. It is time to bring the plantain stem back on the menu.



Plantain stems or banana stems are a part of Indian cuisine, but did you know that they offer medicinal benefits as well? Banana stems are useful in the following conditions.

Kidney Stones


The white inner portions of the banana stem should be eaten at least three times a week to help against kidney stones. Ayurveda states that the juice of the banana stem can dissolve kidney stones. Recent scientific studies confirm that banana stem juices are diuretic, which means that it helps to produce urine and flush toxins from the system.

As an alternative to eating banana stem as a vegetable, Ayurveda says you can also make banana stem juice. To do this, chop tender white banana stem and run in a mixer with some water until it becomes smooth. This juice can be mixed with some buttermilk and salt or some cardamom (cardamom is also effective against kidney stones) and consumed.

Plantain stem is also commonly taken in Tamil Nadu in the form of Vazhai Thandu. To prepare this, ¼ cup of banana stem pieces are mixed with ½ a cup of yoghurt, 1 teaspoon of roast cumin seed and ½ teaspoon of pepper powder. This mixture is ground to a smooth paste in a mixer. The thick paste is then thinned down with some water or buttermilk and a pinch of black salt before drinking.

Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)


The diuretic property of banana stem and it's ability to flush out toxins also helps ease the discomforts that are caused by UTI (urinary tract infections). The banana stem can be had as a juice for quick results.

Constipation


The tender banana stem is an excellent source of fibre. In fact, the tougher, external sheaths of the banana stem are used for weaving into fabrics. The fibre of the edible part of the stem can act as a good, natural laxative. It helps to add bulk to the stools and the intestines are able to pass toxins from the body normally because of it.

Piles


Piles or haemorrhoids can be treated with the plantain stem. The high fibre content makes the stool soft, making it easy to pass, without any strain. Since there is no pressure applied during the passing of stools there is no strain on the tissues of the rectum. This prevents the formation of piles or fissures in the rectum. People suffering from these conditions find relief as their stool becomes soft and that gives help heal the piles/fissures faster.

Obesity


Clearly, because the banana stem is rich in dietary fibres, it has a tendency to make you feel full after eating. This means it gives you a feeling of satiation. You feel less hungry after eating banana stem. As a result, you are able to lose weight more effectively if you include this natural food in your diet on a regular basis. Banana stem offers the added advantage of having zero fats and cholesterol.

Diabetes


Plantain stem is a food with a low glycemic index (GI). Since it is rich in fibre, it takes a long time to digest. This means it affects blood sugar levels very slowly, making it an excellent food choice for diabetics.

Both endocrinologists and dieticians recommend a low GI diet for diabetic patients. Low GI diets do not cause sudden spikes in blood sugar levels, which can be quite dangerous. Low GI diets ensure the slow release of sugars which actually keeps the blood glucose levels in the blood in check.

High Blood Pressure


Plantain stem is rich in minerals like magnesium and potassium. Texts of traditional medicine suggest that drinking juice extracted from the edible banana stem can help to lower blood pressure. Eating a vegetable made out of the stem once a week may also help prevent high blood pressure in healthy individuals.

Acidity


The stem has been used for centuries in traditional medicine to provide relief from acidity. Plantain stem juice mixed with buttermilk may be used for relief against stomach ulcers, hyperacidity and the burning sensation caused by acidity.



The plantain stem is a cheap food, with multiple health benefits. It must be included in the diet. If you are looking for ways to incorporate this healthy food in your diet then try out some traditional recipes from the South, where the plantain stem is a staple.


Article by Juana
Juana is a freelance writer, with years of experience, creating content for varied online portals. She holds a degree in English Literature and has worked as a teacher and as a soft skill trainer. An avid reader, she writes on a variety of topics ranging from health, travel, education and personality development.

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