BENEFITS OF EGUSI SOUP
The benefits of Egusi soup is borne out of the ingredients used in making this amazing and at the same time cheap native dish. Below are the items used in the preparation and their individual health benefits.
- Egusi Melon Seeds
- Palm Oil
- Castor Seed(Ogiri Okpei)
Egusi Melon Seeds
The protein composition is about 23.4% making it similar to other proteinous plant like soyabeans, pumpkin seeds and cowpeas good for muscle building and prevention of diseases like kwarshiokor and marasmus. It has 45.7% of essential fatty acid that the body needs. It aids in the shedding of fats due to low calorie content. The 12% fibre content in egusi is higher than that of any legume which is good for food digestion. Although its carbohydrate content of 10.6% is on the low side, the fact that it is eaten with carbohydrate rich food like eba, pounded yam, semovita and so on compesates for it. It helps in fighting against aging and keeps skin healthy due to the presence of anti-oxidants and niacin. Lastly egusi seed abounds with a lot of amino acids, vitamins and minerals that aids in strengthening the immune system and maintaining good blood flow throughout the body
Due to the presence of full spectrum vitamin E, palm oil has a lot of cardiovascular benefits such as supporting the heart againsts stress, improve blood circulation, regulate cholesterol level, reduce and reduce blood pressure. The full spectrum vitamin E antioxidant properties helps to inhibit the development of skin, stomach, pancreas, lung, liver, breast, colon, prostrate and other cancer. Palm oil also aids in preventing brain and nerve damage. It can also strengthen immune function and promote bone, eye, oral, lung, skin and and liver health. It is a fat rich oil that provides energy and enhance the absorption of fat-soluble nutrients such as vitamin A, D and E.
Beef is an excellent source of phosphorus, protein, selenium, vitamin B12 and zinc. it is also a good source of iron, vitamin B6 and other minerals that help release energy from food. Protein that comes with beef helps with building strong and muscular body. Zinc helps create healthy immune system and heal wounds and phosphorus is for strong teeth and bones. Iron helps in the movement of oxygen in the blood to all cells and muscles to prevent fatigue. In children and adolescent it contributes to optimal growth, cognitive function, red blood cell development. They is fatty acid found naturally in beef that plays a major role in cancer prevention
Fish is the worlds best source of omega-3 fatty acids for good functioning of the brain and body. It lowers the risk of heart attack and stroke. It is beneficial for expectant and nursing mothers.It reduces decline of brain function in old age due to the fact that it increases the grey matter in the brain centers that control memory and emotion. Fish can serve as an anti-depressant both on their own or when taken with other anti-depressant medication. It is a good source of vitamin D and coupled with omega-3 fatty acids helps in combating auto-immune disesase that makes the immune sysyem of the body mistakenly attack and destroy healthy body tissues like type 1 diabetes. Fish aids in reducing the tendency of asthma in chidren. In older people fish could help in preventing macular degeneration responsible for the vision impairment and blindness. People who suffer from insomnia can benefit from adequate intake of vitamin D found in fish.
Pepper contains more than 200% of daily vitamin C intake which helps to prevent common cold, serves as an antioxidant and helps in the absorption of iron. They are a great source of vitamin B6 and folate both of which can help prevent anaemia. It abounds with vitamin A which helps to improve eyesight especially at night. It helps prevent lung and prostrate cancer. It also helps in the proper functioning of the body cells by increasing metabolism.
Salt helps in controlling blood sugar by improving insulin sensitivity. Suitable for people with high allergic and ashamtic tendency. Salt helps in good digestion by maintaning the proper stomach PH. It is useful for people that suffer from insomnia due to the fact that it increases metabolic rate in the body and suppresses the stress hormones. Salt promotes healthy weight by maintaining the level of cortisol in the blood.
Vegetable helps reduce risk of chronic diseases such as stroke, cancer, heart disease, type 2 diabetes and so on. They contain pottasium, fiber, folic acid, vitamin A, vitamin E and vitamin C. Pottasium may help maintain healthy blood pressure. Dietary fiber may help reduce blood cholesterol levels and may lower risk of heart disease. Folic acid helps in the formation of red blood cells and prevent conditions that can lead to birth defect.
Castor Seed(Ogiri Okpei)
Although optional in the preparation, to derive the full benefits of egusi soup its advisable to include it. Castor seed helps in the relief of menstrual disorder, constipation and rheumatism. It also used in oral care, proper lactation, birth control, hair care and skin care. It can also serve an effective purgative. Oil from the seed an be used in the medication for HIV positive patients due to the presence of Ricin and Ricinoleic acid which are germicidal and antiviral in nature. Castor seed oil can also be used on burns and wounds to protect them from infections.