Choosing to remove certain foods from your diet whether to lose weight or improve your health can be challenging. You may feel deprived. I understand, I’m not eating gluten at this point in my life, but I don’t want to feel deprived, nobody does. To feel satisfied without gluten I am always looking for delicious alternative foods.
Feeling deprived takes me away from my daily intention to be in the vibration of joy and appreciation. When I’m on the joy and gratitude frequency, I’m a better friend, better writer, better chef, better coach. Food tastes better, I have more energy and the people I meet smile. Abraham Hick calls this alignment. It’s a feeling of flow.
If you want to eat something, tell yourself you can’t and you FEEL DEPRIVED, you’re out of alignment. At the same time, if you eat something you think you shouldn’t and FEEL GUILTY, you’re also out of alignment.
The trick is to find delicious satisfying foods that are in alignment with your health goals.
Today’s newsletter is about arrowroot. It’s a gluten free starch that boosts immunity and soothes digestion. Even if you’re not gluten free it’s a healthier alternative to cornstarch for thickening sauces and fruits. It’s one of the foods I use to make delicious recipes that satisfy me and keep me healthy.
History of Arrowroot
This very useful food starch has been used for more than 7,000 years. The name may come from aru-aru, defined as “meal of meals” by the Arawak, an extinct people of the Caribbean islands for whom the plant was a staple.
Some sources say the name comes from arrowroot’s ability to draw out poison when applied to wounds of people shot with poison arrows in the Central American region.
What is Arrowroot?
The arrowroot plant is a perennial herb found in tropical and subtropical wet habitats of North and South America and some islands of the West Indies.
The powder we use is cultivated from the plant’s rhizomes (roots).
The roots are soaked in hot water, peeled and mashed to a pulp. This milky liquid is then filtered to separate the pulp from the starch. The pure starch is dried and ground to a powder.
Arrowroot is gluten free and has twice the thickening power of wheat flour. It’s a more desirable ingredient than corn starch which is often genetically engineered and extracted using harsh chemicals. It creates a perfectly clear gel and unlike cornstarch it does not break down when combined with acidic ingredients like fruit juice. It holds up better than cornstarch when frozen and thawed.
Health Benefits of Arrowroot
The demulcent effects of arrowroot powder soothe the bowels and help regulate bowel movements. It’s a remedy for diarrhea especially for people with IBS (1). It relieves nausea and replaces nutrients that are lost due to diarrhea and vomiting.
According to research about Antarctic expeditions of the late 19th and early 20th century, arrowroot was one of the four main medicinal foods and drinks for the explorers whose bodies were largely devoid of vitamins (3).
Maintains Acid/Alkaline Balance
Calcium ash is the only starch in arrowroot. It comes in the form of calcium chloride, a compound that’s central to maintaining the proper acid and alkaline balance.
Good for Weight Loss
Arrowroot provides fiber and other nutrients helping you feel full between meals. It’s fat-free and low in calories making it beneficial for weight loss.
Arrowroot is a good source of potassium which is an important component of cell and body fluids that help regulate your heart rate and blood pressure.
Arrowroot promotes bile production, which increases cholesterol uptake by your gallbladder necessary for bile synthesis.
The extracts of arrowroot powder exhibit cytotoxic activities that boost the production of cells within the immune system. (2)
Helps Fight Food Borne Pathogens
Arrowroot has the ability to fight foodborne pathogens that cause illness, especially in liquid foods such as soup. Research shows, arrowroot dissolved in water massively reduced the amount of salmonella virus in the soups that were tested. (4)
How To Use Arrowroot
- Arrowroot makes delicious gluten free bread when mixed with flax and almond flour.
Recipe: Golden Paleo Gluten Free Bread.
- Make delicious crispy, crunchy sweet potato fries, by tossing them in a bag with sea salt, pepper, arrowroot and spices before roasting in the oven.
Recipe: Crispy Sweet Potato Oven Fries.
- Use as a thickener in cobblers and pies.
Recipe: Pear Raspberry Cobbler
- Arrowroot helps vegan black bean burgers or quinoa burgers hold together well when not using eggs.
- Thicken stir-fries, gravies or stews with arrowroot. Dissolve 2 tablespoons arrowroot in ½ cup of cold water and add to hot broth or vegetables. Arrowroot should be mixed with cold water before being added to a hot liquid to prevent clumping.
- Blend arrowroot with coconut milk and other nut milk’s to create smooth and creamy vegan puddings and custards. Recipe: Vegan Chocolate Pudding
Now that you know how fabulous arrowroot is, I hope you add it to your repertoire of foods. It’s a healthy food everyone can enjoy. If you’re vegan, paleo or gluten free use it to create wonderful dishes. You won’t feel the least bit deprived.
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