Kokum, also known as Garcinia Indica is a spice from a fruit-bearing plant. Part of traditional healing modalities, Kokum offers some well documented health benefits.
The fruits are small and bright red. The outer covering of this fruit is sun-dried and then peeled off. The dried skin is then crushed into a spice which is used as a souring agent. It has a sour and tangy taste with a mildly sweet smell. Kokum is either consumed in the raw form or the form of a juice. Kokum juice forms an integral drink of the summers.
The active ingredient of Kokum is Garcinol. Kokum is used to prepare a famous drink known as Sol Kadhi. It is also used to flavour sherbets. Kokum, when added to food, offers a pinkish purple colour and sweet or sour taste.
Kokum contains nutrients such as hydro acid, acetic acid, garcinol, citric acid, malic acid, and ascorbic acid. Kokum also contains vitamins and minerals such as vitamins B complex, vitamin C, magnesium, manganese, and potassium. It is rich in carbohydrates. It does not contain saturated fats.
The nutritional value of per serving of kokum sherbet contains 112.3 calories. It contains 93.4 mg of sodium, 4.8 mg of potassium, 28.7 gm of carbohydrates, and 4 gm of fibre.
Possible Health Benefits of Kokum Juice…
1/5. Promotes heart health
1. Kokum is a known cardiotonic. The polyphenols like hydroxy-citric-acids present in the kokum juice help in lowering the triglyceride levels and in reducing the risk linked to coronary heart disease.
2. The anti-inflammatory properties of garcinol present in kokum juice also help in protecting the heart.
3. Kokum regulates the cholesterol levels, strengthens the cardiovascular system, and controls the blood pressure and heart rate thereby, protecting the heart from risk to coronary diseases.
2/5. Prevents cancer
1. Garcinol, a compound present in kokum possesses anti-carcinogenic properties. It is effective in certain cancers such as cancers of skin, colon, liver, pancreas, breast and tongue.
2. Garcinol restricts the growth of cancer cells, halts the spread, and also induce their death.
3/5. Treats skin complaints
1. The anti-inflammatory properties and the antioxidative compounds present in Kokum juice make the skin supple, glowing, and soft.
2. Kokum inhibits the enzyme elastase, which decreases the breakdown of elastin thus, making the skin firmer and healthy.
3. The anti-aging property of kokum and the antioxidants present in kokum aids in regeneration and repair of cells thus, delaying ageing.
4. Kokum is used to reduce stretch marks during pregnancy. It also helps in treating skin allergic rashes, cracked heels, chaffed skin, scalds, and burns.
4/5. Promotes weight loss
1. The hydroxy-citric acid present in kokum produces an effect of fullness in the body thus, decreasing food consumption.
2. Hydroxy-citric acid further, promotes the burning of fat. It transforms excess calories into fat.
3. The high fibre content of kokum too helps in weight loss as fibre creates fullness.
4. Kokumrestricts lipogenesis, enhances metabolism, and also acts as a catalyst in burning body fat thus, promoting weight loss.
5/5. Other possible benefits…
Kokum juice produces numerous health benefits, apart from the health benefits mentioned above, it also produces few more such as, alleviatesanxiety and depression, regulates blood sugar, protects the liver, treats diabetes, keeps inflammation at bay, reduces oxidative stress in the body, reduces gastric ulcer occurrences, boosts immunity, improves intestinal health, enhances digestion, treats allergies, promotes cell regeneration and repair, prevents damage to the brain, prevents degenerative diseases, and eases diarrhoea.
Kokum fights oxidative stress, inflammation. It is also a known traditional Cardiotonic and has anti-carcinogenic properties, amogst other healing benefits.
How to make Kokum Juice?
Soak 1 cup dry kokum in water for a minimum of one to two hours.
Then, mash the kokum and strain the water.
Take the leftover kokum in a pan along with 1.5 cups of sugar, 2 tsp roasted cumin powder, 1 tsp black salt, and a pinch of regular salt.
Cook on low heat for around five to six minutes, until the sugar melts.
Add the kokum water in the pan and bring it to boil and cook it for another five minutes.
After removing the pan from the heat, let it cool.
On cooling, strain the mixture, ensuring that all of the juice has been strained out.
Store the mixture in the refrigerator and let it cool.
Add chilled water and ice to this mixture, and enjoy your kokum juice.