Capers (Kachra) Benefits or Uses for Skin, Hair and Health
Capers are exotic, tangy and spicy, providing a unique taste to the Italian dishes. They are usually used for garnishing or seasoning and have a good flavor. They also have a lot of health benefits.
What are Capers?
Capers are the unripe flower buds of the plant Capparis spinosa. They are used in most of the Mediterranean cuisines. Caper buds are plucked with hands. One tablespoon of capers contains only 2 calories. So, if you are on a weight loss diet, you can include capers in your regular diet. They are also full of antioxidants, vitamins, phytonutrients, etc. that are essential for your health.
Benefits of Capers for Skin:
You can treat various disorders of the skin like irritation and pimples on the skin, redness on the skin and so on with capers. Capers are used as important ingredients in a number of skin care products. This herb is also good for slowing down the process of aging of the skin. This is because of its antioxidant properties, which enables it to fight against free radicals that cause aging of the skin.
Relieves from Dry Skin Problems:
Capers help you treat dry skin problems. Applying capers directly on your skin helps in keeping your skin well moisturized.
Benefits of Capers for Hair:
Stops Hair Loss:
Capers are rich sources of Vitamin B and iron, which make it an important ingredient in various hair care products. These two elements help in proper growth of your hair. Vitamin B helps increasing the circulation of blood in the body and thus maintains proper growth of your hair. Iron is effective for preventing hair loss.
Health and Medicinal Benefits of Capers:
Bad enzyme buster:
Foods rich in fat and red meat contain some byproducts that can cause cancer and cardiovascular diseases. Capers help in destroying these byproducts.
If you are suffering from chest congestion, capers can help you get relief as it reduces phlegm and clears your lungs.
You can control diabetes by consuming capers. This is because these herbs contain chemicals that have the power to keep a check on the levels of blood sugar. If you are using medicines for diabetes, you must avoid consuming capers as it may lower the sugar too much.
Good source of fiber:
Capers are rich sources of fiber and this makes it effective for reducing constipation. You get 0.3 gm of fiber from one tablespoon of capers, which is about 3 % of your daily fiber requirement.
Rich in Antioxidants:
Capers are a rich source of flavonoids like rutin and quercetin. These compounds are good antioxidants, which fight against the free radicals that can cause skin diseases and cancer.
- Rutin is beneficial for proper circulation of blood and also for treating strained blood vessels.
- According to recent research made, quercetin has anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antibacterial and anti-carcinogenic properties.
Rich in Minerals:
Capers are good sources of various minerals like copper, calcium, iron and sodium.
- Calcium is good for providing you strong bones and teeth.
- Copper reacts with some proteins in the body to produce enzymes. These enzymes play the role of catalyst and help in various functioning of the body.
- Iron enables the muscles to store and use oxygen when needed. Iron is a part of many enzymes that aids the body to digest food.
Capers were used for treating rheumatic pain by the people in the ancient Greece.
If you are suffering from loss of appetite, consume capers and this will help you improve your appetite. It is also good for getting relief from stomach aches and flatulence.
Capers are loaded with vitamins like Vitamin A, K, niacin and riboflavin.
- Niacin is beneficial for preventing cardiovascular diseases and for supporting nervous and digestive system, and the cognitive functions.
- Riboflavin or B2 converts food into fuel, thus making your energetic. It is also good for the functioning of adrenal glands and helps in maintaining a healthy nervous system.
- Vitamin K is essential for the health of bones and reduces the risk of blood clotting.
- Vitamin A is good for your eye sight and prevents night blindness. It is also good for reducing the risk of some cancers and fight against certain infections. The immune system is kept strong with the help of Vitamin A.
Side Effects of Capers:
- Capers are rich in sodium and hence retain water naturally. So, if you eat too much of this herb, you may feel bloated.
- Consuming too much of capers can lead to extreme thirst. So always have it in moderate amounts.
- If you have high blood pressure, you must try not to eat capers because it contains excess of sodium and hence retains water. This can increase the volume of blood. Excess sodium also makes you prone to heart diseases.
- If you are pregnant or going to have a surgery, you must avoid consuming capers.
- Those who are on low sodium diet are advised not to consume capers as they are rich in sodium.
- You may also suffer from osteoporosis if you consume too much of capers. This is because of excess sodium in capers, which decreases the bone density, making them weak. Sodium also prevents the absorption of calcium by the body, which is essential for healthy bones. The weak bones therefore leads to osteoporosis.
Cooking with Capers:
Capers are used as flavoring agents in a variety of sauces like tartare and remoulade. They taste delicious when cooked with cheese. Because of their immense health benefits, they are a good substitute for salt when you cook salmon, turkey, red meat, chicken salad and vegetable. The tender shoots of capers are also used in cooking.