Chicory, the detox benefits

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Louise Hay
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by Valeria Ghitti



A small tuft close to the ground, with long, serrated leaves, from which rises a thin stem adorned with blue flowers: this is how the field chicory, one of the most used wild herbs in cooking. In addition to the spontaneous plant, the cultivated varieties, with smaller or, conversely, much more elongated leaves.

La chicory, which belongs to the same family of radicchio, endive and dandelion, it is rich in water and minerals, such as calcium, potassium and sodium, which give it a draining and diuretic action. 


«Chicory it is purifying: stimulates the work of the liver, and in this way has the ability to move the slag from tissues and blood, allowing their elimination in the kidney », explains Dr. Anna D'Eugenio, nutritionist. "It also helps reduce cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood".


EFFECTIVE BOTH RAW AND COOKED

«Eaten raw in salads, chicory it has a mainly purifying, hypoglycemic and draining actionContinues the expert. If you prefer a less bitter taste, you can opt for the smaller variety, the so-called chicory, with round and not jagged leaves, which is also more tender.


«The larger variety, when boiled, is good for the liver and it is useful in constipation, especially if sautéed in a pan with garlic, oil and chilli. Cooked in this way is also effective in case of lack of appetite because it stimulates the digestive functions more. Be careful, though, not to abuse it if you suffer from diverticula: it can make the situation worse », concludes the expert.


NUTRITIONAL VALUES

One hectogram of chicory provides 95 g of water, 180 mg of potassium, 1,5 mg of iron, 150 mg of calcium, 7 mg of sodium, 267 micrograms of vitamin A, 8 mg of vitamin C and only 12 calories.




ALSO TRY THE HERBAL TEA

Chicory leaves and flowers dried in the shade and then chopped are perfect for preparing an herbal tea: put a teaspoon of the mince to infuse in a cup of boiling water for 15 minutes, then filter, then drink 2-3 times a day for several days in a row, away from meals. This infusion is purifying and digestive (stimulates the production of bile) and is ideal after a period of overdoing.


→ The chicory water is also excellent: boil a kilo of vegetables in about three liters of water. Cool and store in the refrigerator. "A cup in the morning, on an empty stomach, is useful when an intense draining action is needed, for example for those suffering from kidney problems characterized by high levels of blood urea and creatinine or in case ofarterial pertension»Advises Dr. Anna D'Eugenio. 


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