Bamboo Shoots or bamboo sprouts locally known as ताँबा (Taba) in Nepali community are the wild edible and delicious part of bamboo plant species including” Bambusa vulgaris and Phyllostachys edulis.” They are hard on the outside and soft, faintly sweet and quite crisp inside.
For Centuries, shoots have been a part of many dishes in Eastern Himalaya region including Darjeeling-Sikkim. According to the research, bamboo shoots are packed with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, fibers, protein and have low-fat content.
A fresh bamboo shoot has significant amount of vitamins A, B6, C and E as well as calcium, potassium, niacin, iron, folate, copper, zinc, selenium, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, and thiamine. Shoots also contain phytochemicals such as lignans and phenolic acids which have anti-cancer, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory effects.
Here are some of the numerous health benefits we can obtain from regularly eating bamboo shoots:
1. Helps strength the Immune system: The vitamins, minerals and antioxidants present in the shoots are ideal for improving the body’s immune system in order to low our risk of neurodegenerative diseases.
2. Contains anti-cancer properties: The plant contains phytosterols which have powerful anti- cancerous properties that are effective against stomach cancer, lung cancer, breast cancer, and ovarian cancer. The flavone, chlorophyll, and amylase found in bamboo shoots are call phytosterols. Additionally, it was found to be capable of lowering the risk of colon or colorectal cancer.
3. You’ll have a more regulated Blood pressure: due to its high levels of potassium bamboo shoots can help lower blood pressure levels. Studies also found that potassium in bamboo shoots can steady our heart beat, thereby further enhancing our heart health.
4. Helps treat in menstrual problems: Regular intake of bamboo shoots can help with various reproductive health problems in women. It can help treat irregular menstrual cycle, infertility issues, and reduce labor pain and prevent too much loss of blood post-delivery.
5. Contains Potent Antioxidant and Anti-Inflammatory properties: The Shoots possess powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that are helpful in preventing various diseases such as cancer, heart diseases and even keep the blood vessels safe.
6. Has less calories content: There are only 27 calories in every 100 grams of bamboo shoots. It is also packed with fiber, thus making us full enough to eat less of other high-calories of food.
7. Helps maintain healthier digestive system: The high fiber content of bamboo shoots. Consumption of it can help us have bigger quantity and healthier quality of bowel movement, thus keeping us protected from bowel issues.
Writes: Yougesh Tamang who is a former student of the University of North Bengal, Department of Anthropology.