Seeds of lotus plants, which are also called fox nuts are collected and processed to get Makhanas. Makhana is very healthy and popular food and is cooked as a dessert, curry or snacks. In our country makhana is offered to God as holy fruit. Lotus plants mainly grow on stagnant water bodies. Farmers collect seeds of those plants mainly from water as well as land. Then they wash the seeds and dry them. Finally, seeds are roasted and hammered to get the finished makhana. Producing makhana involves a long laborious process. Makhana can be taken raw, dry roasted or roasted in oil or ghee which is very healthy and tasty.
From the past few centuries, makhanas have been part of Indian religious culture and food habits. It has become a perfect health snack for its multiple excellence. Makhana is crunchy and bland in taste, a variety of flavours and spices can be added to it to get different types of dishes. Some sweet dishes that can be made from makhana are kheer, khoya, halwa etc. Makhana may be used in curry. Chopped makhana can be added to salad. It is roasted on low flame with hot oil or ghee until it becomes crunchy and delicious. Makhana may be included as a snack in everyday’s diet charts for its excellent food value. It is a nutritious and healthy diet containing calcium, carbohydrate, phosphorus, iron and magnesium. It is enriched in protein with low fats, is good for diabetic patients and causes loss of weight for having low calories and insignificant amounts of saturated fat. Astringent properties in makhana keep our kidneys safe. Due to affluent protein, it keeps our stomach full for a long time and resists overeating. Makhana is an antioxidant to fight against inflammation and weakens the way of ageing and fights against loss of hair and wrinkled skin. Components like potassium, magnesium and folate in makhana control blood pressure and protect our heart from any cardiac disorder. Makhana comprises a small quantity of carbohydrates that controls diabetes. Roasted makhana is a good evening snack with a cup of tea because it provides a negligible amount of calories. Roasted Makhana contains low sodium and cholesterol. Makhana is rich in fibre which removes toxic substances from our liver that improve our metabolism and help to shed our extra body weight.
Many of the foods we take in our daily life contain gluten. Gluten is a protein present in our food like bread, cereal, pasta etc. Excessive consumption of gluten may cause celiac diseases like abdominal pain, bloating, and diarrhoea which may harm our small intestine. Gluten may be a source of skin problems, allergies, fatigue and depression. We should include more gluten-free diets in our daily life. Makhana is gluten-free and fibrous food that helps to keep our digestive system well and healthy.
Some people who do not eat any food produced by animals and wholly depend upon plant-based food are called Vegans. Makhanas are ideal food for them because properties like Calcium, Magnesium, Protein, Zinc, Fibre, and Phosphorus are present in makhana. As it is gluten-free, tasty
and crunchy, it is a good snack option for vegans. Makhana provides the need for protein and nutrition to vegans. Roasted crunchy makhana mixed with flavour is an attractive healthy snack.
Lotus seeds or fox nuts are made edible through a long and laborious process into makhana with enriched food value but blandly tested. There is a great scope to add flavour in makhana according to your own choice. They can be mixed with various spices to make them delicious. Roasted makhana with an attractive flavour is a wonderful snack. We can see many brands of roasted and flavoured makhana are available in the market. Flavoured makhana can be eaten raw or by cooking into tasty dishes. Various types of flavours can be obtained from the market to add to makhana, but one should be careful to select the right type of flavour to protect its natural quality of it.
From the above discussion, we can reach the conclusion that makhana is an immensely rich and delicious food. It is a healthy and favourite food for both vegetarians and non-vegetarians. Makhana may be eaten as a snack or in the main course of our diet. Various flavours and spices can be added to makhana to make a variety of tastes to our food including dessert items. In our country, it is a holy offering to God. It is good for blood pressure patients for containing low sodium with high potassium and magnesium. It is rich in calcium and strengthens our teeth and bones. It provides protein, fibre and multi nutrients in our body to keep us healthy. Makhana has antioxidant and anti-ageing elements which are beneficial to our skin and inflammatory problems. It is gluten-free and keeps us away from various celiac diseases and kidney problems. Makhana is low in fat and helps us to shed our extra body weight and give us energy and freshness. Considering all aspects makhana can be called a superfood.