|photo via savoryspiceshop.com|
Check this out: According to greenmedinfo.com, the history of sesame as a medicine goes back 3600 years to Egyptian times where it was listed in the scrolls of the Ebers (one of the oldest medical books in the world) as a favored medicine. Beautiful women of ancient Babylon are said to have used a mixture of honey and sesame seeds (havla) to prolong youth and beauty. Roman soldiers ate the mixture for strength and energy.
Below is a small sampling of information I found on greenmedinfo.com (please check this link so you can see the whole story), pointing to the amazing health benefits of this delicate and flavorful little seed. In addition to what you see here are recommendations to use it as a massage oil for babies, its effectiveness in helping to prevent atherosclerosis, its efficiency as an anti-depressant, and the protection it offers against many forms of cancer.
What you are truly is what you eat. If you make it a point to eat a varied diet of nutritious food, you're doing what nature intended. Why else would all that good stuff be here for us?
- Diabetes: A study published in 2011 in the Clinical Journal of Nutrition showed that sesame oil improved the effectiveness of the oral antidiabetic drug glibenclamide in type 2 diabetic patients. Another study published a few years earlier in the Journal of Medicinal Foods showed that using sesame seed oil as the sole edible oil lowers blood pressure and glucose in hypertensive diabetics.
- High blood pressure: A study published in 2006 in the Yale Journal of Biological Medicine showed that sesame seed oil has a beneficial effect in hypertensive patients on either diuretics or beta-blockers. Substitution of all dietary oils with sesame oil brought down systolic and dystolic blood pressure to normal.
- Gingivitis/Dental Plaque: Ayurvedic medicine, which has been around for thousands of years, indicates a process for oral health which involves swishing sesame seed oil in the mouth for prolonged durations. This is said to prevent teeth decay, halitosis, bleeding gums, dry throat, and that it strengthens the teeth, gums and jaw. Clinical research now confirms that it compares favorably to chemical mouthwash.
OK, now for the recipe:
Cut into 3/4" cubes or 1/4" thick slices:
2 lbs firm tofu
Marinate for 2 hours in a mixture of:
1/3 cup soy sauce (or tamari, and remember you can use the low-sodium variety, and you don't need to use the full 1/3 cup)
1/4 cup oil
2 cloves garlic, minced or 1/4 tsp. garlic powder (fresh is better, if you can get it) (you can add more btw)
1 TB ginger root, grated or 1/4 tsp ginger (more works here as well; spices and herbs are always 'to taste')
1 cup sesame seeds ground in a blender and 2/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour
Brown in oil (canola or coconut). Serve with rice of quinoa.
Tofu Cookery by Louise Hagler