Do you know that Couscous has an array of benefits like preventing cancer, enhance heart health, prevent viral and bacterial infections, regulates metabolism, control the level of fluids in the body, improves digestion, helps in wound healing and also boosts the immune system?
The inflammatory effect of conventional grains might make you rethink about your diet. Do you want to switch to some better alternatives? Try couscous as it truly has more than the above-mentioned benefits. Read this article to know how couscous benefits your health and make the most out of it.
What is couscous?
Couscous(1) is a native food of North African countries. It is a processed grain food made from small balls of semolina flour or durum wheat. It comes in three varieties namely, Moroccan, Israeli and Lebanese. While Moroccan couscous is the tiniest, Israeli is large couscous and Lebanese the largest.
Couscous Nutrition Facts
The couscous benefits are mainly due to its incredible vitamin and mineral content. It supplies you with an adequate amount of vital nutrients like thiamin, selenium, manganese, folic acid, and niacin. Couscous calories amount to only 112 in 100 g which make it superior to other grains.
Incredible Couscous benefits on your health
Is couscous grain healthy? Yes, it is indeed. Below listed are some of the couscous benefits.
1. Couscous benefits your cardiovascular system
Couscous is an excellent source of selenium which is good for your heart health. Selenium is a powerful antioxidant which reduces the buildup of plaque and cholesterol in the blood vessels. Thus, it prevents the risk of some fatal conditions like heart attacks, strokes, and atherosclerosis.
2. Couscous is known to boost your immune system
The presence of selenium in couscous benefits your immune system too. It, being an antioxidant, fights the free radicals present in your bloodstream and benefits your overall health. Further, it also promotes the regeneration of Vitamins C and E, both of which play an essential part in strengthening your body’s defense system.
3. Couscous benefits in Weight Loss
Couscous benefits those who are trying to lose weight. It is a low-calorie grain and rich in fiber; thus it makes you feel fuller with fewer calories. Further, it is also deficient in cholesterol, sodium and saturated fat which are known to cause weight gain.
4. Couscous promotes Digestion
Couscous being a fiber-rich food improves your digestion and regulates the bowel movement. It benefits you by eliminating the toxins and bad cholesterol from the body. It also aids in preventing constipation and reducing the risk of colorectal and stomach cancer.
Here are some easy recipes that you can try to enjoy the vast array of couscous benefits.
3-Bean Israeli Couscous Salad
This healthy couscous salad is easy to prepare and is loaded with nutrients which make it an excellent dish for your overall health.
What will you need?
- One-fourth cup of red onion (chopped)
- One cup of Israeli couscous
- Two cups of water
- One and a half teaspoon of Dijon Mustard
- Two tablespoons of red wine vinegar
- Four ounces of green beans (trimmed and chopped)
- 15 ounces of kidney beans
- Four ounces of yellow wax beans (trimmed and chopped)
- Two tablespoons of fresh Italian parsley leaves (chopped)
- Two tablespoons of fresh dill leaves (chopped)
- Four tablespoons of olive oil
- A three-fourths teaspoon of salt
- One-fourth teaspoon of ground black pepper
How to prepare?
- Take a large bowl and add to it three tablespoons of oil, vinegar, mustard, onion, pepper and one-fourth teaspoon of salt.
- Mix them well
- Then heat a tablespoon of oil in a saucepan over medium heat
- Add in couscous and cook with occasional stirring until it turns golden brown for about three minutes
- After that, add water, half a teaspoon of salt and bring it to boil
- Then keep it on simmer for about seven minutes
- Next, add yellow and green beans, cover and cook for three minutes
- After that strain the mixture to remove the liquid
- Transfer the couscous mixture to the dressing bowl and add in kidney beans
- Mix the ingredients and let it sit for twenty minutes
- Then combine parsley and dill
- Your salad is ready to be savored
Roasted Vegetables Couscous Salad Recipe
The bowl meal adequately satiates your hunger and is super delicious.
What will you need?
- Two cups of couscous
- Three carrots (peeled and cut into chunks)
- Three beetroots (peeled and cut into pieces)
- 200 g pumpkin (peeled and cut into pieces)
- Two red onions (peeled and chopped)
- Two Kumara (peeled and cut into chunks)
- One-fourth cup of unsalted pistachio (chopped)
- One-fourth cup of lemon juice
- Half a cup of mint leaves (chopped)
- One teaspoon of salt
- Two cups of water
- Three tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
- Two tablespoons of honey or maple syrup
- Grated zest of one lemon
How to prepare?
- Preheat your oven to 180 C
- Take a large roasting dish and line it with a baking paper
- Put the vegetables in a bowl
- Drizzle on oil and honey or maple syrup
- Next, season them with salt and pepper
- Spread the vegetables in a single layer on the dish and roast for about 45 minutes until they start to caramelize
- Take a large bowl and add to it couscous, salt, lemon zest, and boiling water
- Let it stand for ten minutes and then fluff up using a fork
- Add roasted vegetables to the bowl along with lemon juice, and mint
- Toss the ingredients and serve the salad garnished with pistachios
Side-effects of Couscous
Couscous packed with essential vitamins and minerals is indeed healthy for you, but there are some downsides to it too.
- Couscous contains gluten, hence is not safe for people with gluten sensitivity.
- Couscous is high in glycemic index
Loaded with essential nutrients, couscous benefits you in numerous ways. Hence, it is a healthy substitute for conventional grains. Include it in your diet for improved health.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is couscous healthy for pregnancy?
Couscous, packed with significant amounts of various minerals and vitamins, provides several health benefits and is safe and healthy to be consumed during pregnancy.
2. Can couscous lower blood pressure?
Couscous is rich in potassium which is known to play a vital role in reducing the contraction of blood vessels. Thus, it lowers the blood pressure and keeps your heart healthy.
3. Why is couscous better than pasta?
Couscous being less refined and more fibrous makes for a healthy choice. Further, the presence of minerals like manganese and selenium make it a better alternative to pasta.