Eggplants also known as aubergine or guinea squash is part of the nightshade family (solanaceae). Eggplants require a warm climate to properly grow and has been grown in its native southeast Asia since antiquity.
- High in antioxidants
Aubergine / eggplants contain a high amount of antioxidants. Antioxidants are substances known to help protect the body against damages caused by substances called free radicals. Several studies have shown that antioxidants can help prevent many types of chronic diseases, such as heart related conditions and cancer. Eggplants are rich in anthocynanins, a type of pigment with antioxidant properties giving the vegetable its vibrant color.
- May promote blood sugar control
Adding aubergines / eggplants to your diet may help keep your body’s blood sugar levels in check. This is because eggplants are high in fiber. Fiber can lower blood sugar by slowing down the rate of digestion and absorption of sugar in the body. A slower absorption rate keeps blood sugar levels steady and prevents sudden spikes and crashes. Another research suggests that polyphenols a compound found in different plants and vegetables including eggplants may reduce sugar absorption and increase the secretion of insulin, which both helps at lowering sugar levels in the blood.
- May reduce the risks of heart disease
Thanks to their high amount of antioxidants, studies suggest that eggplants may help reduce the risk of heart disease. In a study involving rabbits with high cholesterol, 0.3 ounces (10 ml) of eggplant juice were given to them daily for a period of two weeks. At the end of the study, they had lower levels of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, two blood markers that can lead to heart diseases when at a high level.
How to store
Once aubergines / eggplants have been harvested, it is important to keep them inside a refrigerator.