Meals That Heal - Sesame Garlic Roasted Asparagus
- 1½ pounds asparagus spears, washed and ends trimmed
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds (can also use black sesame seeds)
Freshly ground salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Cut the dry woody ends of the asparagus and discard.
- Place asparagus in large bowl and add sesame oil and minced garlic; toss to combine. Arrange spears on large baking sheet and generously sprinkle with sesame seeds. Season with a good amount of sea salt and black pepper.
- Place in oven for 15-20 minutes or until spears reach desired consistency. They should still be a bit crisp. Remove from oven and transfer to serving plate to serve immediately.
- Great with chicken or fish for a heartier meal!
Shatavari is used in Ayurveda to balance pitta and vata, but can increase kapha due to its heavy nature. It’s bitter and sweet taste has a cooling effect on the system, and its unctuous (oily), building nature makes it a great support for anyone looking for a nourishing, grounding effect. These combined qualities make it a rasayana (rejuvenative) for the reproductive system (particularly female), the digestive system (particularly when pitta is involved), and for the blood.
Western View: The health benefits of asparagus have largely been attributable to the saponins in the roots. Saponins have anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties
Asparagus contains a unique carbohydrate called inulin that does not get digested in the anterior part of the intestine, but travels to the large intestine where it is broken down by the bacteria residing there (the Bifidibacteria and Lactobacilli). These bacteria use inulin as food to thrive and multiply, thereby lowering the risk of colon cancer and allergies, and increasing the absorption of nutrients.
Its anti-inflammatory properties, and also its various B-complex vitamins (especially choline, biotin, and pantothenic acid) play a key role in regulating blood sugar levels and keeping the levels of the amino acid homocysteine low. This reduces the risk of heart disease, lowering blood pressure, and reducing risk of heart attack and stroke. It also helps regulate blood fat and cholesterol levels.
Ayurveda uses asparagus/shatavari in treating a variety of problems related to digestion. The unique carbohydrate inulin, and the dietary fiber (which is a combination of insoluble and soluble fiber), relieves constipation, dyspepsia, ulcers, diarrhea, dysentery, and colic, and improves digestion by increasing the levels of the enzymes amylase and lipase, which digest carbohydrates and fat, respectively.
The anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties also translate into the lowering of blood sugar levels, with the dietary fiber also pitching in. This especially reduces risk of type 2 diabetes.
Check out my meal plan program for more meals that heal so that you know you are eating the right foods for your metabolic type.