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Lotus: Health Benefits, Uses, Dosage and Side Effects

By NS Desk | Herbs | Posted on :   18-Dec-2020

Lotus has been considered one of the most sacred flowers by the people and a symbol of divine deity. They grow mostly in flood plains and delta areas. Lotus is found widely in India from central all the way to northern India. It is found in the East Asian regions. Lotus also has high nutritional value, and thus parts of the flower are consumed for the same. Lotus seeds, roots, leaves, and stems are edible and are consumed in different parts of the world for different purposes. However, the most used parts of lotuses are lotus seeds and lotus stems.
Lotus is a good promoter of the blood clot. It helps in stopping the blood flow out of the body by clotting it and making the healing time reduce. Lotus is also a good digestive. It helps in reducing the problem of diarrhea and to break down the food properly for digestion.
Lotus flower has been used in the skincare routine in the past and has proven itself to be good for the skin. Lotus flower enhances the complexion and reduces inflammation on the skin. It also helps to get rid of rashes and boils.
Lotus is rich in antioxidants and has properties to make it anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial. For the same reason, it has been able to cure so many problems in the human body.
Lotus is good for psychological well-being as well. It works wonders on the health of the brain. Lotus helps in getting rid of anxiety and also improves the sleep pattern.
How did the Word Lotus Originate?
The word lotus is said to have derived from the Latin word "lōtus." This word is considered to have originated from the ancient Greek word "lōtós."
Historical Use of Lotus 
As said, the lotus is one of the most sacred flowers. With the sacred aspect also comes the mystery. This is because lotus flowers have even been found as fossils. The question here is that a flower that is present today is exactly the same in the fossil from millions of years ago without any evolution.  It is said that lotus might have existed even 14.5 million years ago. This also means that the flower has survived the ice age, which made most plants and animals extinct. Furthermore, it is the same plant that we see in our gods and goddesses' paintings.
Lotus is said to have arrived in Egypt from India in the 6th century B.C. Ancient Egyptian civilization has also used the lotus flower as an offering to the deity. The same tradition has been seen in India and is still continued. Egyptians also related the flower as a symbol of life, growth, purity, and fertility. The “Book of Dead” states that people have been converted to lotuses after death with the help of magic spells and charms.
The Asian regions of Buddhism and Hinduism symbolized lotus as perfection. Buddhists believed that lotus is a journey from darkness to light as it grows in the mud and yet faces the sun. 
Lotus has been used by people throughout the world in different forms and for different reasons. Today, we are well aware of the medicinal qualities it possesses. The article gives information on the same. 
Nutritional Value of Lotus 
Per 100 grams of lotus seeds have 89 calories, 8% protein, 5% carbohydrates, and 10% potassium. It is rich in iron, magnesium, calcium, and vitamin B6. 
Lotus roots are also highly beneficial. They are a good source of vitamin B, vitamin C, zinc, potassium, copper, and thiamine. Lotus roots have a good amount of fiber as well. 
Ayurvedic Properties of Lotus
Lotus is madhura or sweet as well as tikta or bitter in taste. Being light or light in quality, it has a sheeta veerya or cold potent. Lotus is somewhat picchila or sticky in texture and undergoes a taste change after digestion.
Consumption of lotus balances the Kapha and Pitta Dosha by increasing Pitta and reducing Kapha. 
Benefits of Lotus in Ayurvedic Treatment
There have been studies that prove the qualities of lotus spoken of to be true. These studies have been conducted on animals; however, the visible results cannot be denied on human beings as well.
Lotus has been helpful in the problem of indigestion, diarrhea, and excessive bleeding. It is also good for skin and blood. The use of lotus also keeps psychological health. It helps in reducing anxiety and increases the length of sound sleep.
Treating Diseases or Health Problems Using Lotus 
1. Lotus for Diarrhea



Lotus has anti-bacterial and anti-parasitic properties. Lotus also has anti-enter polling properties that help in the prevention of accumulation of fluid in the intestine. It thus helps in curing diarrhea.

Diarrhea is caused due to improper food and diet, water, and toxins entering the body. This weakens the Agni or the digestive fire. The above happens because of the imbalance of Kapha Dosha. Lotus helps in balancing Kapha Dosha by reducing it and thus increases the Agni or digestive fire that helps to rid of diarrhea.

2. Lotus for Indigestion



Lotus is a good digestive. The compound breakup of parts of lotus has digestive properties due to the presence of alkaloids.

Indigestion is a result of increased Kapha Dosha. This weakens the digestive system and reduces Agni or digestive fire. Lotus helps decrease the Kapha Dosha and increase the Agni or the digestive fire. This helps in proper digestion of the food and thus also cures the problem of indigestion.

3. Lotus for Bleeding 



Lotus helps in managing the blood flow. It has phytochemicals that help in the formation of blood clots in the wounded area. This results in faster healing of the wound as well as regulation of blood flow.

Lotus has been used by our ancestors to promote blood clots. It also helps in easing the excessive flow in the menstrual cycle.

Other benefits are:
4. Lotus is good for the skin. It helps to get rid of rashes and pimples. The extract of lotus flowers also reduces pimple marks and scars.
5. Lotus purifies the blood with the help of the antioxidants that it contains. 
6. Lotus also helps in strengthening the brain and reduces anxiety and stress.
7. It is used as a cure for insomnia. 
Forms of Lotus with Recommended Dosage
Lotus is available as capsules in the Ayurvedic shops. This can come in the combination of other ingredients or as just lotus capsules. Depending on your use for the capsules, you can buy them easily at the nearest Ayurvedic center.
Lotus Capsules can be taken twice a day. Take one or two capsules with warm water after light meals, like lunch and dinner. 
Types of Ayurvedic Care with Lotus 
1. Lotus root chips 
- Cut thin strips of lotus roots and wash them off. 
- Preheat the oven to about 300 degrees Fahrenheit. 
- Add 2 tablespoon of oil to the sliced roots along with salt and pepper and a teaspoon of sesame oil in the bowl. 
- Mix the combination well to season the slices and put them on a baking tray.
- Pop it in the over till it is golden in color. 
- Enjoy the crispy treat when done. 
2. Lotus Capsule
- Take one or two lotus capsules two times a day.
- You can have it after light meals along with warm water. 
3. Dried Lotus Seeds
- Otherwise known as Makhana, lotus seeds are dried and are available in all supermarkets.
- Roast them in ghee with some salt.
- You can have it at least half an hour before your meal. 
Side Effects of Lotus 
Lotus is generally safe to be consumed via mouth. It is a portion of delicious food. However, people can be allergic to the lotus. The allergic effects shown by consumption of lotus can include:
1. Nausea
2. Vomiting
3. Dizziness
4. Itching 
5. Swelling in throat 
6. Swelling of the tongue.
In case you find yourself eating lotus, if you are allergic, visit a doctor immediately and take an anti-allergic.
Precautionary Guide While Using Lotus
1. Lotus in Pregnancy 
There is not much information available on the consumption of lotus while you are pregnant. It is good not to take any risks with the baby and stay clear of any form of a lotus.
2. Lotus while Breastfeeding
There is not much information available about the consumption of lotus while breastfeeding. It is on the safe side to not consume lotus and take a risk. You can consult your gynecologist about the same.
3. Lotus with Diabetes
Lotus can lower the sugar level in blood. People who are already suffering from diabetes should avoid consuming lotus in any form as it can drastically reduce the blood sugar levels and cause severe health problems. 
4. Lotus Before a Surgery
As the blood sugar level is reduced by consuming lotus, it is not advised to consume it before surgery. If you have a scheduled surgery, make sure to stop eating lotus in any form at least 2 weeks before the same.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Can I eat raw lotus?
- No, the lotus is not eaten raw. It has a bitter and pungent taste, which is reduced with cooking. You can steam or boil lotus; however, you cannot and must not eat raw lotus flowers or any other part.
2. Is lotus flower edible?
- Yes, lotus flowers can be eaten. Not only is it edible, but also highly nutritious and good for health. Lotus flower is used in Ayurvedic medicines. It helps in curing diarrhea and bleeding disorders. The cold potent of the flower helps in getting rid of indigestion as well. 
3. What are the types of lotuses?
- There are basically two types of lotus. The first is called "Rakta Kamal." This type of lotus has pink to reddish-pink petals. The other is "Sveta Kamal." This type of lotus has white petals.
4. What parts of a lotus plant are edible?
- Lotus is a miracle plant in every way. All the parts of the lotus plant are used in Ayurveda. The roots, seed, leaves, and stems of a lotus plant are edible with high nutritional and beneficial value.
5. Is lotus root good for health?
- Yes, lotus root is good for health. It is highly nutritious and has a number of properties that make it good for health. Lotus roots help in protecting the cells and also purifies the blood. It is rich in fiber that makes it good for managing body weight as well. Lotus roots are good for the heart and immunity. It is good for men as it increases libido.
6. Does lotus promote weight loss?
- Yes, lotus promotes weight loss. It is rich in fiber and has anti-obesity properties. Lotus helps the enzymes act quickly and properly on the food and helps in digestion and proper excretion. This not only manages weight but also keeps it in check by reducing it. 
7. Is lotus good for skin?
- Yes, the lotus is good for the skin. It is scientifically proven and is used in several cosmetic and skincare products. It is said to tone the complexion and increase the blood circulation in the skin. It helps in reducing the fine lines and wrinkles and also gets rid of dark spots. This means that it makes a good anti-aging paste.
8. What are the benefits of lotus stem?
- Lotus stem is rich in vitamins and minerals that are essential for our body and its functions. It helps in the proper production of blood cells and also purifies the blood in the body.
9. Should the lotus root be peeled?
- Yes, lotus roots have very bitter skin that must be peeled before use. The skin is light in color and is easy to remove when boiled. 
10. Can a diabetes patient eat lotus?
- No, a diabetes patient should avoid eating lotus. Lotus lowers the blood sugar levels in the body. This might not be good for a diabetic patient. Eating lotus might cause severe effects and can be very bad for the health of a person who has diabetes.
11. How to know if the lotus is cooked?
- Lotus is crunchy and hard in texture. When cooked, it becomes soft and has a sweet flavor. If you poke the lotus stem and it feels soft, know that it is cooked. You would want a potato-like texture when you poke.  
12. Can I eat lotus while on homeopathic medicine?
- Lotus is an all-natural product. You can consume lotus while you are on homeopathic medicine. Unless it is a diabetes medicine, it is safe to consume lotus. 
13. Can I eat lotus while on supplements?
- Yes, you can consume lotus while on a supplement. However, if you are consuming more than one supplement for health, you might want to consult your doctor before consuming lotus in any form.
14. Can I eat lotus while on western medicines?
- There is not much information on consuming lotus while on allopathic medicines. You can consult your doctor about the same if you are opting for western medicines. 
15. How do you know if the lotus root has gone bad?
- When you cut a fresh lotus stem, it has a pinkish color. You will know it is bad if it has a deep yellow to brown color. It would be best if you discarded such roots as they are no longer edible. Consumption of this can cause health ailments and diarrhea. 
16. How long can I keep lotus root?
- When cut, you can store lotus root for up to 5 days. After this, it will start to rot. You can store the root in an airtight container. This way, it will stay fresh for at least 1 week.

NS Desk

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