When talking about the need for protein, we know that it is critical for every cell in our body. It helps build nails, hair, bones and muscles, as previously mentioned. When people eat more plant-based protein they weigh less and have a lower risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes than people who eat a lot of meat. Here Rita Winters, Food.news, reflects on ‘duckweed’ as a source of protein:
“Long have we known that protein comes mostly from animal meat. Over the past century, we have started to discover that plants can also supply us with our daily protein recommendations. A recent study by students and faculty at Friedrich Schiller University (Uni Jena) found that a tiny aqueous plant can yield protein more than any plant.
Image courtesy of: Tom Gill.
This plant, called Wolffia globosa, otherwise known as duckweed or water lens, has what it takes to replace animal meat. It is a species of flowering plants, native to south and east Asia and some tropical parts of the Americas. This evergreen perennial grows in clumps or mats on the surface of freshwater bodies such as ponds, lakes, andmarshes. Upon closer look, it is oval-shaped with no leaves, no stems, and no roots. W. globosa is the world’s smallest edible flowering plant at 0.7 to 1.5 millimeters in diameter. Compared to other species from its genus, W. globosa is the most promising.
Image courtesy of: Dinesh Valke
W. globosa is not to be confused with its other relatives that look similar to it, such as Spirodela, which isn’t edible at all.
Duckweeds contain 20 to 35 percent protein, 4 to 7 percent fat (composed mostly of polyunsaturated fatty acids) and 4 to 10 percent starch per dry weight. It is considered one of the most nutritious foods in the world, containing valuable omega-3 fatty acids, such as stearidonic acid and alpha-linolenic acid. As an aqueous species, it multiplies rapidly in water without needing cultivable land like soya (another source of protein) does. Its numbers can reach up to two million plants per square meter.
Image courtesy of: rkramer62
Thailand, Cambodia and Laos have had duckweed dishes in their menu for thousands of years in the forms of soup, in omelettes or as is. Duckweeds easily absorb trace elements that are water soluble; therefore it can be used to relieve symptoms of deficiency due to malnutrition.”
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Read More … Article Source: https://www.food.news/2019-02-15-the-nutrient-profile-of-duckweed.html
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