Horseradish (Cochlearia armoracia) is a medicinal plant that has been well known to our parents and grandparents. It temporarily sank into oblivion and got replaced by numerous pharmaceuticals, but it’s again making its revival as a powerful herbal medicine.
Empirical research has now proved what our ancestors intuitively already knew. When treating certain conditions, horseradish is just as effective as chemically-synthesized antibiotics and it can sometimes even be superior to over-the-counter drugs. Horseradish is particularly potent in the treatment of sinusitis and it clears upper respiratory passages, which helps with cold, influenza and lung congestion. It is also an effective urinary tract infection healer. When used as a natural drug, it comes without any side effects. At the same time, it provides us with some distinct culinary enjoyment.
What makes horseradish so powerful?
Horseradish is a member of the Brassicaceae family, which also includes mustard, wasabi, broccoli, and cabbage. Vegetables from the mustard family are concentrated with glucosinolates that influence the metabolism of hormones and act in an anti-cancer way. Consumption of these vegetables has also been shown to lower the risk for prostate cancer.
Horseradish contains mustard oil and the presence of allyl isothiocyanate gives it the antibacterial punch. Horseradish is also a powerhouse of vitamin C – raw, it contains 79.31 mg of vitamin C per 100g. It is high in many essential minerals and other health-promoting substances, including calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, glutamine, glucose, acid sulfate and essential oils.
Singrin, a very powerful glycoside, is found in horseradish, and it helps with water retention by stimulating the blood capillaries. It improves the blood flow and rejuvenates the circulation below and to the skin surface and can be used for skin treatments.