Nishat Bagh

Nishat Bagh in Srinagar-A delight for eyes & soul

 

Introduction:

Nishat Bagh is located in Srinagar, Kashmir, and is built on the eastern side of Dal Lake. It is the second largest terraced Mughal garden in the Kashmir Valley.’’Nishat Bagh ‘’ is an Urdu word and it means the ‘’Garden of Joy’’,’’ Garden of Delight’’, and ‘’Garden of Gladness’’.

Credit: JK Tourism

History:

Nishat Bagh is located on the bank of Dal Lake and is surrounded by Zabarwan Mountains. It was built and designed by Asif Khan, elder brother of Nur Jahan in 1633. After its completion in 1633, Shah Jahan was overwhelmed by its beauty and he even expressed his interest to his father-in-law, Asif Khan three times in a hope that he might gift him the same but that didn’t happen. So, Shah Jahan cut off the water supply to the garden and it was deserted for some time. This left Asif Khan heartbroken and he became disinterested in the events related to the garden. One day he was resting on one of the terraces, and suddenly one of his servants turned on the water supply from Shalimar Bagh. Asif Khan ordered the servant to disconnect the water supply but when Shah Jahan heard about this incident, he was impressed by the loyalty of the servant and ordered the full restoration rights for the water supply to Nishat Bagh of his Prime Minister and father-in-law Asif Khan. The granddaughter of Emperor Jahandar Shah and daughter of Mughal Emperor Alamgir II, Princess Zuhra Begum is buried in Nishat Bagh.

Layout:

The layout is based on the basic model of Persian gardens or Iranian gardens but it was redesigned to adjust the topographic and water source conditions at the site chosen in the Kashmir valley. A rectangular layout with an east-west length of 548 m and width of 338 m was designed.

Architecture:

It is built in terraces that are lined with chinar and cypress trees that start from the lakeshore running all the way to the hill end. Nishat bagh has 12 terraces representing 12 zodiac signs. Nishat bagh is divided into two sections namely the public garden and the private garden (harem) while Shalimar Bagh has four sections. Although, there are some similarities between Nishat and Shalimar Bagh like polished stone channels and terraces. These two gardens have the same source of water supply. Nishat bagh is built in an east-west direction the top terrace has the Zenana garden and the lowest terrace is connected to Dal Lake. Some of the old Mughal buildings are present in the vicinity of the Bagh. There is a central canal, 4 meters wide, that runs through the garden from the top and has a water depth of 20 cm. The flow of water is from the top to the first terrace and all the terraces are provided with fountains.

Credit: Wikipedia

The twelve terraces:

First terrace: It is a collection chamber for water that is linked to the side flow from the garden.

  1. The second terrace: It has five fountains that are supplied water from the third terrace, from where it flowed to the lowest terrace.

  1. Third terrace: Its design is a little different. It had a two-storied structure called a pavilion which was built in the beginning but was dismantled. The water channel has 5 arched open niches in the front and similar niches on the sides.

  1. Fourth terrace: It has two levels, one is a water channel and another is a square pool.

  1. The fifth terrace: It has a stone bench that gives the view across the channel. The fifth terrace has a square chamber with five fountains.

  1. Sixth terrace: It is at two levels with five fountains and a distinctive paving pattern.

  1. Seventh terrace: The same pattern continues.

  1. Eighth terrace: It is only a water channel.

  1. The ninth terrace: It has a pool with nine fountains.

  1. Tenth terrace: The stairways to this terrace are along the side retaining walls where only the water channel with fountains is provided.

  1. The eleventh terrace: It has a pool with twenty-five fountains.

  1. Twelfth terrace: It is the zenana chamber and is covered by a 5.5 m high wall. There is only one arch in this blind facade that provides an opening to the twelfth terrace. It also has a two-story pavilion which is surrounded by a lovely garden.

NOTE FOR TOURISTS:

Nishat Bagh is located in Srinagar and is 11 km from the city center the nearest airport is Shiekh ul-Alam International Airport. The nearest Rail Head is located at Jammu which is 300 km away. You can use Shikara to visit the Nishat Bagh via Dal Lake. It is open between 9:00 am to 7:00 pm.

Conclusion:

You can visit Nishat Bagh when you visit the valley as it is one of the popular Mughal Gardens. We will help you to book your trip to the famous tourist spots so stay tuned!

 

Kashmiri Samovar

Kashmiri Samovar (سماور) – A Kashmiri Kettle for Tea Lovers

Introduction:

The literal meaning of Samovar is ‘’self-brewer’’, it is a metal container that was traditionally used to boil water. It originated in Russia and spread throughout the world. It uses coal for heating tea however some new designs of samovar use electricity to heat water like an electric water boiler. It is considered an antique due to the beautiful craftsmanship involved in making this traditional kettle.

They are crafted out of plain copper, polished brass, bronze, silver, or gold. It comprises of body, base and chimney, cover and steam vent, handles, tap and key, chimney extension, cap, crown, and ring. Size and design and shape vary. The Russian word was adopted as Persian سماور and Turkish Semaver.

Kashmiri Samovar:

Kashmiri Samovar

Kashmiri Samovar was introduced by a Persian Sufi namely Mir Syed Ali Hamdani. It is handmade of copper with calligraphic motifs engraved. There is a fire container inside the samovar in which coal and live coals are present. Around the fire container, there is a space to boil Kashmiri salted tea (Noon Chai) and Kashmiri Kahwa. The work on its outer side known as ‘naqash’ along with the weight determines the price of the object. It is a very important handicraft of Kashmir and Zaina Kadal in Srinagar is the main market for it 

There were types of Samovars in Kashmir: Copper Samovar which is used by Muslims and Brass Samovar which was used by local Hindus called Kashmiri Pandit. Based on the design, samovars can be categorized as Qandhari Samovars and Plain Samovars. The qandhari samovars have a craving for floral and chinar leaves on the outer surface and are designed intricately. Both outer and inner surfaces of samovar are nickel plated and the plating is locally known as ‘’ Kalai’’ the artisan who crafts the samovar is known as,’’ Thanthur’’ in the Kashmiri language. Samovar has good cultural importance in the valley and every occasion is incomplete without a samovar. A bride takes Samovar to her in-law’s home.

Parts of a Kashmiri samovar:

 Kashmiri samovar consists of a metal pipe running centrally throughout the samovar which acts as a chimney and as a compartment in which coal is burnt. The other compartment forming the main body consists of water and acts as a water tank. The spherical chimney is a fire container in which coal is placed. The soot is collected at the base of the chimney and is thrown out later. A handle is provided for the samovar which is used to lift the samovar from one place to another. The cone-shaped tap called ‘’Krantik’’ (‘Hee’ in Kashmiri)is used to pour boiled tea or water. A small cap is put above this tap known as ‘’Zew’’ in Kashmiri. The body of the samovar is connected to the base by the ‘’Neck’’ which contains holes for the descent of excess heat and for air circulation. The bottom of the samovar is called ‘’Tchook’’ on which the entire weight of the samovar rests.

Parts of a Kashmiri Samovar

Kashmir Samovar tea:

There is no home in Kashmir that doesn’t own a samovar as it is considered the star of the Kashmiri kitchen. It is deeply embedded in the socio-cultural ambiance of the valley and the tea prepared in it is an integral part of the warm-hearted Kashmiri hospitality. Tea time is an enjoyable family custom in Kashmir as all the family members gather around the traditional samovar to enjoy Kashmiri noon chai.

While visiting any tea shop in Srinagar, the first thing that attracts the eyes is the dazzling and glowing samovars full of boiling noon chai and kahwa. Their fresh aroma brightens the mood so much that a person is addicted to visiting that place again and again. Kashmiri samovars attract tourists from all over the world. Some tourists buy it for decorative purposes, some consider it as a precious possession while others consider it as an emblem of Kashmiri art and culture. It is considered a brand ambassador for our tourist industry.

Around the fire container, tea leaves, sugar, cardamom, saffron, and cinnamon are put in water and boiled to make the famous Kashmiri kahwa. Also, Kashmiri noon chai leaves are boiled separately along with baking soda, then it is made in Kashmiri samovar. Milk and salt are added to Kashmiri Noon Chai and are served with Kashmiri Kulchas! Samovars were used to promote family togetherness and emotional cohesion. When Kashmiri kahwa or Kashmiri noon chai is prepared in the samovar, its taste and aroma are entirely different from the one that we make in normal tea vessels other than samovar. People also consider the tea made from it as healthy. It is safely used by people as it is rust-free, strong, and long-lasting.

The use of samovar is restricted to big occasions only as today’s fast-paced lifestyle and modernization have limited its usage and the legacy seems to have been lost. The introduction of new technologies based on steel and plastic has affected the old handicraft of Kashmir which needs to be supported for its survival. Every Kashmiri must try to maintain its legacy and heritage so that future generations will also understand and maintain its cultural significance.

Conclusion:

Kashmiri Samovar is an integral part of Kashmiri culture and every household in Kashmir has a samovar. Every occasion is incomplete in Kashmir without a samovar. The tea prepared in this traditional Kashmiri kettle has a unique aroma and taste. If you are planning to visit Kashmir then you should definitely try Kashmiri Kahwa from a samovar! It is considered a hallmark component of every sociocultural event as its presence amplifies the festive cheer and it is imperative for all the Kashmiris to preserve its rich legacy so that it doesn’t become lost in the pages of history.

Blackberries health benefits

6 Health Benefits of Dried Blackberries You Didn’t Know About

What are dried blackberries?

Blackberry belongs to the family Rosaceae, genus Rubus, and is an eatable fruit of these species. Rubus armeniacus is a Himalayan blackberry, also known as American blackberry. It originated in Armenia, Northern Iran. It is grown for its berries in some areas while it is considered a poisonous weed in many places. One of the most common species of blackberry is grown in Britain and is known as Rubus fruticosus and is naturalized throughout the world.R.fruticosus (European blackberry) is grown in the valley of Kashmir, Assam, and Tamil Nadu.

The blackberry plants were used by Greeks for the treatment of Gout and Romans made tea from blackberry leaves for the treatment of many ailments. Its root is considered more astringent than the leaves. Blackberries are rich in many phytochemicals like flavonoids, polyphenols, anthocyanins, salicylic acid, ellagic acid, and fiber. The dark color of blackberries is due to the presence of anthocyanins in them. Globally, Mexico is the leading producer of blackberries. The fresh form of blackberry fruit can’t be transported over large distances for commercial use as it doesn’t remain fresh for long so its dried and dried blackberries are highly nutritious. The main aim of commercial blackberry producers is to obtain high-quality dried blackberries by using various methods of drying. The process of drying greatly influences the quality of the final product. Usually, they are dried by using mechanical drying, especially hot air drying.

Nutritional benefits of dried blackberries

Why Should You Include Dried Blackberries in Your Diet?

Dried blackberries have numerous health benefits so  they should be included in our daily diets, below are the top 7 health benefits of dried blackberries:

Loaded with Vitamin C:

Vitamin C is an essential nutrient that is required by our body for a variety of purposes like the healing of wounds, regeneration of skin, prevention of scurvy, protection from COVID 19 and its other variants, etc and humans are not able to produce it on their own so it comes from their diet. Blackberries are a rich source of vitamin C so they should be included in our daily diets.

Rich in Vitamin K:

Vitamin K is essential for the clotting of blood, prevention of bone thinning and bone fractures, eases bruising, etc. Blackberries are an excellent source of Vitamin K and provide 32% of our daily need for Vitamin K to our body.

Blackberries

Good Source of Fiber:

Not getting enough fiber causes many problems like bloating, constipation, and stomach pain. Fiber plays an important role in our bodies as it lowers cholesterol, promotes regular bowel movements, controls blood sugar, etc. Blackberries are a good source of fiber and they contain both soluble as well as insoluble fiber.

Good for Brain Health:

Blackberries contain anthocyanins which help slow down the growth of Alzheimer’s disease. In a study published in 2016 in Nutritional Neuroscience, mice were fed a diet containing 1% anthocyanin extract. The brain composition of mice was found to be changed and was less toxic and less brain-damaging. Consuming blackberries also prevents loss of memory which happens due to aging as per the research article (Berry fruit enhances beneficial signaling in the brain) published in the Journal Of Agriculture and Food Chemistry in 2012. Another research article (Effect of blackberries on motor and cognitive function on aged rats) was published in 2013 and as per the results of the research, the rats that consumed blackberries improved cognitive and motor skills in them.

Anti-Cancer:

Blackberries have anticancer properties. Blackberries contain many antioxidants which destroy the free radicals that can cause cancer. They are also known to increase immunity which reduces the risk of cancer. Blackberries help in reducing the risk of many types of cancers, especially esophageal, cervical, and breast cancer. A research article (Blackberry extracts inhibit activating protein 1 activation and cell transformation by perturbing the mitogenic signaling pathway) was published in Nutrition and Cancer Journal in 2004 and as per the results of the research, blackberries can inhibit tumor and the spread of cancer.

Good for Oral Health:

Blackberries promote good dental health as they have ant-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. A research article (Antibacterial Effects of Blackberry Extract Target Periodontopathogens) was published in the Journal of Periodontal research in 2013 and as per the results of the research, blackberries help to fight against the bacteria that cause oral diseases.

Conclusion

Dried blackberries are a powerhouse of essential nutrients which help us in many ways. Some of the health benefits of blackberries are explained above. They are a rich source of Vitamin C, fiber, and Vitamin K.They are good for brain health and are known for their anticancer properties. Blackberries also promote good dental health so they must be included in our daily diets and Kashmir Basket brings to you 100% original blackberries so grab them before they go out of stock!

Aloo Bukhara - Health benefits and nutrition facts

Aloo Bukhara – 6 Health Benefits and Nutrition Facts

Introduction:

Plum, also called Aloo Bukhara or Alu Bukhara, is basically a fruit of trees belonging to Genus Prunus, the family Rosaceae, and subgenus Prunus. There are more than 2000 varieties of Plums and they can be large or small in red, purple, green, yellow, or orange skin with pink, yellow or orange flesh. When plums mature they are covered by a dusty-white waxy coating which gives them a pale grey or bluish-green appearance. Dried plums have a wrinkled and dark appearance and are called prunes.

The most cultivated species of plums which are found only around human settlements include:

  • Prunus domestica/European Plum: It belongs to East European and Caucasian mountains.
  • Prunus salicina/Japanese or Chinese plum: It originated in China and its cultivation is extended to many countries like Korea, Japan, Israel, the United States, and Australia.
  • Prunus simonii/Apricot plum or Simon plum: It is also native to China.

Nutrition Facts

Nutrition Facts

Plums originated in Iran as per Ken Abala who is a professor of History at the University of the Pacific (United States). Globally, the top ten producers of plums include China, Serbia, the USA, Romania, Turkey, Spain, Italy, Bosnia, Herzegovina, France, and Ukraine.

In India, more than ten varieties of plums are grown and the leading producers are Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, and Jammu and Kashmir plums are popularly known by their Urdu name ‘Aloo Bukhara’, in Persian, plum is called ‘aloo’ and ‘Bukhara’ means from the Balkan region.

Top 6 Health Benefits of Aloo Bukhara:

Prevents Constipation:

Aloo Bukhara is rich in fiber so consuming them makes it easier to eliminate waste from the body as fiber adds bulk to the stool. It also contains sorbitol which is a natural laxative and isatin which regulates the function of the digestive system. Those who suffer from constipation must include aloo Bukhara in their daily diet.

Promotes Bone Health:

Aloo Bukhara contains Vitamin K, Magnesium, Potassium, and Phosphorous which are important for promoting good bone health. It also reduces the risk of two common bone disorders, that is, osteoporosis and osteopenia. Many research articles have been published on the impact of bone health due to the consumption of aloo Bukhara, one of the research articles was published in 2017 and is titled,’ Dried Plums, Prunes, and Bone Health: A Comprehensive Review’ and as per the results of the research dried plums or their extracts promote bone formation.

Benefits of Aloo Bukhara

Anti-Diabetic:

Aloo Bukhara has a low glycemic index. The main aim of eating low-glycemic index foods is to minimize cravings for high-sugar foods and to keep blood sugar stable during the day. The blood sugar levels are controlled by consuming aloo Bukhara and they also lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Aloo Bukhara has the capability to reduce the blood sugar levels in our body because they contain a hormone called adiponectin that controls the blood sugar levels. They are also rich in fiber which absorbs sugar thus reducing blood sugar levels. If you are diabetic, you should consult your doctor before consuming plums as they contain a good amount of carbohydrates as well.

Good for Heart Health:

Aloo Bukhara is good for heart health. The phytochemicals and other nutrients present in plums reduce the inflammation that triggers heart diseases like high blood pressure, stroke, etc. If you are hypertensive then you should include aloo Bukhara in your diet.

Enhances Vision:

Aloo Bukhara is a great source of Vitamin A which is essential for healthy eyes and sharp vision. It also contains the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin which counteract free radicals in the body and eradicate their negative effects, thus reducing the risk of developing age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Research is given in The Archives of Opthalmology which shows that a serving of 3 or more fruits including plums can help to lower the risks for age-related vision diseases. They also protect our eyes against the damage caused by Ultra Violet radiation.

Anti-Cancer:

Aloo Bukhara is rich in many antioxidants like flavonoids, phenolic acids, and other phenolic compounds, all of them are effective as natural antioxidants and they help to prevent many types of cancer, especially breast cancer.

Conclusion:

Aloo Bukhara or plum is a healthy and nutritious fruit that we must include in our daily diets because of its enormous health benefits. They help to prevent constipation, promote bone health, are anti-diabetic, good for heart health, enhance vision, and have anti-cancer properties. At Kashmir Basket, we deliver 100% original products with free shipping all over India.

Amazing health benefits of Kashmiri walnuts/akhrot

5 Amazing Health Benefits of Kashmiri Walnuts/Akhrot

Walnut:

Walnut belongs to the family Juglandaceae, genus Juglans and is the consumable seed of a drupe (a fleshy fruit usually consisting of a single seed) of these trees. It is considered a nut in culinary usage but it is not a true botanical nut. The shell is thrown away after full ripening and the kernel is used as a garnish or snack. Walnut was known as the ‘’royal nut’’ during the byzantine era.

Kashmiri Walnuts:

Walnut is a very important part of the horticulture industry of J & K.Kashmiri walnuts are locally known as ‘akhrot’ or ‘doon’ and are in demand all over the world for their superior quality and taste. Kashmir is the major producer of walnuts in India contributing to 90 % of India’s walnut production. The temperate climatic conditions favor the cultivation of walnuts.

As per the National Horticulture Board, in 2016-17, Jammu & Kashmir produced 206.43 thousand metric tons of walnut with an area under its cultivation of 69.24 thousand hectares in contrast to it the rest of India produced 21.8 thousand metric tons with an area of 22.85 thousand hectares.

Benefits of kashmiri walnuts/akhrot

Kashmiri walnuts are purely organic because they are grown in naturally induced conditions without the use of fertilizers and sprays. The harvesting of walnuts is done in the month of August, September, and October. The districts that are major producers of walnuts include Anantnag, Kupwara, Kulgam, Budgam, Doda, Poonch, Kashtiwar, and Kathua.

The types of walnuts that are grown in Kashmir include: 

  • Wonth: It is a very hard nut that is difficult to crack and is mostly used locally for its oil.
  • Kagazi: It is large in size and has a thin outer shell.
  • Burzul: It is a medium-sized variety.

These types of walnuts are known by their local names.

Area and Production of Walnuts (2016-2017):

DistrictArea (in Hectares)Production (in Metric Ton)
Srinagar222606
Ganderbal530211155
Budgam399114198
Baramulla31149958
Bandipora12382463
Kupwara878737423
Anantnag1439341763
Kulgam578125259
Shopian328012924
Pulwama484918184
Leh49109
Kargil1512
Jammu0000
Samba0000
Kathua327111404
Udhampur46409910
Reasi27066965
Doda648022548
Kishtiwar465012000
Ramban52107000
Rajouri43707900
Pounch699114500

5 Amazing Health Benefits of Kashmiri Akhrot:

Good for heart health:

The presence of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids in walnuts reduces the bad cholesterol (LDL) and triglyceride levels in our body. Many types of research have been conducted on the effect of walnuts on heart health, some of them are listed below:

  • A research article was published in The American Journal Of Clinical Nutrition in 2009 titled,‘ Effects of walnut consumption on blood lipids and other cardiovascular risk factors: a meta-analysis and systematic review’ and as per the results of the research, a walnut-rich diet decreased the LDL and total cholesterol. The researchers also concluded that lipid profiles were improved and reduced oxidative stress and inflammation.
  • A research article was published in The Journal of Nutrition in 2013 titled,’ Acute Consumption of Walnuts and Walnut Components Differentially Affect Postprandial Lipemia, Endothelial Function, Oxidative Stress, and Cholesterol Efflux in Humans with Mild Hypercholesterolemia ‘ and as per the results of the research, the acute consumption of walnut oil benefits endothelial function and whole walnuts can improve the process of eliminating ‘ bad ‘ LDL cholesterol.
  • A research article was published in The British Journal of Nutrition in 2006 titled,’ Nuts and coronary heart disease: an epidemiological perspective ‘ and as per the results of the research those who consume nuts more than four times a week have a 37 percent lower risk of coronary heart disease compared to those who never or rarely consume nuts.

Helps in weight loss:

Many kinds of researches have been conducted that demonstrate the effect of walnuts in weight management, some of them are listed below:

  • A research article was published in The Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2010 and as per the results of the research, if we consume nuts daily, greater levels of energy are used while resting. The trials were conducted that compared the weight loss diets that included or excluded nuts and the weight loss was in moderation in those diets that included nuts.
  • A research article was published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition titled, ‘Prospective study of nut consumption, long-term weight change, and obesity risk in women’ and as per the results of the research women who consumed nuts occasionally had more weight gain over an 8-year period than those who consumed nuts twice a week or more.

Reduces risk of cholecystectomy:

A research article was published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2004 titled, ‘Frequent nut consumption and decreased risk of cholecystectomy in women ‘  and as per the results of the research, regular nut consumption reduced the risk of cholecystectomy (an operation to remove gall bladder).

Good for bones:

Osteoporosis is very common in women nowadays, it is a condition in which bones become thinner and prone to fracture. Severe copper deficiency causes an increased risk of osteoporosis, Kashmiri akhrot is a good source of copper that can prevent osteoporosis. Copper is essential for the maintenance of collagen & elastin which are the main structural components of the body.

Maintains good brain health:

Walnuts are rich in phytochemicals and polyunsaturated fats which are excellent for brain function. Many kinds of research have been conducted on the effect of walnuts on brain health, some of them are listed below:

  • A research article was published in The Journal of Nutrition in 2014 titled,’ Role of walnuts in maintaining brain health with age and as per the results of the research, the presence of Omega-3 fatty acids helps in reducing oxidative stress in the brain. The process of brain aging is slowed and the risk of chronic neurodegenerative disease is also reduced.
  • A research article was published in Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition Journal titled ‘Health benefits of walnut polyphenols: An exploration beyond their lipid profile’ and as per the results of the research, walnuts have neuroprotective and memory-enhancing properties.

Conclusion:

In Kashmir there is a famous saying,’’ A doon(walnut) a day, keeps the doctor away’’, because of the immense health benefits of walnuts. Kashmir Basket brings to you both Walnut Giri and Walnuts Kagzi so hurry up before they go out of stock!

 

California Almonds-All about them!

California Badam: All about them!

What are California Almonds?

California is the world’s largest producer of almonds. California Almond is the most widely used and affordable almond type, it is mainly grown in the United States and is exported all over the world. It accounts for 80 % of almonds produced worldwide and 100 % of the United States commercial supply. In 2019, California almonds worth $ 4.9 billion were exported to foreign countries like European Union, China, and India. They are known for their large size and smooth texture. California almonds are chemically processed and then heated to extreme temperatures to increase their sweetness. The oil content of California badam is less than Mamra Almonds due to high heat processing since these almonds are processed and mass-produced so they are less costly.

Nutritional Value of California Badam per 100 g:

Energy579 kcal
Carbohydrates21.6g
Fat49.9g
Protein21.2g
Fiber14.3g
Sugar3.6g

Almond Seasons:

Usually, the almonds bloom from mid-February through March, bees are very important for these trees as they are not self-pollinating. The two different varieties of almonds are planted in alternating rows so that the trees produce two varieties. These almonds mature in a shell that is surrounded by a fleshy part called a hull. These nuts mature over the summer and the hull dries revealing a shell that encloses the nut before harvesting the nuts dry naturally in the shell. California Almonds are harvested with the help of mechanical tree shakers between mid-August and October. After that the nuts are gathered for processing, cleaned and grading occurs. Finally, they are exported to nearly 90 countries.

Almond Board of California:

It was established by the U.S. Congress in 1950 to supervise a grower-enacted Federal Marketing Order under the charge of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The main aim of the Amond board is to broaden the spectrum of California Almonds through new research, industry support, and market development. Its motto is to expand the international and domestic distribution and consumption of almonds to benefit the entire industry. Their main activities include food quality and safety initiatives, nutrition, production & environmental research, and monitoring trade and market access issues. They don’t establish item prices.

California Almonds

California Almonds Handling tips:

California Almonds have a high oil content and less moisture but a long shelf life when handled with care. The factors that are responsible for almond shelf life and quality include the characteristics of the product, the environment during storage and distribution, and the packaging. If the California Almonds are stored at optimum temperature, their quality can be preserved. Usually, they are stored under dry conditions in bins or bulk containers. Chemical processing also affects the shelf life of almonds. It is better to avoid exposure to direct sunlight as it can darken the surface of the nut.

Varieties & Sizes:

More than 50 almond types are produced in California and 95 % of production includes only 12 types. Broadly almond types are divided according to some unique characteristics like size, shape, and ‘’blanchability’’.Most of the almond production in California is classified into three major classifications: 

  • Nonpareil: Their skin is removed readily (blanched), sliced, and cut for processing. Blemish-free processing is done due to their thin outer shell and smooth kernel. They are used widely among the marketing categories.
  • California: This category includes those types which are mainly used in manufactured products. They are well suited for all the processes or applications due to a wide range of shell hardness, different kernel shapes, the color of skin, and surface characteristics.
  • Mission: This type has small and wide kernels with hard shells. Their skin is wrinkled and darker than Nonpareil. In this type, blanching is not done usually. 

Some almond types fall under more than one classification because they have features of more than one type. All the types of California Almonds are developed using traditional breeding methods, the varieties that are genetically modified are not planted in California.

Inshell almonds are further divided into two types:

  • Hard shell
  • Soft shell

Inshell-Hard Shell: This type is characterized by a closed shell with a hard outer ‘cork’ that protects the kernel against contamination & worm damage. The inshell-hard shell market has a limited volume in relation to other marketing outlets.

Inshell-Soft Shell: This type is preferred in the market with greater suture openings to allow seasonings to permeate the shell.

Texture/Crunch of California badam:

They have a crunchier taste that is maintained across many applications. Sweets, fruits, and creamy dairy products all benefit from the added satisfying crunchiness of almonds.

Consumer Popularity:

California almonds are extremely popular all over the world. The addition of almonds increases the nutrient profile of foods thus it offers a marketing advantage for health-conscious consumers. They are also popular in products that provide a good alternative for some dietary concerns like 

  • Gluten-free 
  • Lactose-free

Conclusion:

California almonds are the most consumed and popular almonds all over the world because they deliver a massive amount of nutrients, are loaded with antioxidants, are high in vitamin E, control blood sugar, lower cholesterol levels, effective for weight loss. Kashmir Basket brings to you 100% original California Almonds so grab your powerhouse of nutrients quickly!

Benefits of ajwa dates

5 Great Benefits of Ajwa Dates

Date palm:

The date is the edible fruit of a flowering species of date palm which is scientifically known as Phoenix dactylifera. Date palm belongs to the family Arecaceae. It is mainly grown in North Arica, the Middle East  & South Asia. The date palm can reach up to 100 years of age and can grow up to 100ft in height. They are used as a dessert all over the world. Their cultivation dates back to 6000BC-5001BC in Arabia as there is archaeological evidence for that. In 2020, 9 million tonnes of dates were produced globally and the leading producer was Egypt followed by Saudi Arabia, Iran, Algeria, Iraq, Pakistan, and Sudan.

A large number of varieties have emerged through the history of date cultivation but the most popular ones are as below:

  • Medjool of Morocco
  • Mazafati of Iran
  • Deglet Noor of Algeria
  • Yahidi and Hallawi of Iraq
Ajwa dates

Ajwa dates ( عجوة in Arabic):

Ajwa dates are the delicious and healthiest dates that are widely grown in Al-Madina Al- Munawarah, Saudi Arabia and are oval and soft with black skin. The majority of Ajwa date farms in Saudi are located near Quba Mosque and within the four walls of Haram. In Saudi Arabia, more than 400 varieties of dates are grown but Ajwa dates are the most expensive ones due to their health benefits. They are sold across the globe and are taken especially by the pilgrims who perform Hajj and Umrah for their loved ones back home.

How old are Ajwa dates? 

They are more than 50 million years old. During the excavation of sites in Egypt, remains of dates were found offering evidence for their origin 8000 years ago. In the same era, date palms were found in Greece and Assyria. Ajwa dates traveled the world as they grew popular, during his conquest Alexander the Great brought Ajwa date seeds to Pakistan and some parts of the Middle East. In the 1200s Marco Polo took the date palm seeds to Italy from India. In the 1700s Spanish explorers bought Ajwa date seeds from Mexico and on their way to the North planted them in California. The travelers also spread it to Africa which is now one of the leading producers of Ajwa dates.

Islamic significance of Ajwa Dates:

They are very special in Islam. Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) seeded the first tree of Ajwa dates near the Quba Mosque in Medina. In fact, the word ‘Ajwa’ signifies ‘ produce from Medina’.Ajwa dates have numerous medicinal benefits and they are a part of Tibvi Nabvi, the medical practice of the Prophet (P.B.U.H.) through plants. Due to their immense benefits, Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) suggested that Muslims should break their fast with Ajwa dates in Ramadan. There are many Islamic references and hadith that depict their immense  benefits, some of them are listed below:

  • ‘’Whoever has seven Ajwa dates between the two areas (the east and west of Madina) as soon as he wakes up every morning, he will not be harmed on that day by poison and magic until the evening.’’ – Sahih Muslim
  •  ‘’Ajwa dates are from paradise and they are healing for possession.’’ – Sunan Ibn Majah Vol 1, book 31 
Nutritional value per 100g

5 Great Benefits of Ajwa Dates:

Boosts Cardio Vascular Health:

Ajwa dates are rich in Potassium & Magnesium which are important for controlling blood pressure, normal cardiac rhythm & healthy muscular contractions. The occurrence of stroke and cardiac arrhythmias is reduced, and myocardial contractility is improved due to the nutrients present in ajwa dates. An article was published in the SCIREA Journal of Health in 2019 titled.’ Trends and effectiveness of Ajwa Dates usage in Management of Coronary Artery Disease, Study in Urban Community of Islamabad, Pakistan ‘ and as per the results of the research, Ajwa has some role in the management of Coronary Artery Disease, especially in symptomatic improvement.

Healthy pregnancy and easy labor:

The consumption of Ajwa dates helps to prevent preeclampsia in pregnancy. Preeclampsia is a disorder that occurs after 20 weeks of gestation in which the blood pressure of the pregnant woman doesn’t remain normal. Also, taking Ajwa dates in the last trimester of pregnancy helps in the progression of labor, eases labor pain, and minimizes post-natal bleeding.

Good for bone health:

Ajwa dates are a good source of minerals like Calcium and phosphorous which are essential for strengthening bones and helpful in preventing bone disorders like osteoporosis.

Energy snack:

They are an extremely good source of natural sugars like sucrose, fructose, and glucose. They can pump up your energy levels immediately so you can consume them during your mid-day snacks.

Antianemic:

Ajwa dates contain the perfect amount of iron which makes them a great dietary supplement for people who suffer from anemia. A research article is published in ResearchGate titled ‘ Ajwa date fruit in increasing hemoglobin level to teenage girl ‘ and as per the results of the research hemoglobin levels increased after the intervention of Ajwa dates.

Conclusion:

Ajwa dates are a powerhouse of essential nutrients and they have immense benefits like boosting cardiovascular health, healthy pregnancy and easy labor, good for bone health, energy booster, and anti-anemic. It is a good practice to include Ajwa dates in our daily diets and Kashmir Basket brings to you superior quality Ajwa dates straight from the land of Saudi Arabia.

How black raisins can benefit in pregnancy?

How black raisins can benefit in pregnancy?

Raisins:

Raisins are basically the grapes that are dried. They are produced globally and are used in many different forms like baking, cooking, etc. They are of many types and their classification is done on the basis of color and size. Below are some of the varieties of raisins :

  • Green raisins
  • Black raisins
  • Brown raisins
  • Blue raisins
  • Purple raisins
  • Yellow raisins

The Seedless Varieties of Raisins Include:

  • Sultana/Thompson seeds
  • Zante currants/black Corinth
  • Flame grapes

Turkey is the largest producer of raisins globally, followed by the United States, Iran, and India.

Black Raisins:

Black raisins are one of the most popular dry fruits all over the world. They are basically dried ‘black Corinth seedless grapes. In India, they are known by various names like ‘kali kish mish,’ kali manuka’, and many other names. They are packed with vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, antioxidants, and many other nutrients.

Nutrients in soaked black raisins

Nutrients in Black Raisins:

Fiber: Black raisins are a good source of fiber. Fiber plays an essential role in preventing constipation. Pregnant women usually suffer from constipation, so taking a few raisins daily can be a good way to prevent constipation. Fiber is also known to reduce the level of bad cholesterol in the body.

Iron : Iron is very important in order to prevent iron deficiency anemia which is a common problem during pregnancy. The production of red blood cells is due to iron and RBCs are responsible for carrying oxygen to cells in our body. Since raisins are a good source of Iron, hence they can prevent the occurrence of anemia in women, especially pregnant women.

Calcium & boron: Calcium is one of the most important minerals that is needed for strong bones & teeth. For a pregnant woman, calcium becomes more important because of the bone development of the fetus as well. Raisins are a good source of calcium and boron. Calcium along with boron and vitamin D work together to provide strong bones and teeth for both mother and the baby.

Antioxidants: Raisins are a good source of antioxidants which are essential to prevent damage to our cells and DNA, they also remove free radicals from our blood.

Nutritional value per 100g

Benefits of Black Raisins for Pregnancy:

Pregnancy is a very crucial time for a woman and her baby so it is very important that she makes the correct choice of the foods consumed by her during this entire period. As per experts, a pregnant woman can take all the dry fruits in moderation. There are many ways in which you can have dry fruits during pregnancy. Either take a handful of them directly or you can soak them in water overnight and drink the raisin water early in the morning to stay hydrated as well.

Below are some of the top health benefits of black raisins during pregnancy :

Boost of energy:

Black raisins have a good amount of natural glucose in them so you can grab a handful of them as a snack whenever you feel hungry during the day. It will boost your energy levels. Some pregnant women have sugar cravings so it is a healthy way to overcome those cravings!

Good for gut health:

Indigestion and constipation are two common problems during pregnancy since raisins are a good source of fiber so they can help to prevent these problems if consumed moderately on a daily basis. An article was published in ‘ The FASEB journal ‘ in 2018 titled ‘Effects of sun-dried raisin consumption on gut microbiota composition ‘ and as per the results of the research, raisins are beneficial for a healthy gut.

Impedes anemia:

Raisins are a good source of iron and vitamin C. Many pregnant women suffer from anemia as the pregnancy progresses, it is due to the lack of iron content in the body. Your gynecologist may start iron supplements for that but you can include raisins in your diet as well along with the supplements to curb iron-deficient anemia. In the Journal of Pharmaceutical Research International, a research article was published in 2021 titled ‘ Black raisins improved experimentally induced iron deficiency anemia, biochemical & histological evidence ’. As per the result of the research, black raisins are an excellent source of iron and can be used as a supplement for anemic patients.

Good for dental health:

Calcium is an important mineral when it comes to dental health. A calcium-rich diet is important for a pregnant woman because it is needed by both mother and the baby. Black raisins contain adequate amounts of calcium as well. The department of Food & nutrition USA has conducted a study and concluded that raisins contain many phytochemicals and antioxidants that inhibit the growth of microorganisms that cause dental cavities.

Anti-cancer:

The antioxidants present in raisins inhibits the cancerous growth of cells. A study has been conducted in 2020 by Kandasamy Sasikumar and others ‘ Oleanolic acid from black raisins, Vitis vinifera with antioxidant and antiproliferative potentials on HCT 116 colon cancer cell line ‘ and it was concluded from their research that black raisins have anti-cancer properties.

Conclusion :

Black raisins are a powerhouse of essential nutrients that are required by a woman during pregnancy but it is a safe practice to consult your gynecologist before introducing them into your diet as each pregnancy is special and different and once your doctor gives you a green signal then feel free to buy it from Kashmir Basket as we are delivering all our India.

Dried cranberries

Cranberries-4 Best Health Benefits

What are Cranberries?

Cranberries belong to the family Ericaceae of kingdom Plantae and their edible fruit is a ‘ berry ‘ which is very acidic in taste. Globally, the United States is the leading producer of cranberries followed by Canada and Chile. Its sauce is a very popular festive delicacy and is served at Christmas and Thanksgiving dinners in the united kingdom, Canada, and the United States.

Types of Cranberries:

  • Common cranberry or northern cranberry: These are found in the Northern hemisphere and their berries are pale pink to red in color with an acidic flavor.
  • Small cranberry: They are found in North America, northern Europe & Northern Asia and are mainly like common cranberries.
  • Large cranberry or American cranberry: It is found in North America, the eastern US, and its fruit has an apple-like flavor.

Dried cranberries :

Usually, fresh cranberries have an acidic flavor so mostly they are processed into juice and sauce, some cranberries are dried also. Dried cranberries are half dehydrated and sweetened fresh cranberries. During processing, a lot of sugar is added to dried cranberries, making them poor in nutrients, so organically dried cranberries should be preferred.

Nutrients in dried cranberries

Top Health Benefits of Cranberries:

Prevents Urinary tract infections:

Urinary tract infection is one of the most common bacterial infections that occurs mostly in women. Cranberries are rich in phytonutrients called A-type proanthocyanidins or condensed tannins which are the antioxidants that prevent E.coli from attaching to the lining of the urinary tract & bladder. A research article was published in Nutrition Journal in 2013 titled, ‘ Consumption of sweetened, dried cranberries may reduce urinary tract infection incidence in susceptible women– a modified observational study ‘ and as per the results of the research, the consumption of sweetened dried cranberries had a beneficial effect on the reduction of UTIs in susceptible women.

Benefits of dried cranberries

Prevention of Cancer:

Cranberries contain anti-carcinogenic compounds which stop the growth of cancer cells in the body. The phytochemicals present in cranberries prevent tumor growth and the growth of breast, colon, lung & esophageal cancer cells. A research article was published in 2016 titled‘ Cranberries and cancer: An update of Preclinical Studies Evaluating the Cancer Inhibitory Potential of Cranberry and Cranberry Derived Constituents ‘ and as per the results of the research there were positive effects of cranberries cranberry derived constituents against many types of cancers.

Reduces risk of cardiovascular problems: 

Due to the presence of antioxidants like anthocyanins, proanthocyanidins & quercetin in the cranberries, they are good for heart health. They are beneficial for lowering blood pressure, lowering bad cholesterol, and increase in good cholesterol in our body. Many studies have been conducted on the effect of cranberries on cardiovascular problems, some of them are summarized below :

  • In 2006 a research was done by Guillaume Ruel and others on the ‘ Favourable impact of low-calorie cranberry juice consumption on plasma HDL-cholesterol concentrations in men ‘ and as per the results of the research, the daily consumption of cranberry juice resulted in an increase in the levels of good cholesterol in abdominally obese men.
  • In 2008 a research was done by I T Lee and others on the ‘ Effect of cranberry extracts on lipid profiles in subjects with Type 2 diabetes ‘ and as per the results of the research, cranberry supplements reduced bad cholesterol in type 2 diabetic patients.
  • In 2011 a research was done by Mustalu M Dohadwala and others on ‘ Effects of cranberry juice consumption on vascular function in patients with coronary artery disease ‘ and as per the results of the research, cranberry juice is beneficial for heart health.

Good for oral health: 

Polyphenols present in cranberries protect teeth from bacteria that cause tooth decay. The polyphenol sticks around in our saliva and will continue to help our mouth even after we have swallowed them. Many studies have been conducted on the effect of cranberries on cardiovascular problems, some of them are summarized below :

  • In 2008 a research article was published titled‘ Potential oral health benefits of cranberry ‘ and as per the results of the research, cranberry components help to prevent oral diseases.
  • In 2014 a research article was published in the Journal of Indian Society of Periodontology titled‘ Exploring the role of cranberry polyphenols in periodontitis: A brief review ‘ and as per the results of the research, cranberries proved to be a magical drug for many oral issues owing to their anti-microbial and anti-adhesive properties.
  • In 2019 a research article was published in the IOSR Journal of Dental and Medical Sciences titled ‘ Oral Health Benefits of Cranberry: A Review ‘as per the results of the research cranberry and its extracts have a lot of potential in controlling oral diseases.

Conclusion: 

Dried cranberries are a super healthy snack that should be included in our daily diets because of their immense benefits. They prevent urinary tract infections, lower the risk of cardiovascular problems, prevent the growth of cancer cells, and are good for oral health too. We are delivering top-quality dried cranberries at Kashmir basket so grab them before they are gone!

 

Anjeer or Dried Figs-A super healthy snack!

Anjeer or Dried Figs- A Super Healthy Snack

What are Figs?

Dried figs or anjeer

The fig is the edible fruit of a tree species from the flowering plant family Moraceae. It is popularly grown from Turkey to North India but it is native to the Mediterranean & western Asia. Fresh as well as dried figs are so popular in the Mediterranean region of the world that it is often termed ‘ the poor man’s food ‘.They are one of the richest sources of Calcium & fiber in plants. The cultivation of figs is done in dry & warm climates. The leading producer of figs is Turkey followed by Egypt, Morocco, Algeria, Iran, Spain, Syria, United States, Albani, Greece, and Brazil. Ficus Carica or common figs are the type of figs that are cultivated in India.

Nutritional value of raw figs

Dried figs 

Figs can be taken in any form, either fresh or dried, and are widely used for jam production. The fresh form of figs can’t be transported for commercial use and it doesn’t stay fresh for long so it is dried. Also as per the latest data from the Food & Nutrition Board of the US Institute of Medicine and the US Department of Agriculture, dried figs are the best among dry fruits nutritionally.

Nutritional value of dried figs

Synonyms of figs

UrduAnjeer
BengaliDumur
TamilAtti Pazham
TeluguAthi Pallu
MalayalamAtti Pazham
HindiGulur

Top Health Benefits of Dried Figs:

Beneficial for bone health:

The daily requirement of Calcium by the human body is 1000 mg and our body can’t produce Calcium so we have to rely on supplements to meet our daily calcium requirement. Although milk is the best source of Calcium it doesn’t meet our daily requirements so it is essential to eat a diet full of Calcium, phosphorus, and Magnesium. Dried figs are a good source of all these nutrients and they play an essential role in reducing the risk of osteoporosis.

Lowers blood sugar levels:

Figs are popularly known to regulate the level of blood sugar in our bodies. As per the American Diabetic Association, figs should be considered an integral part of our diet and should be consumed daily. Figs also contain potassium which also helps in controlling the blood sugar levels. In 1998 a research has been done by A Serraclara & others, titled ‘ Hypoglycemic action of an oral fig – leaf decoction in type – I diabetic patients ‘ and as per the results of the study, figs can be used to cure diabetes and other related disorders due to its hypoglycemic effect (blood sugar lowering).

Good for skin health:

Figs contain all the essential nutrients & essential antioxidants that are beneficial for our skin. They can rejuvenate our skin cells resulting in youthful and wrinkle-free skin. A research article was published in the International Journal of Dermatology in 2007 titled, ‘ Comparative study of fig tree efficacy in the treatment of common warts (Verruca Vulgaris) vs. cryotherapy ‘ and as per the results of the research, fig tree latex treated warts in 44 % of the patients without any side effects. Although the mechanism of the anti-wart property of fig tree latex is not clear but can be used as a safe treatment option.

Good for hair health:

Figs are an excellent source of iron and iron is an important mineral when it comes to hair health. Taking a handful of figs daily can help give you lustrous and strong hair.

Remedy for constipation:

Dried figs are loaded with fiber which is very important to ease out the bowel movement. So if you are someone who suffers from constipation then you must include dried figs in your diet. Figs are also known to treat many digestive disorders. An article has been published in The FASEB Journal in 2010 titled, ‘ Effect of Ficus carica on functional constipation ‘, and as per the results of the research the patients who consumed figs significantly showed an improvement in the constipation symptoms.

Controls blood pressure:

When we consume salt in excess, it increases the level of sodium in our body which in turn decreases the level of potassium, this imbalance results in hypertension or an increase in blood pressure. Hence a diet that is rich in potassium is recommended to manage blood pressure, figs are a good source of potassium. A study was conducted in 2017 by Alamgeer and others titled, ‘ Evaluation of the antihypertensive potential of Ficus carica fruit ‘. As per the results of the research, the blood pressure was reduced in animals by the consumption of figs ‘.

Antianemic:

Anemia is caused due to the deficiency of iron in our body, dried figs are a good source of iron hence they should be consumed daily to prevent anemia. Research has been done in 2017 titled, ‘ Use of dried figs to improve hemoglobin percentage ‘ and as per the results of the research consumption of dried figs improved the hemoglobin levels in the blood hence preventing anemia.

Conclusion:

Dried figs should be included in our daily diets because of their enormous benefits. They are antidiabetic, anti anemic, regulate blood pressure levels in our body, and are beneficial for skin, hair, and bones. We are delivering dried figs all over India so grab yours from Kashmir basket  before the offer is gone!

Kashmiri Kahwa

Kashmiri Kahwa – All you need to know

Popularly known as Kehwa or Qehwa or Kahwa is a green tea beverage prepared by people globally, especially in India, Pakistan, Iran, Afghanistan, and some parts of Central Asia. The word kehwa is derived from the Arabic word ‘Qahwah’ which is used for coffee beans however kahwa is a popular aromatic and traditional green tea drink consumed all over the world.

What is Kashmiri Kahwa?

Kashmiri kahwa or kong kahwa is a traditional beverage of Kashmir and is a simple combination of cardamom, cinnamon, and saffron infused in boiling water with the addition of dry fruits. The dry fruits that are added usually include crushed almonds and walnuts and sugar or honey are added as a sweetener. Earlier kahwa was prepared in the samovar, which is a traditional copper kettle. In samovar burning coals are placed in a central cavity surrounded by a space where water boils with other ingredients for the making of kahwa. Nowadays, people prepare it in normal kettles and pots because of the modern fast lifestyle. Winter in Kashmir is particularly very harsh and Kashmiri people prefer it in winters especially ‘’Chillai Kalan ‘’ (Mid December to ending January), although it can be consumed throughout the year.

Preparation of Kashmiri kahwa:

Kashmiri kahwa is a simple yet powerful recipe. Firstly take a few strands of saffron, put them in warm water and keep it aside. Then boil a medium-sized cinnamon stick, one or two cardamoms, and one clove for five minutes on medium heat. Next, lower the flame and add Kashmiri green tea leaves and boil for one or two minutes. Strain the ingredients in a separate pan using a strainer then combine it with the warm water and saffron mixture, and add some almonds. Boil the combination for a  few minutes and serve hot!

Ingredients of Kashmiri Kahwa
Ingredients of Kashmiri Kahwa

Top Health Benefits of Kashmiri Kahwa 

Great for Digestive Health:

Usually, Kashmiri kahwa is served after ‘wazwan’.Wazwan is a very heavy traditional meal of Kashmir which is served on special occasions like marriages, engagement ceremonies, etc. Kahwa is known to speed up the metabolism and smoothens the digestion process. It is also consumed early in the morning to kick start a good day and cleanse the digestive system. It is also beneficial in reducing digestive disorders like constipation etc.

Boosts Immunity:

Kashmiri kahwa is a  popular home remedy for cold, cough, and fever in Kashmir. It is rich in antioxidants that aid in boosting the immune system of our body which helps fight infections. Saffron is a main ingredient of kahwa and is a good source of vitamin B12 which in turn is great for building the body’s immune system.

Good for Weight Loss:

Kashmiri kahwa is served after meals in Kashmir because it not only helps in digestion but also helps in weight loss. It reduces appetite, lowers blood sugar levels, and reduces cholesterol because of the cinnamon present in it so it is good for heart health also.

Benefits of Kahwa
Benefits of Kahwa

Stress Reliever:

Stress and anxiety are common problems these days since Kashmiri kahwa is rich in antioxidants so it helps to purify the toxins from our body and it permits the production of neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine. The release of these happy neurotransmitters brings happiness and peace to our bodies. It is also known to reduce insomnia if taken before sleep. After a long and tiring day at work, a cup of Kashmiri kahwa is all you need to reduce your anxiety and stress.

A Powerhouse of Energy:

Although milk is not added to Kashmiri kahwa yet it is a powerhouse of energy because of the dry fruits and antioxidants present in it. If you want to feel energetic and rejuvenate yourself after your gym, it is a great way to pump up your energy levels. It can also help to reduce headaches and tiredness after a long day at work. Whenever you feel lazy, just take a few sips of kahwa, and you are sorted for the day!

Kashmiri Kahwa

Get Yourself a Kashmiri  Glow:

Kashmiri people are known for their beautiful faces all over the world, the magical potion that works wonders on the skin is kahwa as it contains those ingredients to keep the skin soft and supple. It can treat pigmentation of the skin and has anti-aging properties to give you a youthful appearance. Skin gets dry during winters, the essential oils present in almonds helps to prevent dryness and keep the skin moisturized.

Conclusion:
Kashmiri kahwa is a great drink that you must include in your daily routine because of its immense benefits. It is good for your digestive health, builds your immune system, helps in weight loss, great stress buster, gives you glowing skin, is packed with energy, and much more. Kashmir Basket brings to you 100 % original Kashmiri kahwa straight from the land of Jammu and Kashmir so hurry up and grab your original Kashmiri kahwa before it goes out of stock!

Shilajit

Top Health Benefits of Kashmiri Shilajit

What is Shilajit?

Shilajit is a highly sticky blackish or dark brownish substance from high mountain rocks of The Himalayas, from Arunachal Pradesh in the  East to Kashmir in the west. It is also available in many other countries like Nepal, Karakoram, Russia, Iran, Bhutan, Mongolia, and Peru. It is a famous Ayurvedic medicine.

Kashmiri Shilajit

Chemical Composition:

Chemically, shilajit comprises 60-80% of humic substances like fulvic acid, and humic acid, other chemical components present in shilajit include amino acids, gums, latex, and coumarins, sterols, triterpenes, resins, polyphenols, etc. It also contains more than 80 minerals like silver, copper, zinc, etc. When organic matter (vegetables) degrade by microorganisms’ action, the resulting substances are called humic substances.

Synonyms of Shilajit in various languages

LatinAsphaltum punjabinum
GreekMumijo
Arabicarakul-dzhibo
TibetanBrag-shun
Burmesekao-tui
Germanmumie
Persianmomio
SanskritSilajit,silaras,adrija,girija
EnglishAsphalt,mineral pitch,jews pitch
Hindi,gujarati,marathisilajita,shilajit
Bengalisilajatu

Top Health Benefits of Kashmiri Shilajit:

Prevents Iron Deficiency Anemia:

It is a very common condition in teenage girls and pregnant women and is because of the inability of the body to absorb iron and take a diet that is deficient in iron. Shilajit contains iron so it is a good way to combat iron deficiency anemia. A study was conducted in 2012, ‘ Evaluation of safety profile of black shilajit after 91 days repeated administration in rats ‘  by C Velmurugan and others. It was concluded from the study that black shilajit can be used as a supplement to prevent iron deficiency anemia.

Health Benefits of Kashmiri Shilajit

Anti-Aging:

The fulvic acid present in Kashmiri shilajit is a strong antioxidant and can help in reducing the free radicals in our body which in turn reduces aging.

Alzheimer’s Disease:

It is a brain disorder that progresses slowly and can affect a person’s memory, thinking, and overall behavior. It is believed that shilajit inhibits the growth or progression of this disease because of its composition. The major component of shilajit is an antioxidant called fulvic acid which improves the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. Research has been done in 2012 by Carlos and others titled ‘ Can nutraceuticals prevent Alzheimer’s disease? The potential therapeutic role of a formulation containing shilajit and complex B vitamins and as per the results of the research shilajit is beneficial against brain disorders.

Good for Male Reproductive Health:

Shilajit is popularly known to increase fertility in men. It promotes the release of testosterone which is a male sex hormone. Research has been conducted in 2015 by S Pandit and others titled,’ Clinical evaluation of purified Shilajit on testosterone levels in healthy volunteers ‘ and as per the results, the total testosterone levels were increased in the individuals who took shilajit for 90 days.

Healthy Heart:

Kashmiri shilajit is also beneficial for heart health. The risk of heart attack is reduced and cardiovascular damage is also reduced because of the effect of antioxidants present in shilajit. The research was done in 2014 by Siyavash Joukar and others, titled ‘Cardioprotective effect of Mumie (shilajit) on experimentally induced myocardial injury, and as per the results of the research, it was concluded that shilajit had a positive effect on heart health.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome:

Chronic fatigue syndrome is a unique condition in which an individual experiences extreme fatigue and tiredness. A person’s everyday activities become difficult who is diagnosed with CFS. As per the latest research, a person who consumes shilajit regularly may reduce the effects of this condition. A study has been published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology in 2012 by Dinesh Kumar and others titled ‘ Shilajit attenuates behavioral symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome by modulating the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and mitochondrial bioenergetics in rats ‘ and it was concluded from the study that shilajit helps in preventing CFS.

Antidiabetic:

High blood sugar is a very common problem nowadays and it is growing day by day. Shilajit is considered a strong ayurvedic medicine that can prevent high blood sugar. Many kinds of research have been conducted to study the effect of shilajit on blood glucose levels. An article was published in the Indian Journal of Pharmacology titled, ‘ Effect of shilajit on blood glucose and lipid profile in alloxan-induced diabetic rats ‘ and as per the results of the research, shilajit is very effective in controlling the blood glucose levels and improving the lipid profile.

Conclusion:

Kashmiri shilajit is a wonderful dietary supplement that helps to prevent many diseases and disorders. It is good for heart health, antidiabetic, antiaging, reduces iron deficiency anemia, prevents chronic fatigue syndrome, is good for male fertility, and prevents Alzheimer’s disease. We at Kashmir Basket are delivering 100 % original products all over India, you can avail the benefits of Kashmiri shilajit too so buy it before it goes out of stock!

Nutritional benefits of dried apricots

Nutritional Benefits of Dried Apricots

Introduction

Apricots belong to many species but the most regularly cultivated species of apricots is called  Prunus Armeniaca. Apricots originated from Central Asia and China, according to a famous botanist Nikolai Vavilov. Globally, apricots are produced by Turkey, Uzbekistan, Iran, Italy, and Algeria. Fresh apricots are feeble and their freshness doesn’t last longer, besides they have moderate nutritional benefits so apricots are dried in order to increase their nutritional value.

Why Dried Apricots?

Dried apricots are known for their high nutritional benefits and they have a long shelf life so they can be easily transported over large distances. Initially, California was considered the largest producer of dried apricots but currently, Turkey’s Malatya is considered the top producer of dried apricots globally. Kashmiri dried apricots are unique in their own way and are specially imported from the original producers of Kashmir valley and are easily available at Kashmir Basket.

Nutritional benefits of Raw apricots Vs Dried Apricots
Nutritional Benefits of Raw Apricots Vs Dried Apricots

Excellent Nutritional Benefits of Dried Apricots :

Beneficial for Vision:

Night blindness and cataract are some of the common eye problems nowadays. Vitamin A and vitamin E are very important for maintaining good eye health and dried apricots contain both vitamins in good amounts. The yellowish-orange color of dried apricots is due to Beta -Carotene, which is essential for preventing eye disorders that occur due to growing age.

Good for Bone Health:

Bone disorders like osteoporosis and osteoarthritis are very common in women after their 30s. They are caused due to the deficiency of calcium in our body. Dried apricots are loaded with calcium and other nutrients like boron and potassium which promote good bone health.

Magical Nut for Anemic Patients:

Anemia is when our body doesn’t produce enough red blood cells to supply oxygen to other parts of the body. The main reason for anemia is due to deficiency of iron. Pregnant and menstruating women are at a greater risk of anemia. It can be prevented by taking a diet that is rich in iron and vitamin C.Vitamin C is essential for the absorption of iron. Dried apricots contain both iron and vitamin C, however, taking dried apricots alone will not suffice our body’s daily iron needs so they should be included in our diets along with other iron-rich foods.

Controls Blood Pressure:

Hypertension or high blood pressure is a very common condition nowadays. If hypertension goes untreated it can lead to many other serious complications like stroke, heart attack, etc. This condition can be treated with medicine along with some dietary changes . Dried apricots contain potassium which can lower high blood pressure. Potassium controls the salt levels in our body by working with the kidneys which in turn reduces high blood pressure.

Minerals in apricots
Minerals in apricots

Glowing Skin:

There are many countless benefits of dried apricots for skin since they are a powerhouse of multivitamins and minerals like magnesium, phosphorus, iron, potassium, etc. The skin damage caused by ultraviolet radiation is also reduced because of the antioxidants present in dried apricots. They are also anti-ageing. Apricots can be taken fresh and dried or they can be applied in the form of face masks, face packs, or face scrubs to get a smooth and glowy texture on our skin.

Anti-Cancer Benefits:

As per the latest research, it is believed that apricots have anti-cancer nutrients. The apricot kernels have a compound called amygdalin which is anti-cancerous and can prevent tumours as well by stopping the reproduction of cancerous cells.

Good for Lungs:

Dried apricots have proven to reduce infections in the lungs because they are rich in Vitamin A. For strengthening of lungs, vitamin A plays an important role. They are anti-asthmatic as well due to the presence of nutrients that reduce pressure on our respiratory tract.

Useful for Blood Clotting:

Vitamin K is basically a cluster of vitamins that are required by our body for clotting of blood, healing of injuries, and inhibition of excessive bleeding. Dried apricots are loaded with vitamin K.

Prevents Constipation:

Dried apricots are an excellent source of fiber and they also contain a mild laxative (cellulose and pectin), which helps get rid of constipation. So it is a good practice to include a handful of dried apricots in your diet daily.

Improves gut health:

Good gut health is responsible for overall body functions as nutrients are absorbed in the gut. Dried apricots are full of soluble and insoluble fiber so a diet rich in foods that contain a lot of fiber eventually leads to a good gut.

Conclusion:

Dried Apricots have essentially a lot of nutritional benefits for the body’s overall improvement as they are a powerhouse of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber so you can include them in your snacks, desserts, salads, and main courses. All the products available on Kashmir Basket are 100% original and purchased straight from the original producers of Kashmir valley so you can grab your Kashmiri dried apricots here!

Saffron

Saffron Benefits for Hair and Skin

What is Saffron:

Saffron, scientifically known as Crocus Sativus, is the most expensive spice globally, costing around the US $5000/kg and more. It is derived from a  flower commonly known as ‘’Saffron Crocus’’. It is believed that saffron originally came from Iran, however, some evidence also proves that it originated in Greece and Mesopotamia. Its harvesting requires a lot of labor, time, and handpicking, making it the world’s costliest spice. From ancient times, the dried stigmas of the saffron flowers have been used as a food coloring agent, as a spice, and for medical purposes.

Kashmiri saffron is commonly known as ‘ Lacha’ or ‘Mongra’ recognized for its purplish dark maroon color. The Kashmiri saffron is popularly known as ‘’kong posh’’.

There is a separate department in the UT of Jammu & Kashmir that deals with the production of saffron called IIC STC (India International Kashmir saffron trading center) and a scheme is developed by the government of India in order to boost the production of Kashmiri saffron called National Saffron Mission. Under this scheme, the previous traditional methods are replaced by modern techniques.NSM was launched in 2010-2011 and is exclusively used for the cultivation of saffron in the UT of J & K.The main contributor of saffron in J & K is Pampore and other districts including Srinagar, Budgam, and Kishtwar.

Labour intensive harvesting of saffron

9 Top Magical Benefits of Saffron for Hair and Skin:

Acne Reduction :

When the hair follicles on our skin become clogged with dead skin cells and oil, it causes acne. Acne includes blackheads, whiteheads, pimples, etc. There are many treatments for acne but it can come and go, saffron has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties which can clear acne on the skin to a large extent.

Decreases Pigmentation:

Hyperpigmentation is a condition where the skin becomes discolored and it can happen to males as well as females resulting in an uneven tone of the skin. There can be many reasons for hyperpigmentation including exposure to the sun for a long time, pregnancy, etc. If we soak one or two saffron strands in water for a few minutes and then mix it with turmeric powder, the formed paste should be kept on those areas where skin pigmentation is there for ten to fifteen minutes, doing this once or twice a week dramatically reduces pigmentation.

Anti-aging Properties:

If you are someone who follows an anti-aging skincare routine, then the saffron is a must-have in your routine. It is loaded with antioxidants and promotes deep hydration of skin giving you younger-looking youthful skin. Saffron is used in many cosmetics and skin care products because of the same reason and works wonders on each skin type.

Anti Solar Uses:

A study was conducted in 2010 by Shiva Golmohammadzadeh and others on ‘’ Do saffron have antisolar and moisturizing effects?’’ and as per the results, saffron can be used as a natural ultraviolet absorbing agent. The production of free radicals is promoted by ultraviolet radiation, which causes oxidative stress leading to skin damage since saffron is rich in antioxidants that can protect our skin from the damage caused by UV radiation.

Skin Toner:

Face toner is a part of everyone’s skincare regime, it refreshes your skin gently while maintaining its natural moisture. There are many good toners available on the market but they have chemical ingredients, saffron is a  natural alternative for skin toning. Mix a few strands of saffron with rose water, and wait until it leaves color. Using a cotton ball, gently dab this solution on your skin to get instant freshness.

Glowing skin :

If we mix a few strands of saffron with honey and apply this face pack to our skin, it gives a shiny and bright texture to our skin. This face pack improves blood circulation and rejuvenates the skin from within thus leaving a glow.

Scar Healing :

When a wound or an injury is healed, a mark is left on the skin called a scar. Scars can remain on the skin forever or some can fade over time. Saffron is known for boosting healthy skin, a study was conducted in 2008 by Ghasemali and others on ‘’ The effect of Saffron extract for healing of second degree burn wounds in rats ‘’ and the results of the study revealed that saffron can speed up the healing of the injuries caused by burning.

Skin Brightening :

Saffron contains vitamin C which enhances its skin-lightening abilities, it is believed that if we mix sandalwood powder with saffron milk, it results in a great face pack for skin brightening. Apply this face pack and wash it after 15-20 minutes to get desired results.

Saffron Benefits for Hair :

Saffron is known for its benefits related to good hair health. Hair Fall is a major problem these days and it is present in both males and females. Our hair gets damaged due to many factors externally like radiation from the sun, pollution due to traffic, chlorinated water, etc. The antioxidants present in saffron help in the reduction of hair fall and nourishes the scalp from within and make roots strong. Saffron can be taken with water or milk daily or saffron oil can be massaged on the scalp to reduce hair fall, promote healthy hair growth, reduction of dandruff, and many other benefits.

Conclusion :

Saffron has countless benefits for hair and skin. It helps in acne reduction, decreases pigmentation, has anti-aging properties, protects your skin from damage caused by UV radiations, it can be used as a face toner, has scar healing properties, and gives us a radiant and glowing skin. You can purchase 100 % original Kashmiri saffron from Kashmir Basket.

benefits of mamra almonds

Benefits of Mamra Almonds

Introduction

Scientifically known as Prunus Dulcis, almond/badam is one of the oldest domesticated fruit trees. Their cultivation started in 4000 BC and is native to South and Central parts of Asia and was popularly grown in California in the 1840s. Almonds are one of the healthiest dry fruits and have many varieties. Mamra almond is the most nutritious almond among all the types.

What is Mamra Almond?

Mamra almond is a special type of almond that is much crispy and crunchier than a regular almond hence the name ‘mamra’ (in Hindi murmura ). They were devoured by the Royals as they have a unique taste, shape, and texture than a normal almond. Mamra badam is popularly grown in Afghanistan, Iran, and India (in Kashmir). They have a specific soil, temperature, and PH requirement for their growth so the production is limited to specific regions only.

What makes Mamra Almonds so special ?

What Makes Mamra Almonds so Special?

Mamra almonds are a powerhouse of essential nutrients like proteins, vitamins , minerals, iron,omega 3 fatty acid  etc. Below are some of the important benefits of mamra almonds.

Top 10 Health Benefits of Mamra Almonds :

Lowering of cholesterol :

Total cholesterol in our body is a combination of good cholesterol and bad cholesterol.Bad cholesterol makes our body prone to heart diseases while as good cholesterol protects our body against heart diseases and good cholesterol helps to remove bad cholesterol from our body.,  Studies have shown that eating almonds daily helps in the reduction of bad cholesterol and improves good cholesterol as they are rich in monounsaturated fatty acids.

Beneficial for pregnancy :

Since mamra almonds are a powerhouse of essential nutrients like vitamins, proteins, and fats so consuming mamra almonds daily will ensure that both baby and mother will remain healthy in each trimester. Folic acid in almonds boosts the brain health of the fetus, iron in almonds is good for the immune system and heart of the fetus and several other essential nutrients improve the overall development of the fetus.

Gut improvement :

Registered nutritionist Bonnie Taub says almonds are a great source of fiber. Eating almonds daily can help in digestion, promotes the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut, and prevents constipation. Lactobacillus and bifidobacterium are good gut bacteria and their growth was boosted as revealed by a study conducted in 2014  by the Institute of food science and technology in China.

Controls blood pressure:

Today hypertension, also called high blood pressure is increasing day by day and in order to reduce blood pressure, lifestyle modifications and a healthy diet play a major role. As almonds are rich in potassium, and monounsaturated fats, and are sodium-free, so they can prove to be a great snack for controlling high blood pressure.

Boosts immunity:

Research has been conducted in the Institute of food research in Norwich and Italy’s university and it has been found that almond skin contains a naturally occurring chemical that boosts immune health, hence it is recommended to eat a handful of almonds on a daily basis to protect our bodies viruses.

Beneficial for skin:

An Egyptian queen, Cleopatra, was popular for her body, skin, and hair and it was believed that she included almonds in her daily diet and skincare. Eating almonds daily removes dead skin, reduces dark circles, and improves dried skin. Vitamin E is considered to be a powerful antioxidant and almonds are an extremely good source of Vitamin E.

Helps in weight loss:

Studies have revealed that an almond diet assists weight loss even better than a keto diet! Almonds help in the management of hunger as they provide sufficient calories which also helps in the reduction of belly fat as well. A study has been published in the International Journal of Obesity that almonds will assist in your weight loss journey.

Good for bone health:

In order to strengthen bones and reduce joint pain, it is recommended to add mamra almonds to the diet. A study conducted by Ilana D Platt and others in 2011  (Postprandial effects of almond consumption on human osteoclast precursors) revealed that bone mineral density is increased by the consumption of almonds. They are helpful in protecting our bodies against osteoporosis.

Reduces blood sugar levels:

Many studies have suggested that a natural way to reduce blood sugar levels in our bodies is by consuming almonds. Ruchika Jain, a well-known senior dietician, says that a good mid-time snack for diabetes patients is almonds as they contain magnesium. Lifestyle modifications, dietary changes, and having mamra badams daily can help to control blood sugar levels in the long run.

Boosts brain health:

Riboflavin and L Carnitine are very important nutrients for good brain health and they both are present in almonds so almonds are the best brain foods available on the market. Also, many studies have been conducted and it has been concluded that almonds improve the memory of an individual if they are consumed daily.

Conclusion

Mamra almonds should be considered an integral part of our diet as they are a bundle of essential vitamins, minerals, proteins, and carbohydrates. They are available on KashmirBasket and are 100 % original, directly imported from original producers in Kashmir Valley.

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