What is peppercorn and why is it great for our gut?
This commonly used spice is probably sitting right next to its lovely companion salt on your counter; you guessed it, peppercorn also known as black pepper. Peppercorn can be purchased in whole form or ground; they can also be found in different colors such as white, green, pink and can even be found in different shapes. Regardless of the type of peppercorn that you find yourself using most often, it has long been a staple in the culinary realm for many years because of its versatility and how it naturally adds a kick to any dish. Though this popular spice can often become unrecognized as nothing more than a kitchen spice staple, it is important to highlight its impressive health benefits.
Incorporating peppercorn into most meals can be one of the easier ways to introduce an additional variety of nutrients into your diet. Peppercorn is rich in many vitamins and nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin B6, potassium, manganese and fiber. One tablespoon of peppercorn contains 1.7 grams of prebiotics that our good gut bugs love to eat. Another important property offered from peppercorns is the antioxidant, piperine. Piperine is an alkaloid plant compound that gives black pepper its pungent taste, it is has been shown to be an awesome addition to aid in promotion of #goodgut health. Piperine not only helps with nutrient absorption and gastrointestinal functionality, but also contains anti-inflammatory properties, which helps alleviate symptoms of gastrointestinal disorders such as IBD.
In addition, when piperine interacts with compounds such as curcumin, which is found in turmeric, they not only have enhanced anti-inflammatory properties; they also have enhanced digestive enzyme activity in the gut. This enhancement not only helps our body digest food easier and faster, it may also help to relieve symptoms of nausea, poor digestion, and discomfort from inflammation. While peppercorn may be great for reducing inflammation, some other #goodgut benefits from peppercorn is its ability to fend off ‘bad’ bacteria. Studies show that spices like peppercorn not only help to prevent ‘bad’ bacteria from growing but also regulates our microbiome and enhances our overall gut health. Talk about the amazing benefits of #goodgut friendly spices!
Ways to eat it
Peppercorn is a great spice to add to cooked vegetables or tofu
Pair it with other spices on many dishes such as pasta
Recipe: Creamy Vegan Peppercorn Sauce
Ingredients (Makes 4 Servings):
2 tsp cracked black pepper
1/2 cup coconut cream
1 cup button mushrooms, sliced
1 small onion, diced
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp sea salt
Heat coconut oil in a small pot over medium heat.
Add onion, garlic, and cracked black pepper. Cook until the onion softens.
Add coconut cream, mushrooms, apple cider vinegar and let simmer gently.
Stir until mushrooms have softened and sauce thickens.
Add salt to taste.
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