All About Jerusalem Artichoke

This is unlike any other artichoke you’ve ever seen. Read on to find out what sets Jerusalem artichokes apart.

What is Jerusalem Artichoke?


Photo by Daniel Chekalov on Unsplash

Jerusalem artichoke, also known as sunchoke, sunroot, or earth apple, is a species of sunflower native to several parts of North America. Despite the name, it’s not actually an artichoke and has nothing to do with Jerusalem.

So where did the name come from?

The origin of the “Jerusalem” part of the name isn’t 100% accurately known, but there are a couple of rumors.

Some think it came from Italian settlers in the U.S. who called the plant “girasole,” the Italian word for sunflower. Over time, the pronunciation of girasole may have been corrupted by English speakers, sounding closer to the word “Jerusalem.”

Another rumor is that the name came from Puritans settling the New World. Perhaps they named the plant in reference to the “New Jerusalem” they were creating.

Although we don’t definitively know where the first part of the plant’s name came from, we do know where “artichoke” came from.

Samuel de Champlain, a French explorer, sent samples of the plant to France, comparing its taste to that of an artichoke, and thus the vegetable became known as “Jerusalem artichoke.”

Although I’m sure you enjoyed the history lesson, let’s get into the details on what makes this plant great.

Why do I need Jerusalem Artichoke?

The main reason why Jerusalem artichoke is highly beneficial is due to its function as a prebiotic.

Prebiotics are non-digestible fiber compounds that stimulate the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract.

Jerusalem artichoke contains a large amount of inulin, a prebiotic that fights harmful bacteria.

Prebiotics are important because they improve immune function, lower bad cholesterol, and prevent harmful bacteria growth.

This helps prevent you from getting sick, keeps you healthy, and keeps you happy!

Other potential benefits of Jerusalem artichoke include:

  • May help control blood pressure:
    Jerusalem artichokes have a high potassium amount and a low sodium amount, helping to lower blood pressure. One cup of this plant contains 643 milligrams of potassium and just 6 milligrams of sodium.
  • May help control cholesterol:
    The soluble fiber found in Jerusalem artichokes may help lower overall blood cholesterol levels by lowering low-density lipoprotein, also known as “bad” cholesterol.
  • May help with digestive problems:
    Jerusalem artichokes are packed with B-vitamins, especially thiamine (B1). Thiamine helps with hydrochloric acid in the stomach. Lack of hydrochloric acid can cause stomach pain and impair protein digestion.
  • May normalize bowel movements:
    Jerusalem artichokes contain fiber, an indigestible part of food derived from plants. Eating a diet high in fiber can help normalize bowel movements, reducing constipation, diarrhea and other issues related to your bowels.

Where can I find Jerusalem Artichoke?

You can find Jerusalem artichokes at some health food stores, online, and as a frequent ingredient in several supplements.

Tranont Health’s [Life] includes Jerusalem artichoke to help you live your healthiest, happiest, life.

Our [Life] gives you life!

Sources

Bruso, J. (2011, July 8). Health Benefits of Jerusalem Artichokes. Retrieved from https://www.livestrong.com/article/374796-health-benefits-of-jerusalem-artichokes/

DoveMed Editorial Board. (2014, August 11). 7 Health Benefits Of Jerusalem Artichoke. Retrieved from https://www.dovemed.com/healthy-living/natural-health/7-health-benefits-of-jerusalem-artichoke/

Levetin, Estelle and Karen McMahon. Plants and Society: 231. 2012.

Smith, James Edward (1807). An introduction to physiological and systematical botany . p. 108f.

Wedgwood, Hensleigh (1855). “On False Etymologies”. Transactions of the Philological Society (6): 67.

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