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Store unrefrigerated for 4-6 months or refrigerated for even longer. Ghee has been used for over 2,000 years in Ayurveda which is the ancient natural healing system of India. It can withstand the high heat in baking and is a great way to preserve butter. It has a longer shelf life. Given below are some of the benefits of Butter. Ghee is naturally hydrogenated saturated fat that does not decompose at high temperature. As a result it is easily digested and does not stay in the system unlike other large variety of vegetable oils. It is composed almost entirely of saturated fat. When cooking, it can be unhealthy to heat polyunsaturated oils such as vegetable oils to high temperatures. Ghee comes from milk as the ultimate product. Milk can be converted into many things. However with Ghee the ultimate has come. Ghee is the
embedded soul in milk that remains invisible until it is extracted. To make ghee milk is first converted into yoghurt. Then by churning yoghurt fat molecules start floating on the surface. These are then collected and finally this fat molecules are heated for moisture to evaporate. As the water molecules evaporate butter changes its quality in taste, fragrance, and color. Butter has a tendency to get rancid. However the pure ghee after it is cured over heat has minimal tendency of getting rancid. When polyunsaturated oils are heated these create peroxides and other free radicals. Ghee has a very high smoke point and does not burn easily during cooking. Ghee has stable saturated bonds and so is lot less likely to form the dangerous free radicals when cooking unlike other oils. Ghee is short chain of fatty acids that are also metabolized very readily by the body. Food is one field where many misconceptions exist even among the so-called elite. For many ignorant reasons and wrong business propaganda the consumption of ghee is relatively much lower than dangerous vegetable oils. Modern culinary techniques provide a variety of ways to cook healthier, and using cleaner, purified ingredients such as ghee is highly beneficial for your health. According to Food-India.com, ghee is clarified butter that is devoid of any solid milk particles or water. Ghee is commonly used in India and southern Asia in place of oil or other fat products. According to Ayurvedic tradition, using ghee in cooking and for other sources of consumption may provide various health benefits. Ghee has quite a long history, as it has been used in Indian cooking for many thousands of years. Ghee is an essential (and nutritional) element in much of Indian cuisine, much the way butter or margarine is used in American cooking. Ghee also transcends the cooking realm, as ghee is also often used in religious ceremonies and various healing arts in Indian culture. Additionally, Ghee’s nutritional and health benefits are touted as ideal for anyone from athletes to simple dieters. Ghee is in fact a form of clarified butter. The process of clarifying butter is a bit more complex. The butter is melted and simmered (this process is also called ‘rendered’) in a pot or large saucepan until three layers form: a foamy, watery layer, which is skimmed off, a solid butter layer, and a milk solids layer. The separated butter is the clarified butter, a liquid mass of rich, golden butterfat. Chefs often use clarified butter because it will not burn during frying because this is known as a high smoking point, and possesses a more buttery flavor.
The longer the melted butter cooks, the more intense the resulting flavor of the clarified butter will be. Ghee lacks hydrogenated oils and is a popular choice for health-conscious cooks as well. Additionally, since all the milk proteins have been removed during the clarifying process, ghee gains further nutritional value because it's lactose free, making it a safer alternative for those who are lactose intolerant. Clarified butter is composed primarily of saturated fat. It contains approximately 14 grams of fat per tablespoon but no artificial additives, preservatives, or Trans-fats. Consuming large quantities of ghee is obviously unhealthy, but because of the rich flavor of ghee, it can be used sparingly to full effect, making it more suitable for low-fat diets. A good guideline is one tablespoon of ghee as opposed to four tablespoons of any other butter or cooking oil. Lab studies have shown ghee reduces cholesterol both in the serum and intestine. It does it by triggering an increased secretion of biliary lipids. Ghee is also good for nerves and brain. It helps control eye pressure and is beneficial to glaucoma patients. Ghee is most notably said to stimulate the secretion of stomach acids to help with digestion, while other fats, such as butter and oils, slow down the digestive process and can sit heavy in the stomach. Ghee is rich with antioxidants and acts as an aid in the absorption of vitamins and minerals from other foods, serving to strengthen the immune system. A high concentration of butyric acid, a fatty acid that contains antiviral properties, is believed to inhibit the growth of cancerous tumors. During and after pregnancy the mother is given items prepared only in ghee. It is good for treatment of burns. According to Ayurveda ghee promotes learning and increased memory retention. While in a healthy person consuming ghee may reduce your cholesterol or not affect it, it is not advised for people already suffering from high cholesterol. It is safer than butter. Now you understand how the Punjabis have tones of ghee and still are fitter. It has been used in Indian medicinal practice to help with ulcers, constipation, and the promotion of healthy eyes and skin. Regular consumption of pure ghee enhances physical and mental strength, and keeps the body healthy. It also helps in taking out the impurities from the body. It enhances eyesight, keeps muscles and tendons healthy. For people with cholesterol problems, ghee is a better option as compared to butter as pure ghee is lower in fat than butter.
The fat content in Ghee is much less as a result it is easier to digest. Pure ghee can last for a longer duration of time. It can be stored even without refrigeration. Some people believe that ghee can restore balance to the mind and enhance brain function.
Ghee also helps in stimulating the digestive system and hence also aids in weight loss provided your diet is well balanced and you are exercising simultaneously. It is full of Vitamins A, D, E, and K. These vitamins are only fat-soluble. This means they have to be digested with other fat molecules in order for these vitamins to make it into our bloodstream. Ghee has lots of dietary fats -mostly saturated fats that help our bodies absorb and make use of these vitamins.
Ghee is an excellent cooking medium because it does not break down in high heat like many cooking oils do, resulting in free radicals. Ghee has a high burning point, so it will neither smoke nor burn when cooked. The body needs certain fats in its diet in order to perform vital functions, including protecting the stomach wall from digestive acids, building and strengthening cell membranes and supporting nerve, skin and brain health. The fats in ghee provide these benefits without any of the trans-fats, hydrogenated oils or oxidized cholesterol of butter and other oils. Keep in mind, that we are only attaching these benefits to pure homemade ghee made with zero preservative or vegetable fats. Store-bought ghee or ghee prepared with any artificial methods will not fit in the same category as pure ghee. Ghee is also lactose-free and contains no salt. To some it is known as clarified butter while to others the golden elixir of healing - ghee is a staple ingredient in Indian cooking and Ayurvedic healing known for its versatility, great taste, and many health benefits. It is derived from butter through a process of cooking off the milk solids until it becomes an easier to digest, healthier alternative to butter and oil that can be used for cooking or as an ingredient to add flavor and richness to foods.
1. Excellent cooking oil – since ghee does not start smoking until it is heated to 375 degrees Fahrenheit, it will neither burn nor splatter easily. Its chemical structure also remains more stable than other oils when heated. 2. Stores well – due to its low moisture content, ghee can go weeks without refrigeration. It can last up to six months in the fridge or one year in the freezer, according to the Ayurvedic Institute. The key to ghee longevity implies storing it somewhere cool, keep it covered and make sure it does not get contaminated by other liquids – do not double dip! 3. Flavorful – Thanks to its strong flavor, not much ghee needs to be added to a dish to make it sing.
1. Easy digestibility – In the process of cooking off milk solids from butter burns off lactose and cholesterol thus making it easier to digest than butter or vegetable oils. 2. Anti-inflammatory - according to the Sushruta Samhita, a text of the ancient Indian healing system of Ayurveda, ghee is the best antiinflammatory food. 3. Whole body healing - Ayurvedic practitioners use the golden elixir – ghee for everything from rejuvenating skin to aiding digestion to balancing hormones. 4. Flexibility - Dr. Vasant Lad, founder and director of the Ayurvedic Institute, explains ghee’s popularity among yogis by stating that it lubricates connective tissues and makes the body more flexible. 5. Enhances your essence - ghee boosts ojas (Sanskrit: vigour), the underlying essence of body issues, leading to an increased immune system and greater longevity. 6. Increases agni – Agni in Ayurveda is referred as the digestive fire or capability. Therefore proper digestion revolves around this agni, the body’s digestive fire. Consuming ghee boosts one’s agni, leading to better digestion and faster metabolism. 7. Butter’s yummy richness adds taste to many a dishes however its perceived unhealthiness prevents people from using it. Though it still has a high fat content, ghee’s many health benefits make it a fine alternative to butter or oil that you can make yourself. 8. Nutrient Absorption - One benefit associated with ghee is its assistance in nutrient absorption. Pure ghee is oil that easily bonds with lipid-soluble nutrients that then may be absorbed by the body’s cell walls. For this reason, ghee may help to enhance the power and benefits of certain herbs by allowing the beneficial components to become absorbed into the cells where they most benefit the body. 9. Inflammation - Ayurveda medicine has traditionally used ghee in place of butter for its various healing benefits, according to Yoga Journal online. One benefit of incorporating ghee into the diet is its antiinflammatory properties. Ghee is thought to naturally lubricate connective tissues in the body, which can help to improve flexibility and provide the body with essential antioxidants. This effect is especially
helpful for healing, as the formula can enhance the immune system to reduce inflammation, speed the recovery of wounds and heal blisters. 10. Digestive Health - Ghee may also serve as a powerful agent in digestive health, according to RajasthanVisit.com. When used in place of butter, oils and other fats, ghee may help to reduce stomach acid while protecting and repairing the stomach lining. The effects of ghee as a healing agent for burns and blisters makes it effective in treating discomfort from harmful toxins and acids that build up in the digestive system. Traditional Ayurveda medicine uses ghee to treat chronic peptic ulcers to promote health of the intestinal tract. 11. Ghee is most notably said to stimulate the secretion of stomach acids to help with digestion, while other fats, such as butter and oils, slow down the digestive process and can sit heavy in the stomach. Although tests and research are still ongoing, it has been used in Indian medicinal practice to help with ulcers, constipation, and the promotion of healthy eyes and skin. An Indian folk-remedy for thousands of years, ghee is also said to promote learning and increased memory retention. It is used in Indian beauty creams to help soften skin, and as a topical for the treatment of burns and blisters. 12. Anti-oxidant - In addition to ghee's nutritional value, it is rich with antioxidants and acts as an aid in the absorption of vitamins and minerals from other foods, feeding all layers of body tissue and serving to strengthen the immune system. A high concentration of butyric acid, a fatty acid that contains anti-viral properties, is believed to inhibit the growth of cancerous tumors. Ghee contains conjugated linolenic acid which is helpful in losing weight, especially belly fat, and has been known to slow the progress of some types of cancer and heart disease. However, it is advised to use it on moderate quantities. Ghee is rich with antioxidants and acts as an aid in the absorption of vitamins and minerals from other foods and strengthens the immune system.
Types of Fats in Ghee and Butter
When comparing ghee to butter in terms of health, one reason for the more favorable past research record of ghee versus butter might be the increased amount of medium - and short-chain fatty acids in ghee. Butter contains about 12-15% of these medium-chain and short-chain fats, whereas ghee contains about 25%. Human body metabolizes medium-chain and short-chain fats differently than long-chain ones. And remember medium - and short-chain ones are not associated with cardiovascular problems in the same way as the long-chain ones are.
Ghee Has a Higher Smoke Point than Butter
Ghee tends to have a higher smoke point than butter. For butter, smoke point is typically reached between 325˚-375˚F (163˚-191˚C). Some clarified butters also fall into this general range, but ghee usually has a higher smoke point, between 400˚-500˚F (204˚-260˚C). This higher smoke point can be an advantage when cooking at high heat since smoke point is that moment when heat damage to some of the components in a fat or oil is sufficient to become visible in the form of smoke. When it comes to our health, heating above smoke point is not a good idea with any oil or fat.
For persons choosing to cook in fat at higher heats in the 400˚-500˚F (204˚260˚C) range, ghee makes sense to us, provided that it is used in moderation (no more than 1-2 tablespoons per day). Even for a person deciding to cook in fat, however, the use of butter at higher heats does not make sense to us due to its lower smoke point (325˚-375˚F/163˚-191˚C). The smoke point of coconut oil is also very high - 350 ˚C. Therefore it is advised to mix coconut oil and Ghee as best cooking media. The use of butter and ghee at lower heats (300˚-375˚F/163˚-191˚C) may be acceptable, provided once again that both of these animal fats are used in moderation. Whether there are distinct advantages to the use of butter at lower heats versus plant oils is not clear to us from the existing research. In general, however, we do not like the idea of heating plant oils due to the delicate nature of their polyunsaturated fats and phytonutrients. Since butter has far fewer polyunsaturates than plant oils, it might provide a lower heat cooking alternative for this reason. However, the phytonutrient and vitamin content of butter would still be susceptible to heat damage, and since we have not yet seen research to confirm the health benefits of butter in lower heat cooking, we cannot recommend this practice without the benefit of more research. On our website, we offer a method of healthy sautéing that requires
no fat or oil of any kind. You can visit the Cooking Healthy section of our website to learn more about this method.
Does ghee increase the cholesterol level?
This is a very often asked question. Cholesterol helps cells to regenerate and maintains hormonal balance. This is damaged by free radicals, which in turn results in clogged arteries. Ghee actually maintains the ratio of high-density lipoprotein (HDL or “good” cholesterol) and low-density lipoprotein (LDL or “bad” cholesterol) levels. Interestingly ghee works as an aphrodisiac and promotes longevity. Some fats are needed in the body to provide the essential fatty acids (EFAs). With ghee we have added benefits like a glowing complexion, increased stamina and intelligence. A wholesome Indian diet complete with ghee and sweets might make today’s health freaks shudder, but the near absence of modern day ailments among the older generation is testimony to its benefits. Do you include foods like turmeric, bran, honey and almonds in your diet? Which other traditional nutrients have you found beneficial to your health?
1. Gupta R, Prakash H. Association of dietary ghee intake with coronary heart disease and risk factor prevalence in rural males. J Indian Med Assoc 1997; 95(3):67-9, 83. 1997 2. Kumar MV, Sambaiah K, Lokesh BR. Effect of dietary ghee--the anhydrous milk fat, on blood and liver lipids in rats. J Nutr Biochem 1999; 10(2):96-104. 1999. 3. Kumar MV, Sambaiah K, Lokesh BR. Hypocholesterolemic effect of anhydrous milk fat ghee is mediated by increasing the secretion of biliary lipids. J Nutr Biochem 2000; 11(2):69-75. 2000. 4. Nestel PJ, Chronopulos A, Cehun M. Dairy fat in cheese raises LDL cholesterol less than that in butter in mildly hypercholesterolaemic subjects. Eur J Clin Nutr 2005 Sep; 59(9):1059-63. 2005.
5. Niranjan TG, Krishnakantha TP. Effect of dietary ghee--the anhydrous milk fat on lymphocytes in rats. Mol Cell Biochem 2001; 226(1-2):3947. 2001. 6. Prattala RS, Groth MV, Oltersdorf US, et al. Use of butter and cheese in 10 European countries: a case of contrasting educational differences. Eur J Public Health 2003 Jun; 13(2):124-32. 2003. 7. Shankar SR, Bijlani RL, Baveja T, et al. Effect of partial replacement of visible fat by ghee (clarified butter) on serum lipid profile. Indian J Physiol Pharmacol 2002; 46(3):355-60. 2002. 8. Shankar SR, Yadav RK, Ray RB, et al. Serum lipid response to introducing ghee as a partial replacement for mustard oil in the diet of healthy young Indians. Indian J Physiol Pharmacol 2005 Jan; 49(1):4956. 2005. 9. Singh RB, Niaz MA, Ghosh S, et al. Association of trans fatty acids (vegetable ghee) and clarified butter (Indian ghee) intake with higher risk of coronary artery disease in rural and urban populations with low fat consumption. Int J Cardiol 1996 Oct 25; 56(3):289-98; discussion 299-300. 1996. 10. Trevisan M, Krogh V, Freudenheim J, et al. Consumption of olive oil, butter, and vegetable oils and coronary heart disease risk factors. The Research Group ATS-RF2 of the Italian National Research Council. JAMA 1990, Vol. 263 No. 5: 688 - 692. 1990. 11. Yellowlees WW. Milk, butter, and heart disease. Lancet 1991 Apr 27; 337(8748):1041-2. 1991. 12. Zock PL, Katan MB. Butter, margarine and serum lipoproteins. Atherosclerosis 1997 May; 131(1):7-16. 1997
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