What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear the word pickle? Probably, your grandmother’s handmade aam ka achaar. Ours is a country that thrives on pickles. Any meal without a dash of pickle on the side seems incomplete. There are myriads of pickles to choose from. Every region of India has its own way of making pickles. There is a variety of pickles for everyone in India suitable to their individual taste. For those who like spicy pickles, the pickles prepared using the recipe of the Andhra cuisine serves as a meal saver. The ones who prefer sweeter pickles, may opt for pickles made using tips from the Gujarati cuisine. The most common pickles are mango pickle, red chilli pickle, lime pickle and mixed pickle. 

Image Credit : Pexels. 

A lesser-known fact about pickles is that it’s not just limited to India. There are so many pickles that are made in the international cuisine like the Japanese pickles that are called Tsukemono and have a crunchy, sweet-tart flavour. A common Dutch pickle that originated from the kingdom of Netherlands in Europe is the onion and gherkins pickle. As pickles slowly take over the world, here are a few benefits of consuming them: 

Fermented pickles can be your best friend 

The best way to reap the health benefits of pickles is by taking time to ferment them yourself. In fact, fermented pickles like Kimchi and Miso help in digestion and improve gut health. Fermented pickles are said to be packed with antioxidants all thanks to the ripe ingredients present in them. When ingested these fermented pickle help to increase the good bacteria in your stomach, helping you to strengthen your gut health.

Vitamin packed and nutrient rich 

Pickles are full of vitamins and nutrients. For example, lime pickle which is commonly found in Indian households is a rich source of Vitamin C. Similarly, mixed vegetable pickles that have assorted vegetables like carrot, turnip and cauliflower in them are nutritious and also help to control blood sugar levels. The Aamla pickle is good for your eyes, hair and skin. Seasonal pickles also boost your immunity against various seasonal diseases and flus. 

Credit: Unsplash

Pickles ensure consumption of seasonal vegetables 

Pickles enhance the taste of every meal that one consumes. Apart from being tasty, consuming pickles could also compensate for missing out on seasonal vegetables and fruits. Due to the hectic schedules of our lives, many times we aren’t able to take the time to shop and cook seasonal vegetables. However, consuming pickles that are made from seasonal vegetables and fruits ensures that these remain a part of our diet. This, in turn, boosts our overall health. Many Himalayan pickles contain leafy green vegetables in achaars or pickles, which are relished with a simple plate of dal-chawal. 

Helps in maintaining body weight 

Certain pickles like chilli pickle made from green chillies and lemon pickle made from lemons are low on fat and calories. They also have a healthy impact on the heart and are full of fibres. Mango pickle is another example of a pickle that helps to improve immunity and protects the liver. If had in right quantities, pickles can truly work wonders for your health. 

Pickles are a great way to spice up your bland meal and owing to all of the health benefits above, they are steadily becoming the favourite condiment of many.