King Kamut: the mighty grain
Kamut Khorasan wheat; an ancient grain with an amazing modern day story.
Believed to have been introduced to Egypt by the Romans, for some years folklore suggested it was “the wheat of the Pharaohs” after a handful of the kernels were taken home by a US airman from Egypt in 1949.
A case of “Jack and the wheatstalk”?
Grown and subsequently marketed as “King Tut’s wheat” these few grains turned out to be pretty magical as they were the forbears of today’s Kamut crop of some 40,000 acres farmed in Montana, Alberta and Saskatchewan, producing over 20,000 tons a year.
A fantastic addition to a routine nutrition
Kamut is gentle on the digestive system and can be an excellent substitute for common wheat. With a nutty, sweet flavour, when boiled it is great as a base in salads or stews.
- Try blending raw Kamut grains and adding to porridge
- Make bread with Kamut flour or pizza dough – kamut bread is fantastic with cheese
- Substitute Kamut pasta for white pasta – its flavour is similar to refined wheat flour, but with the whole array of nutritional benefits of whole grain
Kamut has never been genetically modified, is organically grown and is a grain with a high nutritional profile. It’s a top source for manganese, which aids to support the nervous system and helps to regulate blood sugar levels and the absorption of calcium. People who have a routine nutrition high in manganese are less likely to develop diabetes, osteoporosis and arthritis.
Kamut provides a generous amount of protein, which plays an important role in maintaining strong tissues, aids in oxygen transport around the body, whilst also supporting the immune system.
A good source of the minerals zinc, selenium and magnesium;
- Zinc benefits the immune system and promotes healthy thyroid function
- Selenium and magnesium function as antioxidants protecting from genetic mutation and cell membrane damage caused by free radicals.
- On top of this, selenium supports the body’s hormone balance, whilst magnesium strengthens bones.
Finally, it is even a wonderful source of fibre, which helps lower cholesterol, maintains digestive health and aids in combating type 2 diabetes.
The more variety of different whole grains in a routine nutrition the better the chances for optimal health, while according to the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, consuming Kamut products was associated with a significant reduction in total cholesterol and blood sugar, as well as lowering levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines (cell signalling molecules).
An extraordinary grain that could never be linked to the Pharaohs, Tutankhamun or the beauty of Nefertiti, but it’s nice to think it may perhaps have formed part of the diet of Cleopatra, maybe even introduced to her by Julius Caesar or Mark Anthony?
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