lotus leaf / flower extract more
Scientific name: Nelumbo Nucifera
Family name: Nelumbonaceae
Plant origin: Northeastern China
Parts: leaf, flowers
Nelumbo nucifera (পদ্ম), known by numerous common names including Indian lotus, sacred lotus, bean of India, or simply lotus, is one of two species of aquatic plant in the family Nelumbonaceae. The Linnaean binomial Nelumbo nucifera (Gaertn.) is the currently recognized name for this species, which has been classified under the former names, Nelumbium speciosum (Willd.) and Nymphaea nelumbo, among others. Names other than Nelumbo nucifera (Gaertn.) are obsolete synonyms and should not be used in current works. This plant is an aquatic perennial. Under favorable circumstances its seeds may remain viable for many years, with the oldest recorded lotus germination being from that of seeds 1,300 years old recovered from a dry lakebed in northeastern China.
A common misconception is referring to the lotus as a water lily (Nymphaea), an entirely different plant, as can be seen in the center of the flowers. Nymphaea lacks the structure that goes on to form the distinctive circular seed pod in the Nelumbo nucifera.
The flowers, seeds, young leaves, and "roots" (rhizomes) are all edible. In Asia, the petals are sometimes used for garnish, while the large leaves are used as a wrap for food, not frequently eaten (for example, as a wrapper for zongzi). In Korea, the leaves and petals are used as a tisane. Yeonkkotcha (연꽃차) is made with dried petals of white lotus andyeonipcha (연잎차) is made with the leaves. Young lotus stems are used as a salad ingredient in Vietnamese cuisine. Therhizome (called ǒu (藕) in pinyin Chinese, ngau in Cantonese, thambou in Manipuri, kamal kakri in Hindi, renkon (レンコン, 蓮根 in Japanese), yeongeun (연근 in Korean) is used as a vegetable in soups, deep-fried, stir-fried, and braised dishes and the roots are also used in traditional Asian herbal medicine. Petals, leaves, and rhizome can also all be eaten raw, but there is a risk of parasite transmission (e.g., Fasciolopsis buski): it is therefore recommended that they be cooked before eating.
Lotus rootlets are often pickled with rice vinegar, sugar, chili and/or garlic. It has a crunchy texture with sweet-tangy flavours. In Asian cuisine, it is popular with salad, prawns, sesame oil and/or coriander leaves. Lotus roots have been found to be rich in dietary fiber, vitamin C, potassium, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin B6, phosphorus, copper, andmanganese, while very low in saturated fat.
The stamens can be dried and made into a fragrant herbal tea called liánhuā cha (蓮花茶) in Chinese, or (particularly in Vietnam) used to impart a scent to tea leaves. This Vietnamese lotus tea is called trà sen, chè sen, or chè ướp sen. The lotus seeds or nuts (called liánzĭ, 蓮子; or xiān liánzĭ, 鲜莲子, in Chinese) are quite versatile, and can be eaten raw or dried and popped like popcorn, phool makhana. They can also be boiled until soft and made into a paste, or boiled with dried longans and rock sugar to make a tong sui (sweet soup). Combined with sugar, lotus seed paste becomes one of the most common ingredients used in pastries such as mooncakes, daifuku, and rice flourpudding.
In South Indian states, the Lotus Stem is sliced, marinated with salt to dry, and the dried slices are fried and used as a side dish. In Kerala and Tamil Nadu, this end product is called " Thamara Vathal". In Sri Lanka, the sliced Lotus Stem curry is a popular dish called "Nelum Ala". In Vietnam, the bitter tasting germs of the lotus seeds are also made into a tisane (trà tim sen).
The flavonol miquelianin (Quercetin 3-O-glucuronide), as well as the alkaloids (+)-1(R)-coclaurine and (-)-1(S)-norcoclaurine, can be found in the leaves of N. nucifera. The plant also contains nuciferine, aporphine, lotusine and neferin.
Also known as
Nelumbo nucifera, Sacred water lotus, Pink Lotus, East Indian Lotus, Nelumbium speciosum (Willd.), Sacred Lotus, Sacred Water Lily, Bean of India, Bunga Telpok, Ch’Ieh, Chieh Fen, Chinese Arrowroot, and Egyptian Bean.
The Sacred water lotus has been used in the Orient as a medicinal herb for well over 1,500 years, and is also an important religious, artistic, and folklore icon. It was brought to India from Egypt, where it was associated with the sun: the lotus, like the sun, opened in the morning and closed at night. It was also associated with the god Horus, who was often depicted sitting or standing on the lotus, like Brahma and the Buddha after him. In Egypt the flower was blue and white, and was seen as a flower of resurrection, and used in funeral rights and depicted in the artwork in tombs. In India it represents birth and rebirth; Brahma was born seated on a lotus flower. All of parts of the plant may be used.
Seeds, flower petals, flower stamens, pods, and leaves.
The flower petals and leaves are typically made into a tea or decoction for internal and external use. They may also be used as a garnish, smoked, floated in soups, and the fresh petals are used as a wrap in Asia. It is also said that the petals steeped in wine or tea have a calming effect.
Lotuses have long been held sacred by Buddhists, Hindus, and Egyptians, whom all believe that Lotus flowers bring prosperity, fertility, and allow the inner being to bloom. Lotus flowers have long been revered by cultures all around the world, and has been used extensively in folklore, religion, literature, shrines, art, architecture, and sculpture. The lotus is discussed in Buddhist literature, and is the object of meditation in Tantrik Buddhism. Indians believe that Brahma, creator and God of the universe, sprang from a lotus blossom. Architecture of the ancient Greeks is an offshoot of the Assyrian Phoenician architecture, which used the lotus as their basis. The Sacred Lotus has an American relative, Nelumbo petapetala, which was used as a source of starch by the Native American Indians. In addition, the Lotus flower was immortalized in Homer’s “The Odyssey” when Ulysses and his crew come ashore to an Island of the Lotus-Eaters. In addition, a number of wild animals feed on the plant, and fish find refuge in its underwater stalks.
None known. This herb is considered relatively safe for long-term use, with no known negative side-effects.