Epazote (pronounced eh-pah-ZOH-teh) is an aromatic herb; both the fresh leaves and tender stems are used in cooking. The epazote plant is a leafy annual or short-lived perennial plant that can reach 4 feet in height. Its dark green, long, slender, jagged leaves end in a point. The flowers are green and very small; they produce thousands of tiny seeds. As an herb, it is suitable for gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, and paleo diets.
Some people also use epazote to make tea, as it is believed to help regulate digestion, relieve stomach cramps, and even fight intestinal parasites. It can also help with gas and bloating, which is the reason why epazote is often used when cooking black beans.
Epazote has a large amount of dietary fiber, which helps to improve digestive problems, favors the reduction of flatulence and relieves indigestion due to the presence of carminative compounds that act as aging agents. Consumption of the herb can reduce gastrointestinal problems such as constipation, cramps and abdominal bloating. In addition to helping in the treatment of acid reflux and gastritis, and helping to detoxify and strengthen the liver.
Epazote has antioxidant compounds such as vitamin A and beta-carotene that bring benefits to the immune system and help protect the skin from premature aging, they also help protect the body from oxidative stress that can result in the development of various chronic diseases, including, cancer and heart disease.
The presence of B-complex vitamins in epazote is able to increase the metabolism efficiency. In addition to promoting the conversion of food nutrients into energy, these vitamins improve eye and skin health, nervous system, immune system, and brain function.