Now that we are nearly in the Season to be jolly, it is reasonable to suppose that there will be much capering around. This might take the form of a lively skip or a playful dance, or a crazy plan that makes you feel a tad daft, but fun is always good for your health. Certainly there is going to be much eating and drinking over the next few days so you might be glad to hear of some capers that can help out with the over indulgence. These are the capers that come from the Capparis spinosa plant. The medicinal use of capers dates back to the time of the great Greek Physician, Dioscorides and it is still recognised today. Unfortunately, it won’t grow in the UK. We don’t have enough sunlight or heat, but you can buy it in it’s signature tall and narrow jar.
Capers are high in quercitin. In fact, they have more of it per weight than any other plant. Quercitin is a plant pigment known as flavonoids and these are antioxidants. They clear the body of free radicals which are known to cause damage to your cells. It is believed to protect against heart disease and cancer. It is an anti-inflammatory and antihistamine and so helps moderate allergic reactions. And as if this is not enough, quercitin will also prevent damage to your ‘good’ cholesterol (LDL), and the more LDL you have, all the better for combating ‘bad’ cholesterol. Basically, the more capers you have, the more capers you will enjoy. They are even recommended for high blood pressure. There is however, one thing you need be careful about. Edible capers are preserved in brine. Make sure you wash off the salty water before use.