Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Health Benefits of Consuming Vanilla Orchids

Amazingly, vanilla gets used in everyday products like candles, food, and even cosmetics, all coming from the vanilla orchid plant. These are fairly easy to grow, but it is often hard to get them to flower and provide fruit.

The Vanilla Orchid is native to Mexico and it was recorded that the actual plant was handed to the Spanish by a certain Montezuma leader of the Aztecs back in 1518, then shipped later on to Europe. Even though the Vanilla Orchid plant can be grown in other countries, the fruit and flowers from the plant could not be attained. For more than 300 years, Mexico was the only place where the Orchid flowers could be pollinated by the Melipone bee. Then, in 1841 people developed a hand pollination method that is still being used today.

Interestingly, the Vanilla orchid plant is graded as a epiphyte orchid that lives in the very humid rain forests of South America and Mexico. Vines of the orchid would grow in lenght to about 40 feet with leaves as long as 4 inches. It would take the Vanilla Orchid Plant between 7 and 8 years to fully mature. The fruit would often be referred to as vanilla beans that would grow in pods. It should be noted that a healthy vine can produce as many as a 1000 flowers over a period of 20 days.

The Benefits Experience from Consuming Vanilla Orchids

The medicinal benefits of vanilla would include using it as treatment of various fevers, it is also considered to be mildly addictive and is often described as an aphrodisiac.

The main forms in which vanilla would be used is in commercial preparations such as whole pods, powered form, and as an extract.

Foods would be flavored with vanilla in that it would be added as an extract or through cooking vanilla pods as part of a liquid preparation. You would be able to obtain a stronger aroma by splitting the pod into two pieces as you would expose more of the vanilla pod's surface area. In doing this, you would prepare the pod seeds for flavoring of food. Amazingly, natural vanilla would either give of a yellow or brown color when preparing it which also depends on the strength of the concentration. When off a good quality, it normally has a strong aromatic flavor which is good. In the majority of cases, vanilla is used for flavoring ice creams.

Even though vanilla is quite a rich flavoring agent, it is also being used to improve the flavor of things like custard coffee, caramel and so forth. Within the cosmetic industry, vanilla is used as a scent and perfume. Due to this, it is therefore imperative that vanilla pods arer graded properly to ensure the best yield. 


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