Fox nuts

Origin: Fox nut natively belongs to southern asia and eastern Asia. It is also very popular in India. It is also indigenous to Korea, japan and Russia. It grows extensively in korea, japan, india and Russia. The foxnut plant is cultivated for its seeds in lowland ponds and lakes in countries like India, China, and Japan.

The Chinese are known to have cultivated this plant for centuries now. In india, Bihar is one of the state known for cultivation of foxnut seed. In Bihar, More than 96,000 hectares of land were kept aside for cultivation of Euryale in 1990-1991.  

Scientifically: Fox nut is botanically known as Euryale ferox. It also commonly known as gorgon nut. It belongs to the species of the genus Euryale. Foxnut basically belong to foxnut plant which is a flowering plant classified in the water lily family Nymphaeaceae. Foxnut plant grows in water and has bright purple flowers. The leaves are large and round and are more than a meter in size. the leaf stalk of the plant is attached to the centre of the lower surface.

The underside of the leaf is purplish and the upper surface is in bright green in color. The leaves have a quilted texture and the stems, flowers, and leaves float on the surface with sharp pricks. The name Euryale is derived from the mythical Greek Gorgon by the same name. Foxnut plant usually grows in ponds, wetlands etc. foxnut harvesting is a laborious method and requires skilled labour to collect them. The harvesting process usually starts during the morning at about 10:00 am and continues till about 3:00 pm. It takes five hours or more to collect seeds from the bottom of the pond, lake or river to the top. The collected seeds and nuts are later washed and cleaned for storage. 

Usage: Foxnuts are known for their high nutritive value. Foxnuts make a great snack and is rich in medicinal properties. The daily consumption of the foxnut is considered to be highly beneficial for the body. Foxnuts are gluten-free nuts and are a rich source of protein, carbohydrates, calcium, magnesium, and antioxidants. Foxnuts also have low glycemic index. These nuts are low in calorie and fat content. Thus it helps in lowering high blood pressure, diabetes, chronic inflammation, and body stress. It also improves bone health and bone density. It is also eaten as a fasting food in India as it considered very religious nut. And,it is also used to worship God and is offered as a prasad.

Below are some DIYs with foxnuts:

-    Soak 4-5 fox nuts in 2-3 tablespoons of milk for a few hours. Later, blend them into a fine paste. Apply this paste on the face for 15 minutes. Massage it gently and then rinse it off. This remedy helps in deep moisturization of the skin. 
-    Apply soaked foxnut paste on the face for a few minutes helping in soothing inflamed skin. 
-    Extract fresh aloe vera gel and soaked fox nuts (soaked in water for few hours). Blend them together with a tablespoon of yogurt. Apply this mask on the roots of the hair and the length. Keep it on for 30 minutes. This helps in strengthening the hair and prevents premature graying. 
-    Apply the fox nut paste with teaspoon of honey and a pinch of cinnamon. Mix them together and apply on the face. Keep it on for 5 minutes. This helps in removing dry and flaky skin.