Although it carries the “stigma” of carrying bread, its health properties make it interesting enough to give it another try.

Two plates of salmorejo, with its ham and its egg.

Known inside and outside of Spain, the salmorejo is the cousin foodie of the gazpacho. Among its supporters and detractors there is a war even older than that of the tortilla with or without onion.

This orange cream gains followers especially in social networks for its texture, very given to being plated with more or less taste in fashionable restaurants. While, gazpacho continues to be the preferred cocktail of vegetables (and fruit, which the tomato is classified as such) in the national domestic sphere.

One of the arguments to discredit salmorejo as a healthy preparation is to point out with a certain harshness one of its base ingredients, bread, on which a stigma falls. This food composed of flour, yeast and salt is the first to disappear when diet and operation bikini.

It is mainly made up of carbohydrates and a small part of protein, which come from the vegetable protein of the cereal (gluten) and in the case of white bread, it has a high glycemic index. That is, the absorption of glucose is so rapid that the excess is more likely to be stored in the form of glycogen and fat.

Must So discard salmorejo from your diet and abandon this article? No give it another chance to this preparation full of health benefits. In addition, depending on the amounts consumed and with which it is made, it can be an acceptable supplement to many diets.

The perfect salmorejo

Science is transversal and studies all kinds of fields, it can look at the black hole in the center of the Milky Way and at the same time, unravel the mystery about what are the ingredients of the perfect salmorejo. This has been the leitmotiv, for ten years, from a study carried out by a group of researchers from the University of Córdoba.

Scientists spent a decade trying to typify salmorejo, in order to obtain a homogeneous version. In 2016 they published their conclusions, pointing out the ideal proportions of the prepared summer season and determining its nutritional value.

The ideal recipe leads a kilo of pear-type tomato, usually unpeeled; 117 milliliters of extra virgin olive oil; 197 grams of telera bread, neither previously moistened, nor of the day; 5.8 grams of Montalbán garlic and nine grams of coarse salt. The usual accompaniment or garnish is usually ham and hard-boiled egg.

Low in calories

Regarding its nutritional contribution, the researchers concluded that this traditional preparation is a low-calorie dish. It is also rich in water-soluble and fat-soluble vitamins, as well as having a high proportion of monounsaturated fatty acids.

“By having bread and oil among its ingredients, with the possibility of adding chopped egg or ham, we are facing a dish with carbohydrates, proteins and fats, to which are added vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants mainly tomato (even better if it is used with the skin) ”, explains to EL ESPAÑOL María Carmen Japaz, dietician and nutritionist.

Antioxidant

As the expert points out, the key to its benefits is in tomato, which provides the body with vitamin A, C, K, phosphorus, potassium and lycopenes, a carotenoid with an antioxidant effect that acts as a protector against cardiovascular diseases.

This fruit is also rich in polyphenols, which have a strong antioxidant power and protect the body from cell damage. For its part, extra virgin olive oil reduces gastric acidity, prevents constipation, is anti-inflammatory and protects the heart.

Take care of the digestive tract

Much of the tomato is water and both “the contribution of liquid and potassium is very important to replace losses due to sweating,” adds Japaz. The salmorejo acts as a diuretic and in this way it keeps the intestine healthy.

Also, part of its ingredients, garlic and onion, decrease the risk of colon cancer, both in men and women, according to research carried out by scientists from the University of Almería.

Good for the eyes and the brain

Several nutrients present in tomatoes are the perfect allies to maintain eye health. Specifically, people who include high doses of zeaxanthin and lutein in their diets have a 35% lower risk of exudative AMD, the least common form of macular degeneration, according to research published by JAMA Ophthalmology.

For its part, lycopene and beta-carotene, also present in the red fruit that gives the characteristic orange color to salmorejo, also protect neurons. This is explained by a review of different investigations carried out by scientists from the University of Alabama, USA.

Disadvantages

Despite the fact that “depending on the proportion of its different ingredients, salmorejo is very versatile to be used for both low-calorie and high-calorie diets“As the nutritionist clarifies, in some cases its consumption is contraindicated.

First, it should be remembered that there is not a single preparation or a single food that, consumed daily, ensures that it meets the requirements of each organism. Therefore, for people who require a extra calorie intake in your diet, salmorejo is a good option, but if the amount of bread or oil it includes is not controlled, this cream could add many calories. Something negative in case of having a diet whose objective is to lose weight or maintain it.

“In patients with chronic renal failure or heart failure, the consumption of this preparation is not recommended due to its very high potassium content“, Sentence Japaz.