we are not an environmentalist. we are an Earth warrior

Monday, 1 August 2011

HERBS AND THEIR MEDICINAL PROPERTIES

Herbs contribute odours, fragrance and flavour making food more delicious and palatable. They can be used in a variety of ways and are added to a wide range of food and consumer products. Herbs are also known for their traditional medicinal uses and beliefs which for most still needed to be scientifically proven. When used fresh and raw they contribute significant nutrients especially dietary fiber, vitamins and minerals.


Some examples of herbs :



 
KACIP FATIMAH (LABISA PUMILIA).


Botanical name: Labisa Pumilia.

Common name: Kacip Fatimah.

Description: Labisia Pumila is a herbaceous shrub with a rhizome. The leaves are erect and dark green. The petiole is short and slightly flattened. The stem is slightly woody, dark brown and at the older nodes of the stem, roots are produced that grow down into the soil. Flowers are pink or pale violet, about 2mm in size. The fruit is a globose berry, bright red

Medical uses: Kacip Fatimah has been traditionally used by the Malay women for many generations in childbirth in inducing and eases delivery, as a post partum medication to help contract the birth channel, to regain body strength, regulate menstrual cycle and avoid painful or difficult menstration, and to alleviate menopausal symptoms.  The plant is traditionally boiled and the water extraction is taken as a drink.  Other traditional uses include treating dysentery, rheumatism, and gennoehoea.  It is also used as antiflatulence by helping to drive away and prevent the formation of gas.  The plant will also help to firm and tone the abdominal muscles.  Scientific studies have established that the medicinal properties and biological activities of Kacip Fatimah are due to the presence of phyto-estrogen (plant estrogen) that is naturally found in the plant. 

The Labisia pumila is a small herbaceous under shrub that roots from the stem. There are few leaves which point upwards. The root is tough and woody with long primary roots and few secondary roots.  The tip of the leaf is pointed with a base that is tapered or rather broad –rounded. The leaf has a slight odor and taste. The whole leaf is about 5-35cm long and 2-8cm wide finely toothed with numerous veins. It is of a dark green color on adaxial and lighter green on the abaxial.  Flowers on the shrub are very small, generally white or pink, in spike like panicle of small clusters. They range from 6-30 cm long with sepals, petals and stamens. The petals wrap around and enclose the stamens. The fruit are about .5cm in diameter and are either bright red or purple.





HALIA BARA(ZINGIBER OFFICINALE).




Scientific Name: Zingiber officinale  

  Common name(s): ginger

  Habitat: Humid, partly-shaded habitats in the tropics and subtropics.

  Known hazards: Ginger may cause allergic reactions when applied to the skin. Pregnant women should use ginger with caution, as its safety is not confirmed.

Proposed Medical Benefits of Ginger

Ginger root is used today to provide relief for symptoms of motion sickness including sweating, vomiting, dizziness, and nausea. No conclusive results were found when studies compared commercial medications with ginger. Signs of similar results between the two did seem apparent in the studies.

Ginger has other uses including relieving arthritis pain, ulcerative colitis, menstrual discomfort, headaches, fevers from flu and colds, and sore throats. Gastrointestinal problems including heartburn and gas can also be treated with ginger. The muscles of the gastrointestinal tract can be strengthened by the use of garlic. Ginger is also used to treat arthritis, both rheumatoid and osteoarthritis.





ALOE VERA



Botanical Name: Aloe barbadensis

Common Name:  Aloe vera, Curacao Aloe, Barbados Aloe, Lily of the Desert

Plant Family: Liliaceae
 

Medical properties:
 Aloe is believed to be an effective treatment for wounds. Studies also show that the plant can be used to treat some human and animal diseases.

Body-Building Blocks:
Amino acids are our body's building blocks. Drinking Aloe Vera Juice on a regular basis allows you to help maintain your health by replenishing your body naturally with these essential amino acids.

Anti-Fungal/Anti-Bacterial Supplement:
In 2004, biologists tested the effects of aloe vera on certain bacteria. The test results showed that aloe extract inhibited the growth of the Streptococcus and Shigella bacteria. In effect, aloe has been proven to prevent human conditions like rheumatic fever, pneumonia, meningitis and diarrhea. You can take the oral aloe vera gel to prevent bacteria from acting up on your insides.
Diabetes Prevention:
After undergoing research, aloe extract has been proven to decrease blood glucose levels. Research claims that aloe can prevent or at least slow down the development of diabetes. Medications given to diabetics also contain significant amounts of aloe. The plant is clearly the herbalist's method to control the deadly disease.

Immune Support and Function:
Aloe Vera juice provides natural support for the immune system. Since the immune system works around the clock protecting the body, aloe vera, with its natural immune enhancers, gives the body a continual arsenal from which to draw.

Regulates Weight and Energy Levels:
Aloe Vera Gel naturally, and with regular use, allows the body to cleanse the digestive system. Our diets include many unwanted substances which can cause lethargy and exhaustion. Taken regularly, Aloe Vera Juice from the pure aloe gel ensures a greater feeling of well-being, allowing energy levels to increase and helping to maintain a healthy body weight.

Wound Treatment:
Given its bacteria-killing effects, aloe vera can be used to disinfect wounds. It can protect your open wounds from certain microorganisms that can cause infections.

 















Never does nature say one thing and wisdom another.

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