Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Chinese honeysuckle (Niyog-niyogan) - Scientific name: Quisqualis indica

Chinese honeysuckle or Niog-niogan in Tagalog is a perennial climbing shrub growing to about 2.5-8 meters at maturity. It has egg-shaped leaves, aromatic flowers that may come in white to purple orange in color. The oval-shaped fruit can reach 30-35 mm long when ripe. For medicinal purposes leaves, seeds and roots are used.

Medicinal Uses:
  •     Dried seeds, when eaten, act as deworming agents.
  •     Roasted seeds help control diarrhea and fever.
  •     Boiled leaves used to check difficulty in urinating
  •     Fruit decoction of fruit, taken as mouthwash, is effective against nephritis.
  •     Juice made from leaves are used in the treatment of ulcers, boils, and fever-induced headache.
  •     Decoctions of roots aids in reducing pain due to rheumatism.
  •     Pounded leaves are used externally for skin diseases.
How to understand the uses for Honeysuckle in Chinese herbal medicine; get expert tips and advice on employing Chinese alternative healing treatments in this free personal heath video.

Garlic (Bawang) - Scientific name: Allium sativum

Garlic (Bawang) - Scientific name: Allium sativum. Garlic is a low herb with flat and linear leaves growing to about 30 to 60 cm tall. Garlic is commercially grown in the Philippines especially in the provinces of Batangas, Cotabato, Ilocos Norte, Mindoro and Nueva Ecija. Leaves, bulbs, lobes are used for medical purposes.

Bawang or garlic, is a specie in the onion family Alliaceae. Bawang is a close relative of onion (sibuyas), the shallot, the leek and the chive. Garlic has been used throughout recorded history for both culinary and medicinal purposes.

Garlic (Bawang) is a low herb, growing to up to 2 feet high. Bawang is widely popular for its bulbs. Bawang bulbs are broadly ovoid, 2 to 4 cm in diameter, consisting of several cloves. Bawang leaves are linear and flat. Umbels are globose, many flowered. Sepas are oblong, greenish white, slightly tinged with purple.

Bawang has a characteristic pungent, spicy flavor that mellows and sweetens considerably with cooking. Bawang cloves are used as seed, for consumption (raw or cooked), and for medicinal purposes. The leaves, stems (scape) and flowers (bulbils) on the head (spathe) are also edible and most often consumed while immature and still tender.

Medical uses of bawang herbal medicine

Antiinfectious: Antibacterial, antifungal, antiparasitic. Bawang juice is applied to the afflicted area. Scientifically ajoene 0.4% cream when applied topically, has been found 70% effective in certain dermatologic fungal infections. A 0.6% gel was effective in tinea corporis and tinea cruris.

Antiinflammatory and antioxidant activity when included in diet.

Hypertension: Bawang when eaten or chewed raw. Studies suggest ingestion of Bawang has beneficial antihypertensive effect but blood-lowering effects probably not dramatic. Other studies show a vascular benefit through improvement of aortic elasticity and possible slowing of the rate of atherosclerosis progression

Hyperlipidemia: Bawang eaten or chewed raw is found to lower blood cholesterol. Though still controversial, but probably has beneficial effect on serum cholesterol and LDL levels. Some studies have shown a 4% to 12% lowering of total cholesterol. Bawang seems to have no effect on high density lipoprotein (HDL).

Anti-cancer: Bawang is studied to have possible anticarcinogenic properties, specifically for colon, stomach and prostate cancers. In stomach cancers, probably through its inhibitory effect on H. pylori. In epidemiologic studies on stomach and colorectal cancer prevention, the garlic use was 3.5 grams to 30 grams of fresh or cooked garlic per week.

Other folkloric uses of Bawang as herbal medicine that needs further studies for verification:

Arthritis, rheumatism, toothaches: Crush several Bawang cloves and rub on affected areas.

Headaches: Crush one Bawang clove and apply to both temples as poultice.

Insect bites: Crush Bawang or cut clove crosswise and rub directly to affected area.

Athlete's foot.Crush Bawang or cut clove crosswise and rub directly to affected area.

Fever, Decoction of boiled Bawang leaves and bulbs set to luke warm and applied to the head and body.

Colds, cough, sore throat, hoarseness, asthma and bronchitis; Nasal congestion steam inhalation of chopped Bawang and a teaspoon of vinegar in boiling water.

Fresh Bawang has been used as a complement herbal medicine to INH therapy for tuberculosis.

Digestive problems and gastrointestinal spasms. Drink an infusion of a peeled bawang clove or can also be used as suppository.