Category Archives: Dry Fruit

Juglans nigra (walnut)

Botanical Name :Juglans nigra
Family: Juglandaceae
Genus: Juglans
Species: J. regia
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fagales

Common Names:Black Walnut,Persian walnut, English walnut, common walnut or California walnut

Habitat : Juglans regia is native to the mountain ranges of Central Asia, extending from Xinjiang province of western China, parts of Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and southern Kirghizia and from lower ranges of mountains in Nepal, Bhutan, Tibet, northern India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, through Afghanistan, Turkmenistan and Iran to portions of Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia and eastern Turkey. In these countries, there is a great genetic diversity, in particular ancestral forms with lateral fruiting. During its migration to western Europe, the common walnut lost this character and became large trees with terminal fruiting. A small remnant population of these J. regia trees have survived the last glacial period in Southern Europe, but the bulk of the wild germplasm found in the Balkan peninsula and much of Turkey was most likely introduced from eastern Turkey by commerce and settlement several thousand years ago

Description:
Juglans regia is a large, deciduous tree attaining heights of 25–35 m, and a trunk up to 2 m diameter, commonly with a short trunk and broad crown, though taller and narrower in dense forest competition. It is a light-demanding species, requiring full sun to grow well.

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The bark is smooth, olive-brown when young and silvery-grey on older branches, and features scattered broad fissures with a rougher texture. Like all walnuts, the pith of the twigs contains air spaces; this chambered pith is brownish in color. The leaves are alternately arranged, 25–40 cm long, odd-pinnate with 5–9 leaflets, paired alternately with one terminal leaflet. The largest leaflets are the three at the apex, 10–18 cm long and 6–8 cm broad; the basal pair of leaflets are much smaller, 5–8 cm long, with the margins of the leaflets entire. The male flowers are in drooping catkins 5–10 cm long, and the female flowers are terminal, in clusters of two to five, ripening in the autumn into a fruit with a green, semifleshy husk and a brown, corrugated nut. The whole fruit, including the husk, falls in autumn; the seed is large, with a relatively thin shell, and edible, with a rich flavour.

Cultivation:
Walnut trees grow best in rich, deep soil with full sun and long summers, such as the California central valley. In the U.S., J. regia is often grafted onto a rootstock of a native black walnut, Juglans hindsii to provide disease resistance. Other plants often will not grow under walnut trees because the fallen leaves and husks contain juglone, a chemical which acts as a natural herbicide. Horses that eat walnut leaves may develop laminitis, a hoof ailment. Mature trees may reach 50 feet in height and width, and live more than 200 years, developing massive trunks more than eight feet thick.

Edible Uses: Like all other nuts walnuts are eaten and are used in making various  sweet dishes.

Chemical Constituents:
Seven phenolic compounds (ferulic acid, vanillic acid, coumaric acid, syringic acid, myricetin, juglone and regiolone) have been identified in walnut husks by using reverse-phase high-performance liquid chromatography or crystallography.

Walnuts also contain the ellagitannin pedunculagin.

(?)-Regiolone has been isolated with juglone, betulinic acid and sitosterol from the stem-bark of J. regia

Medicinal Uses:
Scientists are not yet certain whether walnuts act as a cancer chemopreventive agent, an effect which may be a result of the fruit’s high phenolic content, antioxidant activity, and potent in vitro antiproliferative activity.

Compared to certain other nuts, such as almonds, peanuts and hazelnuts, walnuts (especially in their raw form) contain the highest total level of antioxidants, including both free antioxidants and antioxidants bound to fiber.

Walnuts are a good source dietary source of serotonin, which is important in maintaining a healthy emotional balance. A lack of serotonin in the brain is thought to be a cause of depression. Walnuts are also one of the best plant based sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Both research and population studies have shown that having the right balance of omega-3 fatty acids in the diet reduces inflammation and may help lower risk such as heart disease, cancer, and auto-immune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis.1

Herbalists are most interested in the bark, leaves and nut husks of black walnut. Black walnut hulls contain juglone, a chemical that is antibacterial, antiviral, antiparasitic, and a fungicide. As a skin wash, black walnut is used to treat ringworm and yeast infections of the skin. Black walnut hull extract is unquestionably one of the best and safest worming agents offered by the plant world. But it can be toxic if not used with proper care, caution, and training. It is an herb best reserved for use by experienced practitioners.

Other uses:
Walnut heartwood is a heavy, hard, open-grained hardwood. Freshly cut live wood may be Dijon-mustard colour, darkening to brown over a few days. The dried lumber is a rich chocolate-brown to black, with cream to tan sapwood, and may feature unusual figures, such as “curly”, “bee’s wing”, “bird’s eye”, and “rat tail”, among others. It is prized by fine woodworkers for its durability, lustre and chatoyance, and is used for high-end flooring, guitars, furniture, veneers, knobs and handles as well as Gunstocks.

Methyl palmitate, which has been extracted from green husks of J. regia has insecticidal properties: at a concentration of 10 mg/ml, it killed 98% of Tetranychus cinnabarinus (carmine spider mites) in one study.

Known Hazards:To remove the husk from kernel can lead to hand staining. Walnut hulls contain phenolics that stain hands and can cause skin irritation.

Black Walnut Side Effects:  Not for long term or chronic use, the juglone in black walnut has carcinogenic effects. Can be toxic if not used with proper care and respect. Remember anything that can kill a tapeworm has the potential of being harmful to the host.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juglans_regia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walnut

http://www.anniesremedy.com/herb_detail221.php

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Phoenix dactylifera (Date)

Botanical Name : Phoenix dactylifera
Family: Arecaceae
Genus: Phoenix
Species: P. dactylifera
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Arecales

Common Names ;Date

Habitat :Phoenix dactylifera is native to the Persian Gulf.It is cultivated for it’s sweet fruit all along the middle east dry areas.

Dates are an important traditional crop in Turkey, Iraq, Arabia, and north Africa west to Morocco and are mentioned more than 50 times in the Bible. Dates (especially Medjool and Deglet Noor) are also cultivated in southern California, Arizona and southern Florida in the United States.

Description:
The date palm is dioecious, having separate male and female plants.It is a medium-sized plant, 15–25 m tall, growing singly or forming a clump with several stems from a single root system. The leaves are 3–5 m long, with spines on the petiole, and pinnate, with about 150 leaflets; the leaflets are 30 cm long and 2 cm wide. The full span of the crown ranges from 6 to 10 m.

click to see the pictures

The fruit is known as a date. The fruit’s English name (through Old French), as well as the Latin species name dactylifera, both come from the Greek word for “finger,” dáktulos, because of the fruit’s elongated shape. Dates are oval-cylindrical, 3–7 cm long, and 2–3 cm diameter, and when unripe, range from bright red to bright yellow in colour, depending on variety. Dates contain a single seed about 2–2.5 cm long and 6–8 mm thick. Three main cultivar groups of date exist: soft (e.g. ‘Barhee’, ‘Halawy‘, ‘Khadrawy’, ‘Medjool’), semi-dry (e.g. ‘Dayri’, ‘Deglet Noor’, ‘Zahdi’), and dry (e.g. ‘Thoory’). The type of fruit depends on the glucose, fructose and sucrose content.

Cultivation & Propagation:
Dates are naturally wind pollinated but in both traditional oasis horticulture and in the modern commercial orchards they are entirely pollinated manually. Natural pollination occurs with about an equal number of male and female plants. However, with assistance, one male can pollinate up to 100 females. Since the males are of value only as pollinators, this allows the growers to use their resources for many more fruit producing female plants. Some growers do not even maintain any male plants as male flowers become available at local markets at pollination time. Manual pollination is done by skilled labourers on ladders. In some areas such as Iraq the pollinator climbs the tree using a special climbing tool that wraps around the tree trunk and the climber’s back to keep him attached to the trunk while climbing. Less often the pollen may be blown onto the female flowers by a wind machine.

They can be easily grown from seed, but only 50% of seedlings will be female and hence fruit bearing, and dates from seedling plants are often smaller and of poorer quality. Most commercial plantations thus use cuttings of heavily cropping cultivars. Plants grown from cuttings will fruit 2–3 years earlier than seedling plants.

A date palm cultivar, known as Judean date palm is renowned for its long-lived orthodox seed, which successfully sprouted after accidental storage for 2000 years. This particular seed was presently reputed to be the oldest viable seed until the sprouting of over 30,000 year old silene stenophylla seeds, but the upper survival time limit of properly stored seeds remains unknown.

Date palms can take 4 to 8 years after planting before they will bear fruit, and produce viable yields for commercial harvest between 7 to 10 years. Mature date palms can produce 80–120 kilograms (176–264 lb) of dates per harvest season, although they do not all ripen at the same time so several harvests are required. In order to get fruit of marketable quality, the bunches of dates must be thinned and bagged or covered before ripening so that the remaining fruits grow larger and are protected from weather and pests such as birds.

Edible Uses:
Dates fruit  have been a staple food of the Middle East for thousands of years. They are believed to have originated around the Persian Gulf, and have been cultivated since ancient times from Mesopotamia to prehistoric Egypt, possibly as early as 4000 BCE. The Ancient Egyptians used the fruits to be made into date wine, and ate them at harvest. There is archaeological evidence of date cultivation in eastern Arabia in 6000 BCE. (Alvarez-Mon 2006).

In later times, traders spread dates around South and South West Asia, northern Africa, and Spain and Italy. Dates were introduced into Mexico and California by the Spaniards by 1765, around Mission San Ignacio.

Dates ripen in four stages, which are known throughout the world by their Arabic names kimri (unripe), khlal (full-size, crunchy), rutab (ripe, soft), tamr (ripe, sun-dried). A 100 gram portion of fresh dates is a source of vitamin C and supplies 230 kcal (960 kJ) of energy. Since dates contain relatively little water, they do not become much more concentrated upon drying, although the vitamin C is lost in the process.

In Islamic countries, dates and yogurt or milk are a traditional first meal when the sun sets during Ramadan.

Dry or soft dates are eaten out-of-hand, or may be pitted and stuffed with fillings such as almonds, walnuts, candied orange and lemon peel, tahini, marzipan or cream cheese. Pitted dates are also referred to as stoned dates. Partially dried pitted dates may be glazed with glucose syrup for use as a snack food. Dates can also be chopped and used in a range of sweet and savory dishes, from tajines (tagines) in Morocco to puddings, ka’ak (types of Arab cookies) and other dessert items. Date nut bread, a type of cake, is very popular in the United States, especially around holidays. Dates are also processed into cubes, paste called “‘ajwa”, spread, date syrup or “honey” called “dibs” or “rub” in Libya, powder (date sugar), vinegar or alcohol. Recent innovations include chocolate-covered dates and products such as sparkling date juice, used in some Islamic countries as a non-alcoholic version of champagne, for special occasions and religious times such as Ramadan.

Dates can also be dehydrated, ground and mixed with grain to form a nutritious stockfeed. Dried dates are fed to camels, horses and dogs in the Sahara. In northern Nigeria, dates and peppers added to the native beer are believed to make it less intoxicating.

Sweet sap tapped from date palm in West Bengal, IndiaYoung date leaves are cooked and eaten as a vegetable, as is the terminal bud or heart, though its removal kills the palm. The finely ground seeds are mixed with flour to make bread in times of scarcity. The flowers of the date palm are also edible. Traditionally the female flowers are the most available for sale and weigh 300–400 grams. The flower buds are used in salad or ground with dried fish to make a condiment for bread.

Dates provide a wide range of essential nutrients, and are a very good source of dietary potassium. The sugar content of ripe dates is about 80%; the remainder consists of protein, fiber, and trace elements including boron, cobalt, copper, fluorine, magnesium, manganese, selenium, and zinc. The glycemic index for three different varieties of dates are 35.5 (khalas), 49.7 (barhi) and 30.5 (bo ma’an).

In India and Pakistan, North Africa, Ghana, and Côte d’Ivoire, date palms are tapped for the sweet sap, which is converted into palm sugar (known as jaggery or gur), molasses or alcoholic beverages. In North Africa the sap obtained from tapping palm trees is known as l?gb?. If left for a sufficient period of time (typically hours, depending on the temperature) l?gb? easily becomes an alcoholic drink. Special skill is required when tapping the palm tree so that it does not die.

In Southeast Spain (where a large date plantation exists including UNESCO protected Palmeral of Elche) dates (usually pitted with fried almond) are served wrapped in bacon and shallow fried.

It is also used to make Jallab.
Medicinal Uses:
The fruit, because of its tannin content, is used medicinally as a detersive and astringent in intestinal troubles. In the form of an infusion, decoction, syrup or paste, is administered as a treatment for sore throat, colds, bronchial catarrh. It is taken to relieve fever, cystitis, gonorrhea, edema, liver and abdominal troubles. And it is said to counteract alcohol intoxication.  The seed powder is an ingredient in a paste given to relieve ague. A gum that exudes from the wounded trunk is employed in India for treating diarrhea and genito-urinary ailments. It is diuretic and demulcent. The roots are used against toothache. The pollen yields an estrogenic principle, estrone, and has a gonadotropic effect on young rats.  One traditional belief is that it can counteract alcohol intoxication. The seed powder is also used in some traditional medicines. Because of their laxative quality, dates are considered to be good at preventing constipation..

Other Uses Of the Plant :
Date seeds are soaked and ground up for animal feed. Their oil is suitable for use in soap and cosmetics. They can also be processed chemically as a source of oxalic acid. The seeds are also burned to make charcoal for silversmiths, and can be strung in necklaces. Date seeds are also ground and used in the manner of coffee beans, or as an additive to coffee.

Stripped fruit clusters are used as brooms. In Pakistan, a viscous, thick syrup made from the ripe fruits is used as a coating for leather bags and pipes to prevent leaking.

Date palm sap is used to make palm syrup and numerous edible products derived from the syrup.

Date palm leaves are used for Palm Sunday in the Christian religion. In North Africa, they are commonly used for making huts. Mature leaves are also made into mats, screens, baskets and fans. Processed leaves can be used for insulating board. Dried leaf petioles are a source of cellulose pulp, used for walking sticks, brooms, fishing floats and fuel. Leaf sheaths are prized for their scent, and fibre from them is also used for rope, coarse cloth, and large hats. The leaves are also used as a lulav in the Jewish holiday of Sukkot.

Date palm wood is used for posts and rafters for huts; it is lighter than coconut and not very durable. It is also used for construction such as bridges and aqueducts, and parts of dhows. Leftover wood is burnt for fuel.

Where craft traditions still thrive, such as in Oman, the palm tree is the most versatile of all indigenous plants, and virtually every part of the tree is utilized to make functional items ranging from rope and baskets to beehives, fishing boats, and traditional dwellings.

When Muslims break fast in the evening meal of Ramadan, it is traditional to eat a date first.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phoenix_dactylifera

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_DE.htm

http://www.plantoftheweek.org/week432.shtml

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Macadamia

Kingdom: Plantae

Division: Magnoliophyta

Class: Magnoliopsida

Order:
Proteales

Family: Proteaceae

Genus: Macadamia

Habitat: The macadamia nut, native to the coastal rain forest areas of southern and northern New South Wales in Australia, is considered to be the worlds finest dessert nut.

Description:
Macadamia is a genus of nine species of flowering plants in the family Proteaceae, with a disjunct distribution native to eastern Australia (seven species), New Caledonia (one species M. neurophylla) and Indonesia Sulawesi (one species, M. hildebrandii).

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They are small to large evergreen trees growing to 6–40 m tall. The leaves are arranged in whorls of three to six, lanceolate to obovate or elliptical in shape, 6–30 cm long and 2–13 cm broad, with an entire or spiny-serrated margin. The flowers are produced in a long slender simple raceme 5–30 cm long, the individual flowers 10–15 mm long, white to pink or purple, with four tepals. The fruit is a very hard woody globose follicle with a pointed apex, containing one or two seeds.

The genus is named after John Macadam, who was a colleague of the botanist, Ferdinand von Mueller, who first described the genus. Common names include Macadamia, Macadamia nut, Queensland nut, Bush nut, Maroochi nut and Bauple nut; Indigenous Australian names include Kindal Kindal and Jindilli.

Cultivation and uses:
The nuts are a valuable food crop. Only two of the species, M. integrifolia and M. tetraphylla, are of commercial importance. The remainder of the genus possess poisonous and/or inedible nuts, such as M. whelanii and M. ternifolia; the toxicity is due to the presence of cyanogenic glycosides. These glycosides can be removed by prolonged leaching, a practice carried out by some Indigenous Australian people in order to use these species as well.

The two species of edible macadamia readily hybridise, and M. tetraphylla is threatened in the wild due to this. Wild nut trees were originally found at Mt. Bauple near Maryborough in SE Queensland, Australia. Locals in this area still refer to them as “Bauple nuts”. The macadamia nut is the only plant food native to Australia that is produced and exported in any significant quantity.

Joseph Maiden, Australian botanist, wrote in 1889 “It is well worth extensive cultivation, for the nuts are always eagerly bought.” The first commercial orchard of macadamia trees was planted in the early 1880s by Mr Charles Staff at Rous Mill, 12 km south east of Lismore, New South Wales, consisting of M. tetraphylla.[2] Besides the development of a small boutique industry in Australia during the late 19th and early 20th century, macadamia was extensively planted as a commercial crop in Hawaii from the 1900s. The Hawaiian-produced macadamia established the nut internationally.

The macadamia tree is usually propagated by grafting, and does not begin to produce commercial quantities of nuts until it is 7–10 years old, but once established, may continue bearing for over 100 years. Macadamias prefer fertile, well-drained soils, a rainfall of 1,000–2,000 mm, and temperatures not falling below 10°C (although once established they can withstand light frosts), with an optimum temperature of 25°C. The roots are shallow and trees can be blown down in storms; they are also susceptible to Phytophthora root disease. Outside of Australia, commercial production is also established in Hawaii, South Africa, Brazil, California, Costa Rica, Israel, Kenya, Bolivia, New Zealand and Malawi. Australia is now the world’s largest commercial producer – at approximately 40,000 tonnes of nut in shell per year.

The macadamia nut’s kernel is extremely hard to mine out of its shell (it requires about 300 psi or 2000 kPa to crack), but after some time in a warm and dry place the shell may develop big cracks. The nut can be opened then with a screwdriver, though the warm dry conditions also reduce the nutritional value of the nut. The shell is most easily cracked with a metalworking bench vice, but care must be taken not to crush the kernel in the process. The nuts can be opened simply by locating the seam line on the shell (This seam line can be located by looking carefully at the shell) and placing a knife blade on the line and tapping with a hammer. The shell will open and allow the nut to be removed whole. A safer and quicker alternative is to use a Ratchet style PVC pipe cutter. Place the cutter blade on the seam line and ratchet it closed—the shell will split and allow the nut to be removed. When nuts have dried for a period of time the kernel will fall out (with green or fresh nuts the kernel may stick in the shell). The nuts can also be smashed open with a hammer or heavy solid kitchen tool or simply opened using a ratchet style nutcracker. Boiling the nuts for a few minutes in a pot until the nuts rise to the surface is also a good way as it causes the nuts to crack. Nuts of the “Arkin Papershell” variety, cultivated by retired stockbroker Morris Arkin, each have a blemish or small crack somewhere on the shell, and the shell will crack open readily if left for a few days, or if struck properly with a hammer.

Fruit fact: If Macadmia Nuts are heated it can affect the quality of the nut.

Chocolate-covered macadamia nutsMacadamia oil is prized for containing approximately 22% of the Omega-7 palmitoleic acid, which makes it a botanical alternative to mink oil, which contains approximately 17%. This relatively high content of “cushiony” palmitoleic acid plus macadamia’s high oxidative stability make it a desirable ingredient in cosmetics, especially skincare.

Macadamia nuts form the staple diet of the Hyacinth Macaw in captivity. These large parrots are one of the few animals, aside from humans, capable of cracking and shelling the nut.

Macadamia nuts are toxic to dogs. Ingestion may result in macadamia nut toxicosis, which is marked by weakness with the inability to stand within 12 hours of ingestion. Recovery is usually within 48 hours [6].

The trees are also grown as ornamental plants in subtropical regions for their glossy foliage and attractive flowers.

Macadamia species are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species including Batrachedra arenosella.

Macadamia nuts are often used by law enforcement to simulate crack cocaine in drug stings. When chopped, the nuts resemble crack cocaine in color.

Click to see :->

Macadamia Nuts Cut Heart Attack Risk

Benefits of Macadamia Nut Oil

Healthy Receipe with Macadamia Nuts

Macadamia Nut Oil: Three Healthful Pluses

Use of Macadamia oil

Macadamia Precessing

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macadamia_nut

http://www.wildmac.com/macadamia.html

Pecan

Botanical Name: Carya illinoinensis
Family: Juglandaceae

Other Names:Illinoensis,it is a species of hickory,
Habitat : Native to south-central North America, in the United States from southern Iowa, Illinois and Indiana east to western Kentucky and western Tennessee, south through Oklahoma, Arkansas, to Texas, Mississippi, and Louisiana; and in Mexico from Coahuila south to Jalisco and Veracruz.

Description:It is a large deciduous tree, growing to 20–40 m in height (rarely to 44 m,; taller trees to 50–55 m have been claimed but not verified), with a trunk up to 2 m diameter. The leaves are alternate, 40–70 cm long, and pinnate with 9–17 leaflets, each leaflet 2–1 cm long and 2–7 cm broad. The flowers are wind-pollinated, and monoecious, with staminate and pistillate catkins on the same tree; the male catkins are pendulous, up to 18 cm long; the female catkins are small, with three to six flowers clustered together. The fruit is an oval to oblong nut, 2.6–6 cm long and 1.5–3 cm broad, dark brown with a rough husk 3–4 mm thick, which splits off in four sections at maturity to release the thin-shelled nut.

pecan_orchard.jpgpecan-nuts-on-tree.jpg

Pican Orchard

Cultivation:Pecans were one of the most recently domesticated major crops. Although wild pecans were well-known among the colonial Americans as a delicacy, the commercial growing of pecans in the United States did not begin until the 1880s. Today, the U.S. produces between 80% and 95% of the world’s pecans, with an annual crop of 150–200 thousand tonnes. The nut harvest for growers is typically around mid-October. Historically, the leading Pecan-producing state in the U.S. has been Georgia, followed by Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma; they are also grown in Arizona and Hawaii. Outside the United States, pecans are grown in Australia, Brazil, China, Israel, Mexico, Peru and South Africa. They can be grown approximately from USDA hardiness zones 5 to 9, provided summers are also hot and humid.

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Male catkins in spring

Pecan trees may live and bear edible nuts for more than three hundred years. They are mostly self-incompatible, because most cultivars, being clones derived from wild trees, show incomplete dichogamy. Generally, two or more trees of different cultivars must be present to pollenize each other. Click to learn more

Uses
Pecans first became known to Europeans in the 16th century; the Spanish explorer Cabeza de Vaca saw and wrote first about this plant. The Spaniards brought the pecan into Europe, Asia, and Africa beginning in the 16th century.

The nuts of the Pecan are edible, with a rich, buttery flavor. They can be eaten fresh or used in cooking, particularly in sweet desserts but also in some savory dishes. One of the most common desserts with the pecan as a central ingredient is the pecan pie, a traditional southern U.S. recipe. Pecans are also a major ingredient in praline candy, most often associated with New Orleans.

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Pecans

In addition to the pecan nut, the wood is also used in making furniture, in hardwood flooring, as well as flavoring fuel for smoking meats.

Medicinal Uses & Neutrition Value: Pecans are a good source of protein and unsaturated fats. A diet rich in nuts can lower the risk of gallstones in women.[8] The antioxidants and plant sterols found in pecans reduce high cholesterol by reducing the “bad” LDL cholesterol levels.

Clinical research published in the Journal of Nutrition (September 2001) found that eating about a handful of pecans each day may help lower cholesterol levels similar to what is often seen with cholesterol-lowering medications. Research conducted at the University of Georgia has also confirmed that pecans contain plant sterols, which are known for their cholesterol-lowering ability.

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1.Antioxidant-Rich Pecans

2.Cholesterol-Lowering Pecans

3.Weight Control and Pecans

4.Heart-Healthy Pecans

5.Nutrient-Dense Pecans

6.Pictures of pecan receipe

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has acknowledged this and related research and approved the following qualified health claim: “Scientific evidence suggests, but does not prove, that eating 1.5 ounces per day of most nuts, such as pecans, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease.” “This nut is an important source of ellagic acid. Pecan nuts are a good low fat source of vitamin E and also have anti-cancer effects. They can also, if eaten correctly, lead to lower cholesterol levels.”

Click to learn more

Where to buy Pecan

Resources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pecan

Prune

Botanical Name: Prunus domestica (LINN.)
Family: N.O. Rosaceae

Synonym:
Plum Tree.
Part Used: Fruit, dried.
Habitat:
Asia and parts of Europe, best from Bordeaux.

Description: A small tree, 15 to 20 feet high, with numerous spreading branches without spines, young branches smooth, leaves small, alternate on longish petioles, provided with linear, fimbriated, pubescent stipules which are quickly deciduous, blade about 2 inches long, oval, acute at both ends, crenatedentate, smooth above, more or less pubescent underneath, convolute in the bud, flowers appear before leaves. The cultivated plum has been developed from the wild plum, the thorns being lost in the process. Plums were known to the Romans in Cato’s time.

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A prune is a dried fruit of various plum species, mostly Prunus domestica. It is wrinkly in shape, unlike its non-dried counterpart. More than 125 cultivars of plums are grown for drying. Four of the most common cultivars are French, Imperial, Italian, and Greengage. In general, prunes are freestone cultivars (the pit is easy to remove), whereas most other plums grown for fresh consumption are cling (the pit is more difficult to remove). Fresh prunes reach the market earlier than fresh plums and are usually smaller in size.

Prune juice is richer in fiber than plum juice and is often marketed as a treatment for constipation, and it helps with kidney stones. One of the largest and best-known prune producers is Sunsweet Growers, headquartered in Yuba City, CA, who control more than 2/3 of the prune market worldwide. In the United States, an effort to rebrand “prunes” as “dried plums” began in 2000, to appeal to a younger market who associated prunes with elderly people. However, only some varieties of plum are usually called prunes when dried; others have usually been called “dried plums” in any case.

Prunes are used in cooking both sweet and savory dishes. Stewed prunes, a compote, are a dessert. Prunes are a frequent ingredient in North African tagines. Perhaps the best-known gastronomic prunes are those of Agen (pruneaux d’Agen).

There has long been an urban myth that prune juice is an ingredient in Dr. Pepper.

Constituents: Prunes have a faint peculiar odour and a sweetish slightly acidulous and viscid taste. The ripe fruit contains sugar, gum, albumen, malic acid, pectin, vegetable fibre, etc.

Medicinal Action and Uses: Dried prunes are mildly laxative and are frequently employed in decoction. They form a pleasant and nourishing diet for invalids when stewed; they enter into the composition of Confection of Senna. A medicinal tincture is prepared from the fresh flower-buds of the Blackthorn. Some 20 per cent of oil is obtainable by crushing the Plum kernel – this is clear, yellow in colour and has an agreeable almond flavour and smell. It is used for alimentary purposes. The residue after pressing is used in the manufacture of a brandy, which is largely consumed in Hungary.

All prunes are plums, but not every plum is choicest to be prune.They are very good source of Potassium the mineral that maintains normal blood pressure, heart function & reduces risk of stroke. It also promotes bone health & slow down mascular degeneration. Prunes also aids in normalizing blood sugar levels, provide an intestinal protection & lower cholesterol. Remember to keep prunes fresh by storing them in airtight containers in cool,dry and dark place.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prunes

http://botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/p/prunes72.html

http://www.adfs.in/dryfruit/prunes.htm

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Pine Nuts

Pine nuts are the edible seeds of pines (family Pinaceae, genus Pinus). About 20 species of pine produce seeds large enough to be worth harvesting; in other pines the seeds are also edible, but are too small to be of value as a human food.

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Stone Pine cone with pine nuts – note two nuts under each cone scale

In Europe, pine nuts come from the Stone Pine (Pinus pinea), which has been cultivated for its nuts for over 6,000 years, and harvested from wild trees for far longer. The Swiss Pine (Pinus cembra) is also used to a very small extent.

In Asia, two species are widely harvested, Korean Pine (Pinus koraiensis) in northeast Asia (the most important species in international trade), and Chilgoza Pine (Pinus gerardiana) in the western Himalaya. Four other species, Siberian Pine (Pinus sibirica), Siberian Dwarf Pine (Pinus pumila), Chinese White Pine (Pinus armandii) and Lacebark Pine (Pinus bungeana), are also used to a lesser extent.

In North America, the main species are three of the pinyon pines, Colorado Pinyon (Pinus edulis), Single-leaf Pinyon (Pinus monophylla), and Mexican Pinyon (Pinus cembroides). The other eight pinyon species are used to a small extent, as are Gray Pine (Pinus sabineana), Torrey Pine (Pinus torreyana) and Sugar Pine (Pinus lambertiana). In the United States, pine nuts are mainly harvested by Native American tribes; in many areas, they have exclusive rights to the harvest.

Pine nuts contain (depending on species) between 10–34% of protein, with Stone Pine having the highest content. They are also a source of dietary fibre. When first extracted from the pine cone, they are covered with a hard shell (seed coat), thin in some species, thick in others. The nutrition is stored in the large female gametophytic tissue that supports the developing embryo (sporophyte) in the centre. Although a nut in the culinary sense, in the botanical sense pine nuts are seeds; being a gymnosperm, they lack a carpel (fruit) outside.

The shell must be removed before the pine nut can be eaten. Unshelled pine nuts have a long shelf life if kept dry and refrigerated (at –5 to +2 °C); shelled nuts (and unshelled nuts in warm conditions) deteriorate rapidly, becoming rancid within a few weeks or even days in warm humid conditions. Pine nuts are commercially available in shelled form, but due to poor storage, these rarely have a good flavour and may be already rancid at the time of purchase.

Pine nuts have been eaten in Europe and Asia since the Paleolithic period. They are frequently added to meat, fish, and vegetable dishes. In Italian they are called pinoli or (rarely) pignoli (locally also pinoccoli or pinocchi; Pinocchio means ‘pine nut’) and are an essential component of Italian pesto sauce. The pignoli cookie, an Italian specialty confection, is made of almond flour formed into a dough similar to that of a macaroon and then topped with pine nuts. Pine nuts are also featured in the salade landaise of southwestern France. Pine nut coffee, known as piñón (Spanish for pine nut), is a specialty found in the southwest United States, especially New Mexico; it is typically a dark roast coffee and has a deep, nutty flavour. Pine nuts are also used in chocolates and desserts such as baklava.

Korean Pine pine nuts – unshelled, and shell, above; shelled, belowIn the United States, millions of hectares of productive pinyon pine woods have been destroyed due to conversion to grazing lands, and in China, destructive harvesting techniques (such as breaking off whole branches to harvest the cones) and the removal of trees for timber have led to losses in production capacity.

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Korian Pine Nuts

Pine nuts can be pressed to extract pine nut oil, which is valued both for its mild, nutty flavour and its health benefits such as appetite suppression and antioxidant action. Pine nut oil also had economic importance in pre-revolution Russia

Pine nuts are excellent source of Iron,Manganese,Copper,Magnesium and high monosaturated fat, which keeps cardiovascular system healthy.It is also packed with Vitamins A,C & D. This makes it give a boost to the immune system. They contain almost three milligrams of iron in once-ounce serviing. Pine nuts are also higher in protein than most nuts & are good source of Thiamine,Potassium & Phosphorous. Pine nuts are best kept in refrigerator, in airtight containers.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pine_nut

http://www.adfs.in/dryfruit/pinenut.htm

21401Apricot

Botanical Name: Prunus Armeniaca (LINN.)
Family: N.O. Rosaceae

Synonyms: Apricock. Armeniaca vulgaris.
Parts Used: Kernels, oil.
Habitat: Although formerly supposed to come from Armenia, where it was long cultivated,hence the name Armeniaca, there is now little doubt that its original habitat is northernChina, the Himalaya region and other parts of temperate Asia. It is cultivated generallythroughout temperate regions. Introduced into England, from Italy, in Henry VIII’s reign.

 

Description-: A hardy tree, bearing stone fruit, closely related to the peach. The leavesare broad and roundish, with pointed apex; smooth; margin, finely serrated; petiole 1/2 inch to an inch long, generally tinged with red. The flowers are sessile, white, tinged with the same dusky red that appears on the petiole, with five regular sepals and petals and many stamens, and open very early in the spring. The fruit, which ripens end of July to mid-August, according to variety, is a drupe, like the plum, with a thin outer, downy skin enclosing the yellow flesh (mesocarp), the inner layers becoming woody and forming the large, smooth, compressed stone, the ovule ripening into the kernel, or seed. As a rule in Britain, the fruit rarely ripens unless the tree is trained against a wall; when growingnaturally, it is a medium-sized tree. It is propagated by budding on the musselplum stock. A great number of varieties are distinguished by cultivators. Large quantities of the fruit are imported from France. The kernels of several varieties are edible and in Egypt, those of the Musch-musch variety form a considerable article of commerce. Like those of the peach, apricot kernels contain constituents similar to those of the bitter almond: they are imported in large quantities from Syria and California and are oftenused by confectioners in the place of bitter almonds, which they so closely resemble as to be with difficulty distinguished. The French liqueur Eau de Noyaux is prepared from bitter apricot kernels.0

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Cultivation:
The apricot is thought to have originated in northeastern China near the Russian border. In Armenia it was known from ancient times, and is native to Armenia. The Roman General Lucullus (106-57 B.C.) even exported some trees,- cherry, white heart cherry and apricot from Armenia to Europe. While English settlers brought the apricot to the English colonies in the New World, most of modern American production of apricots comes from the seedlings carried to the west coast by Spanish missionaries. Almost all U.S. production is inCalifornia, with some in Washington and Utah.. Turkey is one of the leading dried-apricot producers. In Armenia apricot is grown in Ararat Valley.

Apricots have been cultivated in Persia since antiquity & dried ones were an importantcommodity on Persian trade routes. Apricots remain an important fruit in modern-day Iran where they are known under the common name of Zard-ālū . Iran is the second biggest producer of Apricots.

Although often thought of as a “subtropical” fruit, the Apricot is in fact native to a region with cold winters. The tree is slightly more cold-hardy than the peach, toleratingwinter temperatures as cold as −30 °C or lower if healthy. The limiting factor in apricotculture is spring frosts: They tend to flower very early, around the time of the vernal equinox even in northern locations like the Great Lakes region, meaning spring frost often kills the flowers. The trees do need some winter cold (even if minimal) to bear and grow properly and do well in Mediterranean climate locations since spring frosts are less severe here but there is some cool winter weather to allow a proper dormancy. The dry climate of these areas is best for good fruit production. Hybridisation with the closely related Prunus sibirica (Siberian Apricot; hardy to −50°C but with less palatable fruit) offers options forbreeding more cold-tolerant plants.

Apricot cultivars are most often grafted on plum or peach rootstocks. A cutting of anexisting apricot plant provides the fruit characteristics such as flavor, size, etc., butthe rootstock provides the growth characteristics of the plant.Dried organic apricot, produced in Turkey. The colour is dark because it has not been treated with sulfur dioxide (E220).Many apricots are also cultivated in Australia, particularly South Australia where they are commonly grown in the region known as the Riverland and in a small town called Mypolonga in the Lower Murray region of the state. In states other than South Australia apricots are still grown, particularly in Tasmania and western Victoria and southwest New South Wales, but they are less common than in South Australia.

Apricots are also cultivated in Egypt and are among the common fruits well known there. The season in which apricot is present in the market in Egypt is very short. There is even an Egyptian proverb that says “Fel meshmesh” (English “in the apricot”) which is used to refer to something that will not happen because the apricot disappears from the market in Egypt so shortly after it has appeared. Egyptians usually dry apricot and sweeten it then use it to make a drink called “amar el deen”.

Constituents: Apricot kernels yield by expression 40 to 50 per cent. of a fixed oil,similar to that which occurs in the sweet almond and in the peach kernel, consisting chiefly of Olein, with a small proportion of the Glyceride of Linolic acid, and commonly sold as Peach Kernel oil (Ol. Amygdae Pers.). From the cake is distilled, by digestion with alcohol, an essential oil (0l. Amygdae Essent. Pers.) which contains a colourless, crystalline glucoside, Amygdalin, and is chemically identical with that of the bitter almond. The essential oil is used in confectionery and as a culinary flavouring.

Medicinal Action and Uses:

Apricot fruit is nutritious, cleansing, and mildly laxative. They are a valuable addition to the diet working gently to improve overall health.  A decoction of the astringent bark soothes inflamed and irritated skin.  Although the kernels contain highly toxic prussic acid, they are prescribed in small amounts in the Chinese tradition as a treatment for coughs, asthma, and wheezing, and for excessive mucus and constipation.  An extract from the kernels, laetrile, has been used in Western medicine as a highly controversial treatment for cancer.  The kernels also yield a fixed oil, similar to almond oil that is often used in the formulation of cosmetics.  Chinese trials show that apricot kernel paste helps combat vaginal infection. The flowers are tonic, promoting fecundity in women. The inner bark and/or the root are used for treating poisoning caused by eating bitter almond and apricot seeds (which contain hydrogen cyanide). Another report says that a decoction of the outer bark is used to neutralize the effects of hydrogen cyanide. The decoction is also used to soothe inflamed and irritated skin conditions. It is used in the treatment of asthma, coughs, acute or chronic bronchitis and constipation. The seed contains ‘laetrile’, a substance that has also been called vitamin B17. This has been claimed to have a positive effect in the treatment of cancer, but there does not at present seem to be much evidence to support this.

Apricot oil is used as a substitute for Oil of Almonds,which it very closely resembles. It is far less expensive and finds considerable employment in cosmetics, for its softening action on the skin. It is often fraudulently added to genuine
Almond oil and used in the manufacture of soaps, cold creams and other preparations of the perfumery trade.

Cyanogenic glycosides (found in most stone fruit seeds, bark, and leaves) are found in high
concentration in apricot seeds. Laetrile, a purported alternative treatment for cancer, is
extracted from apricot seeds. As early as the year 502, apricot seeds were used to treat
tumors, and in the 17th century apricot oil was used in England against tumors and ulcers.
However, in 1980 the National Cancer Institute in the USA claimed laetrile to be an ineffective cancer treatment.

In Europe, apricots were long considered an aphrodisiac, and were used in this context in
William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and as an inducer of childbirth labor, as depicted in John Webster’s The Duchess of Malfi.

The IUD (intrauterine device) form of birth control, based on the premise that a foreign object within the uterus will prevent the implantation of an embryo, is linked to an old
practice of camel herders and drivers who would place an apricot pit within the uterus of
their female camels to prevent pregenancy and keep them working at carrying cargo rather than the work of mothering.

 

Dried apricots can also be used as a potent laxative.

Trivia

The Chinese associate the apricot with education and medicine. Chuang Tzu, a Chinese
philosopher in 4th century BCE, had told a story that Confucius taught his students in a
forum among the wood of apricot.

In the 2nd century, Tung Fung, a medical doctor, lived in Lushan. He asked his cured
patients to plant apricots in his backyard instead of paying consultation and medical fees.
Those cured of serious illness planted five, and the rest planted one. After some years, a
hundred thousand apricot trees were planted and the wood become the symbol for doctors and medicine.

In The Wizard of Oz, the Cowardly Lion sings, “What puts the ape in the apricot? Courage!”

Apricots were used by the Australian Aborigines as an aphrodisiac. A special tea was
prepared from the apricot stone, while the fruit was crushed and smeared over the erogenous regions.

Among tank-driving soldiers, apricots are taboo, by superstition. Tankers will not eat apricots, allow apricots onto their vehicles, and often will not even say the word
“apricot”. This superstition stems from Sherman tank breakdowns purportedly happening in the presence of cans of apricots.
Dreaming of apricots, in English folklore, is said to be good luck, though the Chinese
believe the fruit is a symbol of cowardice..

The Turkish idiom “bundan iyisi Åžam’da kayısı” (literally, the only thing better than this is apricot in Damascus) means “it doesn’t get any better than this” and used when something is the very best it can be; like a delicious apricot from Damascus.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints includes in their Children’s Songbook the
song “Popcorn Popping on the Apricot Tree” describing an apricot tree in bloom. This song, like several others, requires a familiarity with the environment of northern Utah, where the church is based.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:

www.botanical.com

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apricot..

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm

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Pistachio

English: Pistachios

English: Pistachios (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Botanical Name:Pistacia Vera/Pistacia atlantica

Family: Anacardiaceae
Common Names: Pistachio, Pistache.Mount Atlas Pistache, Mount Atlas mastic tree, Atlantic Pistachio
Origin: The pistachio tree is native to western Asia and Asia Minor,from Syria to the Caucasus and Afghanistan. Archaeological evidence in Turkey indicate the nuts were being used for food as early as 7,000 B.C. The pistachio was introduced to Italy from Syria early in the first century A.D. Subsequently its cultivation spread to other Mediterranean countries. The tree was first introduced into the United States in 1854 by Charles Mason, who distributed seed for experimental plantings in California, Texas and some southern states. In 1875 a few small pistachio trees, imported from France were planted in Sonoma, Calif. In the early 1900′s the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture assembled a collection of Pistacia species and pistachio nut varieties at the Plant Introduction Station in Chico, Calif. Commercial production of pistachio nuts began in the late 1970′s and rapidly expanded to a major operation in the San Joaquin Valley. Other major pistachio producing areas are Iran and Turkey and to a lesser extent, Syria, India, Greece, Pakistan and elsewhere.

The pistachio (Pistacia vera L., Anacardiaceae; sometimes placed in Pistaciaceae) is a small tree up to 10 m tall, native to mountainous regions of Iran, Turkmenistan and western Afghanistan. It has deciduous pinnate leaves 10–20 cm long.

You may click to see the pictures

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The plants are dioecious, with separate male and female trees. The flowers are apetalous and unisexual, and borne in panicles. The fruit is a drupe, containing an elongated seed (a nut in the culinary sense, but not a true botanical nut) with a hard, whitish shell and a striking light green kernel, having a characteristic flavour.

When the fruit ripens, the shells split open partially (see photo). This happens with an audible pop.

You may click to see the pictures

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History
Pistachio is often confused with some of the other nine species in the genus Pistacia, such as P. terebinthus and P. lentiscus. These species have a very different distribution, in the Mediterranean and southwest Asia, and have much smaller nuts, lacking the hard shell of P. vera. Their turpentine-flavoured nuts were a popular food in antiquity. Finds of Pistacia from pre-classical archaeological sites, or references in pre-classical texts, always refer to one of these other species (often P. terebinthus).

Pistachio (in the sense of P. vera) was first cultivated in Western Asia. It reached the Mediterranean world by way of central Iran, where it has long been an important crop. Although known to the Romans, the pistachio nut appears not to have reached the Mediterranean or most of the Near East in any quantity before medieval times. More recently pistachio has been cultivated in California (first commercial harvest in 1976) and Australia. The word pistachio is a Persian loanword, coming into English through Italian, and is a cognate to the Modern Persian word Peste’.

Harvest: The nuts are harvested when the husk or hull covering the shell becomes fairly loose. A single shaking will bring down the bulk of the matured nuts, which can be caught on a tarp or canvas. A fully mature tree may produce as much as 50 pounds of dry, hulled nuts. The hulls should be removed soon after to prevent staining of the shells. To enhance splitting, the hulled nuts may then be dipped into water to moisten the shell and spread out in the sun to dry. One method of salting the split nuts is to boil them in a salt solution for a few minutes, then redry and store them. Stored in plastic bags pistachios will last for at least 4 to 6 weeks in the refrigerator. Frozen they will last for months.

The pistachio is unique in the nut trade due to its semi-split shell which enables the processor to roast and salt the kernel without removing the shell, and which at the same time serves as a convenient form of packaging. About 90% of California pistachios are consumed as in-shell snacks. Shelled pistachios are utilized commercially in confectionery, ice cream, candies, sausages, bakery goods and flavoring for puddings. They can also be added to dressings, casseroles and other dishes.

The kernels are eaten whole, either fresh or roasted and salted, and are also used in ice cream and confections such as baklava. In July 2003, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the first qualified health claim specific to nuts lowering the risk of heart disease: “Scientific evidence suggests but does not prove that eating 1.5 ounces per day of most nuts, such as pistachios, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol may reduce the risk of heart disease”.. In research at Pennsylvania State University, pistachios in particular significantly reduced levels of LDL, the ‘bad’ cholesterol, in the blood of volunteers.Pennsylvania State University’s Department of Nutrition and Sciences has also conducted related research on other health benefits of pistachios, including an April 2007 study concluding that pistachios may calm acute stress reaction , and a June 2007 study on the cardiovascular health benefits of eating pistachios. Paramount Farms, the largest commercial producer of pistachios in the United States, operates and maintains a public website with information on pistachio health, nutrition, history, and facts, as well as links or downloadable files for all of the above health research studies and more at PistachioHealth.com.

The shell of the pistachio is naturally a beige colour, but it is sometimes dyed red or green in commercial pistachios. Originally the dye was applied by importers to hide stains on the shells caused when the nuts were picked by hand. However most pistachios are now picked by machine and the shells remain unstained, making dyeing unnecessary (except that some consumers have been led to expect coloured pistachios). Roasted pistachio nuts turn naturally red if they are marinated prior to roasting in a salt and strawberry marinade, or salt and citrus salts .

The trees are planted in orchards, and take approximately seven to ten years to reach significant production. Production is alternate bearing or biennial bearing, meaning the harvest is heavier in alternate years. Peak production is reached at approximately 20 years. Trees are usually pruned to size to make the harvest easier. One male tree produces enough pollen for eight to twelve nut-bearing females. Pistachio orchards can be damaged by the fungal disease Botryosphaeria panicle and shoot blight, which kills the flowers and young shoots.

Pistachio trees are fairly hardy in the right conditions, and can survive temperature ranges between -10°C (14°F) in winter to 40°C (104°F) in summer. They need a sunny position and well-drained soil. Pistachio trees do poorly in conditions of high humidity, and are susceptible to root rot in winter if they get too much water and the soil is not sufficiently free draining. Long hot summers are required for proper ripening of the fruit.

Pistachio nuts are highly flammable when stored in large quantities, and are prone to self heating and spontaneous combustion

The pistachio has been used as a dyeing agent and a folk remedy for ailments ranging from toothaches to sclerosis of the liver. The pistachio’s high nutritional value and long storage life also made it an indispensable travel item among early explorers and traders. Along with almonds, pistachios were frequently carried by travelers across the ancient Silk Road that connected China with the West.

Click to learn more about Health Benefits of Pistachio

Resources:

http://www.crfg.org/pubs/ff/pistachio.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pistachio

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Behada or India Behara

Indian Name:Behada.

Botanical Name:Terminalia belerica.

Other Name:Bahara,Baheda

Introduction:The fruit is the well-known commercial myrobalan, called belliric myrobalan. It contains all the components of chebulic myrobalan (q.v.), except corilagin and chebulic acid, and can be used as a substitute for myrobalans in tanning. The kernels possess narcotic properties and in Konkan are sometimes eaten with betel- nut and -leaf for the treatment of dyspepsia; the ripe fruit is used as an astringent, usually in combination with chebulic myrobalan. The part used in medicine is the pulp. In Punjab,it is employed in dropsy, piles, diarrhoea and leprosy, also occasionally in fever. When half ripe, it is used as a purgative due to the presence of an oil which has properties similar to those of castor oil.Behada is astrigent,sweet,bitter,pungent and warm.Works on the Lungs,Heart,and liver.Studies of the fruit Bihada found that it contains upto 35% Palmitic,24%oleic and 31% linoleic. Linoleic is an essential fatty acid important for increasing HDL cholesterol,associated with a healthy state and reducing LDL cholesterol, considered to indicate a higher than avarage risk for developing coronary heart.

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Uses : It is Astringent, Tonic, Expectorant and Laxative. It is used in coughs and sore throat.It is useful in asthma, piles and cough. It is also useful in healing of wounds and scalds. It is used as gargle against inflamation of mucous membrane of mouth. It is used in Tanning of leather and purification of petroleum.
Its pulp is used in dropsy, piles and diarrhoea. It is also useful in leprosy, fever and hair care. It is also used in oxalic acid and preparation of ink.
Origin:

It is a large deciduous tree found through out India,common in plains and forests of about 1000.m. Except in dry and arid regions.

Chemical composition/key active constituents:

Tannins(17%) viz.gallic acid, ellagic acid, ethyl gallate, galloyl glucose and chebulaginic acid. Minor contents Phyllemblin, B-sitosterol, mannitol, glucose, fructose, rhamnose.

Pharmacology
Alcoholic extract of the fruit shows a marked bile-stimulant activity, and increased the total solid content in the bile secreted in anaesthtised dogs but aqeous extract has pooractivity; 30mg/kg alcoholic extract shows increase in bile secretion; blood pressure and respiration do not get affected. But a higher dose 60 mg/kg produces a fall in blood pressure and a dose of 100 mg/kg is fatal. It is a constituent of Triphala and is prescribed in disease of liver and gastrointestinal tracts and in large variety of disease a rasyana. Unripe fruit is purgative. Alcoholic extract shows interesting potential antimicrobial activity. Hepatoprotective activity was observed in the fruits. Hypolipidemic activity was also observed when administered to rabbits. The gum is a demulscent and purgative. The bark is a mild diuretic. The pulp of the ripe fruit is used as an astringent, usually along with chebulic myrobalan. The half ripe fruit is used as a purgative. The pulp mixed honey is used as an application in opthalmia.

Behada is the most essential constituents in the preparation of Ayurvedic Triphala which is a very vital medicine for detoxification.

Beleric myrobalan fruit is astringent, tonic, and laxative.  It is principally employed as a treatment for digestive and respiratory problems.  In Ayurvedic medicine, the ripe fruit is taken for diarrhea and indigestion, and the unripe fruit is used as a laxative for chronic constipation.  Beleric myrobalan is also often used to treat upper respiratory tract infections that cause symptoms of sore throats, hoarseness, and coughs. Externally, the fruit is applied as a lotion for sore eyes.  Alcoholic extract of the fruit shows a marked bile- stimulant activity, and increases the total solid content in the bile secreted in anaesthetised dogs but aqueous extract has poor activity; 30 mg/kg alcoholic extract shows increase in bile secretion; blood pressure and respiration do not get affected. But a higher dose 60 mg/kg produces a fall in blood pressure and a dose of 100 mg/kg is fatal. The cold water extracts possess antibacterial activity.  ‘Triphala’ and each of its three constituents- Haritaki, Bibhitaka and Amalaki are well known Rasayana drugs (rejuvenating agents). They prevent aging and impart longevity, immunity, enhance body resistance against disease and improve mental faculties. The beneficial effects are studied on all seven dhatus. Unripe fruit is purgative. Dried ripe fruit is astringent and employed in dropsy, piles and diarrhea. It is also used in fever, applied to the eyes, and is useful in sore throat and bronchitis. Bibitaki is the best single herb for generally controlling Kapha. It is a powerful rejuvenative herb that nourishes the lungs, throat, voice, eyes and hair. It excels at removing stones and accumulations of toxins (mucus, cholesterol, mineral deposits) in the digestive, urinary, and respiratory tracts. It is unique in being both laxative and astringent, so it purges the bowels, while simultaneously toning the tissues of the digestive tract.   Bibitaki has been shown in recent studies to protect the liver from damage.

Remedies
Expectorant, Hypolipidemic & Laxative.

Dosage
Crude powder 3-6 gm, Dry extract 0.5- 1 gm.

On line availabity ofBehada Fruit

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

(Help taken from:http://cc.msnscache.com/cache.aspx?q=4090771120707〈=en-US&mkt=en-US&FORM=CVRE)

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Haritaki(Chebulic myroblan)

Botanical Name: Terminalia Chabula

Local Names: Hadrida,Harar,Chebulic myroblan,Black myroblan,Harada.

Partsd Used : Fruits.

Habitat: Grows Throughout India

Description: Terminalia Chebula is a tree with a rounded crown and spreading branches. Its principal constituents are chebulagic, chebulinic acid and corilagin. Its fruits have laxative, stomachic, tonic and alterative properties.

Terminalia chebula is called the “king of medicines” and always listed first in Ayurveda because of its extraordinary healing power. In Ayurveda it is known to prevent and cure of many diseases and eliminate all waste from the body.At the same time it is known to promote tissue growth and health.

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Haritaki (Terminalia chebula) is a common herbaceous plant, which is very extensively used in the preparation of many ayurvedic medicines.Terminalia chebula is a tree with a rounded crown and spreading branches. Its principal constituents are chebulagic, chebulinic acid and corilagin. Its fruits have laxative, stomachic, tonic and alternative properties and helps in removing toxins and fats from the body, resulting in their reduced absorption.It is also known as an adaptogen, and hepatoprotective drug.
Historical Ayurvedic uses suggest to be used in cough conditions, asthma, abdominal distention, tumors, heart disease, skin disease, and itchin.

Medical Uses:

It is useful in asthma, sore throat, vomiting, eye diseases, heart diseases, hiccup etc. It is also useful in healing of wounds and scalds. It is used as gargle against inflammation of mucous membrane of mouth. It is also used in tanning of leather and purification of petroleum.

Many ayurvedic medicinal formulations are prepared from the fruits of the Haritaki plant. The extract obtained from Haritaki fruit contains a substance which has antibacterial and anti fungal properties. This substance inhibits the growth of bacteria and fungi such as E. coli. Escherichia coli is the most common organism, which is responsible for many types of infections such as infections of the urinary tract. Haritaki extract is very useful in the treatment of infections caused by E.coli. Haritaki is also believed to have powerful effect on parasites such as Amoeba giardia and many others.

The extract for the Haritaki plant is used widely in many ayurvedic formulations. It is used in the preparation of medicines for the treatment of infectious diseases like leucorrhoea, chronic ulcers, pyorrhea and other types of fungal infections of the skin. Many research studies indicated that the oil obtained from the kernel of the Haritaki plant had certain substances, which increased the motility of the gastro intestinal tract. This type of action was similar to that of castor oil. Haritaki is used as a natural cleanser of the digestive system. It improves the functioning of the liver spleen and the colon and hence it is widely used as a digestive tonic.

Many clinical trials were undertaken on patients with chronic constipation problem. From these studies it was evident that the extract obtained from Haritaki has the property of evacuating the bowel and increasing the frequency of stools. Haritaki is also used in combination with other herbs to prepare a formulation called Triphala. This medicine is widely used as Anti aging formula. It is also used for increasing the immunity of the body.

Haritaki is also used as a purgative in ayurvedic treatments. It is also used as a tonic and expectorant. Haritaki is also known to pocess strong anti-mutagenic properties. Haritaki is used in the treatment of mouth ulcers, stomatitis, asthma, cough, candidiasis, gastroenteritis, skin diseases, leprosy ect. It is also used for treatment of intermittent fever, rheumatic pain and fever, wounds and arthritis. Haritaki is one of the best herbs for treatment of Vatadosha. It is used as a natural remedy for Vata disturbances like flatulence, indigestion ect. Haritaki is contradicted in person with weak digestion and also in pregnancy. Haritaki is also believed to improve intelligence and alertness in a person.

Variour uses in Ayurveda:
Terminalia Chebula & The Three Humors:
Haritaki is useful in vitiation of all the three humors. It is better esp. in Vata disorders.

Topical Use Of Terminalia Chebula:
Its paste with water is found to be anti-inflammatory, analgesic and having purifiying and healing capacity for wounds. Its decoction as a lotion is surgical dressing for healing the wound earlier.

Equal parts of three myrobalans and catechu are made in a paste with clarified butter or some bland oil work as an ointment in chronic ulcerations, ulcerated wounds and other skin diseases with discharge. These ointments could be a substitute for Gall ointments used in Britain.

These are used for astringent purpose in hemorrhoids as well. Its decoction is used as gargle in oral ulcers, sore throat. Its powder is a good astringent dentrifice in loose gums, bleeding and ulceration in gums.

Terminalia Chebula & Abdominal Disorders:
It is good to increase the appetite, as digestive aid, Liver stimulant, as stomachic, as gastrointestinal prokinetic agent, and mild laxative.

Haritaki has proven gastrokinetic effect i.e. it helps in moving the contents of stomach earlier. So it can be used after surgeries and as adjuvant with other drugs that interfere with gastric motility as antihistaminics, atropine like drugs.

Base on its comprehensive properties, it promotes appetite and helps in digestion.

It stimulates the liver and protects it further by expelling the waste excretory products from the intestines.

The powder of Haritaki has been used in chronic diarrhea, sprue with good results. It should be used as hot infusion in these disorders. It is indicated in Protracted diarrhea with hematochezia and prolapse of rectum.

For persons with excessive gas in intestine, flatulence, it is a good herb that can be taken daily. it will relieve these conditions smoothly.

One compound Chebulagic acid from Haritaki has shown antispasmodic action like that of Papaverine.

Being a mild laxative, it is a mild herbal colon cleanse. With its other properties, it provides some help in conditions with Liver and Spleen enlargement and in Ascites. It is not a strong purgative like other herbs as Senna. It does the cleansing action very smoothly. Further it can be taken for a long time without any ill effects.

In Ayurveda haritaki is the best for ‘Srotoshodhana’ or purifying the channels of body.

Terminalia Chebula & Central Nervous System:
It is a good nervine. It is used in nervous weakness, nervous irritability. It promotes the receiving power of the five senses.

Terminalia Chebula For Heart & Blood Vessels:
It is adjuvant in hemorrhages due to its astringent nature. It helps in edema and various inflammations.

Terminalia Chebula For Lungs & Airways:

It is good for Chronic cough, coryza, sorethroat and asthma. It is used with other herbs in many holistic herbal formulations in Ayurveda.

Haritaki For Reproductive Or Sexual Health:
Being anti-inflammatory, and astringent, it is useful in urethral discharges like spermatorrhea, vaginal discharges like leucorrhea. It can be given as adjuvant in atonic conditions of Uterus.

Haritaki For Kidney & Urinary Bladder:

It is helpful in Renal calculi, dysurea, and retention of urine.

Haritaki For Skin Disorders:
It is useful in skin disorders with discharges like allergies, urticaria and other erythematous disorders.

General Uses Of Terminalia Chebula:

It is given as adjuvant herb in Chronic fever. On long term use it is helpful in gaining weight in the emaciated persons and in losing weight in obese persons.

When taken with meals it sharpens the intellect, increases strength, stimulates the senses, expels the urine, stool and other waste materials from the body. It saves the person from the vitiating effects of bodily humors. Thus it is considered as an alterative and adaptogen.

Haritaki reduces the ill effects of fat rich, creamy and oily food. T. chebula is the definite aid for persons who habitually overeat. Further it can supplement the Cholesterol normalizing drugs.

Haritaki is reputed for its alterative, adaptogenic and tonic effect when used throughout the year with different substances in different six seasons of the year. Want to follow more about Seasonal use of Haritaki – Ritu Haritaki.

You will find the graphics for personal use to get help and motivation for such use of haritaki.

Terminalia Chebula With Other Herbs:
If we review all the herbal formulations in Ayurveda’s all classical texts, we will find haritaki to be one of the most frequently used ayurvedic herbs. In most of the compounds it is used as minor adjunct. In many others it is used as the foundation base of the entire formula – like in most of the electuaries or jams. It is the one of the prominent herb in formulations for asthma, cough, tonics, skin diseases, abdominal disorders.

Ayurvedic Holistic Approach With Terminalia Chebula:

The author Bhava Prakash in his Materia Medica relates haritaki to be used with sugar in Pitta disorders, with salt in Vata disorders, with dried ginger in Kapha disorders.

Modern Clinical Research & Terminalia Chebula:

Haritaki can serve to act as an effective alternative to modern prokinetic drugs like metaclopramide.

anti-bacterial and antioxidant properties

Some preliminary evidence of its capability to be useful in HSV Herpes simplex virus.

Some anti-tumor activity and effect in inhibiting the HIV virus.

Anthraquinone and Sennoside like purgative activity. Ability to evacuate the bowel.

Wide antibacterial and antifungal activity, esp. against E. coli.

We may learn some home remedies for digestive disorder from haritaki from this site.

Click to buy Haritaki

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:

http://www.ayurvedic-medicines.com/herbs/haritaki.html, http://www.iloveindia.com/indian-herbs/terminalia-chebula.html http://www.holistic-herbalist.com/terminalia-chebula.html

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