Tag Archives: History of China

Pterocarpus santalinus

Botanical Nmae :Pterocarpus santalinus
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily:Faboideae
Tribe: Dalbergieae
Genus: Pterocarpus
Species:P. santalinus
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fabales

Common Names: Red Sandlewood,Red sanders and Saunderswood

Indian vernacular names:
Bengali: Rakta Chandan; Guj.: Ratanjali; Hindi: Lal Chandan, Ragat Chandan,Rukhto Chandan, Undum; Kannada.: Agslue, Honne; Mal.: Patrangam, Tilaparni; Marathi.: Tambada Chandana; Or.: Raktachandan; Tamil.: Atti, Chensandanam, Semmaram, Sivaffu Chandanam; Telugu:Agaru gandhamu, Errachandanam, Raktachandanam, Rakta ghandhamu.

Habitat : Pterocarpus santalinus is native to southern Eastern Ghats mountain range of South India.

Description:
Pterocarpus santalinus is a light-demanding small tree, growing to 8 metres (26 ft) tall with a trunk 50–150 cm diameter. It is fast-growing when young, reaching 5 metres (16 ft) tall in three years, even on degraded soils. It is not frost tolerant, being killed by temperatures of ?1 °C.

The leaves are alternate, 3–9 cm long, trifoliate with three leaflets.
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The flowers are produced in short racemes. The fruit is a pod 6–9 cm long containing one or two seeds.

This tree is valued for the rich red color of its wood. The wood is not aromatic. The tree is not to be confused with the aromatic Santalum sandalwood trees that grow natively in South India.

Medicinal Uses:
Pterocarpus santalinus is used in traditional herbal medicine as an antipyretic, anti-inflammatory, anthelmintic, tonic, hemorrhage, dysentery, aphrodisiac, anti-hyperglycaemic and diaphoretic.

Used occasionally in India for diabetes; the antidiabetic constituent is pterostilbene which also has insecticidal activity. Employed in pharmacy for coloring tinctures.

Other Uses:
The wood has historically been valued in China, particularly during the Qing Dynasty periods, and is referred to in Chinese as zitan and spelt tzu-t’an by earlier western authors such Gustav Ecke, who introduced classical Chinese hardwood furniture to the west.

Due to its slow growth and rarity, furniture made from zitan is difficult to find and can be expensive. It has been one of the most prized woods for millennia.

In India sandalwood is one main and lucrative market for smugglers, as a high price is paid for this wood in China. Since the exporting of sandalwood is illegal in India, the underground market is growing and there are a number of arrests every year of those trying to smuggle this wood to China.

The other form of zitan is from the species Dalbergia luovelii, Dalbergia maritima, and Dalbergia normandi, all similar species named in trade as bois de rose or violet rosewood which when cut are bright crimson purple changing to dark purple again. It has a fragrant scent when worked.

Shamisen: Red sandalwood has been used for making the bridge and also the neck of the Japanese musical instrument Shamisen.

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Costly & rare articles are made from this red sandle wood….click & see 

Religion & speritulality ...Red sandle wood Prayer Bead Mala Necklace are very costly bids used in Tibetian Budhism….CLICK & SEE 
Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pterocarpus_santalinus
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_RST.htm

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Epimedium grandiflorum

Botanical Name : Epimedium grandiflorum
Family: Berberidaceae
Genus: Epimedium
Subgenus:Epimedium
Species:E. grandiflorum
Kingdom:Plantae
Order: Ranunculales

Synonyms:
*Epimedium macranthum var. violaceum (C. Morren & Decne.) Franch.
*Epimedium grandiflorum forma violaceum
*Epimedium violaceum

Common Names: Large flowered barrenwort, Bishop’s hat, Barrenwort, Longspur Epimedium. It is known as dam du?ng hoac in Vietnamese.

Habitat: Epimedium grandiflorum is native to China, Japan and Korea. It grows in the moist deciduous woodlands in the hills. Calcareous rocks in moist woodland. (This entry refers to sub-species E. grandiflorum higoense. Shimau.)
Description:
Epimedium grandiflorum is a deciduous perennial plant, growing to 30 cm (12 in), with bright red stems with green heart-shaped leaves (copper-tinged when young) which are slightly hairy on the bottom. In spring it produces pink, white, yellow or purple long-spurred flowers.

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Main Bloom Time: Early spring. Form: Spreading or horizontal. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees.The plant is not self-fertile.
Cultivation:
Succeeds in any fertile humus-rich soil, preferring a moist but well-drained peaty loam. Requires a lime-free soil. Grows best in the light dappled shade of a woodland. Plants can succeed in the dry shade of trees. A shallow-rooting plant, the rhizomes creeping just below the soil and the finer roots occupying the top 30cm of the soil. A clump-forming species, the rhizomes making only short new growth each year, it needs to be divided every 3 – 4 years in order to maintain vigour. Plants are hardy to about -20°c, though the flowers in spring can be damaged by late frosts. A very ornamental plant, there are several named varieties. It grows well in the rock garden or wild garden. Plants are self-sterile and so more than one clone is required for cross-fertilization in order for seed to be produced. Plants will often hybridise with other species growing nearby. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer or rabbits. Special Features: Attractive foliage, Naturalizing.
Propagation:
Seed – best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe in late summer. Sow stored seed as early as possible in the year in a cold frame. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in light shade in the cold frame or greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out in mid to late summer. Division, best carried out in August to September according to one report, in late spring according to another. Larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring. Cuttings in late summer
Edible Uses:    Young plant and young leaves – cooked & eaten. Soaked and then boiled. (This suggests that the leaves are bitter and need to be soaked in order to remove the bitterness.)
Medicinal Uses:

Antiasthmatic; Antibacterial; Antirheumatic; Antitussive; Aphrodisiac; Hypoglycaemic; Tonic; Vasodilator.

The aerial parts of the plant are antiasthmatic, antibacterial, antirheumatic, antitussive, aphrodisiac, hypoglycaemic, tonic and vasodilator. Its use lowers blood sugar levels. It is used in the treatment of impotence, seminal emissions, lumbago, arthritis, numbness and weakness of the limbs, hypertension and chronic bronchitis. It has an action on the genitals similar to the male sex hormone and can increase the weight of the prostate gland and seminal vesicle, it has increased copulation in animals and increases the secretion of semens. The leaves are used as an aphrodisiac. Administered orally, the leaf extract increases the frequency of copulation in animals.

Traditional Chinese medicine:
E. grandiflorum may have anti-impotence properties due to the presence of icariin, a relatively weak inhibitor of PDE5 in comparison to substances like sildenafil (viagra). Western peer-reviewed research into the efficacy of E. grandiflorum as an aphrodisiac is lacking; however, the herb has been used for this purpose in traditional Chinese medicine and is a common ingredient of herbal remedies for impotence.[citation needed] It is commonly packed in a capsule with other ingredients or sold as herbal flakes or powder with the name “horny goat weed”

Other Uses:
Landscape Uses:Border, Container, Ground cover, Rock garden, Woodland garden.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.
Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epimedium_grandiflorum
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Epimedium+grandiflorum

Black Rice Economical Way to Increase Consumption of Antioxidants

Black rice
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Health conscious consumers who hesitate at the price of fresh blueberries and blackberries, fruits renowned for high levels of healthful antioxidants, now have an economical alternative. It is black rice, one variety of which got the moniker “Forbidden Rice” in ancient China because nobles commandeered every grain for themselves and forbade the common people from eating it.

According to a study presented at the 240th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS), “one spoonful of black rice bran contains more anthocyanin antioxidants than a spoonful of blueberries and better yet, black rice offers more fiber and vitamin E antioxidants, but less sugar.”

Like fruits, “black rice” is rich in anthocyanin antioxidants, substances that show promise for fighting heart disease, cancer, and other diseases. Food manufacturers could potentially use black rice bran or the bran extracts to boost the health value of breakfast cereals, beverages, cakes, cookies, and other foods, Xu and colleagues suggested.

Brown rice is the most widely produced rice variety worldwide. Rice millers remove only the outer husks, or “chaff,” from each rice grain to produce brown rice. If they process the rice further, removing the underlying nutrient rich “bran,” it becomes white rice. Xu noted that many consumers have heard that brown rice is more nutritious than white rice. The reason is that the bran of brown rice contains higher levels of gamma-tocotrienol, one of the vitamin E compounds, and gamma-oryzanol antioxidants, which are lipid-soluble antioxidants. Numerous studies showed that these antioxidants can reduce blood levels of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL) — so called “bad” cholesterol — and may help fight heart disease. Xu and colleagues analyzed samples of black rice bran from rice grown in the southern United States. In addition, the lipid soluble antioxidants they found in black rice bran possess higher level of anthocyanins antioxidants, which are water-soluble antioxidants. Thus, black rice bran may be even healthier than brown rice bran, suggested Dr. Xu.

The scientists also showed that pigments in black rice bran extracts can produce a variety of different colors, ranging from pink to black, and may provide a healthier alternative to artificial food colorants that manufacturers now add to some foods and beverages. Several studies have linked some artificial colorants to cancer, behavioral problems in children, and other health problems.

Black rice is one of several black-colored heirloom plants producing rice variants such as Indonesian Black Rice, Forbidden Rice. High in nutritional value, black rice is rich in iron. Unlike other black rice from Asia, it is not glutinous or rough. This grain is high in fiber and has a deep, nutty taste. Black “forbidden rice” is so named because originally it was considered the Emperor’s rice and was literally forbidden for anyone else to eat it. It is a deep black color and turns deep purple when cooked. Its dark purple color is primarily due to its high anthocyanin content. It has a relatively high mineral content (including iron) and, like most rice, supplies several important amino acids.

In China, noodles made from black rice have recently begun being produced. At least one United States bread company has also begun producing “Chinese Black Rice” bread. It shares the deep tyrian color of cooked black rice.

Black rice is used mainly in Asia for food decoration, noodles, sushi, and pudding. Dr. Xu said that farmers are interested in growing black rice in Louisiana and that he would like to see people in the country embrace its use.

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_rice
Elements4Health

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Acupuncture is Just as Effective Without Needles

Needles

Acupuncture works, but it appears to work equally well with or without needle penetration. This conclusion was drawn from a treatment study involving cancer patients suffering from nausea during radiotherapy.

In a series of acupuncture studies that involved more than 200 patients who were undergoing radiation treatment, roughly half received traditional acupuncture with needles penetrating the skin in particular points, while the others received simulated acupuncture instead, with a telescopic, blunt placebo needle that merely touched their skin.

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Afterwards, 95 percent of the patients in both groups felt that the treatment had helped relieve nausea, and 67 percent had experienced other positive effects such as improved sleep, brighter mood, and less pain. Both groups felt considerably better than a separate control group that received no acupuncture of any kind.

The acupuncture was performed by physiotherapists two or three times a week during the five week long period of their radiation treatment.

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