Botanical Name :Alpinia officinarum
Common Name : lesser galangal
Habitat:Alpinia officinarum is native to China (Hainan Island), Java.It grows mainly on the southeastern coast, and it grows in Hainan, Japan, and Thailand. It is also cultivated in India. Hong Kong is the commercial center for the sale and distribution of the lesser galangal.
Alpinia officinarum is a herbaceous plant can grow up to ten feet in height, though three to five feet is more common. The leaves are lanceolate (long and thin), and the flowers are white with streaks of red, growing from a spike at the top. The plant’s rhizomes, the part known as galangal, are thin and tough, and they are the principal reason the plant is cultivated. They have orange flesh with a brown coating, and have an aromatic odor and a pungent flavor. These are smaller than greater galangal.
This plant is a plant of the ginger family, cultivated in Southeast Asia. It originated in China, where its name ultimately derives. It can grow several feet high, with long leaves and reddish-white flowers. The rhizomes, known as galangal, are valued for their spicy flavor and aromatic scent. These are used throughout Asia in curries and perfumes, and were previously used widely in Europe. They are also used as an herbal remedy.
Constituents: The root contains a volatile oil, resin, galangol, kaempferid, galangin and alpinin, starch, etc. The active principles are the volatile oil and acrid resin. Galangin is dioxyflavanol, and has been obtained synthetically. Alcohol freely extracts all the properties, and for the fluid extract there should be no admixture of water or glycerin.
Beta-sitoterol, 1,7-diphenyl-5-ol-3-heptone, 1-phenyl-7-(3′-methoxyl-4′-hydroxyl) phenyl-5-ol-3-heptone, glandin, kaempferol-4′-methylether and 3,4-dihydroxylbenzoic acid
Part Used: Dried rhizome.
The galangal rhizomes were widely used in ancient and medieval Europe, where they were reputed to smell of roses and taste of spice. Its use in Europe has dramatically declined, however, and is now mainly used in Eastern Europe. It is used in Russia for flavoring vinegar and the liqueur Nastoika. It is still used as a spice and medicine in Lithuania and Estonia.
In Asia the rhizomes are ground to powder for use in curries, drinks, and jellies. In India an extract is used in perfumes, and Tatars prepare a tea with it.
Alpinia officinarum contains high concentrations of the flavonol galangin, which has been shown to slow the increase and growth of breast tumor cells. Historically, the rhizomes were reputed to have stimulant and digestive effects.
Herbal medicine – Medicinal properties digestive tonic stimulant carminative antiemetic antifungal Medicinal parts Rhizome Has medicinal uses yes Do not self-administer no Do no use if pregnant no Legally restricted no Toxicity precautions Medicinal notes Alpiniaofficinarum has herbal applications as a digestive tonic, as a stimulant, as a carminative and as an antiemetic. See the medicinal properties section for even more traditional herbal uses. Only the rhizome is used in herbal preparations.
Traditional uses – Parts used Traditional uses Contemporary uses Fragrance ginger-like roots used for liqueur Fragrance parts Roots Fragrance intensity Mild Fragrance category Spicy Dye parts Dye color.
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.