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Herbs & Plants

Shepherd’s Purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris)

Botanical Name ; Capsella bursa-pastoris
Family: Brassicaceae
Genus: Capsella
Species: C. bursa-pastoris
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Brassicales

Synonyms :  Thlaspi bursa-pastoris. Bursa abscissa. Bursa druceana. Capsella concava.

Common Name ; Shepherd’s-purse

Habitat: is native to eastern Europe and Asia minor but is naturalized and considered a common weed in many parts of the world, especially in colder climates,including Britain, where it is regarded as an archaeophyte, North America and China but also in the Mediterranean and North Africa.  It grows in Arable land, gardens, waste places etc, it is a common weed of cultivated soil.

Description:
Shepherd’s-purse  is a small (up to 0.5m) annual and ruderal species, and a member of the Brassicaceae or mustard family. Capsella bursa-pastoris is closely related to the model organism Arabidopsis thaliana and is also used as a model organism due to the variety of genes expressed throughout its life cycle that can be compared to genes that are well studied in A. thaliana. Unlike most flowering plants, it flowers almost all year round. Like many other annual ruderals exploiting disturbed ground, C. bursa-pastoris reproduces entirely from seed, has a long soil seed bank, and short generation time and is capable of producing several generations each year.

CLICK  &  SEE THE  PICRURES
Shepherd’s-purse plants grow from a rosette of lobed leaves at the base. From the base emerges a stem about 0.2 to 0.5 meters tall, which bears a few pointed leaves which partly grasp the stem. The flowers are white and small, in loose racemes, and produce seed pods which are heart-shaped.

Like a number of other plants in several plant families, its seeds contain a substance known as mucilage, a condition known as myxospermy. The adaptive value of myxospermy is unknown, although the fact that mucilage becomes sticky when wet has led some to propose that C. bursa-pastoris traps insects which then provide nutrients to the seedling, which would make it protocarnivorous.

Edible Uses :
Edible Parts: Leaves; Oil; Seed.
Edible Uses: Condiment; Oil.

Leaves – raw or cooked. The young leaves, used before the plant comes into flower, make a fine addition to salads. The leaves are a cress and cabbage substitute, becoming peppery with age. Leaves are usually available all year round, though they can also be dried for later use. The leaves contain about 2.9% protein, 0.2% fat, 3.4% carbohydrate, 1% ash. They are rich in iron, calcium and vitamin C. A zero moisture basis analysis is available. The young flowering shoots can be eaten raw or cooked. They are rather thin and fiddly but the taste is quite acceptable. They can be available at most times of the year. Seed – raw or cooked. It can be ground into a meal and used in soups etc. It is very fiddly to harvest and utilize, the seed is very small. The seed contains 35% of a fatty oil. This oil can be extracted and is edible. The seedpods can be used as a peppery seasoning for soups and stews. The fresh or dried root is a ginger substitute

Constituents: choline, acetylcholine and tyramine, saponins, mustard oil, flavonoids

Fumaric acid is one active substance that has been isolated.. Although Fumaric acid and its derivatives are used with success in many conditions there is no direct evidence that plant extract has been used with similar success.

Composition:
Figures in grams (g) or miligrams (mg) per 100g of food.
Leaves (Dry weight)

*280 Calories per 100g
*Water : 0%
*Protein: 35.6g; Fat: 4.2g; Carbohydrate: 44.1g; Fibre: 10.2g; Ash: 16.1g;
*Minerals – Calcium: 1763mg; Phosphorus: 729mg; Iron: 40.7mg; Magnesium: 0mg; Sodium: 0mg; Potassium: 3939mg; Zinc: 0mg;
*Vitamins – A: 21949mg; Thiamine (B1): 2.12mg; Riboflavin (B2): 1.44mg; Niacin: 3.4mg; B6: 0mg; C: 305mg;

Parasites
*Capsella bursa-pastoris
*Traditional Chinese

Medicinal Uses:
Common Uses: Abrasions/Cuts * Bladder Infection (UTI) Cystitis * Childbirth * Heart Tonics/Cordials * Menorrhagia *
Properties:  Antiscorbutic* Diuretic* Styptic* Astringent* Febrifuge* Refrigerant*
Parts Used: whole herb.

Shepherd’s purse is one of the important herbs to stop bleeding an effect due to the tyramine and other amines it contains. This property leads to its use is a number of condidtions such as heavy menstrual bleeding, nosebleeds, and as a post-partum herb. The herb is both a vasodilator, and also hastens coagulation and constrict blood vessels.

Shepherd’s purse contains a protein that acts in the same way in the body as the hormone oxytocin, constricting the smooth muscles that support and surround blood vessels, especially those in the uterus. Other chemicals in the herb may accelerate clotting. Still other compounds in the herb help the uterus contact, explaining the long-time use of the herb to help the womb return to normal size after childbirth. Mountain Rose Herbs (2008-07-09)

Herbally, it is primarily used to stop vaginal bleeding, an action which may be attributable to the common parasitic fungus found with it, which is related to the vasoconstrictor ergot.

Other Uses
Shepherd’s-purse is gathered from the wild or grown for food to supplement animal feed, for cosmetics, and for medicinal purposes. It is commonly used as food in Shanghai and the surrounding Jiangnan region as food, where they are stir-fried with rice cakes and other ingredients or as part of the filling in wontons. It is one of the ingredients of the symbolic dish consumed in the Japanese spring-time festival, Nanakusa-no-sekku.

Known Hazards :  Signs of toxicity are sedation, pupil enlargement and breathing difficulty. Avoid if on treatments for high blood pressure. Avoid with thyroid gland disorders or heart disease. Possible addictive sedative effects with other depressants (e.g. Alcohol). Avoid during pregnancy

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/Capsella_bursa-pastoris
http://www.anniesremedy.com/herb_detail112.php

http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Capsella+bursa-pastoris

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Herbs & Plants

Niu Xi (Achyranthes Bidentata)

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Botanical Name: Achyranthes bidentata
Family : Amaranthaceae
Common Name:  Oxknee
Other Common Names: Niu Hsi, Niu Hsi Chiu, Pig’s Knee, Soei In Soei
Genus: Achyranthes

Habitat : Native:
•AFRICA: West-Central Tropical Africa: Cameroon; Equatorial Guinea
West Tropical Africa: Nigeria
•ASIA-TEMPERATE :Russian Far East: Russian Federation – Primorye
China: China – Anhui, Fujian, Guangxi, Guizhou, Hebei, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangsu, Shaanxi, Shanxi, Sichuan, Xizang, Zhejiang
Eastern Asia: Japan – Honshu, Kyushu, Shikoku; Korea; Taiwan
•ASIA-TROPICAL :  Indian Subcontinent: Bhutan; India; Nepal; Pakistan; Sri Lanka Indo-China: Laos; Myanmar; Thailand; Vietnam
Malesia: Indonesia; Malaysia; Papua New Guinea; Philippines

Mostly available at the Forest edges, the sides of streams and shrubberies. Moist shady places at elevations of 1200 – 3000 metres in Nepal

Description:
ACHYRANTHES BIDENTATA (Niu xi, Achyranthes) Traditional Chinese perinial herb.Height: 60-90 cm. It is hardy to zone 8. It is in flower from August to September, and the seeds ripen from September to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs).  Achyranthes is an erect perennial with slender rambling branches, elliptical leaves, and greenish white flowers on terminal spikes. Grows up to 1m tall.
click to see the pictures>..(01)...(1).…….(2).………………….

Cultivation :
Prefers a rich, sandy, slightly acid soil in partial shade . This species is probably not hardy in the colder areas of the country, it tolerates temperatures down to at least -5 °c. When grown in a rich soil the roots can be up to 1.2 metres long. Widely cultivated in China, especially in Henan Province, as a medicinal plant  and as a food plant.

Propagation:
Seed – sow late spring in a greenhouse. Germination should be fairly rapid, prick out the seedlings into individual pots of fairly rich soil when they are large enough to handle. It is probably wise to grow this plant on in the greenhouse for its first winter, planting it out into its permanent position in late spring after the last expected frosts.

Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: Leaves; Seed.
Seed – cooked. A good substitute for cereal grains in bread-making, they have often been used for this purpose in famine years . The light brown oblong seed is about 1mm long. Leaves – cooked. Used as a vegetable in the same manner as spinach.

Medicinal  Actions & Uses:
Anodyne; Antiasthmatic; Antiinflammatory; Antirheumatic; Bitter; Digestive; Diuretic; Emmenagogue; Odontalgic; Vasodilator.
The roots, leaves and stems are widely used in Chinese herbal medicine. The roots contain triterpenoid saponins, sitosterol and sigmastero. They are anodyne, antiinflammatory, antirheumatic, bitter, digestive, diuretic, emmenagogue and vasodilator. They act predominantly on the lower half of  the body and are used in the treatment of aching back and knees and asthenia of the lower limbs. Research suggests that they can cause dilation of the cervix and so this herb should not be used when pregnant. The herb is taken internally to treat hypertension, back pains, urine in the blood, menstrual pain, bleeding etc. It lowers blood cholesterol levrels and so is used in the treatment of atherosclerosis . The root juice is used in Nepal in the treatment of toothache . This juice is also used in the treatment of indigestion and is considered to be a good treatment for asthma . The stem of the plant is used as a toothbrush that is said to be good for the teeth and is also a treatment for pyorrhoea  . The plant can be used fresh or dried. The leaves and stems are harvested in the summer and are usually crushed for their juice or used in tinctures . The roots are harvested from 1 or 2 year old plants in the autumn or winter and usually dried and ground into a powder or used in decoctions.

Mostly used to nourish the kidney and liver, drain ‘dampness’ and promote circulation. Prescribed for difficult urination, painful urethritis, suppressed menstruation. Commonly used to treat traumatic injuries, stiffness and pain of the lower back and loins and for weakness in the legs and feet. Do not use during pregnancy.

Other Uses
Insecticide; Teeth.
Two insect-moulting hormones are found in the roots[174]. Can this have a practical application as an insecticide? The stem of the plant is used as a toothbrush that is said to be good for the teeth and is also a treatment for pyorrhoea.

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.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Achyranthes+bidentata
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Achyranthes_bidentata
http://www.sandmountainherbs.com/oxknee.html

http://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/english/crops/hort/herbs/achyra.htm#des

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Ginseng May be a Natural Anti-inflammatory

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Ginseng, an herb used in traditional Chinese and other Asian medicine for thousands of years, has anti-inflammatory properties, a new study has found.

Scientists from the University of Hong Kong identified seven ginseng compounds, called ginsenosides, which they believe demonstrate immune-suppressive effects. Specifically, after treating human immune cells with different extracts of ginseng they found the seven ginsenosides had the ability to selectively inhibit expression of the inflammatory gene CXCL-10.

“The [benefits] of ginseng may be due to the combined effects of these ginsenosides, targeting different levels of immunological activity, and so contributing to the diverse actions in humans,” says researcher Allan Lau who led the team.

“Further studies will be needed to examine the potential beneficial effects of [the herb] in the management of acute and chronic inflammatory diseases in humans,” he adds.

Ginseng is a slow-growing perennial plant native to cooler climates of eastern Asia, including northern China, Korea and eastern Siberia, and it is available in the form of roots or nutritional supplements in many health stores across the U.S.

Source: Better Health Research. Nov.9th. 2009

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Herbs & Plants

Senna (Cassia angustifolia Vahl)

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Botanical Name:Cassia Senna(Cassia angustifolia or Cassia acutifolia)
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily:Caesalpinioideae
Tribe: Cassieae
Genus: Senna
Species: S. alexandrina
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fabales
Latin Name : Cassia Angustifolia or Cassia acutifolia.
Latin: Folium Cassiae
Common Names: Alexandrian Senna, Cassia lenitiva, Cassia lanceolata, Cassia officinalis, East Indian Senna, Nubian Senna, Tinnevelly Senna,Cassia senna, Senna, Rajavriksha, Fan xia ye,American senna,locust plant
Trade Name: Senna
Parts Used : Leaves and pods
Habitat :  Senna is a shrub native to Egypt, Sudan, Nigeria and Nubia in North Africa, as well as India,Pakistan and China,Sennas are herbaceous subshrubs and both varieties used, Alexandrian and Tinnevelly, have desert origins.

Description:
A small shrub, about 1 m in height with pale subterete or obtusely angled erect or ascending branches. Leaves usually 5-8 jugate, leaflets oval, lanceolate, glabrous. Racemes axillary erect, waxy many-flowered, usually considerably exceeding the subtending leaf. Bracts membranous, ovate or obovate, caducous. Sepals obtuse, cuncate compressed,cotyledons plane. The pods are 1.4 to 2.8 in long, about 0.8 in wide, greenish brown to dark brown in colour and contain 5-7 obovate dark brown and nearly smooth seeds.

You may click to see the picture.......(01)..…..(1)…...(2)..…...(3)..…………………..

A shrub with winged leaves, each being made up of six pairs of smaller leaves. The yellow flowers, produced in longish spikes at the tops of the branches, are moderately large and are striped with red.

Cultivation : The crop can thrive on a variety of soils, but is largely grown on red loams and on alluvial loams. The texture of the soil, which account for the major hectarage under senna varies from sandy loam to loam, while the black cotton soils are heavier and more fertile. The average pH ranges from 7 to 8.5. It is very sensitive to water logging. Hence, it is grown only in well-drained soils. Senna requires sunlight for its proper growth. It can be growth in early summer(February-March) or in winter(October-November). North Indian states like Delhi and Gujarat where there is moderate rainfall is reported to be ideal for the luxuriant growth of the plant. Heavy rains and cloudy weather during growth are harmful to the crop. An average rainfall of 25-40 cm. distributed from June to October is sufficient to produce good crop.

Propagation : Seeds

Characteristics and Constituents :
Leaves contain glycosides, sennoside A, sennoside B, sennoside C and sennoside D. Two naphthalene glycosides have been isolated frofn leaves and pods. Senna also contains the yellow flavonol colouring matter kaempferol, its glucoside kaempferin and isorhamnetin.


Medicinal Uses :

It cleanses and purifies the blood and causes a fresh and lively habit of the body. It is used in  constipation,abdominal disorders,leprosy,skin diseases, leucoderma, splenomegaly, hepatopathy, jaundice, helminthiasis, dyspepsia, cough, bronchitis, typhoid fever, anaemia & tumours.

Composition&Application:
Senna is the most widely used anthranoid drug today and has been used for centuries in Western and Eastern systems of medicine as a laxative, usually taken as a tea or swallowed in powdered form.Its medical use was first described in the writings of Arabian physicians Serapion and Mesue as early as the 9th century A.D. The name senna itself is Arabian.
Besides its wide use in conventional Western medicine, senna leaf remains an important drug used in traditional Chinese medicine and traditional Indian Ayurvedic and Unani medicine

You may click to see & learn more uses of senna in medicines:

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.sbepl.com/cassia-angustifolia.html
http://apmab.ap.nic.in/products.php?&start=20#
http://www.mdidea.com/products/new/new040.html

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Herbs & Plants

Perilla

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Botanical Name:Penserilla frutesc
Family :Lamiaceae/Mint
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Lamiales
Genus: Perilla

Other Names: Ao Shiso, Beefsteak plant, Ji Soo, Perilla, Purple Perilla, Shiso, Wild basil, Wild red basil, Chinese basil, Purple mint, Rattlesnake weed, Summer coleus
Perilla smells funny, which is no wonder since you will usually find it in cow pastures. Rub leaves on your skin and clothes on hikes to repel ticks. Also a good companion plant for tomatoes. Harvest before seeds form, very invasive if allowed to seed.

Habitat:It is native to E. Asia, it is a traditional crop of China, India, Japan, Korea, Thailand, and other Asian countries. Perilla was brought to the United States in the late 1800s by Asian immigrants.It has quickly naturalized and become a common weed of pastures and roadsides in the southeastern United States. Found growing in sunny open fields, roadsides, waste places and open woodlands.

Description:Penserilla frutesc is an annual / perennial herb. It is a very aromatic plant, with a strong minty smell. Growing up to 4 feet tall when in bloom, the stems are square, reddish-purple and branching. The leaves are large, up to 6 in. in diameter, petioled, opposite, ovate and serrate, edges ruffled or curly, dark green tinted red to purple (especially on the underside) and hairy. Sometimes the leaves are so large and red that they remind one of a slice of raw beef, hence the name beefsteak plant. The flower spikes are long, up to 10 in. and born in the leaf axils. Flowers are small about 1/4-inch long and tubular, pink to lavender and numerous. After blooming from July to October, they leave their calyx on the spike to cover the seed pod, shake the dry seed stalks and it rattles like a rattlesnake. That’s how the plant got one of its common names (rattlesnake weed). Perilla is often confused with purple Basil and used for the same purposes. Gather the edible tender leaves from the plant tops anytime. Gather entire plant in bloom and dry for later use.

click to see..>….…(01)……….(1).……...(2).…….(3).……....(4).……
In mild climates the plant reseeds itself. The most common species is Perilla frutescens var. japonica or shiso which is mainly grown in India and East Asia. There are both green-leafed and purple-leafed varieties which are generally recognized as separate species by botanists. The leaves resemble stinging nettle leaves, being slightly rounder in shape. It is also widely known as the Beefsteak plant. In North America, it is increasingly commonly called by its Japanese name, shiso, in addition to being generally referred to as perilla. Its essential oils provide for a strong taste whose intensity might be compared to that of mint or fennel. It is considered rich in minerals and vitamins, has anti-inflammatory properties and is thought to help preserve and sterilize other foods. In Nepal and parts of India, it is called silam. Its seeds are ground with chili and tomatoes to make a savoury dip/side dish.

Cultivation:Cultivation is very easy. Perilla prefers light to medium moist well-drained and rich soil in full sun. Perilla is a very attractive plant for the garden and attracts butterflies. It’s deep purple stems and purple to red tinted leaves last all summer and fall.

Medicinal Properties and Uses: Perilla is edible and medicinal. The leaves have a very pleasant sweet taste and are used as a spice, cooked as potherbs or fried, and combined with fish, rice, vegetables and soups. It is also chopped and combined with gingerroot, then added to stir-fries, tempuras and salads in many Asian countries. The plant also supplies a nutritious cooking oil from the seed, as well as giving color and flavor to many pickled dishes. In the United States the essential oil of the plant is used as a food flavoring in candies and sauces. It is used as a flavoring in dental products and at one time, it was one of the main ingredients in sarsaparilla. The entire plant is very nutritious, packed with vitamins and minerals, and one of the aldehyde isomers found in Perilla is 2,000 times as sweet as sugar. There are many scientifically proven medicinal uses for Perilla. It has been used for centuries in Oriental medicine as an antiasthmatic, antibacterial, antidote, antimicrobial, antipyretic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, antitussive, aromatic, carminative, diaphoretic, emollient, expectorant, pectoral, restorative, stomachic and tonic. The plant constituents confirm these uses in alternative medicine and ongoing studies have revealed that this plant is useful in curing many cancers as well as various other diseases and disorders. Further research has isolated such constituents as apigenin, ascorbic-acid, beta-carotene, caffeic-acid, citral, dillapiol, elemicin, limonene, luteolin, myristicin, perillaldehyde, protocatechuic-acid, quercetin, rosmarinic-acid, and more, to numerous to mention. It is a pungent, aromatic, warming herb. An infusion of the plant is useful in the treatment of asthma, colds, cough and lung afflictions, influenza prevention, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, constipation, food poisoning and allergic reactions (especially from seafood), and to restore health and balance. The stems are a traditional Chinese remedy for morning sickness and restless fetus in pregnancy, though some say the herb should be avoided by pregnant women. Perilla seed oil has been used in paints, varnishes, linoleum, printing ink, lacquers, and for protective waterproof coatings on cloth. Volatile oils of the plant are also used in aroma therapy and for perfume. The seed heads can be collected and dried for use in arrangements, potpourris and wreaths. The crushed plant also makes an effective insecticide.

The essential oil extracted from the leaves of perilla by steam distillation consists of a variety of chemical compounds, which may vary depending on species. The most abundant, comprising about 50–60% of the oil, is perillaldehyde which is most responsible for the aroma and taste of perilla. Other terpenes such as limonene, caryophyllene, and farnesene are common as well.

Of the known chemotypes of perilla, PA (main component: perillaldehyd) is the only one used for culinary purposes. Other chemotypes are PK (perilla ketone), EK (elsholzia ketone), PL (perillene), PP (phenylpropanoids: myristicin, dillapiole, elemicin), C (citral) and a type rich in rosefuran.

Perilla ketone is toxic to some animals. When cattle and horses consume purple mint (of the PK chemotype) while grazing in fields in which it grows, the perilla ketone causes pulmonary edema leading to a condition sometimes called perilla mint toxicosis.

Perilla oil is obtained by pressing the seeds of perilla, which contain 35 to 45 percent oil. In parts of Asia, perilla oil is used as an edible oil that is valued more for its medicinal benefit than its flavor. Perilla oil is a very rich source of the omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid. As a drying oil similar to tung oil or linseed oil, perilla oil has been used for paints, varnishes, linoleum, printing ink, lacquers, and for protective waterproof coatings on cloth. Perilla oil can also be used for fuel.

The oil from the seeds of this plant, widely used in the manufacture of paint, varnish, and artificial leather and as a substitute for linseed oil.

The seed oil is used for cooking, and as an ink dryer. The seeds are eaten by people, they have a sweet, pungent taste. They are alse used as bird seed. The foliage is cooked as a potherb. A few cut leaves are sometimes used to color the rice pink.

The oxime of perillaldehyde (perillartin) is used as an artificial sweetener in Japan as it is about 2000 times sweeter than sucrose.

Chemistry
The essential oil extracted from the leaves of perilla by steam distillation consists of a variety of chemical compounds, which may vary depending on species. The most abundant, comprising about 50–60% of the oil, is perillaldehyde which is most responsible for the aroma and taste of perilla. Other terpenes such as limonene, caryophyllene, and farnesene are common as well.

Of the known chemotypes of perilla, PA (main component: perillaldehyd) is the only one used for culinary purposes. Other chemotypes are PK (perilla ketone), EK (elsholzia ketone), PL (perillene), PP (phenylpropanoids: myristicin, dillapiole, elemicin), C (citral) and a type rich in rosefuran.

Perilla ketone is toxic to some animals. When cattle and horses consume purple mint (of the PK chemotype) while grazing in fields in which it grows, the perilla ketone causes pulmonary edema leading to a condition sometimes called perilla mint toxicosis.

Perilla oil is obtained by pressing the seeds of perilla, which contain 35 to 45 percent oil. In parts of Asia, perilla oil is used as an edible oil that is valued more for its medicinal benefit than its flavor. Perilla oil is a very rich source of the omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid. As a drying oil similar to tung oil or linseed oil, perilla oil has been used for paints, varnishes, linoleum, printing ink, lacquers, and for protective waterproof coatings on cloth. Perilla oil can also be used for fuel.

The oxime of perillaldehyde (perillartin) is used as an artificial sweetener in Japan as it is about 2000 times sweeter than sucrose.

China
Perilla is traditionally used in Chinese medicine and has been shown to stimulate interferon activity and thus, the body’s immune system.

Japan:
The Japanese name for perilla is shiso. The Japanese call the green type aojiso , aoba (“green leaf”), ?ba or aoshiso and often eat it with sashimi (sliced raw fish) or cut into thin strips in salads, spaghetti, and meat and fish dishes. It is also used as a flavorful herb in a variety of dishes, even as a pizza topping (initially it was used in place of basil). The purple type is called akajiso ( “red shiso”, akajiso?) and is used to make umeboshi (pickled ume) dyed red, or combined with ume paste in sushi to make umeshiso maki. An inflorescence of shiso is called hojiso (ear shiso). Its young leaves and flower buds are used for pickling in Japan and Taiwan

Vietnam
Vietnamese cuisine uses a variety similar to the Japanese hojiso but with greenish bronze on the top face and purple on the opposite face. The leaves are smaller and have a much stronger fragrance than hojiso. In Vietnamese, it is called tía tô, derived from the characters whose standard pronunciation in Vietnamese is tia tô. It is usually eaten as a garnish in rice vermicelli dishes called bún and a number of stews and simmered dishes.

Koerea:
The plant’s Korean name is deulkkae or t?lkkae ( which means ‘wild sesame’.). The same word is also used when referring to its seed, which has many uses in Korean cuisine, just as the leaves (kkaennip,) do. The literal translations of deulkkae (“wild sesame”) and kkaennip (“sesame leaf”) are in spite of perilla’s not being closely related to sesame, and Korean cookbooks translated to English sometimes use these translations. Cans of pickled kkaennip can be found in Korean shops all over the world, with some ground red pepper between every two leaves in the can. The leaves’ essential oils provide for their strong taste. Fresh leaves have an aroma reminiscent of apples and mint and are eaten in salad dishes. The flavor is distinct from Japanese perilla, and the leaf appearance is different as well – larger, rounder, flatter, with a less serrate edge and often, a violet coloring on the reverse side. Perilla oil (deulgireum,) is extracted from the seeds; the cake can be used as animal food. Perilla oil has a rich taste and scent slightly resembling dark sesame oil (chamgireum,). Perilla seed can be cooked with meals, roasted, crushed to intensify its taste and/or mixed with sesame and salt.

Folklore
In Asia, centuries ago, ceremonies were conducted before harvesting the plant, it was considered to be alive and was held as sacred, sent by God as food and medicine to treat all ailments of man. Disrespect for the plant meant death, anyone caught stepping on the plant would himself be trampled to death!

Recipe
“Medicinal” tea: To ¼ cup dry herb add 1 pint of boiling water, allow to steep 10 to 15 min. Drink throughout the day for colds, flu, sore throat, and congestion. Also can be boiled and the steam inhaled to clear the sinuses.

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/Perilla
http://www.answers.com/topic/perilla
http://www2.pittstate.edu/herbarium/wildflowers/Perilla_frutescens_BeefsteakPlant.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perilla_frutescens

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