This article will discuss about awapuhi herbs. This plant may sound familiar in your ear. Sometimes you hear it as an ingredient in some traditional herbal brands. But do you know about the benefits of awapuhi? Awapuhi in Latin is Zingiber zerumbet and also known as bitter ginger, pinecone. Awapuhi also called shampoo ginger in Hawaii because it has been used as a shampoo by Hawaiian women.
This spice plant is more widely known in the tropic areas which has many health benefits. Besides famous as herbal ingredients of traditional medicine, rhizomes are often used as cooking ingredients. This plant has not been commercially cultivated. Most just planted in the yard. That’s why you may only be able to find it in limited quantities in traditional markets. Usually people use awapuhi root that is almost similar to java ginger with a more pale color.
The rhizome has a bitter taste with a distinctive fragrance. To consume most people will boil the rhizome with water. For more concentrated results, some people choose to grab the awapuhi rhizome and make it as a juice. Awapuhi is widely used to treat health problems, related to important compounds contained. This herb is rich in essential oils, especially limonen and zerumbon. Awapuhi can also fight cancer cells to apoptosis. A study in Japan revealed that awapuhi extract is effective for preventing melanoma cells that are pre-cancerous.
The bioactive compounds contained in awapuhi rhizomes have essential oils from this herb. This natural oil is widely found in roots such as camphor, nerolidol, also zerumbon found in the leaves. Other nutrients present in awapuhi such as flavonoids, sesquiterpenoids, aromatic compounds, vanilla, kaempferol, phenolic, saponin, and terpenoid.
Many notes said that awapuhi benefits include for treating sore throat, legs swelling after childbirth, pain due to rheumatism, itching due to seafood allergy. Awapuhi has anti inflammatory properties that can relieve inflammation and analgesic properties, because this rhizome contains ethanol. Therefore awapuhi very suitable to overcome the fever due to inflammation. For open wounds, awapuhi can also be used as topical medicine because it contains vitamin K that will accelerate the wound drying. Awapuhi is also useful as a natural worm medicine and increase appetite. In Java island, awapuhi often also used to replace java ginger.
Awapuhi is also used to treat bile disorders, treat jaundice, and liver problems. awapuhi is also used to treat malaria, treat tuberculosis, treat whooping-cough, even dysentery. Awapuhi can treat asthma because it has anti-asthma. The compound contained can boost the immune system in patients with asthma. If you have anemia, then you can drink awapuhi juice to add blood, awapuhi increase the body’s absorption of iron. Awapuhi, in addition to treating various diseases like the above can also be used to reduce weight. For women who want to have a slim body after childbirth can consume awapuhi.
Based on botany, awapuhi is divided into 3 types with different benefits.
This awapuhi is the smallest in size. Typical sharp aroma and has higher antipyretic properties due to essential oil.
This awapuhi has a bigger size with a more tasteless flavor. There are diuretic properties in this type that are often used to treat kidney problems. This type of awapuhi is also often used to treat diarrhea, stomach and digestive problems.
This awapuhi contain camphor substances higher than others so it is very fragrant, even the flowers and leaves also have a strong aroma. This type of awapuhi has anti-biotic higher than others, even very effective to overcome the attacks of bacteria and worms. Some herbalists say this type is effective for migraine and vertigo.
Now you know better what are the benefits of awapuhi. Of course in consuming awapuhi need to understand the right composition. Medicinal plants will be useful and safe if used in the right way, proper dosage, material selection, and as needed.