Medicinal plants


Nature and medicine

At one time, those who today we would define “doctors” were very different characters from the current conception, as medicine simply did not exist as a scientific discipline. In fact, the doctors of the past were a mixture of several figures; the primary meaning was that of “old sages”, or people with a great experience of life, who therefore knew the best remedies to cure states of illness or in any case of malaise in the human body. However, a kind of magical aura was mixed with this figure, as once particular substances were experimented in order to heal people and what resulted was certainly more similar to magical potions than to common medicines. The common denominator of what we have just said (which, among other things, is not of our invention but derived from scientific studies that have studied books, paintings and every kind of testimony of the past) was, however, one and sure: nature. In fact, every doctor who prepared the medicine to cure even a simple fever did it using herbs, roots, more or less exotic fruits and therefore only with natural sources. This testifies to the importance of nature, as well as in many other things, even in the care of our person, since ancient times.


Today, medicine is not all natural unfortunately, in fact scientific studies have progressed hand in hand with technology and we have come to experiment with innovative drugs and treatments with extraordinary power (such as the controversial stem cells that hopefully can help especially in the field of regenerative diseases) which, however, have very little to share with nature at the macroscopic level. However, there is a thought that is spreading more and more among people, that is that nature can always help us more than what we currently use, that is, it could in some cases replace classic medicines or other medical discoveries, thus reducing the present negative impacts. In the face of this ever-spreading ideology, herbal medicine has risen to the fore: this discipline with scientific features not yet confirmed but still validated with regulatory studies is characterized by the fact of using the parts of plants to be able to extract the fundamental active ingredients that have proved to have a good impact on our body. In particular, phytotherapy, according to the symptoms of our malaise, tells us which plant is the most suitable to help us, taking care never to replace classical medicine and above all the opinion of the treating doctor.


What is surprising about disciplines such as phytotherapy (which, we recall, is a sort of derivative of herbal medicine, whose true meaning is to classify plants according to their usefulness and to know how they are kept in order to make them always effective) is that they use raw materials – in this case, plants – totally natural and therefore often very close to us but simply never used for similar purposes. Today’s example is fitting: the onion. This plant is very common in culinary cultures all over the world: it is a classic product of our land and is used a lot in the kitchen, but it is also part of the basis of American cuisine and even the Far East makes a considerable use of it both cooked and raw. Would anyone ever expect a therapeutic use of onion? Maybe not, also because (and here we speak with a hint of joking) it is often indicated as a provocateur of bad breath following its consumption as food, and in fact it is something more than true even if completely natural. However, returning to us, the phytotherapeutic power of onion is not only confirmed, but is also recommended due to the thousand possible uses.

Onion: Positive Effects of Onion

The onion, in whatever way it is consumed (even if there is no need to say that raw the effects are more and more evident), has a good diuretic effect that helps to better dispose of the waste substances of our body; this thing can be good for those who need to help the kidney function, but it is recommended for everyone to keep the body cleansed. A microscopic component of onions are flavonoids: certain that this word is not new to you, we tell you that they are very powerful antioxidant agents, capable of intervening to slow down the natural deterioration of body functions and therefore aging. But perhaps the most important effect that onion can bring to our body is in the reduction of the famous LDL cholesterol, the “bad cholesterol” that worries many people as it contributes to “clog” veins and arteries of the body, causing (when this circumstance becomes serious) to arteriosclerosis, a pathological condition that can lead to death or definitive and very disabling physical damage. In the queue we are going to mention some negative effects of onion, useful to know to understand its consumption well: slowdown of digestive processes and increase in stomach acid, two bad things for those who already suffer from the digestive system.

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