While it is vital to remain patriotic to our country, it is also very important to take care of our health.
Writing about the political scenario can be satisfying but also a stressful process whereby one has to read and then respond to clear the air.
A departure from the usual norm of political posts, here is information which I hope will benefit all my blog readers and friends - something on lemon grass or serai.
According to Healthers:
Lemongrass is a plant that is commonly used in Asian cuisine but which may provide therapeutic and medical benefits. Easily available from any ethnic store, health food store, online merchant or in the seasoning aisle of the supermarket, its anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, antioxidant and therapeutic properties make lemongrass a useful alternative or complementary remedy for a wide spectrum of common ailments. Whether using the dried leaves steeped to make tea or the extracted essential oil, lemongrass produces considerable benefits.
What is lemongrass?
Lemongrass is a perennial plant with thin, long leaves and is indigenous to India and other areas of the Asian continent including Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam. It is also common in Ceylon, Central America, China, Guatemala, India, Java, Madagascar, Sri Lanka, the West Indian islands and Zambia. There are more than fifty varieties of lemongrass but not all are suitable for consumption or medical use. The lemongrass plant usually reaches heights of three feet or one meter and is found mainly in the wild.
Lemongrass has long being used as a flavoring in Asian style cooking. When added to recipes, the citrus-like flavor of the lemongrass herb powder or dried leaf adds a unique element to the meal. Though lemongrass is more widely known for its use as tea, it may be added to curries, beef, fish, poultry, seafood and soups.
The name of the lemongrass plant is purported to be due to its lemony scent and taste. There are over fifty species of lemongrass but the scientific names for the ones more commonly used for cooking and healing are cymbopogon citratrus and cymbopagon flexuosus.
In India it is more popularly referred to as choomana poolu. There are many other common names by which lemongrass is known. These include andropogon citratus, barbed wire grass, British Indian lemongrass, Ceylon citronella grass, citronella, citronella grass, citronnelle de Java, East Indian lemongrass, Guatemala lemongrass, hierba Luisa, Hierba de Limón, Indian Melissa, Indian Verbena, Madagascar Lemongrass, silky heads, tanglad, te-de-limon, Verveine Indienne and West Indian lemongrass. Some of these names are culturally specific. In the Caribbean it is known widely as fever grass, attesting to its traditional use to relieve the symptoms of fever.
The main chemical component found in lemongrass is citral, an aromatic compound, also known as lemonal. Citral is used in perfumes because of its lemon odor. It is the presence of citral which accounts for lemongrass’ lemon scent. It is an antimicrobial and therefore effective in destroying or inhibiting microorganisms. Citral also contains antifungal properties. This chemical has pheromonal qualities, which explains its industrial use as an insect repellant. It also has a positive effective on the body’s ability to use Vitamin A. The compounds myrcene, citronellal, geranyl acetate, nerol and geraniol are found in varying quantities in Citral. Myrcene, geraniol and nerol contribute to lemongrass’ strong fragrance, citronella acts as an insecticide and geranyl acetate is another flavoring agent. Lemongrass has rubefacient properties, meaning that it may be able to improve blood circulation.
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