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What are the Medical Uses of Jujube Fruit?

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  • Written By: Jessica Hobby
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 20 November 2016
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Native to China, the jujube plant now grows in locations throughout the world that include the Middle East, North Africa, southern Europe and the southwestern United States. The jujube plant produces jujube fruit, which are berries that have similar properties to figs, dates and raisins. The plant's fruit has been used as an herbal remedy for more than 2,000 years in traditional Chinese medicine. Today the fruit is still used in Chinese and Korean medicine and is continually being researched in the West.

Jujube fruit has been most frequently used as a demulcent, which is a substance that soothes inflamed or injured skin. In addition to treating boils, sores and scrapes, jujube helps to treat internal soreness and inflammation. Extractions and paste made from the fruit commonly appear in cough drops and sore throat lozenges. Additionally, soothing teas are made from the fruit.

The jujube fruit offers many treatments for digestive concerns. Not only does the fruit aid in digestion, but it is believed to aid in treating appetite loss and diarrhea. The fruit destroys bacteria in the intestinal tract. Jujube fruit is believed to strengthen the liver, so it is commonly used by the Chinese as a treatment for hepatitis and cirrhosis of the liver. Additionally, jujube supports the function of the spleen.

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In addition to aiding with the process of digestion, the jujube fruit has medical uses that are applicable to mental health issues and promoting general health. The fruit acts as a mild sedative; therefore it is often used to treat individuals who are irritable or hysterical. Those who suffer from chronic nervousness will appreciate jujube’s sedative qualities, which produce a calming effect in people who ingest the fruit. Jujube fruit also acts as an antioxidant, helps to increase strength and stamina, provides energy, alleviates allergies and improves metabolism.

Modern medical research includes possible medical uses of jujube fruit that include the treatment of leukemia, cancer and HIV. Water based extracts of jujube have been proven to suppress K562 leukemia cells in the human body. Experiments on treatments for cancer and HIV are formed from the betulinic acid which is abundant in jujube fruit.

Betulinic acid decreases melanoma activity because it causes apoptosis, which is programmed cell death. The betulinic acid has also aided in killing non-melanoma cells such as those found in brain tumors. Betulinic acids coupled with dihydrobetulinic acid acyl derivatives have promoted significant anti-HIV activity.

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serenesurface
Post 3

Actually you can use the Chinese herb classification chart to determine which herbs will be good for which ailments. So according to this chart there are three herb temperatures, either warm, neutral or hot. Herbs also have one of five different flavors which are salty, sweet, spicy, sour or bitter.

Jujube for example has a neutral temperature and since it's sweet it has warm energy. This is why it's good for appetite, energy and also for circulation. A friend of mine actually eats jujubes to help control excess sweating.

Of course, it's not the same thing as visiting a doctor. But if you have a minor ailment, you can probably find a herbal treatment with little or no side effect. Maybe you just need a little something sweet, bitter, spicy, sour or salty.

turquoise
Post 2

I had jujube tea (I bought it as "red date") when I was breastfeeding. I was at a Chinese grocery store talking with my friend and the owner of the store overheard me. She went and got a pack of Chinese jujube and told me to make a tea of this.

I used about 20 dates in about 6 cups of water and boiled it for an hour. I would have this without sugar all day long, it has a pleasant and sweet taste. It did increase my milk, so I would recommend it for nursing mothers. I think even if you are not breastfeeding, you can benefit from it after childbirth because it's very nutritious.

candyquilt
Post 1

My grandfather believed that everything could be cured with the right herbs, plants and knowledge. He always had a stock of his herbs and would often tell me about them. Jujube was one of my favorites because most of the herbs that he made me drink or eat while sick did not taste very good, except a few. Jujube, which is called Hong Zao, was one of them. He would make a tea or dessert with it after I had just gotten over a flu. It would energize me and increase my appetite.

My grandfather is no more but I have not forgotten what he has taught me. I keep some jujube at home always and have some when I feel a cold or flu coming on.

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