Hello, my friends!
Welcome to the Part-2 of Foods & Habits That Boost the Immune System.
It’s been a while since I shared the Part-1. But I thank God for this chance to be sharing more about boosting our Immune System.
Pandemic or not, we need to take care of our health and boost our immune system.
We need to find ways to do this.
I’m glad to be sharing my personal experiences and stories of people close to me.
And so here it is…
Over A Cup Of Karkade
In this article, let me introduce Kardade drink.
This drink was first introduced to me by my friends from Egypt and Sudan.
Karkade is a staple in their kitchen and beverages.
I wish I could offer you a cup of cold Karkade drink, or perhaps you like it hot, while we talk about the health benefits from this wonder herb.
Karkade is a famous refreshing red tea in Egypt, Sudan, and in other African and Arab regions.
We know karkade as Hibiscus.
Wikipedia says – “Hibiscus is a genus of flowering plants in the mallow family, Malvaceae, comprising hundred species that are native to subtropical and tropical regions throughout the world.
Hibiscus is also known as rose mallow, hardy hibiscus, rose of sharon, roselle, red sorrel.
It is called Gumamela in the Philippines; Bissap in West Africa; Agua de Jamaica in Mexico and Central America; Soobolo in one of the local languages in Ghana; Orhul in India.
Of the many species of Hibiscus, the Hibiscus sabdariffa is what we will talk about here.
A drink that may boost the immune system.
Why should we learn the health benefits of Hibiscus?
Anything that cleanse and restores functions of the different organs of our bodies is supporting and indirectly boosting the immune system.
As we look at the scientific research of reputable authorities, we can’t help but be amazed at the wonderful creation of a Living God.
I specially chose to talk about Karkade/Hibiscus in this series, because I am currently benefiting from the healing wonders of this God-given herb.
I regret that I have not started drinking Karkade earlier on and more frequently. But I am still thankful for the positive effects of this beverage on my health.
Now I’m making it my daily habit to take in at least five mugs of karkade drink – hot drink in the mornings and evenings, and cold drinks at noontimes and afternoons. I am using either the karkade teabags available in the grocery stores or the dried karkade petals given by my friends from Sudan. I believe the dried petals are also available in the stores.
Here is how I prepare my karkade teabag:
I just pour hot water in a large mug with 1 teabag of karkade and add sweetener to complement the tart taste. My friends use honey as their sweetener but I prefer mine with stevia sweetener.
And with the dried petals, sometimes I boil and most often I just put the petals in my drinking water, like this:
This photo shows my drinking water, in 1.5L bottle. I put 1 scoop of dried karkade petals into my drinking water and leave it until the water turns pink or red. The tincture gets darker as I add more petals.
Hibiscus flower powder is also available in the market, but I have not tried it yet. I’ll be trying it sooner.
Health Benefits From Hibiscus
Even before learning about this hibiscus beverage, we might have already heard about health benefits of hibiscus. I heard from my friends from South Africa and Nigeria that their folks use Hibiscus flower as anthelmintic, used to deworm their kids.
My friends from Sudan, Ethiopia and Egypt also tell me that their folks use karkade for relief of sore throat, fever, and cough. My friends from India and Pakistan also say the same, but wider range of use – it serves as diuretic and leaves poultice are used on abscesses and wounds. They also use Hibiscus in their ayurvedic medicine.
In my hometown in the Philippines, our old folks use Hibiscus flower and leaves to treat boils and wounds.
Let us see what scientific research has revealed in the table below. Nutrient contents in this table are calculated per 100g of the different parts of the Hibiscus sabdariffa.
|Vitamin A [I.E.]||–||–||1000|
|Vitamin C [mg]||17||9||2.3|
Table 1 Adopted from: Naturlan. Also used by researchers at medcraveonline.com.
Looking at this scientific research, I no longer wonder how it is possible that many of my friends testify to feeling healthier and better just by maintaining their habit of drinking karkade. They not only take karkade as a beverage but they also use it in their food preparation.
Their testimonials led me to read more about this wonder herb, and was more amazed to learn that more research works are proving the effectiveness of Hibiscus sabdariffa when used as medicinal supplement for various kinds of diseases, such as:
1. Diabetes Type 2
Research made on rats revealed that Hibiscus sabdariffa has the ability to lower blood sugar.
Studies done on hypertensive patients show that daily consumption of Hibiscus flower aqueous extract resulted in lowering systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Laboratory tests done on those subjects also showed increase in good cholesterol (High Density Lipoproteins – HDL). It is still being debated whether Hibiscus has the ability to lower bad cholesterol (Low Density Lipoprotein – LDL).
Several studies made show the effectiveness of Hibiscus aqueous extract taken by mouth to deworm individuals infested with schistosoma and other round worms. Extracts are also proven to act against fungal infections.
4. Cough and colds
Because of the Vitamin-C content of Hibiscus, it is effective in relieving cough and colds.
There are many other diseases claimed to be cured by Hibiscus sabdariffa extracts, but we cannot discuss here at the moment until we find more reliable proof.
If we look at the table above and see the nutrient content of Hibiscus sabdariffa, we should be encouraged to try this drink and prove the health wonders of this God-given wonder herb.
Let us boost our immune system with this drink. Let us start a daily habit with Hibiscus.
So far, there have been no reported cases of health risks related to taking in Hibiscus sabdariffa.
But if we are taking maintenance drugs for diabetes, we have to take caution on the timing of drinking Hibiscus. It is advised to test your blood sugar level before drinking Hibiscus. If your blood sugar is below normal level, avoid taking in Hibiscus, as it has ability to lower blood sugar. You may drink when your blood sugar is on normal or higher level.
To Him Who Blesses Us Be All Glory and Honor
Never should we ever magnify the things that give us health benefits or boost our immune system. Rather, we magnify the One Who created them to serve mankind.
On the time of creation, God told Adam to have dominion over all His creation, and give each its name according to their kind.
I thank God, the Creator of Heaven and earth, for His wonders and awesome powerful works. Just having a thankful, joyful heart at all times give a boost to our immune system. So let us be joyful and thankful to God.
May blessings overflow to you as you read this article and look forward to the next series.
God bless you,