The Miracle Gynura Plant - Antiviral Miraculous Detoxifying Herb.
Gynura procumbens is the new superfood. In Java, the young shoots of this plant are eaten raw as a vegetable. Singaporeans find it more palatable if the leaves have been blanched in hot water before consumption. This would be a matter of taste.
Ultimately, you are what you eat. For someone living with diabetes nothing could be truer. When it comes to maintaining good blood sugar levels, a healthy diet is vital. People with diabetes have to take extra care to ensure their diet is properly balanced with their insulin and oral medications. The right meal plan will also help any person living with diabetes improve their blood glucose levels. In Thai, this herb is known to reduce blood sugar and reverse diabetes. It is called “Longevity Spinach” it is said to be effective on Type 2 Diabetes and has proven to lower blood glucose on type 1 diabetes as well. Being an anti viral and anti-inflammatory herb it has the ability to help regulate not only the blood glucose, but also blood pressure and cholesterol levels. It has also shown promising results against viruses such as cancer and HIV.
Anti-Inflammatory: Study of ethanol extract showed anti-inflammatory activity.
Antihypertensive: Study showed the oral administration of aqueous extract significantly lowered blood pressure in spontaneously hypertensive rats. Results suggest GPE may be useful for prevention and treatment of hypertension through increasing NO (nitric oxide) production in blood vessels.
Glucose Lowering: Ethanolic extract of leaves significantly suppressed elevated serum glucose levels in diabetic rats. The extract did not significantly suppress glucose levels in normal rats. Results conclude the leaves of GP may be biguanide-like activity.
Abundant Leaf Proteins / Peroxidase: Study found few abundant proteins from the leaves of GP; among these, peroxidase was found the most abundant of the extracted proteins. Results suggest a natural source for peroxidase for use in the cosmetic and skin care industry.
Nutritive / Antioxidative Properties: Ethanolic Gynura extract exhibited the highest antioxidative properties in every assay. Nutritive evaluation suggests the extract is a good protein source and may have positive effects on free radical scavenging and iron chelating.
Gynura procumbens Medical Toothpaste: A Gynura procumbens toothpaste invention consists of" gynura procumbens (Lour.) extractant of 1-20%, glycerol of 20-55%, diglycol of 10-15%, abradant of 20-45%, carboxymethyl cellulose of 0.5-1.5%, sodium dodecyl sulfate of 0.5-2%, additive of 1-4%, essence of 1-2% and saccharin of 0.1-1%.
Anti-Ulcerogenic: Study results suggest the ethanolic leaf extract of Gynura procumbens promotes ulcer protection as shown by significant reduction of ulcer area, histologic decreases in ulcer areas, with absence or reduction of edema and leucocyte infiltration of submucosal layer.
Anti-Diabetic: (1) Study evaluating the water extract of G. procumbens in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats showed a hypoglycemic effect by promoting glucose uptake by muscles. (2) Study results suggest the antidiabetic effect may be mediated through the stimulation of glucose uptake and the potentiation of insulin action.
Toxicological Evaluation: Administration of a methanol extract of G. procumbens did not produce mortality or significant changes in various parameters in both acute and sub-chronic toxicity studies.
Besides the above medicinal properties, according to the Plant Resources of South East Asia (PROSEA), this plant is also used in Africa, where the boiled leaves are applied externally to relieve general body pains and raw leaves for rheumatic pains. Dried and pounded leaves are mixed with oil and applied as a poultice to treat skin complaints. It also used for the treatment of kidney problems and dysentery.
Longevity Spinach (gynura procumbens) can be eaten fresh like a salad, stir fried with other vegetables, juiced, and also enjoyed as a cup of tea. It has a very delicious taste.
CULTIVATION / GROWING
This plant grows easily from stem-cuttings. Seeds are not available. It is best grown in well-draining, fertile soil that is kept moist at all times. Semi-shade is preferred by this plant although it can be slowly adapted to grow in full sun, provided the plant does not dry out at the roots. Initial planting under direct sunshine will result in burnt leaves and stunting in growth. Growth should resume once the plant has acclimatised to its new growing conditions.
Gynura procumbens grows as a scrambling perennial plant with stems that can extend 18-20 feet long if left to grow. The fleshy leaves are bright green, and rather smooth to touch. The shape of leaves can vary depending on the growing conditions and they can range from roundish to ovate in shape but are all shallowly toothed at the margins.
In shade, they are darker green and appear rather flat but under direct sun, the two sides of each leaf may develop a slight V shape along the mid-rib and take on a lighter green color. The plants I have seen so far have green leaf undersides although I read that there are plants with purple undersides.
The stems can be totally purple or have patches/specks of purple. From the above description, one can observe that Gynura procumbens can be highly variable.
Gynura will climb if you let it but it is easy to keep it as a small bush in pots with regular pruning (harvesting/eating).