Gumamela (Hibiscus) As An Alternative Medicine For Common Illnesses

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As much as possible we would like to use herbs as an alternative medicine for some practical reasons. When we say illness usually people would worry about medical expenses. But now, we don’t have to worry much because there are existing herbs that were proven effective. One of them is gumamela that is very accessible and can be commonly seen even in our backyards. Have you ever imagined how these flowers growing in some of our gardens can be an option in treating our illnesses? I was also was surprised to discover its multiple benefits.

Gumamela, scientifically known as (Hibiscus rosa- sinensis Linn) is a shrub that usually grows from 1 meter up to 4 meters high and is usually cultivated as an ornamental plant in the Philippines. Gumamela (Hibiscus) flower varies in different colors: red, yellow, orange, white, purple, pink, and other color combination. The Hibiscus with 5 petals is noted to have medicinal properties. The flowers are considered astringent, the roots contain mucilage that is calming on the mucous membranes of the digestive and respiratory tracts. It has also the following medicinal use: expectorant, diuretic, anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, antipyretic anodyne, and refrigerant.

Parts Utilized And Their Uses

  1. Flowers as flavanoids and proanthocyanidins are antioxidants, antipyretic, analgesic, and spasmolytic.
  2. Roots as expectorant
  3. Leaves as laxative
  4. Seeds as stimulant
  5. Bark as emmenagogue

Used As Treatment Of:

  1. Bronchitis- as an expectorant
  2. Coughs, Sore Throat
  3. Fever- as refrigerant drink
  4. Treats dysentery
  5. Urinary Tract Infection, Bladder Infections
  6. High Blood Pressure
  7. Prevention of Constipation
  8. headaches, boils, swelling, abscesses and mumps
  9. In Venezuela, used to treat tumors
  10. In the Dominican Republic, it is used to treat hematomas
  11. Myocardial Injury, Myocardian Injury

Preparations and Use of Gumamela (Hibiscus)

There are two ways to utilize gumamela as herbal medicine. The dried and fresh gumamela.

For the dried gumamela, first collect the flower, leaves and roots. Wash, then cut into small pieces and sun dry. To use as decoction, boil the parts of gumamela that were dried (1/4 cup dried gumamela in 1 glass of water).

For the fresh gumamela, wash the gumamela flower and leaves, cut into small pieces, and boil (1/3 cup of gumamelain 1 glass of water).

Use as Poultice

The poultice is the use of fresh or dried herbs that is mashed, crushed, or pounded and often heated (boiled in water to soften) and applied to the skin directly to reduce pain.

Preparation and Medicinal Use:

  1. For mumps and urinary tract infections: use dried drug materials 15-30 grams, boil to decoction, and drink.
  2. Decoction of roots, barks, leaves, and flowers can be used as an emollient
  3. For abscesses, carbuncles and boils: crush fresh leaves and poultice the infected area. Also, pound flower buds into a paste and apply to external swellings; used for boils, cancerous swelling, and mumps.
  4. Decoction of roots can also be used as an expectorant for coughs and drops for sore eyes.
  5. A decoction from roots of red and white-flowered plants is a Kelantan antidote for poison. Same decoction is drunk for venereal disease and fever.
  6. Decoction of flowers and roots can be used as a natural diuretic.
  7. The bark is an emmenagogue; can also be used to normalize menstruation.
  8. Malays, use a decoction of leaves as a lotion for fevers, and roots can be used for the glands in the neck.
  9. Infusion or poultice of leaves used for headaches.
  10. Seeds used as a stimulant and for cramps.
  11. Decoction of leaves can be used for fevers.
  12. Leaves are mildly laxative.
  13. Mucilage applied during labor.
  14. Red flowers are used for sprue.
  15. Infusion of flowers and leaves is used as an expectorant in bronchitis.
  16. Infusion of flowers, exposed all night to the dew can be used for gonorrhea.
  17. Flowers fried in ghee, given for menorrhagia. the dark red petals are used as a mucilaginous infusion for painful urination, strangury, cystitis, and other irritable genitourinary conditions.
  18. Hair stimulant: oil made by mixing the juice of fresh petals and olive oil in equal proportions, and boiled until the water has evaporated.
  19. Seeds, pounded to a pulp and mixed with water, can be used for gonorrhea.
  20. Red flowers are purgative, when taken with papaya seeds may be abortive.




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