Saturday, March 31, 2007

Is Tanglad a cure for cancer?

"Tanglad" is a Cebuano term for lemon grass. It is said to produce an inviting aroma that is why Tanglad is the main spice you see inside the hallow stomach of lechon. That long green grass that is folder and placed inside roasted pig? That's Tanglad.
There is a claim that Tanglad can cure cancer. This has been reportedly tested with positive results in Israel. The following article I picked up from my inbox tells about the curative effects of Tanglad.
I supposed Elln Tordesillas, a columnist of the Malaya, a cancer patient herself, wrote about this.
By the way, despite Ellen's condition, she was not spared by the First Gentleman from his libel suits agasint journalist. Ellen is a respondent in one of the first gentleman's libel suits.
Here is that article about Tanglad:

Fresh lemon grass
While I was undergoing chemotherapy for ovarian cancer, my oncologist, Dr. Cecilia Llave, suggestedthat I try tanglad (lemon grass) for a drink, a tip she got from one of her patients.
That’s what I have been doing the past three years. I don’t know if tanglad has something to do with it butso far I’m okay.
A few weeks ago, an article on the medicinal powers of tanglad went the rounds of internet.
There’s no harm trying this. A bunch of tanglad is ten centavos. Or you can plant it in your backyard for a steady supply.= = =
The article is by Allison Kaplan Sommer:
"At first, Benny Zabidov, an Israeli agriculturalist who grows greenhouses full of lush spices on apastoral farm in Kfar Yedidya in the Sharon region, couldn’t understand why so many cancer patients fromaround the country were showing up on his doorstep asking for fresh lemon grass."
It turned out that their doctors had sent them."
‘They had been told to drink eight glasses of hot water with fresh lemongrass steeped in it on the daysthat they went for their radiation and chemotherapy treatments," Zabidov told ISRAEL21c.
"And this is theplace you go to in Israel for fresh lemon grass.’
"It all began when researchers at Ben Gurion University of the Negev discovered last year that thelemon aroma in herbs like lemon grass kills cancer cells in vitro, while leaving healthy cells unharmed."
The research team was led by Dr. Rivka Ofir and Prof Yakov Weinstein, incumbent of the Albert Katz Chair in Cell-Differentiatio n and Malignant Diseases, from the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at BGU.
"Citral is the key component that gives the lemony aroma and taste in several herbal plants such as lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus), melissa (Melissa officinalis) and verbena (Verbena officinalis. )"
According to Ofir, the study found that citral causes cancer cells to ‘commit suicide: using apoptosis, amechanism called programmed cell death."A drink with as little as one gram of lemon grass contains enough citral to prompt the cancer cells tocommit suicide in the test tube."
The BGU investigators checked the influence of the citral on cancerous cells by adding them to bothcancerous cells and normal cells that were grown in a petri dish.
The quantity added in the concentrate was equivalent to the amount contained in a cup of regular tea using one gram of lemon herbs in hot water.
While the citral killed the cancerous cells, the normal cells remained unharmed.
"The findings were published in the scientific journal Planta Medica, which highlights research onalternative and herbal remedies. Shortly afterwards, the discovery was featured in the popular Israeli press.
"Why does it work? Nobody knows for certain, but the BGU scientists have a theory."
‘In each cell in our body, there is a genetic program which causes programmed cell death. When something does wrong, the cells divide with no control and become cancer cells. In normal cells, when the cell discovers that the control system is not operating correctly - for example, when it recognizes that acell contains faulty genetic material following cell division - it triggers cell death," explains Weinstein.
"This research may explain the medical benefit of these herbs.’"The success of their research led them to the conclusion that herbs containing citral may beconsumed as a preventative measure against certain cancerous cells."
As they learned of the BGU findings in the press, many physicians in Israel began to believe that whilethe research certainly needed to be explored further, in the meantime it would be advisable for theirpatients, who were looking for any possible tool to fight their condition, to try to harness the cancer-destroying properties of citral.
"That’s why Zabidov’s farm - the only major grower of fresh lemon grass in Israel - has become a pilgrimage destination for these patients. Luckily, they found themselves in sympathetic hands. Zabidov greets visitors with a large kettle of aromatic lemon grass tea, a plate of cookies, and a supportive attitude."
‘My father died of cancer, and my wife’s sister died young because of cancer," said Zabidov.
"So Iunderstand what they are dealing with. And I may not know anything about medicine, but I’m a good listener. And so they tell me about their expensive painful treatments and what they’ve been through. I would never tell them to stop being treated, but it’s great that they are exploring alternatives and drinking the lemon grass tea as well."
"Zabidov knew from a young age that agriculture was his calling.
At age 14, he enrolled in the KfarHayarok Agricultural high school. After his army service, he joined an idealistic group which headedsouth, in the Arava desert region, to found a new moshav (agricultural settlement) called Tsofar."
‘We were very successful; we raised fruits and vegetables, and," he notes with a smile, "We raisedsome very nice children."
"On a trip to Europe in the mid-80s, he began to become interested in herbs.Israel, at the time, was nothing like the trend-conscious cuisine-oriented country it is today,and the only spices being grown commercially were basics like parsley, dill, and coriander.
"Wandering in the Paris market, looking at the variety of herbs and spices, Zabidov realized that there was a great export potential in this niche. He brought samples back home with him, "which was technicallyillegal," he says with a guilty smile, to see how they would grow in his desert greenhouses.
Soon, he was growing basil, oregano, tarragon, chives, sage, marjoram and melissa, and mint just to name a few."
His business began to outgrow his desert facilities, and so he decided to move north, settling in themoshav of Kfar Yedidya, an hour and a half north of Tel Aviv.
He is now selling "several hundred kilos" oflemon grass per week, and has signed with a distributor to package and put it in health food stores."Zabidov has taken it upon himself to learn more about the properties of citral, and help his customers learn more, and has invited medical experts to his farm to give lectures about how the citral works and why."
He also felt a responsibility to know what to tell his customers about its use. ‘When I realized what washappening, I picked up the phone and called Dr. Weinstein at Ben-Gurion University, because thesepeople were asking me exactly the best way to consume the citral.
He said to put the loose grass in hotwater, and drink about eight glasses each day.’
"Zabidov is pleased by the findings, not simply because it means business for his farm, but because itmight influence his own health.
"Even before the news of its benefits were demonstrated, he and his family had been drinking lemon grass in hot water for years, ‘just because it tastes good.


Anonymous said...

Nice health blog jay.I have read one article about this and indeed very inspiring to many people who should know the health benefits of our simple tanglad that just grow profusely like weeds in our backyards.I am starting now to get more dose of tanglad in my diet but sadly ,tanglad is hard to find here.I can only pop in huge supermarkets get a chance to get a small pack in plastic 2 stalks of 4-5 inches almost dried up lemon grass and the cost is about a £,what the hell of a price in comparison ,i get this for free in our backyard back home or can buy a huge generous bunch for only 50 centavos in the dumaguete market . I feel sorry for myself.There's no place like home.

Jean said...

Hi Jay, I'm so glad to find someone who has tried lemon grass. My mum is a 4th stage cancer patient, and she is currently trying lemon grass, 8 cups a day. Do you take the leaf portion or the stalk portion for the drink? Do you experience any side effect, like bloatness? Have you been drinking 8 cups a day for the past 3 years? ... sorry for having asked so many questions at one go. Thank you in advance! :)

Anonymous said...

..I started drinking lemon grass a year ago now and I believed it helps. My blood pressure became so normal everyday. when I was on vacation in the Philippines, you won't believed it I guit taking my medicine like high blood pressure etc. You can get lots of lemon grass at Stater Bros.stores. 8 glasses a day will help you.

Anonymous said...

can anyone tell me how to prepare the fresh lemon grass? my father is a dialysis patient, thus he won't be able to take to much water, Is it possible to make it into concentrated? Any comment is greatly appreciated

Anonymous said...

the taste of the lemon grass is very
delicious when you add calamansi and
honey..It also cure my asthma and my
cough..thanks for your wonderful lecture ...and thhanks to god for this amazing herb...

Anonymous said...

Hi, my family used to drink lemon grass with honey & lemon everyday, our meal is not complete without lemon grass tea in our table, i discover this through an australian lady who sell tanglad tea in tiange at Ayala Alabang.I researched for the herbal advantage of lemon grass and I found out that it can lowered cholesterol, high blood pressure, also very good cure for cough & asthma.We grew tangland in our own yard. Thanks for this God given herbal.

budji said...

To prepare Lemon grass tea: (This is how I do it)

5 cups of water and 3 lemon grass bulbs

Pour water in a casserole or pot, enough for 5 cups or more, let it boil. Then prepare the lemon grass by cutting the grassy part, retain the 'fleshy' part only, (or the 'bulb' you might say), about 3 inches or so. Wash through running water until all dirt is removed, take out outer old layer of the bulb. Crush the bulbs with a knife handle. When the water boils, put the lemon grass bulbs, simmer until the water turns 'lemon grass yellow' and the the fragrant aroma fills your whole kitchen. The strain the lemon grass, let it cool a bit and enjoy!

Its really a nice, soothing tea health benefits notwithstanding.