LIKE the pure virgin maiden repulsed by the dirty fingers of the scraggy man, MIMOSA PUDICA (Touch Me Not or Sensitive plant) quickly hides its face and body from the prowling fingers. The rapidity with which it does so speaks volumes and tells us something about its medicinal capabilities. It has a lot of nerve energy, is, therefore, a nerve herb and should be able to help in medical conditions which require the strengthening of nerves. One of these conditions is bleeding, when an astringent herb is required to tighten those passages through which blood leaks are occurring. This herb is found useful by women who bleed excessively during their menstrual cycles, or who are beset with bleeding uterine fibroids or endometriosis. It is, perhaps, for this reason that the Yoruba of south-western Nigeria call it PATANMO or PADIMO. Patanmo (pa itan mo) literally means hide your lap. Pa idi mo means hide your secret place. Both names indicate the astringent capacity of this plant to stop excessive vaginal bleeding.
Many studies have confirmed the health benefits ascribed to this herb by traditional medicine. These include…wound healing, anti-microbial, antifungal and anti-viral essence, anti-diabetic, anti-diarrhoea, anti-inflammatory, anti-pile remedy and anti-fertility, among many others.
In various concentrations with different carrier sources, Touch Me Not (sensitive plant) has been found to help wounds to heal.
The leaves are ground with little water and the juice is extracted. At two percent concentration in methanol or water base, the juice ointment expressed significant healing abilities.
People who suffer from liver troubles should be glad to learn that the herb is liver-protecting. When researchers gave a group of rats deadly meals and added sensitive plant to that diet, it was found that the poisons did not affect the livers of the rats. This is one way in which researchers determine the hepaprotective nature of herbs.
It is not surprising that this plant also controls diarrhoea. That is because it is astringent in nature. When Albino rats were fed castor oil to induce diarrhoea in them, the ethanolic extracts of Sensitive Plant they were given thereafter proved effective in preventing diarrhoea.
If this herb heals wounds, if it eases excessive menstrual bleeding, will it not similarly help bleeding piles because of its astringent nature? Yes, it should. In fact, many studies are reported in which it did when the leaves were crushed into a paste which was then applied on burning and bleeding piles.
Wall gecko poisoning
These days in Nigeria, there is so much talk about the bite and poisoning of the wall gecko in many homes. One woman has called me two times this month in respect of her children. In bed at night, the wall gecko probably crawl on their faces, arms or other parts of the body, leaving nail marks which fill up with pus in the morning. The wall gheko is present in almost every home and is chased away or killed only by fumigation. So ubiquitous is the wall gecko that the Yorubas call it Omo onile, which means child of the house.
Some people believe it may be perilous to send them out of the house. Such people always say there is a psychic angle to their presence in a home despite all the window and door netting against the tiny mosquito. Recently videos have been flying around in WHATSAPP chat groups showing how the wall gecko licks exposed tooth-brushes and crawls on exposed raw food such as rice or beans. It, therefore, becomes necessary to protect the household against the effects of poisons from the contamination of food and other household items by the wall gecko. Mimosa Pudica (Sensitive plant/Touch Me Not Plant) can offer such protection, going by the report of studies that it curbs poisoning by cobra bite. In the experiment with cobra poison, the dry root of Mimosa Pudica was used. It was boiled in water which was then administered orally.
Because of the negative way in which many people view the wall gecko in Nigeria, I would like to make the following comment…the wall gecko is well known worldwide for different things. In many parts of Nigeria, it is associated with evil and darkness. But in Akwa Ibom State, some people see it as a guardian of the souls of children. In Japan, it is believed to be a re-incarnation of the Dragon, and is used in many rituals. The Dragon in this case is by no means the biblical Lucifer. It is that animal which thousands of years ago provided human beings the means of traveling by air, as thou they were traveling in an aeroplane, from one part of the earth to the other. Like the Dinosaur and the lost continent of Atlantis, the Dragon has gone into extinction. But it is still lovingly remembered in some Asian countries which, in fact, observe a Dragon holiday in their national calendars. About ten years ago some Nigerian Christians exhibited ignorance of world history when they rejected a herbal medicine product from one of this countries on which the image of the Dragon appeared on the package. The image was merely to show that the product combines the friendliness and the power of the Dragon. But the Christians saw it as Luciferian.
Indonesians believe the sounds the wall gecko makes can help them to predict the future, and are thought to attract good luck to their owners.
It would surprise many Nigerians to learn that, in China, the skin of the wall gecko is used in several traditional medicines for say, asthma, diabetes, skin diseases and even cancer. The powder of the gecko skin is offered in particular for skin diseases.
Please do not throw up at this. The Chinese who eat anything, including cockroaches and the earthworms, believe the tongue and heart of the wall gecko can cure AIDS and other seemly incurable diseases. This is attributed to a chemical compound called Tri-Hexapentaphenicol in the wall gecko’s saliva. It is believed, as well, that it can knock out the Human immuno deficiency virus (HIV). But no scientific investigation has validated these folklore beliefs.
While Nigerians hate the wall gecko, it is being sought for business in Malaysia and the Philippens where, due to a decline in the wall gecko population, is now being imported for use as pets or medicine from countries which are now producing it on large scale farms.
This is caused by inflammation. Mimosa Pudica is anti-inflammatory, one of the reasons it curbs peptic ulcer as well. For joint pain or arthritis, the leaves are crushed into a paste which is then spread over the joint overnight and washed off in the morning. The proprietary leaf powder product may be used. Some people add it to shea butter or confrey root cream or use it plain.
It is suggested that the leaves be crushed to a paste which is boiled, strained and drunk for about 20days to correct this condition.
This is yet another inflammatory condition for which the leaves are juiced and made into a solution with water which is drunk two times a day.
How I wish that a woman whose case I learned about last week knew of Mimosa Pudica. She developed gum problems which ended in cancer of the gums to which she has lost all her teeth. Micro-organisms and their poisons as well as other poisons may be behind gum problems. This plant may also be helpful in conditions of the slurry tongue and glositis. In this conditions, the tongue becomes larger than the space it is meant to occupy in the mouth. To have a feel of this condition, bring out your tongue a little, and try to say the words…I LOVE YOU. The root of this plant is made into a decoction and gangled with to improve the hygiene of the mouth and challenge or curb tooth-ache.
Women worry a lot about their breasts. They do not want it to sag and will do anything to make them buoyant like a maiden’s. That is why many bras are wired to give the breast a lift. But the wire presses firmly against the skin of the breast blocking circulation, and this may lead to chest pain underneath the breast which may not be immediately traced to this wiring. The modern bra tries to overcome this with rigid, padding stuff which gives the softened, flat or falling breast a deceptive buxom appearance. As this deception is frowned upon by many men when the chips are down, some women adopt the Mimosa option. The only contraindication against this is that Mimosa can be anti-fertility and should not be over done as a tea or as a food supplement by women who still wish to bear children. For women who do not belong to this class, all it takes is to make a paste of the leaves of Sensitive Plant, if need be with Ashwanghada paste or essential oil, and massage them into the breasts, for their upliftment.
From time to time, we experience glandular swellings one way or the other. They may come with burning sensations and other types of pain. The glands so affected may be the liver, pancreas, salivary gland, spleen, the pineal in the brain, the testes, ovaries, thyroid, the pituitary (also in the brain) et.c. To get rid of glandular swellings with this plant, the leaves are juiced and massaged deeply into the affected areas. Some of the juice may also be added to water and drunk.
We appear to be lazy and uninventive in Nigeria, and cry to high Heavens that the economy is bad and we do not have jobs and money. We still gather our Mimosa from the wild. Sometimes, we travel from Lagos to Ikenne almost 50 kilometers away, to search for a few hand fuls of Mimosa. We come back to base to wash it, clean it up, dry it and then grind it to powder only to discover that we do not have more than five or six tablespoonfuls of the finished product which cannot reward the cost and the labour. Imagine the prosperity in another country where a farmer cultivate one square kilometer of Mimosa farm land and cures the harvest in a factory from where the product is sold to different part of the world. There will be jobs and money in that kind of country. We will continue to dream for that day when Nigerian Agriculture will embrace plantation farming of lemon grass, Marigold flower and Mimosa Pudica, our good, old Sensitive Plant or Touch Me Not Plant.
The Black Walnut, for brain power and balance
SOME readers of this column who read Mellie Uyldert account of the cosmic healing powers of the Marigold flower last week agreed with the suggestion that she is a good company to keep. The report on Marigold flower as a multi-purpose healer was culled from the book THE PSYCHIC GARDEN, written by Mellie Uyldert. This book being an old one, some of its hunters have begun an internet search. I have appealed to them for a feed-back, if they find it to buy.
To encourage the search for it, I thought that it would be worth the trouble if those of us health seekers who wish to fortifying our home libraries with such helpful books as this one hears again from the PSYCHIC GARDEN this week, this time in respect of a nut currently in fruiting season in Nigeria…the Black Walnut.
Mellie Uyldert says:
“Brain Tonic. The kernel has the shape of the human brain, complete with the division to left and right. According to the doctrine of symbols, the walnut must therefore be the right food for the brain, and this is a fact. People who do much mental work should eat plenty of them. Since the damp young nuts cannot be kept long without becoming mildewed, the trade stores them in sulphur, in the course of which they become steadily drier and less tasty through the winter. They contain oil and resin and are very nutritious. The felty pith is infused in boiling water as a tea against high blood pressure. The thick peel contains vitamin C in abundance and can be used (externally) as a styptic. Since the walnut is a brain tonic, it retains man’s ego within his pole of thought in the head, even when much alcohol is drunk (which does the reverse). This reverses the human organism so that the pole of life and the subconscious part of the soul gain the upper hand, bringing the hidden truths to light in the inebriate.
“It has been proved that walnuts keep people sober even when large quantities of wine are drunk! At the time when Austria formed part of the Roman Empire-under the name Noricum-the Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius Probus (278-282) had vineyards built for his soldiers in the foothills of the Alps since the spring water was difficult to reach in the jungles which then existed. However, when drunk, the soldiers fought so much amongst themselves that great numbers were killed. The Emperor thereupon had nut trees planted all over amongst the vineyards. A wine still exists called Nussberger after the nut-hill on which it grows. Every wine shop had to offer nuts free of charge with the wine and, in this way, drunkenness disappeared, together with it consequences. This habit still exists at the Heckenwrite where people can sit and drink wine outdoors in the autumn, plates of nuts are placed ready on the tables. And so larger quantities are always drunk.”
The Black Walnut has more healing powers which we cannot discuss today. The green shell, sold as black walnut hull, is a great antibiotic. The leaves can be use as tea to resolve some mental problems.
Mr. Olusegun Shoboyede, who was 80 about 3months ago, once ate far too many raw black walnut with some dire consequences which he may share with us some day. We were toying with the idea of walnut wine. This would involve grating some raw black walnut and infusing them in red wine from which a tort of the decoction can be taken at least once a day on empty stomach. Who will bell the cat?