Useful information

Bamboo - mister perfection

Bamboo

Bamboo is the symbol of the Asian continent. It is widely distributed from northeastern India to Burma, southern China, Sumatra and Borneo, where more than 1000 varieties of woody bamboo grow, forming bamboo forests. They are graceful perennials from the Poaceae (Gramineae) family of cereals, a subfamily of bamboo (Bambusoideae).

In addition, bamboo is one of the most beloved objects of poetic and artistic embodiment of Eastern art, which has inspired many poets, artists and philosophers.

I wander the garden all day - a delight.

Bamboo whispers to me about the voids of being, ...

Tao Yuan-Ming (365-427)

In the East, this plant is a symbol of a perfect human character, constancy, long-term friendship, truthfulness and grace are celebrated in it.

In China, bamboo is written with the hieroglyph "zhu", which is very similar to the plant itself:

Bamboo figures prominently in Eastern philosophy. Bamboo, wild cherry and pine - the "three friends of cold winter" - together with the orchid make up the "four perfect". This is a symbol of pure and noble people, whose friendship and mutual support have passed all the tests.

The ideas of the ancient Chinese about the nature and philosophy of life are somewhat different from our understanding. The Confucian beginning, representing the theme of the constancy and balance of the world, understands emptiness not as the opposite of fullness, but as its potential. "Emptiness is omnipotent, for it contains everything," said the Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu. “The bamboo breaks - its interior is empty. He is my model, "wrote the famous Chinese poet Bo Tszyu-i. Therefore, the empty bamboo inside is a symbol of a noble and staunch person. The flexibility of bamboo also symbolizes a person who can bow before the storm, but always rises again.

The plant has strong stems and can reach 15-32 meters in height. The stem is ligneous, hollow, rounded, straight, often branched in the upper part, with numerous nodes, but retaining the structure typical of cereals. Flowers grow in large panicles from the internodes of the stem.

Bamboo is one of the fastest growing plants in the world. Some varieties grow at a rate of up to 5 cm per hour, but usually the growth rate is about 10 cm per day. It is an evergreen plant that sheds part of its leaves every year, thanks to which it is also personified with longevity, blooming old age and caring for parents.

From weekdays to festivals and from flute to sewers

Bamboo

Bamboo is one of the important and multifunctional plants on which the lives of people in the countries of Southeast Asia are built and supported. Almost all of its parts are used in bamboo - leaf, stem, bamboo juice and root. This plant is involved in all spheres of Indochina life, from religious festivals to everyday life.

The matured lower parts of the stem - from 10 to 16 cm in diameter, hard and durable, are used for buildings, furniture, sewers and pipes for water, poles for palanquins, etc. Thinner and younger stems are used for making canes, flutes, musical instruments , weave mats, make chopsticks. Bamboo products are used to decorate rooms and use them as dishes. In Laos, bamboo is even dressed up instead of a Christmas tree.

Bamboo - healer

The use of bamboo is much wider and more effective than massage with bamboo brooms in spa salons.

To begin with, it concentrates a number of compounds that are practically not found in other plants. The bamboo stem is almost entirely composed of cellulose, hemicellulose (xylans, arabans, polyuronides, etc.) and lignans, as well as a small amount of resinous substances and triterpenoids, 1.8% silica, 6.0% extractives, 19.6% pentosans, 30.1% lignin and 57.6% cellulose. Bamboo sap and stem have a high silicon content.

Silica is one of the important components of connective tissues: cartilage, tendons, some elements of the arterial walls, skin, hair and nails. Silica-rich bamboo juice has a beneficial effect on the joints, stimulates collagen synthesis in the connective tissues, thus facilitating the reconstruction of cartilaginous tissues, which can be thinned in joint diseases. With its remineralizing properties, it helps to protect bone tissue from destruction. It is very useful for arthritis and osteoporosis, improves the condition of hair and nails, and prevents the effects of atherosclerosis. These compounds stimulate the body's natural defenses during critical periods for the body: during the growth of a young body, during pregnancy, for the restoration of bone tissues in fractures, with aging of the body, as well as in diseases of the spine. Besides silicic acid, bamboo contains iron, calcium, choline and betaine.

When studying the chemical composition of the plant in the leaves, a high content of flavonoid compounds was found, as well as the presence of phenolic acids, anthrone derivatives, peptides and amino acids, polysaccharides and trace elements - manganese, zinc and selenium. Bamboo leaves have recently begun to be used as a source of flavonoids (vitexin, orientina, etc.), which are used as antioxidants.

The history of the use of bamboo in medicine goes back more than one century. Bamboo medicines and their descriptions were first introduced in the lyrics of the Chen Wuci Dynasty. These books described not only the purpose of bamboo preparations, but also with which plants it is best to use it. In traditional Chinese medicine, bamboo is most often combined with ginger, orange, and licorice.

Fargesia MurielFargesia Muriel

In the book "Clinic of Traditional Chinese Medicine", bamboo preparations are included in the group of essential medicines for the treatment of such a complex disease as epilepsy. Interestingly, modern research has confirmed the fact that saponin-containing fractions from bamboo have anticonvulsant activity. Bamboo, according to traditional ideas, "removes the accumulation of phlegm" and is used "with a lack of the feminine" yin "in the liver and kidneys."

In China, bamboo is classified as a plant that affects the functioning of the gallbladder, lungs and stomach, and is credited with the main properties - "sweet and cold". Traditionally, it is used as a medicinal food plant for pulmonary problems, for internal bleeding, as a means of promoting lactation in nursing mothers.

Bamboo leaves are an ancient antipyretic and anti-inflammatory agent in China and India. This plant is used in the treatment of hematuria, in the treatment of arthritic inflammation, colds, fever, coughs and nosebleeds. Traditionally, extracts from it are an effective remedy for kidney and bladder problems. To some extent, its action and application resembles the field horsetail.

Stalk juice - antipyretic, antitussive, antiemetic and sedative. It is squeezed from young stems in the summer and then dried for later use.

Bamboo root is an astringent, antipyretic, diuretic and styptic. Bamboo root ointment was considered a good traditional medicine for cirrhosis and tumors. The roots are usually dug in the winter and dried for later use.

Scientific research on the medicinal properties of bamboo preparations began relatively recently; intensive work on the study of bamboo leaf extracts has been carried out since 1992 at the Zhejiang Agricultural University (China). The researchers found that extracts from bamboo leaves have high antioxidant activity, effectively bind free radicals, and normalize the state of free radical oxidative homeostasis.The ability to neutralize the negative effects of nitro-derivatives and lipid peroxide derivatives, to protect against a number of carcinogenic compounds was revealed.

Extracts from bamboo with a high content of bioflavonoids are effective for normalizing blood pressure, reducing blood lipids and cholesterol, and protecting the body from premature fatigue. They contribute to the normalization of brain activity during hypoxia (lack of oxygen). Bamboo preparations improve blood circulation and inhibit allergic reactions.

Substances from Ginkgo biloba, now well known to almost everyone, also have a similar positive effect on blood vessels. However, if ginkgo extracts must be thoroughly purified from the ballast toxic impurities of specific acids present in it, then no related compounds harmful to humans were found in bamboo leaves.

Phyllostachis golden

Bamboo contains acetylcholine (its role in plant biochemistry is still unknown). It is especially abundant in some parts of the plant, for example, in the upper parts of young bamboo shoots (about 2.9 μm / g). This compound is a neurotransmitter, a chemical transmitter of nervous excitement and plays an important role in life processes. Acetylcholine takes part in the transmission of nervous excitement in the central nervous system, autonomic nodes, the endings of the parasympathetic and motor nerves. Perhaps the presence of this compound in bamboo may explain its positive effects on brain function.

For medicinal and nutritional purposes, to obtain bamboo extracts and extracts, leaves of such species as cane bamboo (Bambusa arundinacea), phyllostachis black, or black bamboo (Phyllostachys nigra), which grows and is cultivated along the Yangtze River (southern China), andhainanese bamboo (Bambusa tuldoides) and weaving bamboo (Bambusa textilis)... Raw materials are harvested all year round, but the best time to harvest leaves is in autumn and winter.

 

Pharmacological studies on the liver tissue of mice, based on chemiluminescence, confirmed that bamboo leaf extracts have a high ability to bind peroxide radicals and significantly reduce lipid peroxidation in the experiment. It was revealed that fractions containing bioflavonoids and water-soluble bamboo polysaccharides are responsible for the antioxidant activity.

Among other things, it turned out that bamboo powder and extracts have an antimicrobial effect: they inhibit growth Staphylococcus aureus, Echerichia coli, and Salmonella typhi... It is recommended for pulmonary infections with cough, nausea, chronic gastritis.

Bamboo creams and skin toners facilitate and accelerate wound healing, reduce inflammation, and have a rejuvenating effect.

Bamboo has attracted great interest among manufacturers of functional and natural products. Bamboo extracts are currently being produced - in the form of thick and dry extracts with different bioflavonoid content - 5%, 8%, 15% and 24%.

Food supplements of bamboo leaf extracts convey all the beneficial properties of the natural complex of bamboo bioflavonoids, this is P-vitamin, capillary-strengthening, antioxidant effect. First of all, this is a beneficial effect on the work of the heart, stomach and liver, including the regulation of the function of the endocrine glands, as well as for improving the functions of the brain. It is a valuable product necessary for the prevention of cardiovascular and oncological diseases. The extract is added to dietary supplements, drinks, medicines and food.

Bamboo beer

At present, the mills of the East have begun to produce a new type of product - bamboo beer, which immediately found its customers.

Bamboo beer is made with bamboo leaf extracts. For these purposes, bamboo leaves of bamboo reed or plants of the genus Phyllostachys harvested in late autumn, dried and extracted. The resulting extract is alone and added to the composition with juice to enrich the beer. For the preparation of bamboo beer, an extract is added in such a way that the sum of flavonoids has a content of about 10-50 mg / l of beer.

How does this product differ from regular beer? Firstly, there is a characteristic smell of bamboo leaves, and the beer itself has a pleasant refreshing taste. Due to the high content of bioflavonoids with high biological activity and antioxidant properties, it is to some extent a functional product, that is, enriched with biologically active substances that promote the elimination of cholesterol and blood lipids, reducing the risk of heart disease. Surprisingly, the shelf life of the product is increased.

 

Note for gourmets

Apart from household needs, bamboo arrows are a well-known food product in Chinese, Thai and Japanese cuisine. They are widely used in food in Southeast Asia, and recently the culinary advantages of this plant have been recognized in other countries. Bamboo dishes can be found in Chinese and non-Chinese restaurants around the world. Fresh bamboo shoots have a rather bitter taste, but during the cooking process, after boiling and cooking with seasonings in oil, they acquire a pleasant vegetable taste. Young shooters are pickled, cooked with curry sauce, used to make soups, sauces, and prepare traditional dishes and seasonings. For example, in Australia they are used to make sauces Mesu and Tama.