Gumamela is a shrub that grows from one meter up to 4 meters high. Gumamela is also known as: Hibiscus, China Rose and Shoeflower. In the Philippines, gumamela is cultivated as an ornamental plant. The gumamela flower comes in many colors: red, yellow, orange, white, purple, pink and other color combinations.
Gumamela leaves, usually blended with Rose Hip has long been used in the Middle East and Okinawa as herbal tea. Today, the use of gumamela tea is gaining worldwide popularity – including Asia. Gumamela (Hibiscus) is associated with longevity. Gumamela as Herbal Medicine
As herbal medicine, gumamela flower, leaves and roots are used. Gumamela has the following medicinal characteristics: expectorant, diuretic, emollient, anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, antipyretic, anodyne and refrigerant. Preparation & Use of Gumamela:
There are two ways to utilize gumamela as herbal medicine. One is dried and the other is fresh. For Dried gumamela, collect the flower, leaves and/or roots. Wash, then cut into small pieces and sun dry. To use as decoction, boil the dried gumamela parts (1/4 cup dried gumamela in 1 glass of water)
To make a decoction from fresh gumamela, Wash gumamela flower and/or leaves, cut into small pieces and boil (1/3 cup in 1 glass of water), let cool and drink. Use Gumamela as Poultice: Poultice is the use or fresh or dried herbs that is mashed, crushed or pounded – often heated (boiled in water to soften and heat the herb) and applied directly to the skin. A clean cloth or gauze can be used to help the poultice stay in place.
Gumamela is used for the treatment of:
• Bronchitis – as an expectorant
• Coughs, sore throat
• Fever – as refrigerant drink
• Treats dysentery
• Urinary tract infection, bladder infections
• High blood pressure
• Prevention of constipation
• Boils, swelling & abscesses, mumps
Application & Use of Gumamela:
• Decoction is used to treat: Bronchitis, coughs, fever, dysentery, urinary and bladder infections, high blood pressure and constipation. • Poultice is applied externally on the afflicted area. This is used to treat: headaches (on the forehead), boils, swelling, abscesses and mumps. • Intake of gumamela (alone or mixed with papaya or papaya seeds) specially in large quantities can be an abortifacient.
In Thailand, roselle is drunk as a tea, believed to also reduce cholesterol. It can also be made into a wine, especially if combined with Chinese tealeaves, in the ratio of 4:1 by weight (1/5 Chinese tea). It is also drunk cold and sugared. The beverage is popular in Malaysia and Indonesia as well. In China, candied flower petals are occasionally available. In Mandarin Chinese, it is called luòshénhuā (洛神花). In Europe
The tea is popular as a natural diuretic; it contains vitamin C and minerals, and is used traditionally as a mild medicine. Dieters or people with kidney problems often take it without adding sugar for its beneficial properties and as a natural diuretic. A 2008 USDA study shows consuming hibiscus tea lowers blood pressure in a group of prehypertensive and mildly hypertensive adults. Three cups of tea daily resulted in an average drop of 8.1 mmHg in their systolic blood pressure, compared to a 1.3 mmHg drop in the volunteers who drank the placebo beverage. Study participants with higher blood pressure readings (129 or above) had a greater response to hibiscus tea: their systolic blood pressure went down by 13.2 mmHg. These data support the idea that drinking hibiscus tea in an amount readily incorporated into the diet may play a role in controlling blood pressure, although more research is required.
Hibiscus rosa-sinensis has a number of medical uses in Chinese herbology. Lokapure s.g.et.al their research indicates some potential in cosmetic skin care; for example, an extract from the flowers of Hibiscus rosa- sinensis has been shown to function as an anti-solar agent by absorbing ultraviolet radiation. In the Indian traditional system of medicine, Ayurveda, hibiscus, especially white hibiscus and red hibiscus (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis), is considered to have medicinal properties. The roots are used to make various concoctions believed to cure ailments such as cough, hair loss or hair greying. As a hair treatment, the flowers are boiled in oil along with other spices to make a medicated hair oil. The leaves and flowers are ground into a fine paste with a little water, and the resulting lathery paste is used as a shampoo plus conditioner. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hibiscus
Vitamin C is found in high concentrations in immune cells, and is consumed quickly during infections. It is not certain how vitamin C interacts with the immune system; it has been hypothesized to modulate the activities of phagocytes, the production of cytokines and lymphocytes, and the number of cell adhesion molecules in monocytes. Antihistamine
Vitamin C is a natural antihistamine. It both prevents histamine release and increases the detoxification of histamine. A 1992 study found that taking 2 grams vitamin C daily lowered blood histamine levels 38 percent in healthy adults in just one week. It has also been noted that low concentrations of serum vitamin C has been correlated with increased serum histamine levels.