In this article, we are going to discuss the proven health benefits of medlar, including its ability to support blood sugar and skin health. Research has reported that its leaf may also be helpful in supporting liver and pancreatic health, two key organs that aid in detoxification. In addition, we will share with you a remedy for diabetes based on a medlar leaf tea.
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The health benefits of medlar leaves
We are all familiar with the medlar as a tasty and juicy fruit. However, research has said that we shouldn’t be so quick to fire the other parts of the tree and that we can make generous use of its leaves which have a variety of proven health benefits.
The tree that produces the delicious medlar fruit is an evergreen native to China and Japan, but is now cultivated in many parts of Southeast Asia. Also known by its scientific name Eribotrya japonica, the tree produces an orange-plum-shaped fruit with a taste and consistency similar to a hybrid of a peach and a mango.
The fruit is eaten on its own, either fresh or dried, but it is also used to make delicious jams. While many people will be familiar with the fruit, fewer will be aware of the many benefits that can be obtained from its leaves.
The Japanese in particular use the leaves to make healthy medlar leaf tea, while it is also possible to make healing salves and poultices from the crushed and ground leaves before applying them to treat minor wounds.
Loquat nutritional value
Both the medlar fruit and its leaves contain a rich variety of important vitamins and other nutrients. These include pectin, potassium, iron, and fiber, as well as vitamins A and C.
This wide range of vital nutrients is great for general health purposes, but medlar leaves also confer certain specific health benefits that we will discuss in detail below.
Loquat leaves for diabetes
One of the most important findings regarding medlar leaves is that it could help the body prevent and fight diabetes. It has antidiabetic potential because the leaves produce chemicals known as triterpenes, including an acid called tormentic acid.
Research has shown that tormentic acid can increase the body’s production of insulin, which can help fight the symptoms of diabetes.
Additionally, the Chinese government has approved the use of medlar leaves to support blood sugar levels because they help produce polysaccharides that are known to stimulate insulin production in the pancreas.
For diabetics, avoiding highs and lows in blood sugar is also very important, which can be achieved by consuming loquat tea regularly.
Other health benefits of loquat leaf
Medlar leaves have been fairly well studied in recent years and research has revealed that many of its health benefits are related to its powerful antioxidant capacity.
At this time, most people are aware of the importance of getting as much natural antioxidants into our system as possible to prevent free radical damage that wreaks havoc on our health and leads to serious illness.
In addition to its antioxidant activity, medlar leaves contain triterponoid acid that can help reduce swelling and redness of the skin. Loquat leaf benefits include the following:
For liver support
Your liver is the powerhouse of the body when it comes to removing harmful toxins from the body. Sometimes your liver becomes overworked and needs help to perform its important functions in the best possible way.
Loquat leaves can help because they contain an antioxidant compound called Amygdalin that can support the liver and help it function better. Additionally, research shows that loquat leaves are a rich source of plant sterols, linoleic acids, which help the liver function properly.
For respiratory health and allergies
One of the traditional uses for medlar leaves was as a natural remedy for a variety of respiratory problems including congestion, coughing, allergic reaction, and irritation of the lungs. Recent scientific research has contributed in some way to confirming that this historical use had merit.
Experiments have found that medlar leaf has a natural antihistamine effect and reduces sneezing. It also reduces redness and inflammation by interrupting the communication of the swelling response after the cells detect an allergen.
Drinking a nice cup of loquat leaf tea also has an expectorant effect, which means it helps loosen mucus and relieve congestion, helping you breathe more freely.
For eczema and other skin complaints
Loquat leaves can be applied topically in cream form as a remedy for redness and irritation caused by environmental allergens, especially when the reaction is caused by histamines.
When applied topically, loquat leaf can combat the reaction of histamine production that soothes inflamed skin and supports overall skin health. Its antioxidant properties make it ideal for avoiding the unwanted effects of free radical damage to the skin. By adding more antioxidants to your system, you can help protect against many of the signs of premature aging, such as wrinkles and fine lines.
Drinking loquat leaf tea can provide general benefits for the skin due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory abilities, while it can also help soothe painful and inflamed gums.
For brain health
Experts believe that oxidative stress as a result of exposure to free radicals is one of the main causes of neurological degeneration. Due to its powerful antioxidant effects, medlar leaves can be beneficial in maintaining brain health.
There is scientific evidence that loquat leaf has antiviral properties as a result of the antigens produced by the acids in the leaf. In addition to these antigens, the triterpenes contained in the leaf can help protect against the cold.
So, if you feel like you’re catching the common cold, try making a good cup of loquat leaf tea and have it a few times a day. You may very well prevent a cold from taking hold and could help you recover much faster if you already have an illness.
As we age, our bone density becomes lighter and our bones weaken. This is especially the case in women going through menopause due to the reduced level of estrogen in their bodies. Recent research shows that loquat leaf tea can help combat bone loss from estrogen depletion.
Liver health and detox
Loquat leaf can also help improve the health of the body’s hardest working organ – the liver. The leaf contains a compound called Amygdalin that is proven to support liver health, fight liver disease, and remove toxins from the body. While researchers aren’t sure how it works, they believe it owes its effect to antioxidant capabilities.
How to make loquat leaf tea for diabetes
Medlar leaf tea is a traditional Japanese popular drink called Biwa Cha. It is easy to make and has a smooth and pleasant flavor that accompanies its many health benefits and can be enjoyed both hot and cold.
Commercially, the leaves are picked when green before washing, cleaning and drying. After drying, they are cut into pieces ready to be processed.
Loquat leaf tea is fairly easy to make at home as long as you can get the leaves. The following is a traditional Japanese recipe for loquat leaf tea that is an excellent remedy for diabetes.
- Cut the leaves into finger-width strips.
- Add 5 grams of leaves to 4 cups of water and then bring them to a boil in a saucepan.
- Lower the heat and let it simmer for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Turn off the heat and let the tea steep for another 10 minutes.
- Strain the tea, serve and drink.