Monday, April 18, 2011

Ma Chi Xian 马齿苋 Portulaca oleracea L.

When I saw this herb is selling in the market, I remember when young, my granny used to cook it as delicious dish, and in the practice of herbal usage to fight disease for physical health. She used it as therapeutic herb to help to get rid of the tapeworm and parasites in our stomach, we grew up eating this herb as vegetable, it is also dispelling heat and toxins from the liver as liver tonic. This is the cheapest edible vegetable for the poor family, but it is delicious healthy food.

Immediately, I bought 2 big bundles and cooked it with garlic. I like to cook it with garlic, it is my best choice of delicious vegetable dish. It is very easy to cook, simply add oil and fried with garlic and salt.  This dish turns out to be a sour and crispy in bite. Very smooth and soothing taste.

Done.....a big plate portion of at least 5 colors vegetable ~ Red, Yellow, Green, White and Black in colors "5 colors a day for better health".  This rich colorful vegetables is nutritious low fat food for my dinner. Some prefer to cook with eggs as healthy healing soup for digestive problem.

Even thought this kind of wild vegetable, it is very common and can be found growing wild at the roadside, farm or plantation. We can even get it as cheap as RM 0.50 per bundle in price. 
But do not judge from the cheapest price to underestimate its useful and healthy medicinal properties. It has been used in alleviating most of the stomach and colon illnesses, for lungs and liver cancer.

What is Ma Chi Xian "马齿苋"

Portulaca oleracea L. or common name as Purslane or verdolaga, in Chinese name as “Ma Chi Xian” 马齿苋, belongs to succulent plant in the family Portulacaceae, we also called it as “Pigweed” in our hometown. The village people used it as pig feeding food. Don't be surprised, today it has becoming popular healthy and alternative healing herb, also one of the well-known delicious dishes.

Medicinal properties of Purslane (Ma Chi Xian 马齿苋)

It has the medicinal effect and its nutritional value is very high. And in culinary usage it is delicious, sour in taste, it has extraordinary content of omega3 fatty acid, the Eicosapentaenoic Acid ~ the EPA, Vitamin A, B, carateniods, and vitamin C, dietary minerals like calcium, magnesium, potassium and iron.

In traditional Chinese medicine property is sour in taste and cold, its meridian channel to intestine, liver and spleen. It's cheapest and wonderful natural herbal therapy were based on its medicinal effect and its purposes.

Why Ma Chi Xian is named as five element herb in traditional herb?

Because the whole herb or plant is consisting of 5 colors, green, yellow, red, white and black.

  • Leaf is green in color
  • Flower in yellow,
  • Stem is red,
  • Root is white
  • Seed is black

In Traditional herbal is has been known as “longevity vegetable or herb”. It is drought resistant grass with strong vitality and can last for a long time expose to the sun without dying. The people regarded it as the "natural antibiotic" and "natural good vegetable and alternative medicine" in home remedy. It is commonly used as expectorant of internal heat, anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, anti-aging, laxative and diuresis.

From the whole plant itself, the stem and the flower has the potent antioxidant properties. The scientist conducted the research to the Purslane, and discovered that it is rich in alpha-linolenic acid, can suppress the blood serum cholesterol and LDL, to lower the triglyceride production, and eliminates it and to prevent it from sending to the blood vessel wall deposits, and reduces atherosclerosis ~ prevent from build up of fatty deposits in the walls of the arteries. It protects and against of the heart and cardiovascular disease.

The leaves containing oxalate, like spinach. As it is advisable when using Purslane as natural therapeutic herb, for those with kidney stone history is not advisable or should take it with care. Excessive intake food in oxalate or oxalic acid, in long-term it may produce and cause the kidney stone.

Note: Start with low dose for any home remedies, possible some herbs may do well and it may also cause harmful effect or allergic reaction to it. In general, this herb not to say has no side effect, but it is less severe.

It helps in eliminate the roundworm, pin worm in the stomach, also treating infection, Inflammatory of the colon and intestinal disorder syndrome.

Purslane has great detoxification, antioxidants, and cooling effect for treating skin problem like eczema, dermatitis, itching and swelling skin, it helps to eliminate skin problem like pigmentation spot, prevent pimples and acne skin, as well as maintain the normal physiological function of the skin and delay skin aging, to keep our skin moisture balancing effect. 

Raw Juice Healing with Purslane:

Internally intake: 
Raw Purslane extract  or juice can be used to treat backwoods coli bacterial in the stomach.

Externally application: 
This herb has the varying degree in inhibitory action to the common pathogenic skin fungus, which can be used for skin rashes, fungus and ringworm.

For itchy scalp and head and skin fungus, apply of raw Purslane extract mixed with Burdock juice and apply to the infectious area, it may help to reduce itchiness, and has the anti-inflammatory effect. 

Natural Anti-aging herb:

The Purslane or Verdolaga 马齿苋 is richly including nutritional value of renieratene function with Vitamin A, E and Vitamin C, which has anti-aging, enhances the immunologic function, and to maintain the eye and skin health. Possible help in prevent the senile dementia. In addition, it also helps to reduce the blood sugar, in prevention of diabetes.

In cooking as herbal soup and porridge:
Use of this simple herbal therapy in traditional method, it helps in clearing heat and detoxification, e.g. cook it with egg as herbal soup.

And usually it is mixed with rice to cook into porridge is one of the home remedy for upset stomach and to stop diarrhea. It can be used either for diarrhea or constipation, it helps to smooth the bowel movement to prevent constipation. To drain damp-heat from the stomach and intestinal system.

Not suitable for pregnant woman, it will cause the contraction of the womb, it may cause and induced earlier delivery of childbirth. As it has diuresis effect, and strengthens the intestines creeping movement function and cause laxative effect to smooth the bowel movement.

1 comment:

  1. there is a vegetable locally known as salumi in Penang, which looks like Purslane. The stems are green in colour not red. The flowers are white. Penangnites usually fry it with sambal belachan . It taste a bit bitterish. Is it another species of Purslane?


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Please note that all the home remedies, traditional medicinal herbs usage are not alternatives for medicine. Although home remedies, alternative healing, natural healing or any alternative health articles are natural, all information I presented here is based on traditional usage and collected for informational purposes only. Results may not necessarily occur in all individuals. For severe illnesses, do not cease taking any prescribed medications. It is recommended that you must consult or seek your physician’s advice before starting any alternative healing with home remedies or herbs with caution.

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