Breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis) is a big, round fruit native to Indonesia and Polynesia. Migration of Austronesian tribes made breadfruit dispersed through Pacific islands. The European colonizations made the fruit dispersed through Asia and Latin America. The plant grows well in tropical country with high rainfall.
Breadfruit is used as a source of carbohydrate in Pacific Islands. In Indonesia, the young fruit is used to make chips, the ripe one to make fritters or cakes. In India and Sri Lanka, breadfruit is used to make curry. Too read more about breadfruit, click here: Benefits of Breadfruit .
Not only the fruit, the leaf also have many health benefits. Indonesian people use the young leaves as vegetables (eaten raw or made into curry) and livestocks’ foods (especially as goats or sheeps’ food). Chinese herbalists use the leaves to make tea to cure diseases.
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Breadfruit leaves contain kalium, which has big role of destroying kidney stones by dilluting the stones so it can be eliminated through urine. There are many other compounds which give benefits to our body, such as essensial amino acids, riboflavin, hydrocyanate, acetylcholine, tannin and polyphenols. In a research in China, it is proven that breadfruit leaves is very useful to heal cardiovascular diseases.
1. Kidney Failure Treatment
Kidney failure is very frightening. People with kidney failure must do hemodialysis regularly, can be every 2 week or even everyday, according to the severity of the disease. The hemodialysis have some undesirable effects such as hypotension, fatigue, infection, and sepsis; those effects make people really do not want to undergo hemodialysis. Drinking breadfruit leaf tea can help optimize kidney’s work by acting as diuretics. People with kidney failure can consume breadfruit leaf tea for months until the kidney functions turn normal again.
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2. Lowers Cholesterol Level
High cholesterol level can be acquired from eating foods with saturated fats and trans fats. These fats are obtained from meat with plenty of fat, such as beef tenderloin, fats underneath poultry skin, and vegetable oil such as palm oil. Excessive cholesterol cannot be used by our body, and will pile up in the blood. The long time effect can cause cardiovascular diseases (hypertension, heart disease and stroke) because the cholesterol will cling into blood vessels.
Drinking breadfruit leaf tea can lower cholesterol level, by taking away cholesterol from the blood and eliminate it through urine and stool.
3. Lowers Risks of Heart Diseases
People in Jamaica drink breadfruit leaf tea regularly to prevent heart diseases. Heart diseases can be caused by many factors, such as complications of hypertension, diabetes, or kidney failure. Moreover, bad metabolism pattern of the body can form plaques in blood vessels, causing atherosclerosis (stiffening of blood vessels) and other crdiovascular disorders. The most frightening thing is, heart attack can happen anytime. To prevent and reduce the risks of heart disease, we can use breadfruit leaf tea. The compounds in breadfruit leaf make blood pressure become normal and promote better bloodstream. By consuming the breadfruit leaf tea for long time, we can maintain healthy heart.
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4. Stops Proliferation of Cancer Cells
Cancer is caused by many things in our body, but the main cause is the damage of healthy body cells because of free radicals. This make the healthy cells mutate and can be cancerous. Cancer cells can appear in any body organs and can metastase to other organs. To reduce the cancer risk and to cure cancer, we can drink breadfruit leaf tea. The tea can substitute chemotherapy, since the breadfruit leaf contain high antioxidant which can overcome cancers.
5. Reduces Uric Acid
Excessive uric acid can make our body become weak. In advanced stage, people with high uric acid will get gout arthritis, which can lead to disability. This disease often happens in old people, and usually accompanied with other diseases such as diabetes, stroke or hypertension. Drinking breadfruit leaf tea can reduce uric acid gradually. The breadfruit leaf also have anti-inflammation properties, which is very good to reduce inflammation in joints.
When using breadfruit leaf tea therapy, it is very recommended to avoid high-purin foods, for example nuts, beans, water spinach, asian spinach, and fatty meats.
6. Treatments of Liver Disease
Liver has a great function to accomodate all toxins from the body and neutralize them. Liver that neutralizes too much toxins can get disorders because of bad metabolic condition. Moreover, alcohol intake and smoking can destroy liver too. The breadfruit leaf tea can be used to overcome liver inflammation or liver enlargement. Some substances contained in the breadfruit leaf, such as acetylcholine and antioxidants, is very good to fight inflammation. Be sure of avoiding smoking and alcohol during the therapy.
7. Cures Allergy
One of the health benefits of breadfruit leaf tea is to cure allergy. Allergy happens because the body cannot form hormones or enzimes responsible for anti-allergen system in the body. This makes the body have system failure in recognizing some substance, then making some reaction when confronted by an allergen. Allergens can be cold air, seafoods, fruits, and drugs. The allergic reactions can be itch, body swelling, difficulties of breath, or Steven-Johnson syndrome. Drinking 1 cup of breadfruit leaf tea everyday can reduce the onset and reactions of allergy. However, if we have allergy, we still need to avoid the allergens.
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8. Treatment of Spleen Enlargement
Spleen enlargement can be caused by the damage of the spleen system. The risk factors are various, but the most common one is because the body contains too much toxins. Many bad foods make the spleen cannot function well in creating enzimes and hormones needed to ingest the foods, thus the spleen will be damaged. Breadfruit leaf tea has anti-toxin activity, thanks to its high antioxidants. The breadfruit leaf tea can do detoxification and eliminate the toxins from the body, thus alleviate the spleen. Drinking the tea 1 cup per day can cure this disease.
9. Curing Tooth-ache
Tooth-ache commonly caused by caries or tooth decay that reaches dentine cavity, where blod vessels and nerve fibers are located. The contact between nerve fibers and air causes extreme pain. Breadfruit leaf tea can be used as mouthwash to cure tooth-ache. Breadfruit leaf contains anti-microbial properties which can kill germs causing tooth decay, plus the anti-inflammation properties will sooth the swelling and pain.
10. Curing Wound and Skin Infections
Drinking 1 cup of breadfruit leaf tea everyday can accelerate the healing of would, skin infections or skin rash. The sap of the tree can be used as topical ointment on the skin, while the tea does the job from inside of the body. Both will make the healing process much faster.
Breadfruit Leaf Tea for Reproductive System
Thus, health benefits of breadfruit leaf tea is also work for reproductive system.
11. Treatment of Vaginal Candidiasis
Vaginal candidiasis or vaginal thrush is a condition of vaginal infection by the yeast Candidia sp. This often happens in obese women, in diabetic women, and women with low immunity, such as cancer, tuberculosis and HIV patients. The infection causes severe itching on the vulva, and can spread to the area nearby. Breadfruit leaf tea can be used to cure this disease, by drinking the tea 1 cup per day and use the tea as vaginal wash 2-3 times a day. But make sure to reduce the weight and blood sugar to avoid the reccurent infection.
12. Treatment of Post Partum Hemorrhage and Promotes Lactation
Traditionally, breadfruit leaf tea is used as remedy for post-partum hemorrhage. Breadfruit leaf contains anti-hemorrhage activity, which can stop the bleeding in a few days. Women who just give birth take 3 cups of breadfruit leaf tea every day. Sundanese people from West Java, Indonesia also give the raw young leaves as vegetables to new mothers, to promote breastmilk production, thus making exclusive breastfeeding a success. The tea also has many substances which make the new mother feel stronger and energized. The tea also promotes faster healing of vaginal incision (episiotomy).
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We can see that breadfruit leaf tea has many great benefits. If we live in tropical countries, we can find breadfruit tree almost everywhere, both cultivated or naturally grown. It is very cheap, but very potent. If we live in subtropical countries, now we can buy the dried breadfruit leaf online too. Even when we still do not have the diseases mentioned above, drinking breadfruit leaf tea can help us avoid those diseases.
Breadfruit Leaf Tea Preparation
To prepare the breadfruit leaf tea, there are some points which should not be missed:
- Make sure that we take the fresh leaves directly from the tree, not the ones that hass fallen onto the ground.
- Take 2-3 pieces of dark leaves. The leaves should have dark green or green-yellow color,with very visible yellowish lines. Pick the perfect-looking leaves, without any torn / rotten part.
- Wash the leaves with running water, scrub them softly to eliminate any dirts.
- Cut the leaves thinly, then dry them under the sun until they are completely dry. Make sure that the leaves do not contact with water during drying process.
- Boil 2 tablespoon of dried leaves in 2 liters of water. Make sure that the pan is made of enamel, ceramic or stainless steel. Do not use aluminium pan since it can react with the leaves. Once the water is reduced into half, add more water until it reaches 2 liters again. Then bring to boil, and remove from heat. The tea should look reddish brown.
- Consume the tea daily. Store the excess tea in the fridge. Add honey, stevia or brown sugar to mask the bitterness.
Thus, as herbal tea will promote you a healthier life. Also, we may spend everyday consuming unhealthy beverages, then herbal tea like breadfruit leaf tea may balance our health.
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