Katuk leaves or Sauropus androgynus in Latin is a leaves vegetable that grows in native Southeast Asia. Katuk leaves is regarded to be good for pregnant women and nursing mothers to smoothen their milk. Because such advantages of katuk leaves is instrumental in improving the breast-milk production, so now a lot of milk product are made using katuk leaves.
Katuk leaves has been widely consumed in many countries. This vegetable is a plant that is widely available in Southeast Asia. Katuk leaves is included in the tribe of phyllantheae, and they are related to menteng plants, berry, and cermai. Katuk plant is also included in tibus phyllanteae and subtibus flueggeinae. Katuk leaf contains many benefits of vegetables that are good for body health.
Maybe a little ironic that although the leaves katuk have often been heard, there are still many people who do not know what exactly katuk leaves is. Katuk leaves has the scientific name Sauropus androgynus. This plant is evenly distributed in Southeast Asia.
Katuk leaves included in shrubs. If it grows, the height can reach up to 2 to 3 cm. The leaves grow randomly on the stem. The shape is oval tapered leaves, bone pinnate leaves, leaf edges flat and blunt hilt. Very green leaf color when the plant is young, but becomes greenish brown when it is old. Katuk leaves have a purple flower.
Before looking further on this leaves properties of katuk to one’s health, let us first know what the content of the katuk leaf are and what makes the leaf so beneficial to health, especially the health of pregnant women. Meanwhile, here are the nutrients value of katuk plant:
|Katuk Leaves Nutrients|
|leaves katuk contains almost 8% protein|
|crude fiber up to 20%|
|Katuk leaves are rich in vitamin K|
|pro-vitamin A (beta-carotene)|
|calcium, potassium, iron, potassium, phosphorus and magnesium|
|Chlorophyll also presents in lot of this katuk leaves|
In Katuk leaves, there are very useful substances for human body. The nutrients found in katuk leaves include vitamin A, B, and C, fat, protein, calcium, iron, and phosphorus. In addition, researchers also discovered that the leaves katuk contain ephedrine that are highly effective for treating influenza. Meanwhile, katuk leaf is amazingly full of great nutrients that our body needs. Thus, here are the health benefits of katuk plant that will shocking you:
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Katuk Leaves Benefits for Pregnancy
Thus, these are the health benefits of katuk plant for pregnancy and breasfeeding.
1. Good for Pregnant Mother
As we have seen above, leaves katuk have chemical compounds. These compounds, called phytochemicals have medicinal properties. There are seven chemical compounds in it that stimulates the growth of steroid hormones (progesterone, testosterone, estradiol, and glukokortiroid) and eicosanoid compounds. If a woman consumed this leave then the active compound will stimulate the female hormone.
2. Beauty Treatment
By then, if a pregnant mother consume it, it will naturally also good for skin during pregnancy. The skin becomes smoother and hair to be healthy and soft. As a result, consuming katuk leaves may be the best tricks for beauty and health in the pregnancy semesters.
3. Boost Breast Milk Production
Researchers speculated that the chemical content contained in katuk are sterols that have estrogenic properties, providing hormonal effects that trigger milk production so that the milk become abundance in volume. Effective for smoothing milk for mothers who are breastfeeding. Essential oil compound (saponin, flavooid, tannins, triterpenoids) a number of amino acids, vitamin a, b, and c, minerals (calcium, phosphorus, iron) as well as seven other active compounds.
4. For Hormones
For couples, to have children is a big miracle. However, it is not uncommon after years of marriage, they are still not blessed with offspring. Eating katuk leaves is highly recommended for couples who wanted to have children, especially for men.
Consuming katuk leaves daily will speed up the sperm quality and its quantity to be enhanced. Many person often processed roots of katuk leaves and turn it as an herbal healing proper to overcome the body fever. It was not just the leaves that are beneficial, but the roots as well.
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It is already known that the leaves katuk is essentially important for the improvement of milk. Nonetheless, understanding just many nutrients that are in them that would simply increase the milk is not only the sole purpose of katuk leaves. Now we can see some other advantages from this katuk leaves as below:
Katuk Leaves for Overall Health
Here are the health benefits of katuk leaves for overall health:
5. Prevent Osteoporosis
Calcium contained in it are pretty good, suitable for consumption by women who do not want osteoporosis. up to 2.8% calcium, potassium iron, can be processed as the benefits of vegetable such as spinach.
6. Influenza Treatment
Containing ephedrine that were very good for people with influenza. Iron content is high enough to overcome the symptoms of diseases such as anemia. It contains ephedrine, a substance that is extremely beneficial for patients with influenza
7. There are seven active compounds that stimulate the production of steroid hormones and compounds eiksonoid.
8. As a source of the benefits of vitamin A which is needed to prevent eye disease, cell growth, immune system, and healthy reproduction and maintaining healthy skin.
9. Katuk leaf can contain nearly 7% protein and crude fiber up to 19%. These leaves are also rich in vitamin K. In addition to the pro-vitamin A (beta karoneta), b, and c.
10. The content of calories, protein and carbohydrates of katuk leaves almost equivalent to the benefits of papaya leaves and cassava leaves benefits. While the iron content and protein content is higher than in the two types of leaves that were mention later.
11. Katuk leaves are also rich in vitamin A, B1 and c. Photochemistry compounds such as tannins, saponins and alkaloids papaverineacts as a potential of natural remedy.
12. Nourish the eyes, the content of beta-carotene and vitamin A that are believed to help prevent eye disorders.
13. Good for men’s health. In katuk there are active substances that can stimulate the synthesis of steroid hormones such as progestron, and testosterone that evokes sexual vitality, and boost the quality and increase the quantity of sperm.
14. Very low calcium can cause increase high blood pressure. To fix this, try eating leaves katuk that are good enough to increase calcium levels.
15. Katuk leaves contain main compounds that the body needed in the manufacture of collagen inside human body, and as a fat carrier, transporting electrons, the gums health , regulate cholesterol levels, as well as immunity boosters and increase resilience of the body.
16. The highest source of chlorophyll substances, consuming many said substances can be important for the health of the body that it can be maintained, chlorophyll also useful for eliminating parasites, bacteria and viruses that are present in the human tissue.
17. For men, the compound stimulates the hormone might that might increase vitality.
Thus, above is the proven explanation about the health benefits of katuk plant.
How to Process Katuk Leaf Tea
In general, fresh leaves can be dried, can be stored in an airtight container for future use. In the store, the leaves of katuk can be placed in the refrigerator, dark, moist and placed freely as it did for other vegetables such as spinach and kale.
For the mother, leaves katuk is a plant that has often been heard by pregnant women and also those who nurses their baby. They are often recommended to consume leaves katuk because this plant can reliably smooth mother’s milk, which became the staple food of the baby. Besides useful for mothers, katuk leaves are also commonly used as vegetables. Katuk leaf is healthy food ingredient that is also delicious.
How to Make Katuk Leaf Tea:
- Choose the fresh katuk leaves
- Boil katuk leaves in 250 ml water
- When it’s boiled, pour it to glass
- You can add honey or lemon for more seasoning
- Katuk leaf tea is ready to serve
In its natural habitat, the leaves of this plant are harvested as needed. However, most of the leaves is also available in the market that are grown under greenhouse conditions in agriculture that are supervised. If the plant grows alone in the backyard, then take the leaves that have a short stem for use as fresh food.
Side Effects of Katuk Leaves
Besides katuk leaf is a plant that is beneficial, In addition katuk leaves excess consumption will adversely affect the lungs that results in permanent bronchiolitis disease. So one have to be watchful when eating large number of it due to unpleasant side effects. Because the leaves katuk has papaverina, which is an alkaloid that is also contained in opium, excessive consumption will lead to toxic fatality.
In addition to these two, the research conducted in Taiwan says that consumption of crude katuk leaves in an ongoing basis as much as 150mg per day, which is a considered to be larger amount, for as long as two weeks to seven months will result in shortness of breath, loss of appetite, and difficulty in sleeping.
Due to the side effects, then regulating consumption of katuk leaves are highly recommended. It would be beneficial if katuk leaves are boiled before eating because heating can destroy anti-protozoa properties then the toxins in the leaves katuk can be substracted or even disappear totally. Consumption of raw katuk leaves are also not recommended.
Katuk leaves that are eaten as a vegetable helps improve breastfeeding has not been officially tested in standard laboratory in Indonesia so we don’t exactly know whether this leaves would have a negative impact or not. Katuk Leaves contains papaverina, which is an alkaloid that is also found in opium. So, consuming excessive katuk leaves can cause side effects such as toxicity of papaverine
When cooking the leaves katuk, there are nothing too special because the process is similar to other green vegetables, although for some people, the taste is not as delicious as other green vegetable flavor that are much more common such as spinach. But still, there are things that need attention. One of them is the duration of the cooking. The Katuk leaves that are boiled for longer time will make the quality deteriorates due to the vitamins that were flushed out. Frying Katuk leaf is not advisable. However combining with milk when serving is a smart move to enhance the advantages of katuk leaves because it changes pro-vitamin A that in turn will transform into vitamin A.
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