Sampaguita: Medicinal Uses Of The Philippines’ National Flower
Sampaguita, the Filipino equivalent for jasmine, is the country’s national flower. It symbolizes the simplicity and purity of the Filipino woman.
And yes, who can not imagine the touching picture of a little girl holding sampaguita necklaces in her hands and selling them to people around the church? Although vending of sampaguita necklaces is not popular anymore, the flower has become a symbol for vulnerable little children trying to make little money out of the delicate flowers.
Aside for its patriotic image, sampaguita also has medicinal uses. Known for its strong sweet scent, it is used as a popular aroma therapy. It is also the main ingredient for the Chinese’ Jasmine tea.
Eduardo Quisumbing also writes in his book called “Me dicinal Plants of the Philippines” that sampaguita leaves are use as poultice to the breasts of women, acting as lactifuge. He also cited that the leaves can be given internally in decoction for fevers. And if boiled in oil, they exude a balsam which is used by the natives to alleviate eye complaints. Even the dried leaves of the flower has purpose – if soaked in water and made into a poultice, the can be applied to ulcers.
The roots of sampaguita flowers can also be used to treat venereal diseases when given fresh. A tincture made from them can also be applied as sedative, anaesthetic, and vulnerary.
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