The consumption of penguins can bring several health benefits (Getty Images)
The penguin is also known as Mexico bearberry, pindicua, manzanita or tepesquite, while scientifically it is known as Arctostaphylos pungens. It is a creeping shrub that contains essential oil, arbutoside, methyl arbutoside, gallic tannins, arbutin and allantoin.
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It is mainly known for helping in the treatment of menopause and helping in menstrual disorders
Of which both the root and the leaves are used, and even on some occasions the entire plant is used for certain treatments. It is generally consumed in the form of infusion, tincture or extracts, in addition baths can be made with the decoction of its leaves, however it is important to mention that it should not be consumed during pregnancy and lactation season.
Its physical description responds to the fact that it is a shrub that grows up to 3m high, its branches are hairy, it has long and pointed leaves with teeth on the edges, they are dark green but with a pale reverse, the flowers are pink and yellow, and arise in groups of one to three. It grows from the root, like grass, has a good flavor and smells like lemon balm. It grows where they plant it, on the banks of the road and the canal, it is also a hot plant.
It can be consumed in different ways (Getty Images)
According to the Government’s book “Guide to medicinal plants in the Valley of Mexico”, the penguin is used to treat:
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– Stomach pain, indigestion, colic and digestive discomfort: for which it will be necessary to boil water and add branches with leaves, they do not necessarily have to be fresh, they will have to be left to rest between three and five minutes. You can consume a cup of the infusion before each meal, until the discomfort disappears. It is also a stimulating infusion, taken after food, especially in the morning and at night, with honey or sugar.
– Postpartum baths: prepared as an infusion combined with rue, arnica, tatalencho, santamaria, stink, estafiate, pennyroyal, walnut, rosemary, skunk epazote and a bouquet of piru.
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– Kidney problems: due to the arbutin contained in the leaves and fruits, it is a diuretic compound and is used to relieve edema.
– Treat menstrual cramps.
– Auxiliary cough discomfort.
– It’s exhilarating.
It also helps reduce menstrual cramps (Getty Images)
– Prostatitis or inflamed prostate.
Likewise, its composition responds to the following form: 2.67% protein, 43.87% carbohydrates, 4% lipids, 31% fiber and 1.15% ash. While its analysis indicates that its fruit contains 13 parts per million (ppm) of iron, 8 ppm of copper, 9 ppm of zinc and 1,809 ppm of calcium.
It is not considered a toxic plant, however its leaves contain arbutin glycoside, which is metabolized to form hydroquinone, meaning that if consumed in excess it could cause a possible liver toxin.
Its consumption is not recommended during pregnancy and lactation (Getty Images)
By carrying out this transformation of arbutin into hydroquinone, intestinal bacteria may come to favor the environment for intestinal cancer. In addition, its consumption is not recommended during pregnancy and lactation or in people suffering from gastritis.
In conclusion, it is not advisable to ingest very high doses since they can cause stomach disorders such as: nausea and vomiting. Likewise, popular medicine gives it diuretic properties, as an antiseptic of the urinary tract, urodilator and antilithiasis, it is also useful in the treatment of bronchial conditions.
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