Traditional medicine of indigenous peoples

Today drugs play a crucial role in our society. Who doesn’t resort to the classic Ibuprofen when faced with a migraine or inflammation? Or Betadine after getting an injury? And of course, what would we do without our beloved antibiotics, which can kill a bacterial infection in a matter of days? However, since the 1970s, the WHO has been talking about the need to integrate traditional drugs into our Western medicine, especially for cultural and economic reasons since 80% of the world’s population does not have access to Western medicine and resorts to it. to traditional medicine Kambo Stick.

We therefore travel to the heart of the Amazon jungle, more specifically to the Andean mountain range, home of the indigenous peoples. In this exotic location we find a very varied flora with which most of the drugs we use today are made. Well-known pharmaceutical companies such as Bayer extract raw materials from this area to produce products. We will talk about these traditional methods, techniques that are passed from father to son, from one generation to another. A series of methods that, although in our opinion they may be rudimentary or bizarre, are 100% natural and effective.

GINGER: this is a tuber with a strong and exotic flavor that we normally use to flavor our dishes, whether sweets, salads, sauces, etc., however if we focus on its medical benefits, ginger is used in this culture as an analgesic/ anti-inflammatory, in addition to ending nausea, thanks to the presence of phenols and gingerols in its root. A kind of ginger tea is made by letting the tuber rest in boiling water for a few minutes. If ingested, it ends with pain and nausea. If hot cloths moistened with this remedy are applied to an inflamed area, the swelling and pain disappear. In our culture, some athletes add ginger to their protein and antioxidant shakes in injury recovery processes.

SPIDER WEB: Strange, right? Spider web is used by indigenous people as a coagulant. When a wound or cut occurs, a piece of this tough, sticky substance is applied to the bleeding area, clotting the blood and accelerating the healing process. The specific web is extracted from the black widow, one of the most exotic and poisonous spiders in the world. It has been shown that the fibroin (structural protein) present in the arachnid’s web is responsible for carrying out the medical function. Scientists from the University of California have managed to isolate the genetic sequence necessary for the synthesis of fibroin to produce it commercially and make medicines.

CHIRIMOYA: this fruit comes from the American continent, and its name means “cold seeds”, since it germinates at high altitudes. It began to be cultivated in Europe with the conquest of America, and from there it was taken to the East by Spanish explorers. It has an infinite number of beneficial properties for health: it strengthens memory, reduces daily stress, it is easily digested due to the amount of hydrolytic enzymes it contains, in addition to vitamin C, proteins, sugars, phosphorus, antioxidants, etc. However, this fruit is of great help during childbirth, an amazing property. The cherimoya seeds are boiled with a little water and given to indigenous women just before and during childbirth, in order to speed it up. It acts like prostaglandins, contracting the smooth muscle tissue of the uterus during childbirth. In addition, the cytotoxic effect of cherimoya seeds was demonstrated, preventing cervical cancer, breast cancer and leukemia. This led to the Abeefe Brystol Meyers Nobel Prize in Medicine for a group of students in 2007. In short, a true superhero with anti-cancer, antioxidant, laxative, etc. properties.

These are just a few examples of the very extensive traditional medicine of the indigenous culture, which may seem strange and unusual to us. However, their effectiveness has been demonstrated, not only by studies carried out in different universities, but also because they have been used for thousands of years and their chemical components are used to manufacture our much appreciated drugs.