Let's be open to discoveries.
We don't have to follow the path that everybody takes but rather have some idea of the kind of
things that could improve our lives, make us happier and leave a trail
for others to follow. Here's a page about the wonders of Lemongrass derived from
a forwarded email. It is worth trying.
While I was undergoing
chemotherapy for ovarian cancer, my oncologist, Dr. Cecilia Llave, suggested
that I try tanglad (Lemongrass) for a drink, a tip she got from one of her
patients. That's what I have been doing the past three years. I don't know if
tanglad has something to do with it but so far I'm okay. I smash several stalks
of Lemongrass, boil them in water for few minutes and take the Lemongrass drink
like a regular tea.
A few weeks ago, an article on the medicinal powers of tanglad Spread in the
Internet. There's no harm trying this. A bunch of tanglad is ten centavos or you
can plant it in your backyard for a continuous supply. The article is by Allison
'At first, Benny Zabidov, an Israeli agriculturalist who grows Green houses full
of lush spices on a pastoral farm in Kfar Yedidya the Sharon region, couldn't
understand why so many cancer patients from around the country were showing up
on his doorstep, asking for fresh Lemongrass.' It turned out that their doctors
had sent them. ''They had been told to drink eight glasses of hot water with
fresh Lemongrass steeped in it on the days that they went for their radiation
and chemotherapy treatments,' Zabidov told ISRAEL21c, 'And this is the place you
go to in Israel for fresh lemon grass.'
'It all began when researchers at Ben Gurion - family: University of
Negev discovered last year that the lemon aroma in herbs like Lemongrass kills
cancer cells in vitro, while leaving healthy cellsunharmed.
'The research team was led by Dr. Rivka Ofir and Prof. Yakov Weinstein,
incumbent of Albert Katz Chair in Cell-Differentiation and Malignant Diseases,
from the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at BGU.
'Citral is the key component that gives the lemony
aroma and taste in several herbal plants such as Lemongrass (Cymbopogon
citratus), Melissa (Melissa officinalis) and verbena (Verbena officinalis. )
'According to Ofir, the study found that citral causes cancer cells to'commit
suicide: using apoptosis, a mechanism called programmed cell death.
'A drink with as little as one gram of Lemongrass contains enough citral
toprompt the cancer cells to commit suicide in the test tube. 'The BGU
investigators checked the influence of the citral on cancerous cells by adding
them to both cancerous cells and normal cells that were grown in a petri dish.
The quantity added in the concentrate was equivalent to the amount contained in
a cup of regular tea using one gram of lemon herbs in hot water. While the
citral killed the cancerous cells, the normal cells remained unharmed.
'The findings were published in the scientific journal Planta Medica, which
highlights research on alternative and herbal remedies. Shortly afterwards, the
discovery was featured in the popular Israeli press. 'Why does it work? Nobody
knows for certain, but the BGU scientists have a theory.
''In each cell in our body, there is a genetic program which causes programmed
cell death. When something goes wrong, the cells divide with no control and
become cancer cells. In normal cells, when the cell discovers that the control
system is not operating correctly - for example, when it recognizes that a cell
contains faulty genetic material following cell division it triggers cell
death,' explains Weinstein. 'This research may explain the medical benefit of
'The success of their research led them to the conclusion that herbs containing
citral may be consumed as a preventative measure against certain cancerous
cells. 'As they learned of the BGU findings in the press, many physicians
in Israel began to believe that while the research certainly needed to be
explored further, in the meantime it would be advisable for their patients, who
were looking for any possible tool to fight their condition, to try to harness
the cancer-destroying properties of citral.
'That's why Zabidov's farm - the only major grower of fresh Lemongrass
in Israel - has become a pilgrimage destination for these patients. Luckily,
they found themselves in sympathetic hands. Zabidov greets visitors with a large
kettle of aromatic Lemongrass tea, a plate of cookies, and a supportive
attitude. ''My father died of cancer, and my wife's sister died young because of
cancer,' said Zabidov. 'So I understand what they are dealing with. And I may
not know anything about medicine, but I'm a good listener. And so they tell me
about their expensive painful treatments and what they've been through. I would
never tell them to stop being treated, but it's great that they areexploring
alternatives and drinking the Lemongrass tea as well.'
'Zabidov knew from a young age that agriculture was hiscalling. At age 14, he
enrolled in the Kfar Hayarok Agricultural high school. After his army service,
he joined an idealistic group which headed south, in the Arava desert region, to
found a new moshav (agricultural settlement) called Tsofar. ''We were very
successful; we raised fruits and vegetables, and,'he notes with a smile, 'We
raised some very nice children.'
'On a trip to Europe in the mid-80s, he began
to become interested in herbs. Israel , at the time, was nothing like the
trend-conscious cuisine-oriented country it is today, and the only spices being
grown commercially were basics like parsley, dill, and coriander. 'Wandering in
the Paris market, looking at the variety of herbs andspices, Zabidov realized
that there was a great export potential in this niche. He brought samples back
home with him, 'which was technically illegal,' he says with a guilty smile, to
see how they would grow in his desert greenhouses.
Soon, he was growing basil, oregano, tarragon, chives, sage, marjoram and
melissa, and mint just to name a few. 'His business began to outgrow his desert
facilities, and so he decided to move north, settling in the moshav of Kfar
Yedidya, an hour and a half north of Tel Aviv. He is now selling 'several
hundred kilos' of lemon grass per week, and has signed with adistributor to
package and put it in health food stores.
'Zabidov has taken it upon himself to learn more about the properties of citral,
and help his customers learn more, and has invited medical experts to his farm
to give lectures about how the citral works and why. 'He also felt a
responsibility to know what to tell his customers about its see. 'When I
realized what was happening, I picked up the phone and called Dr.
Weinstein at Ben-Gurion University, because these people were asking me exactly
the best way to consume the citral. He said to put the loose grass in hot water,
and drink about eight glasses each day.' 'Zabidov is pleased by the findings,
not simply because it means business for his farm, but because it might
influence his own health. 'Even before the news of its benefits were
demonstrated, he and his family had been drinking lemon grass in hot water for
years, 'just because it tastes good.''
of the battles of life are won by looking beyond the clouds to the
sun. And having patience to wait for the day when the sun comes out and
the clouds float away.
thing never changes. It remains the same forever. God truly loves His
children and He will forsake them never! ~Helen