Lotus tree health benefits – Not many people know about the lotus plant. The lotus tree is a tree in the Rhamnaceae family scientifically known as Ziziphus lotus, it is a shrub plant. This shrub is native to the Middle East, such as the Mediterranean, Morocco, Algeria, Libya, Tunisia, except for France and Italy. The lotus tree belongs to one of the “jujube” species, and is closely related to Z. jujuba.
Some of the popular jujube plants are African jujube, Lotus tree, Lotus fruit, Lotus jujube, wild jujube and Lotus. This plant is used by humans because it is rich in nutrients, good for health, used in cosmetics. For example, it is used in tea, honey, oil, jam, cake and loaf.
About Lotus Tree
Lotus is a thorny plant and is classified as a shrub with many branches, it grows to a height of about 6.6–16.4 ft. Lotus grows throughout the world arid and semiarid regions. For good growth, this plant should be planted in clay.
The branching system tends to be zig zag, bent and irregular. The leaves are elliptical, 2-4 cm long, with three longitudinal veins, on the leaf surface. On the insert of each leaf there are hard spines, some are straight and the other is bent.
Cultural and religious references
In Greek mythology, Ziziphus is often thought of as the lotus tree. This plant is eaten by Lotus-Eaters as a narcotic to induce feelings of happiness and well-being.
Historically, in Greece there was a lotus tree planted by Romulus near the Vulcan temple of Rome. So, the plant that is still growing up to 700 years later is considered a plant planted by Romulus. This is history in the time of Pliny the Elder.
While in Arab areas or parts of Arabic-speaking countries, they are more familiar with the Ziziphus plant as a sidr (lotus tree) and this is mentioned in the holy book of the Koran. In Palestine, it is known by the name Ziziphus spina-christi which is also known as Sidr. While in other parts of Arabia, plants with the name European and Chinese jujubes are also associated with sidr trees (Lote-trees).
Richard Francis Burton, an explorer in the 19th century reported, where he saw an ancient Sidr tree in the Medina mosque (where the Prophet Muhammad’s tomb is). Precisely this plant grows in a plant of the daughter of the Prophet Muhammad, namely Fatimah. The fruit is sold to those who make pilgrimages there and the leaves are used as an ingredient in bathing corpses.
Traditional uses and benefits of Lotus tree
– Ziziphus lotus in everyday life is used as an anti-diabetic, bronchitis medicine, sedative, anti-diarrhea, insomnia, as a traditional medicine by local residents.
– There is a part of the Ziziphus lotus tree which is used as an anti-urinary agent, skin infection, anti-diabetic, anti-fever, anti-diarrhea, sedative, bronchitis and as a hypoglycemic activity.
– The powder from the leaves and fruit of the lotus is mixed with water or with milk, it is traditionally used to treat boils.
– In traditional medicine, the root bark of the lotus plant is used as an anti-diabetic.
– The juice from the root of ziziphus lotus is good for treating eye leukoma.
– The health benefits of lotus tree are also good for diarrhea and intestinal ailments. It is used as an emollient.
– The fruit, leaves and roots of the lotus or ziziphus plant have long been used in traditional African medicine to treat diabetes, digestive problems, heart, respiratory, and skin problems.
– Powder from lotus tree leaves is used traditionally to treat abscesses and wounds.
Furthermore, boiled lotus fruit is used as a remedy for diabetes, respiratory problems, digestive problems, as is practiced in Central Morocco.
Other facts of Lotus Tree
- Lotus is also used as animal feed, honey plant, fuel, erosion control and as a hedge.
- The thorny stems are very effective for use as hedges, this will be a fortress for animals who want to break through the fence.
- Lotus flower attracts bees
- The thorny stems are used as stock-resistant barriers.
- The dry wood can also be used as firewood.