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Health News of Thursday, 30 December 2021


How unripe palm kernel seed shrinks fibroid - Experts

Palm kernel Palm kernel

Staying at a healthy weight by eating a balanced diet that includes plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and healthy fats can be helpful to decrease or prevent fibroid growth.

But research suggests that unripe palm kernel seeds provide a natural, readily available and cheap treatment of fibroids.

Researchers, in a new study, said unripe palm kernel seeds contain chemical substances that lower oestrogen, progesterone and cholesterol in animals under laboratory conditions to prevent and treat fibroid as well as reduce the distortion that fibroid causes in the womb.

The study investigated the protective and curative effects of unripe palm kernel seeds on monosodium glutamate (MSG)-induced uterine fibroid in rats. The rats were in eight experimental groups: the first four groups investigated the protective effects of unripe palm kernel for 28 days and the last four groups investigated the curative effects of unripe palm kernel after treatment with MSG for 28 days. It was in the 2020 edition of the Open Access Library Journal.

Fibroids can cause severe pain and discomfort for many people. Fibroids are tumours in the womb made of smooth muscle and connective tissue. While the word “tumours” may sound terrifying, fibroids are typically benign.

In fact, it’s estimated that up to 80 per cent of all people with wombs will develop fibroids at some point in their lives, with African Americans being three to four times more likely to have fibroids than other groups.

Fibroids also become more common with age up until menopause, when they rarely develop or tend to shrink if they’re already present. While some people never even realise they have fibroids, others have painful symptoms, including heavy or elongated periods, pelvic pain, increased urination, constipation and backaches.

Several genetic, biological and hormonal factors have been shown to contribute to the development and growth of fibroid, with fibroid often most prevalent in black women. Ample evidence supports hormones, estrogen and progesterone, as important factors in the cause of fibroids, with a high level of oestrogen reported to be the most common cause of fibroid.

Monosodium glutamate is used in the food industry as a flavour enhancer and a popular food additive. Studies have shown that monosodium glutamate (MSG) induces fibroid under laboratory conditions in female rats by increasing the levels of total protein, cholesterol and oestrogen and progesterone.

Treatments include medication and removal of the fibroid. Given the risks, side effects associated with these methods and health care costs, there is an increased demand to find alternative and cheap means for the treatment and management of numerous disease conditions.

Herbal practitioners have often recommended daily doses of unripe African oil palm kernel seeds over a period of time, and this has been reported to be successful in reducing fibroids. However, there is an unavailability of scientific data on the mechanism of this action.

The researchers suggested that the decrease in the blood levels of oestrogen and progesterone associated with unripe palm kernel seeds may explain the use of this treatment method by herbal practitioners.

According to them, the decrease in the blood cholesterol levels observed in MSG-treated female rats may be another mechanism of action by which the unripe palm kernel seeds acts in protecting against fibroid development.

However, they said that further studies would be important in determining the potential effects or toxicity associated with daily consumption of unripe palm kernel seeds over an extended period of time.

Previously, experts in a survey for herbs for treating fibroid have identified 102 medicinal plants and 16 recipes used in treating fibroid in Ogun and Osun states.

The study, carried out with the purpose of documenting information available on traditional plants from herbs sellers and traditional medical practitioners that are used in the treatment of fibroid, was documented in the June edition of the Journal of Research in Forestry, Wildlife & Environment.

The plants’ parts usually used for the fibroid treatment include the plant root, bark, leaves, fruits, seeds, extracted juices from the fruits, and bulbs.  Most of the preparations had leaves. The recipes included cutting in pieces and soaking in water equal amounts of Xylopia aethiopica (Eeru) and Cocos nucifera (coconut seed and pod) for three days. Half a teacup is taken daily for at least 90 days. Seeds of Diociea reflexa (Agbaarin) and leaves of Sida pilosa are ground and soaked in local gin and a quarter of a teaspoon is to be taken for 90 days.

The bark of Kigelia africana (Igi amuyan), fruits of Ricinus communis (Lara), leaves of Newbouldia laevis (Akoko) and leaves of Pseudospondias microcarpa (Ekeja) were soaked with fermented maize water to which table salt had been added. One teacup of it is to be taken for 90 days.

The fourth recipe indicated that leaves of Macaranga barteri (Agbosa) were ground and soaked with local alcohol. Four teaspoons are taken daily for 30 days. Others included soaking the bark and seeds of Xylopia aethiopica (Eru) with dry gin for two to 24 hours. A small-cup full of this is taken twice daily for 30 days. Barks of Palisota hirsuta (Akeretupon), Olax subscorpioidea (ifon) and Heliotropum indica (Atapariobuko) were cut into pieces and boiled with water. A teacup is taken daily for 60 days.

Leaves of Desmodium velutinum (Emo berodefe), the bark of Uvaria chamae (Iju igi) and seeds of Xylopia aethiopica are soaked with water. A teacup of it is to be decanted after three days is taken daily for 90 days. Ground trona (Kahun bilala or potash) is mixed with lime juice. Four teaspoons are taken for 30 days. Also, 25 seeds of Elaeis guineansis (Ekuro) are eaten every morning to treat fibroid.

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