10 Health Benefits Of Borage
Borage, also known as Mexican mint, is a herb is a native of East Africa. It has now spread to many tropical areas around the world. It requires little water and overgrows. The leaves of the herb are the most sought after part as it is used for flavoring food. The leaves can also be dried and ground and added to soups, stews and other food items. Essential oils can be extracted from the leaves. The herb contains phytonutrients, vitamins, and minerals. It contains Omega 6 fatty acids, are rich in vitamin C, vitamin A, iron, calcium, potassium, manganese, copper, zinc, and magnesium. It also contains moderate amounts of B complex vitamins. It, therefore, has some health benefits and here are a few of them.
#1. Respiratory Problems
The herb is very effective in treating respiratory problems like cold, sore throat, congestion, stuffy nose, sinus problems, etc. You can simply chew on the leaves of Indian Borage to get relief from these problems. Alternately you can prepare tea from borage leaves. Drinking this tea also helps to get relief from respiratory problems.
#2. Immune Booster
The herb is rich in vitamin C. Vitamin C is known to boost one’s immune system. It is a strong antioxidant which can fight and neutralize disease-causing bacteria, infection or microbes, which help you develop resistance to many common diseases especially cold, cough and flu.
#3. Skin Care
The herb is a good source of vitamin A an antioxidant which is beneficial to the skin as it can fight the free radicals from causing damage to skin cells and tissues. The leaves of borage can also be topically applied for treatment of insect bites, eczema, and other skin problems. Its anti-inflammatory properties help to relieve the inflammation and reduce the redness and also the discomfort.
#4. Bone Health
Borage is rich in calcium, iron, and potassium in addition to other minerals like magnesium, manganese, and copper. Calcium is essential for bone strength and for maintaining bone density. Potassium present in the herb helps the absorption of calcium by the bone, helping them to become strong and healthy. Regular consumption of this herb can prevent osteoporosis.
The essential oil from the leaves of this herb contains omega six fatty acids called gamma-linolenic acid. This is particularly effective in reducing arthritis. It also helps in the regeneration of joints.
#6. Eye Health
The herb is rich in vitamin A and carotenoids. Both carotenoids and vitamin A help to reduce oxidative stress on the eyes by neutralizing the free radicals which cause this stress. It thus helps to improve the vision. It also helps to reduce the macular degradation and help in the maintenance of eye health.
#7. Cancer Prevention
Indian borage has antioxidant properties. It also contains omega six fatty acids called gamma-linolenic acid. They are effective in retarding the spread of breast cancer. Recent research also has shown the positive effect of this herb in treating breast cancer. The effect of the herb on prostate cancer is also being studied.
#8. Kidney Benefit
The herb has got good diuretic properties. It, therefore, stimulates urination and helps to flush out the toxins from the body. It also reduces water retention, excess salt, and fat in the body. This will help the kidney to function smoothly.
#9. Stress Relief
The presence of some of the organic compounds and minerals in borage has a mild sedative effect. It is administered in tea form to those who are suffering from anxiety and stress. This will help relax the mind and provide relief from anxiety and stress by inducing sleep.
Drinking tea prepared out of the leaves of this herb regularly has a positive effect on the digestive system as it regulates absorption, relieves inflammation of the stomach, and thus it can settle the upset stomach and relieves irritable bowel syndrome.