Saturday, April 20, 2024

HEALING HERBS: Sugar apple gets you in the groove


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The Principal and staff of Gordon Greenidge Primary School invited me to address them at Teachers’ Professional Day last Friday. The focus was on health and healing.  

The day was very productive and as professional teachers, we exhibited great appreciation towards each other as we discussed ancient and modern silent doctors.  

The principal there is an excellent instructional leader. Mrs Angela Smith interacted well with her staff. As we ate during the lunch recess, I discovered that she is very enthusiastic about pedagogy.

As I sat admiring her leadership acumen, I felt happy to know that other “cutting-edge” principals truly exist in our schools. The school is presently blessed with the name of a famous international cricket legend. So impressed was I that today I am associating silent doctor sugar apple, another legend, with the school.   

Sugar apple, custard apple seed or sweetsop is a very impressive, legendary, exotic fruit. I adore my sugar apple trees and fruit but the birds also adore them too. Sugar apples are very tasty and can sometimes get you in “the groove” because of the niacin and vitamin B content.

Sugar apples contain many nutrients, including iron, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, zinc, copper, vitamins B6 and C, riboflavin, fiber, niacin and thiamin. Research has revealed that the copper in sugar apples can maintain thyroid health and the niacin can assist with lowering cholesterol and boost sex drive.

Sugar apples can aid digestion, help prevent some pregnancy problems, keep the bones strong, treat anaemia, can assist in lowering blood pressure and in regulating the menstrual cycle, boost energy levels, alleviate pain, lower the risk of cancer and assist in lowering blood sugar. Crushed leaves can be used for fainting, treating insect bites and hysteria. Sugar apple seeds are excellent for treating lice infestation on the head.  

I pray that Caribbean people would let this phoenix (sugar apple) rise from the ashes and once again take her rightful place in the healing kingdom. Legends are not new to the Caribbean, neither are sugar apples.

Therefore, we in Barbados must plant sugar apples trees and like the principal of Gordon Greenidge Primary, create an atmosphere of love around them. Let us unite and grow and use the delicious, nutritious sugar apple and like the birds, understand its healing properties.

• Annette Maynard-Watson is a teacher and herbal educator.

DISCLAIMER: It is not our intention to prescribe or make specific claims for any products. Any attempts to diagnose or treat real illness should come under the direccton of your health care provider.


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