Why did I start this blog? I have been having episodes of inflammation in my hands and fingers, feet and toes, and joints for some time now. I’ve consulted the doctor and have had tests done. It’s not rheumatoid arthritis and my uric acid is normal (tho at times borderline normal). In an effort to determine which food triggers the inflammation, I have been systematically eliminating certain foods from my diet and then bringing them back. After several years, I have now come to the conclusion that I seem to be reacting to animal protein in general (like some sort of allergic reaction). Different animal proteins affect me to different degrees; some cause inflammation faster than others. So I have decided to reduce my intake of meat. No, I am not going vegetarian; maybe semi-vegetarian if there is such a thing. I will be adding interesting and not too difficult recipes here as I find them. I will also include arthritis management tips that have worked for me.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Peperomia pellucida (pansit-pansitan)

Peperomia pellucida is an annual, shallow-rooted herb, usually growing to a height of about 15 to 45 cm. The plant flowers year-round and is characterized by succulent stems, shiny, heart-shaped, fleshy leaves and tiny, dot-like seeds attached to several fruiting spikes. It has a mustard-like odor when crushed. It grows in clumps and thrives in loose, humid soils in various shaded, damp habitats and a tropical to subtropical climate; it may be found all over Asia and the Americas.

Peperomia pellucida has been used as a food item as well as a medicinal herb; the entire plant is edible, both cooked and raw (good for salads). Ethnomedicinal uses for the plant vary; P. pellucida has been used for treating abdominal pain, abscesses, acne, boils, colic, fatigue, gout, headache, renal disorders, and rheumatic joint pain. In the Philippines, P. pellucida is also known as pansit-pansitan or ulasimang bato; it is one of the 10 herbal medicines approved by the Philippines’ Department of Health. A decoction of the plant (boil 1 ½ cups of the herb with 2 cups of water for 15-20 min) is used to decrease uric acid levels (as a remedy for rheumatism and gout) and to treat renal problems. It is also used topically for skin disorders such as acne and boils.

I found several clumps growing in my garden while I was weeding (yes they grow as weeds) and thought I’d make some herbal tea. It tasted fine by itself but you could probably add some honey if it suits you.

Though the plant is available the whole year round, if you find them growing abundantly in your garden, you may want to dry them for longer storage. You may even want to give them as gifts this coming holiday season.

References: Food Recap, Wikipedia

1 comment:

  1. swallow's nest in an edible gel form is supposed be good for the skin too. it gives that clear and pasty skin that we all love.

    it's mad expensive. my brother and i bought some for my mom for her birthday. it was like 400 bucks for like a 6-8 oz jar. Luckily we finally found the one of popular brand online (hongkong-bird-nest.50webs.com/index_e.htm and http://www.euyansang.com/)

    dad said it's really popular in indonesia. that a guy has to climb a high mountain to get the nest. that's why it's so expensive.

    i mean why doesn't the dude just look for the fabled korean swallow king, capture it and let it lay eggs full of gold! then, he wouldn't have to work so hard and climb them high mountains.