Widely cultivated in China and India, ziziphus zizyphus(syn. Ziziphus jujuba and Ziziphus vulgaris) is a species of small deciduous spreading tree in the buckthorn family Rhamnaceae. It is native to warm temperate and subtropical regions throughout the world, and is commonly known as Jujube, red date, or Chinese date. Ziziphus zizyphusis can tolerate a wide range of temperatures and rainfall. It requires hot summers and sufficient water for fruiting.
Jujubes are high in nutritional value (The Herbs 2011) and a good source of: Vitamins, Minerals & Antioxidants.
Medical Benefits: Jujubes are widely used in Chinese Medicine as a mild sedative (Sisyphus 2011) and for relieving anxiety, insomnia, apprehension, nervous exhaustion, palpitations, nerve excess, night sweats and hot spells and irritability.
Varieties: 1. CHICO and LI are the best Fresh varieties 2. TA-JAN is an ideal drying fruit 3. SUIMEN is an all-rounder, suitable for drying and can be eaten fresh.
Originally from China, it is now grown throughout the world. The Chinese discovered the health benefits of Jujube fruit more than 2000 years ago and it has been used as a herbal remedy ever since. Modern research has enabled the Chinese and Koreans to use this fruit in many medicines and studies continue in the western world on the properties the Jujube fruit contains.
In Vietnam, the fruit is taken fresh & used as a healthy fruit drink.
The jujube fruits can be eaten fresh or dried. They are available in either red or black, with the latter being smoked to enhance flavor. They are used in Chinese and Korean traditional medicine. Dried fruits are usually used in Chinese delicacies, tea, or sweetened tea syrup.
The most common health benefits of the Jujube fruit:
- to soothe injured or inflamed skin.
- also used as a demulcent in this way.
- used for treating boils, scratches and sores and
- can also treat internal inflammation and discomfort.
- Used for many cough drops and sore throat lozenges.
Similarly, several known digestive complaints can be treated effectively by Jujube fruit including loss of appetite and diarrhoea because it destroys bacteria in the intestines. In fact, the Chinese use it in the treatment of hepatitis and cirrhosis of the liver simply because Jujube fruit is known to strengthen the liver. It also serves another purpose by aiding the spleens daily function ensuring that the health benefits of Jujube fruit are used to their full potential.
As well as assisting with many bodily functions, Jujube fruit is known to help mental health conditions by having an overall calming effect, when ingested. Therefore irritable, nervous people can take advantage of the health benefits of Jujube fruit. Further benefits include increased stamina and strength, increased energy levels, improvement to the metabolism and a reduction in allergies.
The high content of botulinus acid found in Jujube fruit is being used in experiments aiding modern medical research in the quest to find cures for cancer, leukaemia and HIV. In addition, K562 leukaemia cells in the body have been proven to be reduced by extracts from Jujube fruit which again verifies the health benefits of Jujube fruit.
All in all, the Jujube fruit is an invaluable natural source, one that will probably continue to be in use for many years to come.