Almost all parts of the cherry tree can be used for human benefit. So, what are the benefits of cherry leaves for health?
The cherry plant (Muntingia calabura L), also known as the seri or cherry plant, is a tree that is often found in parks and roadsides. This tree is mostly used as shade because of its shady leaf arrangement.
The benefits of talok or cherry leaves for medicine are still minimal. However, this plant has medical and economic potential, including the leaves, because of the phytochemical content in it.
The content and benefits of cherry leaves for health
Compared to the flowers and fruit, boiled cherry leaves have been proven to have higher levels of fiber and carbohydrates. Apart from that, the leaves also contain water and protein, although in amounts that are not too significant.
Talking about phytochemical content, cherry leaves contain flavonoids which consist of various types, such as flavones, flavonones, flavans, and biflavans. Other chemical compounds found in cherry leaves are tannins, triterpenes and polyphenols which can act as antioxidants.
Based on its nutritional content, the health benefits of cherry leaves are as follows:
1. Treating headaches
The most striking benefits of talok leaves are the result of their various chemical compounds, such as flavonoids, tannins, triterpenoids, saponins and polyphenols. These substances show antioxidative and antimicrobial activity so they are believed to relieve headaches or inflammation in the body.
2. Relieves cough
Cherry leaves are also believed to have antiviral properties so they can be used as a cough suppressant. The benefits of cherry leaves are still related to the antioxidant properties in them which can also function as an anti-inflammatory agent.
3. Stabilizes blood sugar and treats diabetes
Cherry leaves contain saponins and flavonoids which can act as antioxidants. These two substances can also act as natural insulin which the body needs to normalize blood sugar levels in the human body, especially in diabetes sufferers.
In an experiment, diabetes sufferers who used cherry leaves as an alternative medicine did show results. The wound which was initially festering slowly healed and dried, and the blood sugar levels in his body also gradually returned to normal.
This is due to other benefits of talok leaves, namely accelerating wound healing. However, this claim is still limited study early so that further scientific research is still needed to determine the efficacy of cherry leaves in the medical world.
4. Prevent colon cancer
Compounds from methanol extract and cherry leaves have potential anti-cancer activity, one of which is preventing colon cancer.
Methanol extract and the benefits of cherry leaves can reduce oxidative stress that occurs in the colon. Apart from that, extracting these two ingredients with flavonoid compounds such as routine and gallic acid can form effective antioxidant activity to prevent cancer.
5. Reduces the risk of other diseases
Consuming boiled water from cherry leaves is also believed to have other benefits for the body, for example lowering cholesterol levels and blood pressure, and even preventing tumors. Cherry leaves for high blood pressure are known because of the mineral content in them.
When used as an external medicine, cherry leaves can also act as an antiseptic and anti-inflammatory for minor wounds. Kersen leaf stems for gout are also effective because they contain triterpenoid and saponin compounds which can reduce blood uric acid levels by inhibiting xanthine oxidation activity.
Another benefit of cherry leaves related to the phytochemicals in them is that they improve the immune system so that they can prevent certain diseases and speed up the recovery process. Apart from that, antioxidants can also slow down the aging process in the body.
It should be remembered that the benefits of talok leaves above have not been medically tested, including unknown side effects. You should not use it as an alternative treatment without a doctor’s recommendation.
How to process cherry leaves
Cherry leaves are not widely used commercially, so you may have difficulty finding supplements that contain cherry extract. However, you can make your own processed cherry leaves which are easy and simple.
Kersen leaves that have been washed clean can be roasted until dry, then crushed so that the texture is similar to tea leaves.
You can also consume it like drinking herbal tea, for example by boiling it and drinking the water or using it as an external medicine.
The rules for drinking cherry leaf decoction depend on each health condition. Consuming cherry leaves for diabetes is recommended by drinking water boiled with cherry leaves twice a day, one glass each.
The way to boil cherry leaves is to boil the washed cherry leaves until 500 ml of water remains. Cool the boiled cherry leaf water first before drinking.
Side effects of cherry leaves
A number of side effects that can occur if you eat too many cherry leaves are:
- Experiencing impaired mitochondrial function and oxidative stress if consuming excessive aluminum
- Consuming excessive cherries to the limit of the Boron mineral levels consumed by the body will cause reproductive disorders
- Excessive copper content in cherries can cause diarrhea, stomach ulcers, and internal bleeding
Even though the benefits of talok or cherry leaves are many for health, you also need to be aware of the side effects.