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Blue ginger – food and medicine

| On 31, Jan 2015


It’s taken a 12th century German mystic to draw attention to a root that practically grows in our own backyard.

Galangal (variously known as lengkuas/laos/blue ginger) is a common ingredient in Nonya, Malaysian, Indonesian and Thai cuisine. Naturopath Sebastian Liew quotes St Hildegard of Bingen, the Benedictine nun and herbalist who was born nearly 1,000 years ago – “Whoever is suffering from heart pain or is threatened by a cardiovascular weakness (fainting) should immediately eat a sufficient amount of galangal and he will feel better.”

There is more about galangal in his new book, From Leaf to Life where he explains the healing powers of plants. Sebastian says, “In German-speaking countries (Germany, Austria, Switzerland), doctors have found galangal to be the best solution for protection against heart attacks, strokes, and sudden hearing loss. It also guards against circulatory collapse, travel sickness, and extreme fatigue.

“In my view, galangal is one of the best first-aid herbs for the family and is indispensable for travelers. I carry the tablets whenever I travel, to treat lack of appetite, indigestion, dizziness, digestive discomfort, nausea, motion sickness and extreme fatigue.”

from leaf to life

For information and to purchase the book , visit

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