Published: 09/11/2008 - Updated: 08/09/2019
Author: Prof. Dr. Luis Ruiz-García
Bay leaf is known by unmistakable flavor of dishes of the Mediterranean diet which, in the leaves of this tree is one of its best and most powerful allies. In herbal medicine, the bay leaf is used as a wonderful tonic to impact positively on stomach, joints, muscles, and abnormal delays and interruptions in the menstrual cycle. But beyond its culinary and medicinal uses, the bay leaf is known in esotericism as a noble and powerful protector, which is said to attract a destination truly fortunate an achievement not only material but spiritual who is entrusted to it.
About Bay leaf
Its scientific name is Laurus nobilis, the family of the Lauraceae, is an evergreen shrub that can measure from 2 to 8 meters in height until, in some cases, the 20 meters. Its leaves are dark green, shiny, hard and pointed way. The flowers, which can be found male and female specimens are whitish or yellowish, and grow together. The fruit is oval and becomes black color at maturity. The leaves are harvested throughout the year.
Originally from the European part of the coast, used fruit and leaves, which yields an aromatic essential oil which is also concentrated in smaller parts of the tree, it is this oil that gives it its characteristic odor. If you burn their leaves, you will notice a special smell in the air, purifying the air and giving a feeling of freshness, pleasure and comfort.
Moreover, the fruits contain 25% fat, such as lauric acid, oleic, palmitic and linoleic. These oils are used in ointments for various purposes.
The active ingredient responsible for the medicinal effects of the bay is its essential oil, which is very effective to treat various ailments.
- Antiseptic, excellent tonic for skin, useful to the same conditions.
- Carmine ( helps eliminate the digestive gases)
- Sudorific charitable acts in rheumatic pain
- Regulates menstrual
- Useful for skin problems
- Facilitates digestion
- Very effective anti-inflammatory and applied externally.
How do you use it?
Bay can be given in decoctions, ointments made with the oil of its fruit also can be produced tonics, teas and scents to vaporize, the latter used to great effect in aromatherapy.
Laurel ointment for muscle pain
You can make a kind of ointment, after boiling the crushed leaves of the bay leaves to consume the water. Applying this kind of ointment by friction on the painful area, gives a considerable welfare and relief.
Uses in the kitchen
Of all the spices that makes the Mediterranean coast, the bay is one of the most reputable, the fragrance is used in hundreds of recipes. Many renowned chefs argue that the absence of the bay leaf is equivalent to total failure among diners.
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Its use lies in its leaves, which are incorporated into stews cooked in them to soak in its essence and aroma. It is really known as a condiment and not need too many descriptions as this can be seen at lunch time.
A bit of history and magic…
Bay tree is a male energy, whose regent is the star sun and the fire element. It represents the glory and honor. Over time, this mystical tree is associated with a divine inspiration and victory. Their exquisite perfume was perhaps the cause that devoted it to the gods of Olympus mainly to Apollo, the god of arts, poetry and oracles.
Historically, the bay was given a divine role, related to art and immortality. Was used to honor distinguished personalities relevant as the emperors, which were crowned with its leaves.
Mythology says that Daphne, a nymph, was turned into bay tree to evade harassment of Apollo, when he discovers the most telling: "If you do not want to be my lover, I'll be eternally consecrated; your leaves are always green and Coroners them with me. " But another tradition that has Gea, mother of Daphne, transformed hwe daughter in bay tree to avoid harassment of Apollo.
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Paracelsus, the controversial doctor and alchemist of old, used the leaves of the Laurel for his prophetic and divinatory arts called "Dafnomancia or divination with bay leaves. The Greeks, on the other hand, on they return of the famous oracle of Delphi, "is crowned with the leaves of the Laurel if the oracle had been favorable.”
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