Traditional Malay medicine encompasses various kinds of ritual ceremonies intended to communicate with the world of spirits to determine whether the nature of an illness is physical or psychological. In such ceremonies, the aim is to summon and exorcise the spirits causing illness. A ritualist serves as a medium, and a small ensemble often provides the musical component.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Onion in folklore medicine

The origin of the cultivated onion is obscure, but it is known that both onion and garlic were cultivated in ancient Egypt.

The Malay name for onion is bawang. The word bawang is almost universal in the other languages of the Archipelago whenever the plant is known.

Onion gruel was regarded as a good cure for colds and fevers, right up to the twentieth century. A Scottish Highland remedy for pneumonia was to place a boiled onion in each armpit.

The onion was use in a variety of cold remedies. Eating onions raw, ingesting the juice squeezed from a roasted onion, or drinking a glass of milk with a slice of onion in it were common remedies.

Onion contains vitamin B1, B2 and C, as well as potassium and a little protein. Folk healers have use onions for centuries to prevent infection.

Fresh onion can reduce clot formation, thereby reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke. This effect is lost when the onion is cooked. They have anti-oxidant activity and may be helpful in preventing cancer. Folk medicine has use onion in the treatment of allergies, asthma and diabetes.
Onion in folklore medicine
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