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The healing power of Chinese jujube

  1. Jujube is a tree that originates in China and grows 10 to 15 meters high. In dry conditions it loses its leaves, but if enough water is available, this tree remains green all year round. It can withstand rainfall and is frost resistant to -15. The tree is nowadays cultivated in the warm regions of Asia, America and Africa. It also grows in Southern Europe, as far as Southern Switzerland. The jujube fruit is edible but very rarely for sale in the Netherlands. Jujube is used in Asian cuisine but this tree is much more famous for its use in Chinese medicine.


  1. History of the jujube tree Jujube in dishes Traditional use jujube Jujube in science Naming Active substances Jujube for nerve problems Other medicinal qualities Dose and safety Visit a doctor or herbalist

History jujube tree

  1. Jujube tree was cultivated 9000 years before Christ. There are about 400 cultivars of it. The jujube tree was known in ancient Egypt, ancient Greece and the ancient Romans. Pliny the Elder, a Roman who has written many books, already noticed that the jujube fruit resembles an apple. Rembert Dodoens, the pioneering herbal scientist from the Netherlands also wrote about this tree, although it did not grow in our regions. In Persian traditional medicine, it is used in combination with other herbal remedies to treat colds, flu and coughs.

Jujube in dishes

  1. The fresh or dried fruits are often eaten as a snack with coffee in Asia. The jujube fruit can also be smoked or put in syrup. Jujube juice and jujube vinegar are made from it, but these are mainly available in China. In India, they dry the fruit in the sun and mash it with tamarind, red pepper, salt and jaggery, a natural sweetener. Then fresh fruit is ground with this mixture to make a delicious cake that is sold under the names Ilanthai vadai, Regi Vadiyalu or Telugu.

Traditional use jujube

  1. The fruits and seeds are used in Chinese and Korean traditional medicine to relieve stress. Jujube is also used as an anti-fungal and anti-ulcer antibacterial agent. It has an anti-inflammatory, calming, anti-spasmodic effect, as a contraception, antihypertensive, heart-strengthening, antioxidant, immune system stimulant and wound healing. The slimy fruit is soothing to the throat and decoctions of jujube have often been used to treat sore throats

Jujube in science

  1. A controlled clinical study found the fruits useful for treating chronic constipation. In another study, Zizyphus jujuba proved to be effective against neonatal jaundice. Scientific research implies that jujube fruit has neuroprotective properties. Ziziphin, a substance in the leaves of the jujube, suppresses the ability to perceive sweet taste.


  1. In Latin, Chinese jujube is called Ziziphus zizyphus. In Dutch we know the alternative names Chinese date, Red date, Breast berry and Breast berry. A Latin synonym of this plant is Zizyphus jujuba.

Active ingredients

  1. Jujube is the roasted seed used for phytotherapeutic purposes. This contains the following important active ingredients: saponins such as the triterpene bide mosides protojujubosides A, B and B1, jujubosides A1 and C and acetyljujuboside B. Other triterpenes in this plant are oleanolic acid and betulinic acid. It also contains the alkaloids sanjoinineziziphusine and nuciferine. It also contains the flavonoids 4´´-beta-D-glycopyranosyl and swertisin or zivulgarine.

Jujube for nerve problems

  1. Chinese date seed is a nervinum; an agent that acts on the nervous system. It has a calming, anti-anxiety and sleep-promoting effect. The saponins, alkaloids and flavonoids together are responsible for these actions. In Western science-based phytotherapy it is prescribed for the following indications:

Other medicinal qualities

  1. Jujube or Chinese date has antihypertensive qualities. In addition, it has a sweat-inhibiting effect. In addition, it relaxes the muscles, protects during radiotherapy and counteracts cardiac arrhythmias. A special property of jujube is that it has an oxygenating effect. This means that at high altitudes you are less likely to experience oxygen problems due to this plant. Furthermore, it prevents convulsions; it has an anti-epileptic effect.,

Dose and Safety

  1. When jujube is used in the therapeutic dose there is no reason to assume that you will get side effects. There is a standard way to use this medicinal plant.

Visit a doctor or herbalist

  1. Much of the information about the medicinal plant referred to in this article comes from Geert Verhelst's book Great Handbook of Medicinal Plants. That is a handbook in phytotherapy. However, it is not suitable for self-healing. Anyone who is bothered by something should visit a doctor or phytotherapist for a proper diagnosis and choice of the best remedies, tailored to your personal situation. The knowledge and science mentioned here is of a purely informational nature.

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