Investigating Antimicrobial Properties of Plants

Topics: Antimicrobial, Bacteria, Petri dish Pages: 8 (2567 words) Published: August 24, 2012
An antimicrobial is a substance that kills or inhibits the growth of microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi, or protozoans (Antimicrobial). Antimicrobial drugs either kill microbes or prevent the growth of microbes. Disinfectants are antimicrobial substances used on non-living objects or outside the body. Ginger

Figure 1 : Ginger (Studies Reveal Ginger Lowers Colon Cancer Risk) Ginger is commonly used around the world and has been employed in the treatment, cure, and prevention of numerous conditions. Its concentration of aromatic oil and related constituents is responsible for its stomachic, stimulant, aperitive, digestive, carminative, and sialagogue effects. Research has demonstrated its long list of useful properties: anti-emetic, anti-nausea, anti-motion sickness, antidiarrheic, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, cholinergic, analgesic, and antipyretic.

Ginger can reduce cholesterol levels and resists cholesterol buildup. In addition, it is inotropic and inhibits platelet aggregation. Therefore, regular use tends to promote cardiovascular health. Ginger root also promotes transitory phagocytic activity. Ginger root, in the powdered, encapsulated form, has been found more effective than dimenhydrinate (Dramamine) in preventing the nauseating symptoms of motion sickness (Ginger Plant). Cinnamon

Figure 2 :Cinnamon (Foret)
Cinnamon is a small tree that grows in India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Brazil, Vietnam, and Egypt. It's one of the oldest known spices. To prepare it, the bark of the cinnamon tree is dried and rolled into cinnamon sticks, also called quills. Cinnamon can also be dried and ground into a powder. The characteristic flavor and aroma of cinnamon comes from a compound in the essential oil of the bark called cinnamonaldehyde. Although there are four main varieties of cinnamon, Ceylon cinnamon and Cassia cinnamon are the most popular.

In traditional Chinese medicine, Cassia cinnamon is used for colds, flatulence, nausea, diarrhea, and painful menstrual periods (Wong). It's also believed to improve energy, vitality, and circulation and be particularly useful for people who tend to feel hot in their upper body but have cold feet. In Ayurveda, cinnamon is used as a remedy for diabetes, indigestion, and colds, and it is often recommended for people with the kapha Ayurvedic type. It's a common ingredient in chai tea, and it is believed to improve the digestion of fruit, milk and other dairy products. Mint

Figure 3 : Mint leaves (Fresh Mint)
Mint has been used in healing remedies for many centuries. It has a great smell and taste. It is commonly used to treat health conditions in the Middle East, India and Europe. Mint is often used to settle a nervous stomach. It is a popular treatment for irritable bowel syndrome and other digestive conditions. Mint is believed to slow the effects of bacteria or fungus, and is also said to help control asthma and various allergies.

Some believe that mint can assist in cancer treatments. Studies on animals show that the alcohols present in mint can help prevent colon, lung and skin cancer (Benefits of Mint). The findings are yet to be replicated in human subjects.

Mint is a very common flavoring. We will find mint-flavored toothpaste, mouthwash, gum, chocolate, liquor and hard candies. Mint has a very soothing taste and is commonly used to add to the flavors of cherry, grape and lemon. It also appears in teas and other beverages. Some recipes for entrees (for example, lamb with a mint julep side) also contain mint. Mint also could be the solution for an upset stomach or for a fresh tasting dessert. Garlic

Figure 4: Garlic (Garlic)
Some of the old stories of garlic's healing properties have doubtful validity, but many of its claimed health benefits have been backed up by modern scientific research. There are two main medicinal ingredients which produce the garlic health benefits: allicin and diallyl sulphides (Garlic...
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