Epazote grows wild in many parts of the USA and Mexico, and is key in central Mexican cuisine. Epazote is commonly confused with Mexican oregano, but is quite different, with an almost perfumed, grassy aroma. Dried epazote is referred to as the ‘bean herb’, most often cooked alongside dried black beans or pinto beans to aid digestion.
Traditionally Epazote is added into the boiling water in the last half hour of cooking beans; use epazote in central Mexican-style quesadillas along with cheese and chillies; or add a pinch of dried epazote to guacamole to introduce a depth of herbal flavours.
However, for ascites reduction to ensure you are using the full medicinal value of the herb, you can make teas by decocting for 10 mins in clean boiling water and drink throughout the day, or you could simply use it as a regular brewed tea. The tea is unusual in taste , which is probably due to the oil Ascaridole which is anti parasitic.
Also known as: Mexican Tea, Wormseed, Pigweed, West Indian Goosefoot, Hedge Mustard, Jerusalem Parsley, Pazote
Epazote’s Role with Ascites Reduction
According to a clinical studies on pubmed, the leaves from the Epazote plant ‘Chenopodium ambrosioides L.’ have been indicated for the treatment of several diseases, among which the cancer. In this study Brazillian researchers injected C.ambrosiodes into the perotoneal cavity of mice and they found that it significantly inhibited the solid and ascitic Ehrlich tumor forms. They say this inhibition was observed in ascitic tumor cell number, in the ascitic volume, in the tumor-bearing foot size and foot weight when compared to control mice.
They also say the treatments also increased the survival of tumor-bearing mice. They concluded that C. ambrosioides has a potent anti-tumoral effect which was evident with a small dose and even when the treatment was given two days after the tumor implantation. They summised the effect is probably related with anti-oxidant properties of C. ambrosioides.
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C. ambrosioides and its major components (ascaridole, carvacrol and caryophyllene oxide) which are anti-microbial, anti-parasitic (antileishmanial) and anti-bacterial agents. Carvacrol suppresses COX-2 inflammation, activates PPAR (involved in metabolism and cell apoptosis) , stimulates apoptosis in prostate cancer cells, and activates, but then rapidly desensitizes, the pain receptor TRPA1; this explains its pungency. Ascaridole is the major oil present at 16 – 70% of the plant’s oils and is used as an anthelmintic drug that expels parasitic worms from plants, domestic animals and the human body.