Gum tragacanth is the sap that is obtained from the Tragacanth plant. This plant grows low, and it includes thorny shrubs that grow in the mountains of the Middle East. Gum tragacanth is obtained from the tragacanth plant by tapping the roots and branches. Gum dries when it comes out and can build up very quickly. The word “tragacanth is said to come from the Greek word for” tragos (meaning goat) and akantha (thorn) which describe the texture of the raw sap. Iran is the largest producer of tragacanth gum.
Tragacanth gum is a mixture of polysaccharides that is soluble in water and it is tasteless, odorless. It is obtained from the sap of the tragacanth plant by tapping the branches and roots of the plant. The sap of the plant oozes from the stems in the form of a ribbon string, and is flakes that can be powdered. The dry sap when you add water can be stirred into a gel or paste. The main fraction, known as tragacanthin, is a slimy colloid and dissolves in water. Another one is bassorin, it is insoluble in water but swells in water and forms a gel.
Gum tragacanth is used in vegetable-tanned leather, it serves and is used as an edge coating and burnishing agent. Sometimes it is also used as a stiffener in textiles. In addition, gum is also useful as a herbal remedy for treating certain conditions such as burns. The gum is also used in the pharmaceutical and food world. In food it has a certain code and functions as an emulsifier, stabilizer, thickener, and texturant additive (code E413).
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In the manufacture of artists’ pastels, it is also used as a binder. It does not cling to itself, unlike other gums. The tragacanth is also useful for making a paste to be used in floral sugar crafts. In the cigar rolling, gum tragacanth also traditionally takes part.
Gum tragacanth, in its history was first described by Theophrastus several centuries BC. The name “tragacanth” is taken from the appearance of the sap when it comes out, when it comes out of the stem or roots, this gum is shaped like a ribbon similar to the horn of a goat. As we discussed earlier, the word tragacanth comes from the Greek word for “tragos” meaning goat and “akantha” meaning horn. The gum is obtained from a small shrub in plants of the genus Astragalus, a small plant with the shape of a shrub and taproot, the root of which is the one used to extract the tragacanth gum. The tragacanth plant grows on the slopes of dry mountains such as in the mountains of Southwest Asia, from Pakistan to Greece. Especially Iran and Turkey.
Dry areas become production areas such as in the mountains of Iran. About 50 years ago, Iran could export 4000 tons of gum tragacanth annually. However, in the 1970s and 1980s the production of this sap shrank drastically due to the lack of demand. Now the world market for tragacanth is estimated at not more than 500 t / year (about 300 t). This plant accumulates a lot of gum in the root area, especially in the middle of the root. If the roots are split open gum tragacanth, gum-shaped gum and soft, and very brittle when dried.
Health Benefits of Tragacanth Gum
The uses of Tragacanth gum are very broad, due to its wide range of benefits. It can be used as a thickener and stabilizer in the paper industry, cosmetics, in the textile industry and others. Below we see what are the benefits of this gum in the world of health.
1. Treat heat stroke
Tragacanth gum contains amazing cooling agents. Hence it is widely used in drinks to cool the body during summer. It functions as a cooling agent and as a lowering body temperature. The sap of this plant is also very useful in controlling nose bleeds that children often experience in the summer.
2. Increase male stamina
The health benefits of gum tragacanth are as a stamina booster for men. It can increase male libido, and is known as an aphrodisiac that can help increase male sexual desire. It is considered important for men and effective in preventing various sexual problems experienced by men. Tragacanth gum can solve all the problems associated with male desire and stamina.
3. Act as remedy for urinary incontinence
Tragacanth is a natural remedy that is very effective in treating urinary incontinence problems. It works by relaxing the urinary muscles. So, it can prevent urinary tract obstruction problems and urinary tract inflammation.
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4. Tragacanth is beneficial for skin and beauty
Gum Tragacanth is very good for improving skin beauty and health. This gum contains anti-aging properties so it is good at firming the skin and preventing premature aging. So, if you use tragacanth gum, then your appearance will always be youthful.
5. Enlarge breast size
Many women who do not like small breasts, they like large breasts. To increase breast size, a daily dosage of Tragacanth can help you in increase the size of the breasts of women. For those of you who want to try it, you don’t need to try drugs whose benefits and side effects are not clear.
6. Cure constipation
For those of you who are constipated, you can also try consuming Gum Tragacanth. In fact, this gum is very useful for those of you who feel disturbed in digestion. This drug functions as a laxative, so it is very good for your bowel movements.
7. Good for women after childbirth
After giving birth, women experience tremendous weakness. Gum Tragacanth can be one solution, because it can increase stamina after childbirth. It is also useful for controlling blood flow during the puerperium. In India it is very common for women to give birth to eat tragacanth for their health.
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If that’s the benefit, what about the dosage? The appropriate dose for tragacanth gum depends on several factors such as age, health and several other conditions. Until now, there is no scientifically correct dosage for consuming this traditional medicine.
However, you should know that natural or herbal remedies are not always safe, so knowing the dosage is very important. If you buy this product, then make sure you follow the directions on the label or follow your doctor’s advice.
How to Eat
- Tragacanth is used widely in thickening ice cream and as a dressing
- Tragacanth is also used in favorite sauces, condiment bases, sweet pickles, mayonnaise and liquors.
- Gum tragacanth is also used in drinks, salad coverings, processed cheese, food dressings, it has extraordinary cooling properties.
Other Facts of Gum Tragacanth
- Used as a hardener for calico, crape, etc.
- Tragacanth gum is used in medicinal emulsions, syrups, jellies, ointments, thickening creams, emulsifiers and as a lubricant.
- It is also used in low-calorie herbs and syrups
- Used in toothpaste, to form softness and brilliance.
- This substance has been used in textile printing pastes and is used as sizes for high quality silks and crepes.
- Tragacanth is used in leather dressings and in the preparation of leather polishes.
- It is also used in the manufacture of furniture, auto polishes and floors.
- As an adhesive on cigar leaves
– When taking tragacanth, make sure you consume enough water to avoid choking
– Do not use in pregnant people and nursing mothers
– If you are sensitive to quillaia bark, then using tragacanth can cause respiratory problems.