Botanical Name :: Vitis vinifera
Indian Name :: Angoor
Grapes are one of the most valuable fruits, They are delicious, highly nutritious and most easily digestible. They are one of Nature’s precious gifts for the revitalization of the human system.
Spherical or ovoid in shape, the grape is a form of berry. They are of innumerable varieties differing in size, shape, colors, aroma and taste. The sizes vary from as big as plums to as small as peas. They are found in various colors such as green, black, red and blue.
Origin and Distribution
Grapes have been cultivated from time immemorial and they are one of the earliest fruit vines cultivated by man. The 8000 year old monuments of Egypt contain carvings of grapes in stone. The grape is believed to be indigenous to Caucasia and its surrounding areas. From here it gradually spread to Western Asia, Southern Europe, Algeria and Morocco. It came to India at a very early time. The main centres of grape cultivation in India are in Tamil Nadu, Nasik, Pune and Aurangabad in Maharashtra, Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh and Punjab and Haryana. The plant grows all through the year in Hyderabad and South India.
The grape is a highly valued fruit mainly for its rich content of sugar which is formed almost entirely by glucose. The quantity of glucose in grapes varies from 15 to 25 per cent in different varieties. The glucose is a predigested food and is absorbed in the body soon after its consumption. It supplies heat and energy to the body within a short time.
Minerals and Vitamins
|Moisture – 92.0%||Calcium – 20 mg|
|Protein – 0.7%||Phosphorus – 20 mg|
|Fat – 0.1%||Iron – 0.2 mg|
|Minerals – 0.2%||Vitamin C – 31 mg|
|Carbohydrates – 7.0%||Small amount of Vitamin, A, P and B Complex|
|* Value per 100 gm’s edible portion||Calorific Value – 32|
Grapes – Natural Benefits and Curative Properties
The therapeutic value of grapes is closely linked with its richness in pure glucose. Studies have indicated that the production of energy essential for the proper functioning of the heart and organs of high physiological importance depends on the metabolism of glucose. Grapes, therefore, have a restorative effect by virtue of their easy assimilation. They are thus highly valuable in case of weak digestion, general debility and fever.
The ‘grape cure’ is perhaps the best of the various fruit cures proposed from time to time. It consists of eating an exclusive diet of grapes daily It is an old established mode of treatment. As far back as 1556, books on this wonderful method of natural treatment pad been published in the various languages of Europe. They deal with the grape cure as a remedy for various diseases. Over a hundred years ago, Dr. Lambe, a pioneer reformer and dietitian, treated cancer in England with grapes Germany seems to be the centre of this natural healing cult.
The grape diet is recommended by Dr. Herman Rieder, a university Professor, and Dr. Martin Zeller, both of Munchen, Germany For a complete cure these doctors prescribe the juice extracted from fresh grapes.to be taken in five meals daily. The treatment lasts from four to six weeks and the best time for this is during September and October. In some cases large quantities of juice are administered from I to 6.5 Kg. of pressed grapes being used daily.
- Constipation :- The combination of the properties of the cellulose, sugar and organic acid in the grape makes it a laxative food. It is highly valuable in relieving constipation. Its field of action is not limited in clearing the bowels only. It tones up the stomach and intestines and relieves the most chronic cases of constipation. One should take at least 350 grams of grapes daily to achieve the desired results. When fresh grapes are not available, raisins soaked in water can be used
- Dyspepsia :- Grapes are valuable in dyspepsia. They constitute a light. food which removes indigestion and irritation of the stomach in a short time and relieves heat.
- Asthma :- Grapes are considered useful in asthma. According to Dr. Oldfield, grapes and their juices are beneficial in the treatment of asthma. He thinks that the patient can recover early if he is kept in a garden of grapes.
- Heart Disease : – Grapes are highly beneficial in the treatment of heart disease. They tone up the heart and are effective in cardiac pain a£!d palpitation of the heart. The diseases can be rapidly controlled if the patient adopts an exclusive grape diet for few days. Grape juice will be valuable when one is actually suffering from a heart attack. This will avert serious consequences by reducing the pain and palpitation.
- Migraine :- The juice of ripe grapes is a very effective home remedy for migraine. It is said that King jamshed, who was very fond of grapes, once stored the juice of grapes well packed in bottles and made it public that the bottles contained strong poison so as to prevent others from taking it. It so happened that the wife of the king was struck with migraine and having obtained no relief from any treatment, decided to end her life by taking this so called ‘poison’ She took it several times in small doses and contrary to her expectations, it gave her great relief instead of killing her.
- Kidney Troubles :– The grape has an exceptional diuretic value on account of its high contents of water and potassium salt. Its value in kidney troubles is enhanced by its low albumin and sodium chloride content. It is an excellent food remedy in acute and chronic nephritis and in kidney and bladder stones.
- Liver Disorders :- Grapes activate the liver or hepatic functions to stimulate glycogenic functions and bile secretion They are thus highly beneficial in the treatment of all liver disorders.
- Children’s Diseases :- Grape juice is excellent blood-builder. It is an effective household remedy and can be preserved in bottles. It is valuable to children in the treatment of constipation and also in the prevention of convulsions due to constipation. The juice is an effective food remedy for infants during teething trouble.
- External Sores :- Grape poultices have been found effective in case of external growths, where there is an open sore. The poultice is prepared by crushing grapes and spreading them between layers of cheese cloth or muslin It should be placed over the affected parts and covered with a dry cloth The poultice should be renewed frequently as it absorbs much of the toxins.
- Pyorrhea :– The organic acids of the grapes are strongly antiseptic and their effect on the gums is very effective According to Johanna Brandt, “Every tooth may be loose in its socket and pus may be pouring from the gums, but after a few weeks on the exclusive grape diet it wil1 in time be found that the teeth are firmly set in the jaws and that every trace of pyorrhea poisoning has disappeared”.
- Alcoholism :- Grapes are highly beneficial in the treatment of alcoholism. It is a very effective remedy for those craving for alcoholic drinks as it supplies the purest form of the alcohol. Grapes should form an exclusive diet in treating the alcoholics.
Grapes have a poor keeping quality. They undergo quick putrefaction. They should, therefore, be used soon after purchase or else be preserved in cold storage. While purchasing grapes, care should be taken to ensure that they are fully ripe.