Tag Archives: Phytochemicals and Constituents

Food as Medicine: Pistachio (Pistacia vera, Anacardiaceae)

The pistachio (Pistacia vera) is the only commercially grown species in its genus, which belongs to the Anacardiaceae family. Members of the genus Pistacia are among the oldest flowering nut trees and are small to medium in size, and characterized by their ability to exude mastic (plant resin).1,2 Other economically important plants in Anacardiaceae include cashew (Anacardium occidentale) and mango (Mangifera indica). Pistachio trees

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Food as Medicine Update: Carrot (Daucus carota subsp. sativus, Apiaceae)

Widely available at most supermarkets, the common root vegetable carrot (Daucus carota subsp. sativus, Apiaceae) is a biennial plant with erect, green stems and fine, feathery leaves.1 The plant produces densely clustered white blossoms in an umbrella shape, which is typical of plants in the Apiaceae family. The edible taproot comes in a variety of colors: orange is the most widely available in

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Food as Medicine: Date (Phoenix dactylifera, Arecaceae)

The date palm (Phoenix dactylifera, Arecaceae) has been cultivated for more than 5,000 years.1 Because of this long history of use and cultivation, the exact origin of the date palm is difficult to pinpoint. Dates have been harvested for centuries in northern Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, and have played a large role in the economies of countries where the plant

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Food as Medicine: Pecan (Carya illinoinensis, Juglandaceae)

Pecan (Carya illinoinensis) is a member of the Juglandaceae family, which also includes other economically important North American trees, such as hickory (Carya spp.) and walnut (Juglans spp.).1,2 Fossil records show that the pecan tree can live up to a thousand years, and its existence predates human settlements in North America.3 Pecan can grow to a height of 150 feet with a seven-foot diameter.2-4 The

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Food as Medicine: Butternut Squash (Cucurbita moschata)

History and Traditional Use Range and Habitat Cucurbita moschata— often referred to as winter or pumpkin squash — is a trailing annual with lobed leaves that produce yellow flowers. Mature fruits that are peanut- or bottle-shaped are harvested for their rich orange flesh and edible seeds. Native to tropical and subtropical America, butternut squash requires warmer climates for cultivation as it

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Food as Medicine: Sesame (Sesamum indicum, Pedaliaceae)

Sesamum indicum (Pedaliaceae) is an annual flowering plant with fuzzy, slender, oblong leaves that are arranged opposite to one another on the stem. The plant reaches an average of two to four feet (0.6-1.2 meters) in height and produces small, bell-shaped pink, violet, or white flowers arranged closely to the stem. The plant produces oblong seed capsules that contain many

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