Last Updated on by Eat Better Move More
I Guess I Was Wrong: The Truth about the Health Benefits of Tobacco Leaves
I grew up in a family where male members dominate the number. I think it was funny. I got many male cousins, uncles, nephews, and even had 4 older brothers. I guess it makes us that way. This helped me to be more comfortable in the presence of boys and men around the school, work, and even places I typically go. Yes, it is, I’m one of the boys as my grand Nana would always utter.
But I had this issue I would like to confide. I just can’t stand the smell and the sting of the cigars that these people used to sniff and heave out all the time. I’m referring to that tobacco cigar.
My dad was one of those who just love getting his dose of smoky indulgence after a meal, whenever he’s with friends, and even on those out of the blue moments, he used to spend on the patio. The funny is, my mom just let him be. Until after a day when I saw my great Nana puffed one of those sticks made from the leaves! I asked her out of curiosity. She responded with a proud voice stating that she knows the health benefits of tobacco leaves.
I was astounded; I thought only the brood members of the family were doing the vice. Well, I guess it turns out that these leaves are habit forming, don’t they? They thought me at school that cigars are bad and youngsters shouldn’t try them. I live in a town where most people rely on farming and animal husbandry as their major source of income. It’s a place where the laid-back life is surreal and I get to enjoy the scenic views of the rice fields, the mountain ranges that added more texture in the abyss, and the free-flowing rivers and streams where you can dip for a bath or a swim.
I remember that many farmers in the area plants various vegetables, crops, rice, wheat, and that tobacco was also one staple. I got the itch to know why this plant propagates and how do farmers profit from it. And of course, I have a great intent to know why my father, my Nana, and the rest of the male members of the family were so fond of puffing such stuff.
I tried several ways to learn and research. I found a book about herbs and medicinal plants under my mother’s wooden chest and carefully scanned it over the internet. I’m not surprised when I saw some facts that tobacco contains undesirable deleterious effects on humans.
Since it is consumed widely through smoking, the harmful effects of tobacco leaves like lung and heart diseases, cancer-related sickness, and nicotine addiction greatly beat the health-related benefits of the tobacco plant. I found a few hope saving facts on how we can benefit from tobacco leaves on a positive note.
1. Tobacco leaves can treat and soothe skin discomforts.
Many suffer from common allergies and skin infections like dermatitis, dry and itchy skin, and getting some traumas like burns, cuts, and abrasions. The skin is our ultimate outer protective barrier of the body and guards us against the first contact of microbes, germs, and even bacteria found elsewhere. The beneficial part of the tobacco leaves contains Nicotine, a highly addictive substance you can get from smoking, ironically functions as an anti-inflammatory and anti-ineffective agent of nature. We can apply the chopped or grounded leaves as an antimicrobial solution to treat wounds like cuts and abrasions. While these also help, to soothe skin from itching and allergies to prevent them from getting inflamed.
It’s probably a cliché, tobacco leaves are the prime components in making cigars, yet it’s also known that we can use the medicinal properties of tobacco as a home remedy to treat respiratory sicknesses like common colds, severe coughing, and asthma episodes. The penetrating musky and earthy scent of the steam, once boiled, creates soothing and vasodilating effects in the nasal canals to ease blockages and difficulties of breathing. However, prolonged exposure can be harmful, especially for children. Others try to mix oils and eucalyptus to add a more soothing and cooling effect.
3. It’s a natural way of driving away Dengue causing mosquitos.
During wet seasons, especially in tropical countries across Asia, Dengue cases are becoming more prevalent and dangerous. Dengue is a deadly form of hyperthermia commonly called fever associated with a bite from infected mosquitoes that carry the virus. Further complications like bleeding, the appearance of rashes across the torso and body parts, and dehydration can be fatal in most cases. The mortality cases each year becomes high, especially if they merely address the outbreak, and the dengue causing factors. Recently some people discovered the insect repelling efficacy of tobacco leaves that contains Nicotine. They found nicotine in tobacco leaves to have toxic compounds that drive away mosquitoes as effective as commercial mosquito repelling sprays and coils.
Health Benefits of Tobacco Leaves Conclusion
In conclusion, the present society still refers to tobacco as a harmful substance added with cigarettes and other smoking products that affect cells found in the lungs. Nicotine shrinks the cells and has a vasoconstriction effect with the blood vessels carrying oxygenated blood going to the brain, heart, and other major internal organs.
However, as history and modernized culture collide, there are still some people that recognize the health benefits of tobacco leaves to have been found effective and economical.
Most people aren’t keen on taking chemical and mineral-based medicines because of the harmful side effects that may occur with other vital organs like the kidneys and the liver. They resort to taking herbal supplements and plant-based drugs that have a low side effect profile. In that case, I believe I’ve been mistaken to put it in a bad light. Tobacco leaves have been used in many industries, and the production of this product has economically helped several sectors in the farming, pharmaceutical, and textile manufacturing businesses.
Tobacco leaves may be beneficial to certain conditions that don’t require hospitalization or intensive medical management from healthcare providers. As mentioned above, it is economical and widely available.