HEALING HERBS: Multiple uses of corn silk
Corn silk became a ”Barbadian star” last week.
This star status became evident when many readers were trying to locate her, while others were trying to discover who she was. In trying to acquire that information corn silk became popular, thus I call corn silk “the star which sustains life”.
This week the spotlight remains on children as we conduct more comprehensive research about corn silk. Indeed, corn silk is excellent for treating and healing bed wetting in children and it has been used by native Americans since 5 000 BC.
It comes highly recommended by academic researchers and by some grassroot people who live in Barbadian communities.
The excitement mounts when we think of asking the vendor who roasts corn by the roadside to give us a sample of this priceless commodity.
It is also worthwhile to know that corn silk tea is sold commercially. Therefore, the commercial aspect of corn silk needs to be awakened in Barbadians. We are truly blessed with an abundance of corn silk and other genuine silent doctors.
Corn silk is a collection of the stigma (yellowish, soft, fine tassels of the female corn. In Barbadian terms “it’s the golden hair on an ear of corn”.
It has a faint sweetish taste and its scientific name is Zea Mays, and is known by many other names including mother’s hair, Turkish corn or maize jagnog.
It is high in Vitamin K and C, and contains potassium and other immune building elements.
Research shows that it can be used to detoxify the body. It can reduce stress, kidney stones, blood clotting, high blood pressure and urination caused by irritation of the bladder.
It can also treat gonorrhea, bed wetting, carpel tunnel syndrome, PMS, arthritis pain, infections of the urinary tract and genital system including cystitis, prostatitis and arthritis. It can also be used for obesity, oedema and jaundice.
In China it is used to treat diabetes.
Externally it can be used to heal ulcers, boils and wounds.
The corn silk is collected and then dried. After the drying process has been completed, it can be used as a tea. You can also sprinkle it on salads or stews, or use in it your favourite dishes. Dried corn silk can be stored for an entire year.
I have tried the tea and it has an excellent taste. It is important to do extra research on this topic and explore other benefits.
Finally, I advise you to never again throw away the corn silk from around the corn. Instead, use them for healing purposes.
• Annette Maynard-Watson is a teacher and herbal educator.
DISCLAIMER: It is not our intention to prescribe or make specific claims for any products. Any attempts to diagnose or treat real illness should come under the direction of your health care provider.