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Gynura Procumbens "Longevity Spinach"

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I got some cuttings of a plant when I picked up the new chicks in St. Pete: longevity spinach, or gynura procumbens. I researched it to see if it was actually the plant the lady thought it was, then I researched it to see if the many health claims about it have scientific support (I use Google Scholar). It is a really amazing plant! Note that the studies are usually on leaves alone, although a couple included stems. Roots were only the subject of one study.

I'm currently waiting for my three cuttings to root: it roots more slowly in cool weather, but after 10 days in water, I am now finally starting to see the nodules for roots appearing on the stems. In warm weather, I read that it only takes five days to have visible roots.

It is non toxic and edible. The stems can be used in concoctions, but the leaves are more tender for consumption. Crushing them is sufficient for releasing beneficial properties for topical use. The leaves are a bit thicker than they appear in photos, more like a succulent than a regular leaf and having a very thin layer of clear gel inside that looks similar to aloe gel.

It has a bland taste, so it can be added to a smoothie or a salad, or even a cold soup, or just chewed alone. The health benefits are best when raw, but it can be cooked or used as a tea. For health, the amount of it to use depends on the goal, but people report getting results by just chewing from 4 to 8 raw leaves per day. It is a fast grower and roots readily, so this is not impossible. It is not a cold weather plant, but it can grow indoors and there is no worry about kids or pets eating it. It likes moisture, so a bathroom with good light would work...

I always research plants in regard to the animals... (Especially after discovering several I had in the yard were highly toxic.) The study I found on chickens and feeding said it lowered bad bacteria in the poo, and it improved egg cholesterol levels and shell thickness. It also caused no harm to the chickens. My hens and chicks all loved it when I gave them a sample. My German Shepherd also liked the small sample of it I gave her and, unlike grass, it did not result in vomiting.
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00071668.2014.938020?journalCode=cbps20

The leaves are high in protein, and the upper portion of the plant has no toxicity. The roots have an incidence of liver damage reported, from one lady in Indonesia (?) who ate them.
The leaf and stems, though, are being studied extensively for human medical applications so there is a lot of scientific basis for the various claims and I checked using Google Scholar. I included links below:

It is anti-inflammatory, both internally and externally (topical application) including rheumatic inflammation. 
It balances blood sugar: it lowers high sugar, but has little effect on people with normal blood sugar levels (150mg/kg) type I and II diabetes.
It suppresses cancer cell growth (ingesting and topical application), including colon, breast and skin cancer and it prevents damage caused by UV light exposure (anti aging).
It protects against ulcers and helps heal existing lesions.
Helps heal external wounds, prevents scarring, and promotes production of collagen.
It protects kidney cells from kidney disease.
Improves sperm count and motility.
Contains a protein that has the effect of masking the taste sense of bitterness. (A commercial application used for bad tasting medicines).
It is good for controlling hypertension by acting in two ways: calcium channel and butunolic fraction.
Promotes healing and reduces virus count of herpes. 
Anti fungal (it was not the most anti fungal plant tested, but the plant that tested highest is also known to be a really strong carcinogen! Your toenail fungus is cured, but now you have cancer...)
Protects from liver damage caused by free radicals that are released in the liver by environmental toxin exposure (to toxic chemical in a surgical setting). 

It is a free radical scavenger/anti-oxidant.

Overview with links to studies
http://www.eco-philippines.com/longevity-spinach-gynura-precumbens-herbal-medicine-anti-diabetic-anti-inflammatory-anti-hypertensive-anti-oxidant/

Wound healing
http://www.academicjournals.org/article/article1380719856_Zahra%20et%20al.pdf

Hypertension links
http://online.liebertpub.com/doi/abs/10.1089/jmf.2006.9.587
http://www.scielo.br/scielo.php?pid=S1807-59322011000100025&script=sci_arttext
http://scholarsresearchlibrary.com/DPL-vol2-iss2/DPL-2010-2-2-273-293.pdf
http://www.biomedcentral.com/content/pdf/1472-6882-13-188.pdf

Sperm
http://ejum.fsktm.um.edu.my/article/649.pdf

Taste masking
http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s12010-011-9377-x

Diabetes
http://www.sma.org.sg/SMJ/4101/articles/4101a2.htm

Herpes
http://downloads.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2013/394865.pdf

Cancer
http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s13596-012-0063-5
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378874111004168
http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0068524

Anti fungal
http://umexpert.um.edu.my/file/publication/00005343_66273.pdf

Liver protection
http://agris.fao.org/agris-search/search.do?recordID=ID2001001119

Diabetes Liver function study
http://ceodcure.blogspot.com/2012/10/gynura-procumbens.html#!

Liver study
http://apb.tbzmed.ac.ir/Portals/0/Archive/Vol2No1/14.Hermawan.pdf

Lymphocyte study...increases aiding immune function
http://www.oalib.com/paper/2080828#.VIXVnkc8KrU

Colon cancer inhibition
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378874113009264

Nutrient and toxicity
http://scialert.net/fulltext/?doi=ajps.

No toxicity or harmful physiological effect.
Recommended dose = 2.89g dried per 70kg of body weight
Abstract online at http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378874109001524
Journal of Ethnopharmacology
22 June 2009, Vol.123(2):244–249, doi:10.1016/j.jep.2009.03.011
Wound healing and toxicology
Significant wound healing results and no toxicity in rats
Extract tested up to 5g per kg body weight. 

( 0.18 oz. extract per 2.2 lbs of body weight of extract 
= 1lb 5 oz dried leaf per 2.2 lbs BW
http://umexpert.um.edu.my/file/publication/00005343_69996.pdf

Root compounds (incomplete list, those mentioned are beneficial in some manner, but Toxicity of root material is not mentioned in abstract)
http://www.researchgate.net/publication/257668174_Induction_characterization_and_NMR-based_metabolic_profiling_of_adventitious_root_cultures_from_leaf_explants_of_Gynura_procumbens
Root consumption had one report of liver damage, so I would avoid them.
Edited by Kikiriki - 12/9/14 at 11:23am
I'm not a rooster, but I reserve the right to crow!
One husband who wants a rooster, one son who flew the FL coop for northern climes, one lovely German Shepherd, one Kangal Dog, two young feed store Easter Egger, two 3 year old Golden Comets, three young Gold Laced Wyandotte.
Reply
I'm not a rooster, but I reserve the right to crow!
One husband who wants a rooster, one son who flew the FL coop for northern climes, one lovely German Shepherd, one Kangal Dog, two young feed store Easter Egger, two 3 year old Golden Comets, three young Gold Laced Wyandotte.
Reply
post #2 of 6
Do you know where i can get clippings of the
Longevity spinach cuttings - Gynura procumbens

I heard there are no seeds to grow from.

Thank you for the great information in your posts.

Alicia
post #3 of 6

Did you come upon any mention of the Vit. K content. It is important for me as I need bloodthinners because of a medical condition and so any plant that is high in Vit. K has to be used very sparingly.

 

Thanks,

post #4 of 6

I have some of these plants planted some right outside my chicken run and the girls eat them up.if anyone in the ocala forest area id be willing to give a cutting, so you can start your own plants.email me  cause i prolly want see this post again for awhile  :) i happened upon it when i googled longevity spinach .jmyles_55@msn.com. put need plants or someting in the title  :)

post #5 of 6
I know this is an old thread, but I wanted to let everyone know Baker Creek Seeds (rareseeds.com) is now selling live plants of longevity spinach.
post #6 of 6


I have grown Gynura in a hydroponics setup, with a fish tank and a gravel-filled grow bed above it to pump the fish water into and then let it drain back.  Gynura loves it, I think it is a water plant.  The problem I have had is that they are next to a sliding glass door and ants have actually carried aphids in through the door frame and put them on the plants.   The aphids multiply and perhaps give the Gynura a disease because the plants which were growing to the ceiling turned black and died.  Twice I had plants elsewhere in soil and got them back growing but the last time the remaining plant seems to only be hanging on.   I think another way to grow them is to have the plants floating somehow in a 5 gallon bucket with an aquarium bubbler in the bottom to aerate it.

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