Monday, 9 January 2012

Tulasi Importance (Understanding our Tradition .. 2)

Light has a natural associated property - Heat. Hence light and heat are combined to describe any object of illumination. Except for a few exceptions due to technical advancement such as metal halide/ cfl, Energy Generation Points have these twin features.

Radiation, be it nuclear/ solar or otherwise become intolerable beyond point. For the basic protection from Radiation, we use clothes, herbs etc. Women are affected by the radiation in the kitchen/ sun. Hence, Indian Household traditions make it mandatory for them to be in contact with Tulasi Plant in one form or another. Similarly, every temple has an avenue to use the Tulasi leaves in the worship.
 Now, let us understand the basis of the tradition.
The ancient Indian tradition of growing tulsi (Ocimum sanctum) in the backyard is not without scientific backing. Research shows that the tulsi or Indian basil mitigates the ill-effects of radiation, whether background or nuclear, and can protect cells in patients undergoing radiation therapy for cancer.
Scientists at the DRDO’s Institute of Nuclear Medic-ines and Allied Sciences, and the Department of Rad-iobiology, Kasturba Medic-al College, Manipal, have successfully tested tulsi ex-tracts on mice for its anti-radiation and anti-cancer properties. The DRDO is now preparing a herbal co-ncoction from tulsi that wi-ll serve to prevent and cure the ill-effects of radiation. In the mouse model, there was no impact on bone marrow after the mice, exposed to radiation, ingested the tulsi preparation. It is the bone marrow that is affected in case of radiation exposure, and this brings down the immunity level.
The DRDO now proposes to take up human trials, says Dr W. Selvamurthy, chief controller (research and development), DRDO, who presented a research paper on the anti-radiation impact of tulsi extract at the 99th Indian Science Co-ngress, which concluded in Bhubaneswar on Saturday. “We need to conduct a few more tests and take up phase II trials before it is released for general use,” said Dr Selvamurthy. The DRDO is spending `7 crore on the tulsi project. Research on the anti-radiation effect of tulsi in animals has been going on in India for the last four decades. Doctors at KMC discovered that tulsi contains a chemical called glutathione, which gives it the anti-radiation properties.

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