Alicament is food that has active medicinal properties that help the body protect itself from disease.
The benefits of a varied diet based mainly on vegetables or other plant based food are immense because they are an Alicament. Those who eat fruits and vegetables daily get sick less often, dont suffer from obesity and seem to have less cancer. Many studies confirm that the beneficial effect of a plant based diet depends largely on phytochemical compounds in plants that perform an antibacterial, antifungal and provide insecticide protection to the plant or tree.
Chemical compounds that occur naturally in plants are phyto means “plant” chemicals. Some are responsible for color and other organoleptic properties, such as the deep purple of blueberries and the smell of garlic.
Plants create special compounds to defend themselves against infection and damage caused by microorganisms, insects or other external aggressors. The plant production and activation of phytochemical compounds is linked to the stress suffered by the plant. Evidence suggests that if plants or trees are cultivated in a natural way, ie without any use of chemicals or pesticides, rendering the plant more exposed to external attack, the plant reacts to the added stress by becoming more capable of producing higher quantities of compounds that are good for the plant and for humans when eaten. The phytochemical compounds are good for humans since they directly or indirectly help cell proliferation which is important for keeping us healthy. Two of these very important compounds are angiogenesis and apoptosis. The first helps the development of blood vessels through which the food for our cells passes through; Apoptosis is a form of necrosis. Necrosis is a form of cell injury which results in the premature death of cells in living tissue. Necrosis is caused by factors external to the cell or tissue, such as infection, toxins, or trauma which result in the unregulated digestion of cell components.
You understand, then, how it is important to look into these areas of research, and for us as consumers to know more and more about the properties of certain foods in order to guide our choices for our health. Some foods are particularly rich in these phytochemicals so when they are in season, try to make sure they are on the table! Having said that: good health to all! Some great Alicaments : CABBAGE, GARLIC, ONIONS, CHIVES, SCALLIONS