In our age of ‘shots’ – nutrient-packed wheatgrass, celery, kombucha – my current favourite is relatively new to wellness-speak. And yet it’s also as old as the palaces from whence it hails.
Oral tradition and cultural heritage from far flung lands are music to my ears when it comes to a little elixir of good health, especially when myth tells us it was originally a carefully guarded beauty secret of princesses in ancient Java.
Jamu, this particular time-defying remedy, was introduced to me as a child growing up in Indonesia, where women hawkers carry their pharmacy of potions for potency, purity, kidney stones, skin-whitening and so much more, in baskets on their backs. Stop streetside for a quick complexion, energy or libido shot – how great is that!
In fairytale fashion, the magic jamu recipes, made from herbs, roots, barks, leaves, honey, fruits and sometimes even egg yolks, are handed down verbally through generations of women.
So it’s heartening to find a female jamu brewer here in England who is making her own hand-blended recipe for her growing tribe of customers. Jamu joy: thanks to Emma Stableford we no longer have to push stuff through our juicer! Though as Emma rightly points out jamu is not a juice, its ingredients are activated by heat and brewed over time.
Jamu’s vibrant marigold colour, a welcome break from do-good green and enough of an allure for me, is due to the panacea turmeric. Its active ingredient curcumin makes turmeric the all over anti-inflammatory queen, liver detoxifier, kidney cleanser, immune booster, joint easer, digestion aid – the list goes on. Of interest to us women are the positive results of curcumin from studies on dementia and cancer.
Ginger and galangal, rich in vitamins and phytonutrients, share some of the super-boosting turmeric properties and add to jamu’s effectiveness against arthritis and joint pain. Tamarind is another anti-oxidant, metabolism-booster and appetite-suppressor due to its ability to lower blood sugar levels. What more can menopausal women, like myself, ask for?! And for something sweet there’s coconut nectar blossom in the brew too, whose name alone makes me smile.
Jamu gives us so many reasons to smile. I take it each morning on an empty stomach. And there’s a hint in Emma’s brand name JAMU 365… Below she explains why and tells us more about her special ‘princess’ product.
A £12 bottle of Jamu 365 lasts a week and it’s worth every penny for what it brings to mine.
Contact Emma Stableford: firstname.lastname@example.org; +44 7712890664.