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Jamu as a promotive and curative effort


National Jamu Day

Jakarta, IO – National Jamu Day is celebrated every May 27. Jamu is a traditional Indonesian herbal drink that is often used as a remedy. It consists of varying blends of natural ingredients such as leaves, seeds, and bark. At the 18th session of the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage Committee, which took place until 9 December 2023, in Kasane, Botswana, jamu was officially designated as an “Intangible Cultural Heritage” (ICH). ICH is defined as practices, representations, expressions, knowledge or skills, as well as instruments, objects, artifacts and cultural spaces that are considered by UNESCO to be part of the cultural heritage of a place. Jamu has officially become Indonesia’s 13th ICH. 

dr. Inggrid Tania, MSi
dr. Inggrid Tania, MSi. (Source: Special)

In the talk show themed “Is It OK to Drink Jamu Every Day?” which was held on Tuesday (21/5/2024), dr. Inggrid Tania, MSi, General Chair of the Association of Indonesian Traditional Medicine and Herbal Medicine Development Doctors (PDPOTJI) said that in general, jamu is safe to drink every day for various health purposes, including increasing stamina, appetite, and as an anti-aging prophylactic. “It is safe to drink jamu every day. Jamu made from recipes handed down from ancestors has been empirically proven to be safe, for example, beras kencur, kunyit asam, or wedang jahe. There have been no reports of bad effects from drinking jamu. Many studies have stated its benefits for health, and it can be given from ages over 1 year to old age. For the preventive-promotive aspect, the dose is 1-2 glasses, while for the curative aspect 3-4 glasses per day, but it is of course always best to consult with a doctor,” she said. 

However, dr. Ingrid underlined three important aspects when processing jamu. “First, make sure the ingredients are correct, because appearances are sometimes similar. Second, only choose fresh ingredients, discard ingredients that look dry or moldy. Third, use the correct tools when boiling the ingredients, namely clay, a glass pan, or stainless steel. Initially, wash all the ingredients thoroughly with running water, then drain them. Avoid boiling ingredients using a metal pan, because the phytochemicals from active herbs can react with the metal content. When storing, choose a bottle that is sturdy and thick, preferably BPA-free to avoid contamination, especially if the jamu is still warm.” 

Read: Pathlab: Leading Indonesia Toward Healthier Tomorrows

Dosage Range 

It is emphasized that, like making fruit juice, the range of herbal medicine dosages is very wide. “We can use a volume the size of a finger for rhizomes such as ginger, curcumin, or turmeric. Don’t use too much of each ingredient because it is related to taste. Too much it can be less delicious. Measure according to what you will drink. For children, use the size of a child’s finger. However, you should not add too much-granulated sugar, replace it with ½ teaspoon of honey. If you don’t have time to make it by yourself, you can look for packaged in sachets: simplicial or powder. But choose a type that doesn’t contain preservatives, dyes or other chemicals,” she warned. 

At the end, dr. Ingrid advertises to drink 8 glasses of water per day and adopting a healthy lifestyle by consuming nutritious food, exercising regularly, stopping smoking and managing stress. “Drinking jamu means that we adopt a healthy lifestyle, contribute to the welfare of farmers, build the nation’s economy, and participate in preserving Indonesian culture. Instead of consuming modern beverages that are high in sugar which can increase the risk of diabetes, it is better to switch over to jamu.” (est)


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