IMAGE BY FREE-PHOTOS FROM PIXABAY

The moment you hear the word “grapes”, you visualize a bunch of yellow or black – purple delicious, juicy fruit, which you enjoy plucking off their stalks and popping in your appreciated mouth. Believe it or not, grapes are just about the only fruit, which can be eaten in large quantities, without any sort of harmful side effects. The magic about grapes is that not only is this considered to be an extremely good way which you can cure yourself, but it is also such a good and delicious, easy to eat fruit, that even fussy and finicky eaters who touch fruits and vegetables very rarely cannot resist a fistful of grapes. The history of grapes goes back as long as mankind existed. In prehistoric times, grapes were gathered in the jungles, before man decided to cultivate them in his vineyards or gardens. The Bible says that Noah grew grapes on his farm. But before that, the classical age of Greece had already assigned a God Dionysius, as the God of grapes and wine, and you can see him sporting around with the grape vine leaves around his head as he blesses his worshipers with the gift of the grapes – wine. The Romans called him Bacchus.

The Global Scope of Grapes 

The most famous grape vineyards in Europe are in France and Italy. In the USA, California, is well-known for its grape production and so is Australia getting to be known for its high quality wine. The most popular, expensive and most delicious grape in the East is grown in a place named Chaman [literally – garden] since ancient times. This is in Afghanistan. It is not exported, because the local produce is taken up by local traders, who want to keep this grape to themselves. Here are some reminiscences about the people of that area. Since ancient times, the medicine in this area has had a Greek influence, thanks to Alexander the great’s soldiers, deciding to settle here, around 2000 years ago, and raise families. Instead of going back to Greece, they intermarried with the native women of Gandhaar, which was what that area was called since ancient times, going back to the Mahabharata – guess that age to be 7000 years ago – [this name is reflected in the name of that well-known city Kandahar]. I bet they brought this great grape and planted it here, in their garden, in Gandhaar. It is still grown with absolutely no artificial pesticide, and natural fertilizers. Accord- ing to the farmers, organic fertilizers poison the soil and poison the fruit.

Because of its particular medicinal values, the people of that area using the Greek idea of plenty of sun, good food and no worries, coming down from ancient times used to make sure that any old person, who was getting to be really sick was put into this grape orchard. Along with that he had easy access to other dried fruits, which are grown in abundance in Afghanistan. He lived in a thatched shed, to shelter him from the sun and the cold in the night. Just one family member replenished his earthen pitcher of water every day, and fed him home baked naan- the local bread – along with bowls full of soup [goat/sheep, chicken meat depending on the financial status of the family, for lunch, as well as for supper.] This sick old person was then allowed to spend his days in the open air, with healthy food, and eat everything that was growing in the orchards and as much as he could. The other adults in the family kept their day to day problems and worries and also them away from the ailing member of their family and tribe. That was so that he did not feel any sort of mental responsibility and tension. His care was the responsibility of just one family member, who considered it a matter of pride, when his grandfather came back to the tribe, all hale and hearty. This was the custom, even up to the 30s and 40s, and I do not know whether this is still being practiced, but the longevity of the people in that area, and their comparative better health is considered to be stuff of legends. I believe the idea of taking care of a family member came down from ancient Greece traditions, mixed with ancient Indian subcontinent traditions. And then, good food, open air, no medicines, – unless they were herbal remedies, coming down from Greek times and ancient times – cured the ailing aged elder, 98% of the time. 

Naturally grapes played a very important role in his recovery.

Using Grapes for Natural Cures

Constipation 

Suffering from constipation? Add grape juice to your diet. Small children suffering from constipation can get relief, if you give them one teaspoonful of grape juice. This is going to get their system moving.

Teething Problems 

In the same manner, if they are suffering from teething pains, just keep feeding them a spoonful of grape juice, along with a mixture of half a teaspoonful of ground roasted cumin seeds boiled in water.

Stress and Strain 

Now this is a good remedy for all those people were suffering from tension, stress and strain. Just make sure that a few raisins are added to a glassful of hot milk and boiled. Then drink it down with a teaspoonful of honey added. This is normally a winter recipe, so drink it only in the winter.

Tuberculosis (TB)

People suffering from tuberculosis have shown a marked improvement, when they were given plenty of red grape juice in large quantities.

Dry Cough 

A dry cough can be cured by taking 10 g each of powdered almonds, licorice, and raisins. Grind them together, and make small pellets with a little bit of honey. Now take two of the pellets at a time and suck them to get rid of that dry cough. Make sure that the raisins are unseeded.

Flatulence and Digestion Related Problems 

If you are suffering from digestion related problems, all you have to do is take 50 g fresh juice of grapes, first thing in the morning. You are soon going to find your digestion working perfectly. One tablespoonful of liquid is about 16 g. So you need 3 tablespoons and a little bit over. Follow up with a fistful of grapes.

Types of Grapes 

There are about 140 cultivars of grapes available to us today, coming down from the grapevines of yore. In fact, during war in ancient and medieval times, the farmers used to make sure, that they had some grape plant cuttings, stored away, some- where, because after the war was over, it would be the job of those cuttings to bring prosperity back to their destroyed farms. The color of grapes is definitely not restricted to just the ordinary yellow and the Black or Crimson. You have plenty of varieties, giving you pink, green, and even orange grapes. The color of the grape is going to depend on the amount of natural anthocyanins and other actual pigment materials present in them. Vitis vinifera is the grape extensively grown in Middle East, and in the way. Read your rainy and region. Along with that, the wines produced in Asia and in America comes from Vitis labrusca and the North American native Vitis riparia, which is excellent for jams. The muscadine grapes are famous for its wine production in France, United States and the Gulf of Mexico. Their scientific name is Vitis rotundifolia. Yes, they are to- tally rotund and rich in juice.

Green Muscadine.

PHOTO BY LUKAS FROM PEXELS

Vitis amurensis is what the Chaman grapes are. They are grown extensively in Asia, but they came here from Europe – especially from Greece. Some of the most popular grape varieties, which are planted in France to make their own special wines include Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blank, Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Riesling. The ever popular Sultana grape, which is now called the Thompson seedless, as well as the Black Monukka are Vitis vinifera cultivars. Monukka is the traditional name for dried seedless plants grapes, which can also take the place of raisins in Eastern cuisine and herbal remedies. Many of the ancient herbal medicines and traditions start with – take four Monukkas and then… Aha, says the patient to himself, “I need to go and search for the black dried large variety of grapes which do not have seeds in them. That is what the wise ancient well-versed in herbal lore meant when he told me to eat this remedy with Monukkas.” Spain leads the word today, in grape cultivation. It is followed by France and Italy. However China tops the world in producing grapes, followed by the United States and then Italy. 67,067,128 metric tons of grapes were produced all over the world in 2012.

Difference between Wine Grapes and Table Grapes 

Wine grapes are sweeter, because they have a larger sugar content. Table grapes are different cultivars altogether. These grapes ready for the table have seedless grapes, and they are larger in size. Their skin is thinner than wine grapes. Grapes which are used in making wine are smaller in size, but juicier in content. They also have seeds in them. That is why they are used to make wine, because all the aroma of the wine comes from the skin. So if you find yourself making wine from grapes, which are completely skinned, you are going to wonder where the aroma went! The table grapes definitely do not have excessive sugar content, but because they are seedless, they are used to make what is now being sold as commercially pack- aged and produced “grape juice – hundred percent natural product.” Seriously speaking, this hundred percent natural product, is also going to be mixed up with fillers and additives to make up the weight. Also, you are going to find chemical preservatives added to this supposedly hundred percent natural product, in order to increase its shelf life. Also, people can get away with wines made from table grapes, by saying that they have just made them for private consumption, and thus they do not have to bother about strict and stringent quality testing rules from government officials.

Difference between Sultanas, Raisins and Grapes.

IMAGE PAREMILIAN ROBERT VICOL DE PIXABAY

The moment you hear about raisins, you think about dried grapes. Grapes are the juicy fruits that you pick off the vine or grab off the market shelves. Any dried grape – also known as “dried vine fruit” in the EU – can be called a raisin in the USA or in the UK. Raisin actually is the French word for a single grape. The bunch is called a grappe , so you request a grappe de raisins, (Oone graap duh rey san)when you go shopping in France. This word grappe became grape in English. The sultana is just a dried raisin coming from Turkey, and it is normally bleached in color. Currants, in the UK are dried, Corinth, black grapes, but in the USA, this term is used to describe red currants and black currants, which both happened to be berries, and are definitely not grapes

How to Get Grape Juice?

IMAGE PARWILLFRIED WENDE DE PIXABAY

Real grape juice is definitely not going to be seeded, and it is going to have the skin in. That is because the seed has plenty of beneficial oil in it. So if you remove the seeds, and the skin, you will just have juice from the pulp. Winemakers make sure that up to 23% of the grape juice content is made up of seeds, skins, and even stems to make real good quality wine. The grape juice that you drink in the USA, and which has been packaged commercially is made up of the locally grown and native purple Concorde variety. In the same manner, you are going to get white grape juice, from the indigenous Niagara variety. These are both different from the European varieties. In California, the Sultana variety is normally dried and sold as sun-dried raisins, but sometimes you may also find yourself drinking white juice obtained from the sultanas.

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