As a tonic, cabbage has long been used to treat cirrhosis of the liver, as well as lethargy, irritability, and headaches, all symptoms associated with a sluggish liver. Because of its iron and chlorophyll content, it has long been used to treat anemia. Cabbage may help reduce blood sugar, so may be of benefit to diabetics. It is taken to treat anxiety, depression, insomnia, exhaustion.
Breastfeeding mothers use it to stimulate milk production.
In soups and teas, cabbage has long been used during colds, flu, sinusitis, and sore throats.
Cabbage has long been used to heal ulcers as it contains mucilage that coats the lining of the digestive tract, protecting it from irritants and excessive acid. It is recommended that two or three glasses of freshly extracted juice be taken between meals to relieve peptic ulcers, gastritis, heartburn, and ulcerative colitis.
It is used to stimulate the digestion and to relieve constipation. A traditional Russian cure for chronic constipation is one-half glass of salted cabbage juice taken before each meal. However, it can be just as effective without the salt.
Like other brassicas, cabbage also has the ability to help lower the risk of cancer, especially of the colon, and growth of polyps, which often are a prelude to cancer. When eaten raw, cabbage has been shown to help protect against the effects of radiation.
Cabbage also appears to enhance the body’s ability to metabolize estrogen, helping to reduce susceptibility to breast, uterine, and ovarian cancers, if eaten regularly.
Externally, cabbage leaves have a soothing antiseptic and healing effect and the ability to draw out toxins from the skin. Cabbage poultices are also excellent for sore throats and hot, swollen joints. Lightly crush the leaves, blanch in boiling water, and wrap around the area. Leave on for two to four hours and renew, as necessary. Care is needed not to blister the skin.
- Cabbage, and all brassicas, should be avoided by those who have an overactive thyroid gland.
- Sauerkraut is high in thyramine, which can trigger migraine headaches in some people.
- heals tissues by encouraging cells to proliferate
- a liver decongestant
- protects the stomach from gastric hydrochloric acid
- vitamins and minerals (especially A, B, C, E, calcium, sulfur, silica, magnesium, iodine, iron, and phosphorus)
- mustard oils