Vanilla plant is native to south and center of American continent and Caribbean area. At the first time vanilla was used by Eastern coast of Mexico Totonacs (a group of Mexican Indians). Aztecs (Indian civilization Mexico) after overcoming Totonacs knew vanilla plant in 15 AD. Aztecs used a mixture of vanilla and chocolate as drinking. After the defeat of Aztecs by Spanish, vanilla and cocoa bean were imported to west Europe by Hernan Cortes. Natives of that area used vanilla as medicine and perfume for diseases treatment and their ritual, before Christopher Columbus arrived to America.
1. Preventing Skin Aging and Repairing Damaged Skin
Studies have shown that antibacterial property of vanilla repels skin infections. It accelerates improvement trend and treatment of skin disease and reduces remained effects of wound, Acne vulgaris on skin. Other researches show that vanilla tea antioxidant reduces injuries caused by free radicals and the process of using it slows the symptoms of aging in the skin. Niacin, Thiamine, Riboflavin and Pantothenic acid help to maintain skin health. Vanillin is a Polyphenol with powerful antioxidant properties that protect skin against free radicals and peripheral stress (tension). These ingredients restore skin with producing new Chollagen and prevents incidence of fine lines and wrinkles on the skin.
2. Boosting Libido
Studies show that vanilla extract stimulates secretion of Testosterone and Estrogen hormones and as a result reduces problems caused by disability and loss of libido. Based on results of researches that were published in pharmacology journal in 2013, the daily consumption of 200 mg/kg of vanilla extract enhanced libido in male mice and helped the increase of their libido.
3. Antidepressant Properties
Researches have shown that vanillin Hydroxybenzaldehyde has anti depression property and have caused improvement of depression and mood. The results of a laboratory study on mice show that the use of vanilla extract with 100 mg/kg dose has anti-depressant property and helps to decrease and cure depression disorder. These results indicate that consumption of this amount of vanilla is equal to consumption of anti-depression drug of Fluoxetine. Based on the other research that was published in Chemical senses journal in 2005, vanilla extract reduces stress. Based on this report smelling vanilla perfume calms the mind and helps the person with reduction of anxiety.
4. Improving Brain Function
Researches show vanillin ingredients of vanilla plant reduce inflammation and improve brain function. Inflammation causes diffusion inflammatory Cytokine and as a result reduces brain function and cognition power. For this reason, people in situations of anxiety and stress are unable to do things thoroughly. Inflammation caused by stress secretes Cytokine like TNF-alpha that reduces brain function.
Vanilla beans contain 1-2% vanillin (4-hydroxy-3-methoxybenzaldehyde). Vanillin is the major flavor component of vanilla. Vanillic acid, p-hydroxybenzoic aldehyde, tannin, polyphenol, free amino acids, and resin are other major component of this plant.
The nature of vanilla is warm and dry and in traditional medicine vanilla is considered a jolly substance with the effects on the nervous system and the human brain reduces fear and eliminates depression. Vanilla is traditionally used for curing pain and ulcer, indigestion, weight loss, reducing anxiety, menstrual regulation, sinus and coughing treatment, stimulating the secretion of male and female hormones, reducing inflammation caused by convulsion and fever. In the past, fresh vanilla was used for caring skin against sunlight. Vanilla shell has tiny and perfumed grains that are used in confectionary and cosmetics.