The Poppy, so much more than a narcotic. What a beautiful flower. Beautiful and useful. This flower has so much to offer. Since ancient times it’s been used for its psychoactive, sleep-inducing and pain relief qualities. The Latin form of the name for the Poppy means sleep-bringing poppy. From the opium of the poppy plant the drugs morphine and codeine are produced. Where would we be without those pain relievers?
This little plant has been the object of such interest that it caused at least two wars in history: the Opium wars between China and Britain. The Chinese were using so much opium that the government wanted to ban its use. The British, who were profiting nicely from the trade in Opium, didn’t take too kindly to this. They effectively made the Chinese government continue to trade with them in this lucrative business.
The other very popular use for the poppy was as a symbol of remembrance for the people who lost their lives during WWII. In Flanders fields the poppies blow….
The Poppy has been dubbed the Plant of Joy and could be the 1st authentic anti-depressant. The famous Laudanum, which many a lady used back in the old West days for ‘headaches’, was made from opium being extracted into Brandy. The resulting concoction was a tincture of morphine. By the 19th century vials of laudanum and raw opium were available in English pharmacies and grocery stores.
Whereas Opium is harvested from green poppy-seed, the edible poppy-seed is harvested when fully ripened and dried. This is the tiny black seed we see on some our favourite baked goods, such as bagels, and all sorts of pastries. Poppy seeds used in baking are most popular in Central and Eastern European countries. The poppy-seed oil is highly nutritious and provides essential fatty acids especially Oleic Acid. Vitamin B complex and a good level of minerals, such as, Calcium, Magnesium, Iron, Copper, Zinc and Manganese to name a few.
iHerb.com sells poppy-seed as a condiment and some tinctures. The only problem for me is that I can’t get it in Korea. It’s a controlled substance. So if you live in a country that allows the import of the poppy-seed here’s the link. http://www.iherb.com/tr/cb?pcodes=PUH-01276_SOG-18609_HBP-00028_RLT-10861&rcode=RVZ335.
Take a look at the reviews for the California tinctures where people are getting good results for sleep problems.
- Hazelnut Maple and Poppy Seed Spiced Corn Cakes (produceonparade.com)
- Roasted Pumpkin Seeds with Cumin, Paprika, and Poppy Seeds (titans-table.com)
- Lemon Poppy Seed Bread (recipe & video) (citysonnet.wordpress.com)