Over the past few last centuries, humans lost contact with nature, leading to mistreatment or even apathy about the importance of Earth and Sky for his existence. In ancient Greece in the West and in China in the East, and among the indigenous Americans, respect for nature was the basis for fostering growth and prosperity.
In ancient Greece, pine forests were sacred and valuable. People managed them with deep respect and appreciation for their ‘abilities’.
Like true superheroes of the Mediterranean dry and hot summer climate, they would easily rise from the ashes on their own, regenerate, and thrive in just a few years.
The nature-based civilization and religion of Greeks and Romans knew that. Legislation reflected that knowledge, with strict rules for managing and using the forest, including banning human activities or shelter nearby.
Pinus halepensis was the favorite tree of Rhea, mother of Gods, daughter of Earth and Sky, because this tree connected the Earth and the Sky. Pine trees were dedicated to Poseidon, the God of Sea, because they offered the best wood for Greek ships.
All parts of pine trees are useful. The nutritional value of ‘koukounari’, the pine nut of Pinus pinea (koukounaria pine tree) is known from ancient Greece, were it symbolized fertility and masculinity. It was the number one food for enhancing ‘erotic performance.’
Pine nut koukounari is rich in protein and Ω-3 acids, ideal for boosting the cardiovascular system. It is also rich in vitamins, folic acid, calcium, phosphorus, and iron. ‘Retsini’ – resin from the bark provides us with the traditional retsina Greek wine, but it is also used in ointments for bruises, rheumatoid arthritis, and wounds.
Pine leaves are rich in essential oils with strong antiseptic, antioxidant, tonetic, and diuretic substances. In combination with eucalyptus oil, they can help respiratory system problems. Fresh leaves in boiled water can be inhaled and help with coughing, bronchitis, igmoritis, and sneezing.
In the bath, pine substances can help us with respiratory as well as dermatic problems due to their antiseptic action. In cosmetics, some are used to support collagen action. Pine substance and protect cells from damage, and they seem to help regarding cancer.
* The above is not medical advice but mere suggestions for improving your diet. Before reach herbal use you should consult your doctor, especially those who have health issues, are pregnant or are under the age of 6.
Evropi-Sofia Dalampira holds a PhD in Agricultural Economics and an MSc in Botany-Biology.