sumac Sumac Bobs

There are several plants and herbs that play significant roles in our everyday living especially in terms of their beneficial healing and therapeutic properties.

Among these important plants is the sumac, which is of the rhus genus and of the family of Anacardiaceae. Also pronounced as sumach or Sumaq, this plant ideally survives better in the temperate and subtropical regions of the world.

Other species of Rhus include; Rhus vernix, Rhus toxicodendron, Rhus diversiloba, Toxicodendron vernix, syn. and poison sumac. The name sumac is derived from the word sumâqâ, which means red.

The use of sumac fruits has been on the increase because it is an excellent source of organic acids, myricetin, anthocyanin, kaempferol, gallotannis, flavones, volatile oil, tartaric acids, phenolic acids, malic acid, hydrolysable tannins, anthocyanin, citric acids, flavonols and quercetin, which are all beneficial to human health. 

Sumac is a shrub that can grow approximately up to 10 m tall and the leaves are normally arranged spirally while the flowers are densely clustered as spikes or panicles. The sumac fruits densely cluster together in the form of reddish drupes known as sumac bobs. The dried Rhus specie sumac bobs are usually ground to form flavourful tangy spices used for seasoning food such as kebab, salad, beverages and meat etc. However, species like skunkbush sumac, littleleaf sumac, R. aromatica, staghorn sumac and  smooth sumac are usually planted for ornamental purposes.

staghorn-sumac-leaves Sumac Leaves

Amazing Benefits of Sumac

1. Antioxidizing Properties Sicilian sumac (Rhus coriaria L.) and staghorn sumac (Rhus hirta L.) contain anti-oxidizing and free radical scavenging properties that are highly beneficial to human health. The powerful antioxidant contents of sumac is as a result of the presence of flavonoids and polyphenols like anthocyanins in the plant. 2. Promotes Cardiovascular system Studies reveal that sumac is very beneficial for the healthy functioning of the human's cardiovascular system as a result of the high content of tannin antioxidants in the plant. 3. Antimicrobial Properties Sumac contains antimicrobial properties thus can be used for fighting microbial organisms such as Salmonella typhimurium. 4. Tanning and Dyeing Purposes Sumac leaves especially the pyrogallol specie produces tannin that is used for dyeing and tanning. 5. Culinary Purposes Spices are an important part of cooking so the dried Rhus specie sumac bobs can be ground into flavourful tangy spices used for seasoning food and adding flavour to drinks. 6. Indigestion Treatment Sumac can be infused and taken to treat indigestion. 7. Antifungal Properties Rhus coriaria seeds contain anti-fungal properties, which help to fight against disease-causing pathogens.

rhus-typhina-sumac-tree Sumac Tree

Having read through this post, it will be highly appreciated if you will leave your opinion or ask related questions in the comment section. Every opinion counts!!!

This post is for enlightenment purposes only and should not be used as a replacement for professional diagnostic and treatments. Remember to always consult your healthcare provider before making any health-related decisions or for counselling, guidance and treatment about a specific medical condition.
1. Al-Boushi M. A., Hamdo, H. H. and Herbali, J. (2014), Extraction and study of the phenolic compounds in the leaves and sticks of the Syrian sumac plant (Rhus coriaria L.), International Journal of ChemTech Research, Vol.6, No.4, pp.2414-2415.
2. Mehrdad, M. (2009), Validated high throughput HPLC method for the analysis of flavonol aglycones myricetin, quercetin, and kaempferol in Rhus coriaria L. using a monolithic column. Journal of AOAC International, 92: 1035-1040.
3. Dülger, Ö., Turak, F., Turhan, K. and Özgür, M. (2013), Sumac Leaves as a Novel Low-Cost Adsorbent for Removal of Basic Dye from Aqueous Solution, Hindawi Publishing Corporation Analytical Chemistry, pp. 1-2.
4. Kosar, et al., (2007), Antioxidant Activity and Phenolic Composition of Sumac (Rhus coriaria L.) Extracts, Food Chemistry, Vol. 103, No. 3, pp. 952-955.
5. Khalil, M. K. M. (2010), Antimicrobial Property of Rhus coriaria Seeds [Sumach], Journal of King Saud University, Vol. 8, pp. 257-261.
6. Mehrdad, M. (2009), Validated high throughput HPLC method for the analysis of flavonol aglycones myricetin, quercetin, and kaempferol in Rhus coriaria L. using a monolithic column, Journal of AOAC International, 92: pp. 1035-1040.
7. Moazen, M. and Mohseni, M. (2012), Sumac (Rhus coriaria L.): Scolicidal Activity on Hydatid Cyst Protoscolices, Surgical Science, (3), pp. 452-454.
8. Ozcan, M., Antioxidant activities of rosemary, sage, and sumac extracts and their combinations on the stability of natural peanut oil. J. Med. Food, (2003). 6: p. 267-269.
9. Valiollahi, M. R., Gholami, M., Namjoo, A. R., Rahimian, Y. and Rafiee, A. (2014), Effect of using Sumac (Rhus coriaria L.) and Ajwain (Trachyspermum copticum) powders on performance and intestinal microbial population in broiler chicks. Res. Opin. Anim. Vet. Sci., 4(10): pp. 545-547.


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