Jamu Gendong (Heaved Jamu): Javanese Heritage, Indonesia

Indonesian jamu is inherited form generation to generation. And medicine was always there as human found this for their well being. Historically, Indonesian jamu was recognized since 772 according to the oldest proof depicted on Borobudur Temple, that is also found in Candi Prambanan, Candi Penataran and Candi Tegalwangi.

In 991-1061, herb receipe, extraction from plants were written on palm trees, called as Lontar Usada in Bali. In South Sulawesi herb recipe was written on Lontarak Pabbura.

In Java, receipe of herbs written on Rontal (ron=leaf). Tal leaf is same with lontar or palm leaf. Before independence, J. Kloppenburg-Versteegh dan Martha C. van Wijk-Fransz publish their book “Indische Planten en Haar Geneeskracht” and “Martha Indische Kruiden Recepten Boek”

In Kraton era, Kraton Surakarta codify herb recipe in Bab Kawruh Jampi Jawi published in 1858, that contains 1734 herb formulas. Herbal plants found in forest if not planted on yard. And created idea to cultivate herbal plants. This cultivation is aimed to gain same quality as in its original habitat, forest. Rimpang is best harvested on dry season when it stops growing, leaves and branches dry. And the best time to harvest is at 9 to 11 pm, that recently discovered that in that time interval is the maximum assimilation. And it is better harvested when it is flowering and before the fruits are ripe. Flowers are best harvested before or when pollination ongoing, when bees and butterflies come. And fruits are best harvested before ripe (javanese chilly, kemukus, black peper) or when they ripe (adas manis, white pepper). And seed is best collected when fruits ripe.

Jamu is one of heritage of Indonesia that is still favorite, especially for Javanese. Jamu is liquid and poured into bottle and stacked in cradle. The most marketing method is pretty interesting, by heaved on the back of the seller. Usually the sellers are women, young or old. Bottles in cradle are usually seven to eight bottles. There is a local belief about the number of the bottles carried. If the bottles are in odd number, means that the seller woman is single, never been married or a widow. And if that of even number means that the woman is married.

Jamu has close relation with traditional belief that if any part of human body experiencing illness, the medication should not only heal the certain part but also to other related parts. Accordingly by taking or drinking jamu would do better as jamu comprises preventive ingredients as well. Practice of drinking jamu make body stay healthy, as jamu also benefit as tonic increasing immune system of human body.

According to research, Jamu could heal various illness, as it conceives active components useful to invigorate body and healing sickness. It said that the will to be healed is the main factor that determined the healing process.

Heaved Jamu was originally from Wonogiri Surakarta, and then spread over Indonesia linear with government transmigration program. Jamu was carried to new places such as Sumatera, Ternate, Maluku by Javanese. Jamu also known in Holland. Jamu is inherited from generation to generation. Javanese children are intruduced to Jamu since they were baby. When a child could not eat, mother usually will make or buy jamu from market for the child.

In general, there are 4 types of Jamu that is sold itinerant. They are beras kencur, cabe puyang, pahitan and galian. The later mentioned has few variants: galian putri (foe women), galian singset (slimming herb) and galian for men.

Beras Kencur favors tiredness and avoid cold. The main ingredients are rice (Oryza Sativa) and kencur (Kaempferia galanga L.) that are added with other herbs as supporting ingredients. The additional ingredients used are cloves (Sysygium aromaticum (L) Merr.
& Perry), adas (Foeniculum vulgare Mill.) and ginger (Zingiber offcinale Roxb.)

Cabe Puyang is useful to heal cold and eliminate muscle pain after work or travel. Its main ingredients are Lempuyang (Zingiber aromaticum Val.) and cabe (Piper retrofractum Vahl. ) and added by supporting ingredients such as for beras kencur.
Pahitan can stimulate or increase appetite, relief blood circulation to refresh body.Its main ingredients are  jongrahab (Baeckea frutescens L.) and pule  ( Alstonia scholaris (L) R.Br.) added with same additional ingredients as beras kencur and cabe puyang.

Main ingrediants of Galian are  jongrahab, pulasari (Alyxia reinwardtii Bl.), mrico
bolong (Malaleuca leucadendra (Stickm.)L .). Galian is differenciate into three depend on the additional ingredients used. Jamu galian puteri, is added with delima putih (Punica granatum L.) and other herbs as natural appetizer and aroma. This jamu increase immune for teenage or young girls. Jamu galian singset is added with Guazuma ulmifolia Lmk.or kencur. This will eliminate excessive fat and rejuvenate and special for women. Jamu galian for men is added with pepper (Piper ningrum L.) to increase stamina and rejuvenate.

Jamu ingrediants are:
Sembung (Blumea balsamifera (L.) DC.)applied as analgesic, antipyretic.
Pegagan (Cantella asiatica(L.) Urb.)applied as antiseptic, diuretic,antihypertension.
Saga (Abrus precatorius L.) applied as stomatitis
Sambiloto (Andrographis paniculata (Burm.f.) Nees) applied as antiseptic, antidiabetic, antidiarrhea.
Pala (Myristica fragrans Houtt.) applied as sedative
Kunyit (Curcuma domestica Val.) appliedas antiseptic, antihepatitis.
Sirih (Piper betle L.) applied as antiseptic
Legundi (Vitex trifolia L.) applied asantiseptic
Jeruk Nipis (Citrus aurantifolia (Christm.& Panz) Swingle) applied as cough relief.
Brotowali(Tinospora tuberculata Beumee) applied as antimalaria, antidiabetic
Dlingo (Acorus calamus L.) applied as sedative.
Tempuyung (Sonchus arvensis L.) appliedas diuretic.
Pare (Momordica charantia L.) applied as antidiabetic.
Ceguk (Quisqualis indica L.) applied as ascariasis
Temu Lawak (Curcuma xanthorrhiza Roxb.) applied as antihepatitis.