Tuba is naturally made from the sap of a young coconut bud. Like the coconut which is named as “The Tree of Life,” the tuba also has some medicinal uses or health benefits.
Some of the health benefits of tuba are the following:
1. Tuba can help prevent respiratory ailments.
Working in a cement factory often causes respiratory ailments. But, Roel Rigor, who is a researcher about tuba, said that the workers in a certain cement factory in Naga, Cebu, have only a small chance of having respiratory ailments? Why? Because of tuba. The workers have told Rigor that they have tuba as their main course every morning and that they usually drink tuba on special occasions and even on ordinary days. They said that tuba brings out the phlegm and makes them breathe better.
2. The vinegar from tuba can help lower fever and is used as disinfectant for dog bites and wounds.
Whenever you get fever, your grandmother would tell you, “Pagkuha ug suka sa tuba unya ipahid sa imong lawas! [Get some tuba vinegar, then wipe it all over your body!]” This is because they believe that this kind of vinegar acts as heat trapper, thus, lowering your fever!
3. Other people also use the vinegar from tuba as disinfectant for dog bites and wounds. They put the vinegar in cotton balls or a soft cloth, then they wipe it on the sides of the wound. Others pour the vinegar directly onto the wound or dog bite.
4. Tuba was used as the main food source during World War II.
During the World War II, when there was a lack of food source, the parents of the children use the freshly gathered tuba called “vinagre” as their main food source. Mothers who have babies even use the fresh tuba (without tungog) as breastmilk substitute, for even they themselves do not have enough nourishment to make healthy milk. Babies can tolerate the tuba’s taste because fresh tuba (without tongog) tastes sweet.
At that time, people also believed that fresh tuba has vitamin C, which helps improve the baby’s resistance against sickness.
5. The elderly and other people use tuba as food supplement.
Old people say that drinking tuba is the key to their long life. They believe that there is something in the tuba that makes them stronger and more agile. My grandfather is now about 70 years old, but he is still active and strong. He still even tills our land in the province and can still carry a 25-kilo to 50-kilo sack of rice! His secret? Tuba!
He even once said, “Panginom mo ug tuba para mangahimsog mo! Maayo pa ni kay wala’y sagol nga makadaot sa lawas! [Drink tuba so that you’ll have good health! This is better because it does not have any ingredients that can harm the body!]”
Well, the elders are right about saying that tuba is clean because tuba really has natural ingredients and its utensils are always cleaned. The tuba is the natural juice from the coconut, so it has nutrients and vitamins that are also found in the coconut tree itself. And the tongog (powdered mangrove bark) is also a natural product.
Because of the known health benefits of tuba, it became more popular among Cebuanos, Boholanos & Leytenos. It started from the early Cebuanos and was passed on to the next generations. It is also popular among those living in rural areas because it is where big coconut plantations are found. Tuba is cheaper than other artificial medicines used to cure the ailments or other health problems stated above.
All in all, tuba is really useful, not only for its by-products, but also its use in making our body healthy!
Drink tuba in order to enjoy the amazing health benefits of tuba. Tagay na bai.