Magic Bullets of Biology
Have you ever heard the use of the phrase: “Magic Bullet”? I have, and honestly, I didn’t know what it meant until recently. Google dictionary defines a magic bullet as, “a medicine or other remedy, especially an undiscovered or hypothetical one, with wonderful or highly specific properties.” So what are these magic bullets of biology, anyway? Well, get ready to unpack these “bullets” one by one, but first, I want to get specific about how I am interpreting this definition.
A Medicine or other Remedy…
According to Shreya Dasgupta, “There are 391,000 species of vascular plants currently known to science.” Out of that large number, we know, as Plants for A Future dictates, that “There are over 20,000 species of edible plants in the world…However, there are hundreds of less well known edible plants from all around the world which are both delicious and nutritious.” So we find ourselves separating these plants into edible, inedible, poisonous, and the unknown.
There are many poisonous, extremely harmful and addictive substances in this world. And just as with anything we contact from the ground, we must pay careful attention lest we ingest the wrong berry, rub against the wrong plant, or inhale the wrong aroma. Many of these harmful substances can cause minor problems like short-term skin irritation, but some have been known to cause more harmful and long-lasting effects like hallucinations, strong addictions, painful withdrawals, agonizing symptoms or even death. And the latter is pretty long lasting, my friends.
It seems that some plants, in their nature and purpose, were created to harm humans and animals, and throughout time and learned behavior, humans and animals have chosen to avoid such plants in order to survive.
Other plants, in their nature, are meant to be purely beneficial and edible because they were created for humans and animals to consume or utilize for their healing effects and nutritive value. These plants have become part of our diets and part of our lives, and they may never be considered as harmful. I’m talking about plants like spinach, blueberries, ginger root, etc. And though we are grateful to have such a wide variety of natural plants to consume, we are left with a question in mind.
What else is there?
Undiscovered and Hypothetical
So, what if people haven’t added a specific natural plant to their normal diet, but it seems that it isn’t poisonous either? Or what if we know it isn’t poisonous, but we’re not sure yet what properties it contains? These magic bullets could be the natural answer to many of our health issues. Is it possible that we have discovered them, and we just haven’t uncovered their exact benefits yet?
Whatever the case is, there are some particular plants in question that are not poisonous, yet their unique and specific properties have yet to be uncovered. Each carries a lot of potential for solving human afflictions, ailments, and pains in specific and miraculous ways. These are magic bullets.
We are constantly discovering new things about the biology of our planet, and as many scientists would tell you, we are still discovering the capacity our earth has to aid us in many different areas of health. I’m interested in how these little known, but potentially beneficial bullets of biology can help create and maintain better lives for us.
Wonderful and Highly Specific Properties
Despite having lived on earth for millennia, humans still have many mysteries to unveil when it comes to our planet’s biology. What I would love to do is begin by getting into detail on the unveiling of the mysteries of this earth.
When the devastating boll weevil destroyed Alabama’s cotton fields, George Washington Carver began asking God to reveal the mystery of the peanut. To many’s dismay, the peanut was of more use than they could have ever realized. Today, and because of Carver, we now know of 105 uses of the peanut, according to the article on “George Washington Carver.”
I’m not saying there are 100s of uses for every plant on earth, but if George Washington Carver could find that many uses for the peanut, should we not seek to reveal the capabilities of the plants in our world in order to use them for good?
Here at Magic Bullets of Biology I am interested in the truth, I am interested in the facts, and I will write accordingly, getting into as much detail in regards to acclaimed properties of certain plants as possible. Please leave your comments if they are appropriate, backed by research, and beneficial in any way or if you have a great question or “magic bullet” you think I should look into. I look forward to hearing from you!
Sources: (In the order they appear)
Dasgupta, Shreya. “How many plant species are there in the world? Scientists now have an answer.” Conservation news, 12 May 2016, news.mongabay.com/2016/05/many-plants-world-scientists-may-now-answer/.
Edible Uses, Plants for a Future, http://www.pfaf.org/user/edibleuses.aspx.
“George Washington Carver.” George Washington Carver | National Peanut Board, nationalpeanutboard.org/peanut-info/george-washington-carver.htm.