Apricots used as medicine by locals in G-B
The northern areas of Pakistan are rich in one of the world’s healthiest fruit – Apricots. Apricots are used as an all-purpose fruit in Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B), for taste as well as a medicine.
Apricots are rich in many plant antioxidants; they contain vitamin A, vitamin C and favonoids. They are also rich in copper, potassium and fiber. Apricots are good for digestion and in controlling blood cholesterol levels.
According to the border security officer at Khunjerab Pass, tourists and travelers who visited the pass and other areas of Gilgit-Baltistan were advised to keep apricots and dates with them as this is a local remedy for altitude and motion sickness.
A tourist, an architect from Lahore, Maira Khan, whom the HTV Stands for (Health Taste and Vitality) team met at the Eagles Nest in Hunza (10,000 feet above sea level), informed that she had been suffering from breathlessness and nausea due to such high altitude and her consecutive journey from Lahore.
“On reaching Khunjerab pass, I was advised by locals and frequent travelers to eat apricots and dates,” said the tourist. “I felt a jolt of energy on eating the borrowed fruit. I have been eating apricots from there onwards on regular intervals.”
A good serving of apricots a day decreases the chances of heart disease, and protects eyesight and blood vessels from inflammation-related damage, leading to better blood pressure control.
Although apricots have all these benefits, doctors recommend travelers to avoid excess eating of the fruit during their journey and to visit doctors to understand the difference between a good diet and an excess diet. It has been reported that some travelers with earlier health conditions were poisoned by eating apricots.