Mention of health at the end of the entry on rhubarb brings to mind purgative powers, plus questions about possible health risks if a lot of rhubarb is eaten.
Its low-calorie and high calcium content, and supposed medicinal benefits as a purgative , have brought a new generation of eaters.
Prior to Election Day, there was a widespread belief that the outcome of the 2000 Election was a fluke, an aberration, that would correct itself, as a sort of natural purgative process, in 2004.
The traditional vocabulary calls this the purgative path: We cleanse ourselves in order to keep God in our life.
This also applies to some purgative herbs such as rhubarb and senna leaf.
Napoleon had been treated for a long time with tartar emetics, and the day he died he had been given a huge dose of calomer as a purgative .
If he was indeed suffering from syphilitic symptoms such as burning joint pain and oozing ulcerations, then this portrait could represent a sort of purgative catharsis.
It is this purgative function of art to which Ernst Gombrich has appealed in his explication of the ‘grotesque.’
Prepared rhubarb is used when one desires to enhance the blood moving or heat clearing effects of the herb, but minimize the purgative action.
This purgative application is generally thought to be safe and effective even for geriatric and pediatric use.