Carrot (Daucus carota)

Carrot (Daucus carota)

Latin Name Daucus Carota
Sanskrit Name Gaajara, Garjara, Granjana
English Name Carrot, Cultivated Carrot
Common Name Gaajar


Ayurvedic Properties and Action:
Rasa Madura, Masaya, Tikta
Guna Laghu, Tiksna, Vidahi
Virya Usna
Vipaka Madhura
Karma Arsoghna, Sangrahi, Deepna, Hrdya, Vrsya, Grahani rogahara.


Carrot contains flavones including apigenin, chypsin, luteolin; flavonols including kaempferol, quercetin and various glycosides. The furanocoumarins, 8-methoxypsoralen and 5-methoxypsoralen are found in the plant. The seed oil contains terpinen-4-ol, a renal irritant. It is a rich source of carotene.

Carrot is rich source of the fat-soluble hydrocarbon, C40H56, the ß form of which is the precursor of vitamin A. It also contains proteins, fibre, calcium, phosphorus, iron, carotene vitamin B1, vitamin C, Thiamine, riboflavin, nicotinic acid, Vitamin D and vitamin E.

It contains 12.11% palmitic, 24.03 % oleic, 55.82 % linoleic, 3.43% stearic acid, Arachidic (20:0) 0.81, and Mineral contents (Ca, Cu, Fe, K, Mg, Mn, Na, P and Zn and found to be rich in protein, fiber and ash

It is reach source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B5 (Niacin) and Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid).

It contains dietary fiber, Vitamin: vitamin A, A-carotenoids, A-retinol, A-beta carotene, thiamin-B1, riboflavin – B2, niacin – B3, vitamin B6, biotin, vitamin C, vitamin E, folate, vitamin K, pantothenic acid, Minerals: calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, iodine, zinc, Essential fatty acids: Oleic, linoleic, linolenic, omega 3 fatty acids, omega 6 fatty acids and Amino Acids: alanine, arginine, aspartate, cystine, glutamate, Glycine, histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, proline, serine, threonine, tryptophan, tyrosine, valine.
Pharmacological Actions:

It is diuretic, deobstruent, stimulant, emmenagogue, and antispasmodic.
Medicinal Use:

It is used to cleanse the blood, for hot flushes of the menopause and in amenorrhea.
It is used as a remedy for thread worms, it increases the quantity of urine and helps the elimination of uric acid. The addition of large amounts of carrot to the diet has a favorable effect on the nitrogen balance.
It is an aromatic herb that acts as a diuretic and soothes the digestive tract. An infusion is used in the treatment of oedema, flatulent indigestion and menstrual problems, in the treatment of various complaints including digestive disorders, kidney & bladder diseases and in the treatment of dropsy.
A wonderfully cleansing medicine, it supports the liver, stimulates the flow of urine and the removal of waste by the kidneys. An infusion of the leaves has been used to counter cystitis and kidney stone formation, and to diminish stones that have already formed.
It is used as a remedy for threadworms. A tea made from the roots is diuretic and has been used in the treatment of urinary stones.
Clinical / experimental study:

An interferon inducer has been isolated from carrot. It stimulates cells to produce the protein that increases human resistance to virus infections. It is rich Source of Beta – Carotene (Provit-A) which works as anti-oxidant also contains.

Carrot seed oil exhibits both smooth-muscle relaxant and vasodilatory action in isolated animal organ studies. It depresses cardiac activity in both frog and dog hearts. An ethanol extract (10 to 100 mg/kg dose) produced a dose-dependent decrease in systolic and diastolic blood pressure in anesthetized normotensive rats. Further experiments using beating guinea pig paired atria showed that the cardiovascular effects are independent of adrenergic or cholinergic receptors, and the extract induced a concentration-dependent (0.3 to 5 mg/mL) decrease in force and rate of atrial contractions. The same preparation applied to rabbit thoracic aorta produced inhibition of potassium-induced contractions. These results suggest that D. carota extract may exhibit calcium channel blocking-like direct relaxant action on cardiac and smooth muscle, and may explain its hypotensive action.



An extract of D. carota has demonstrated hepatoprotective activity against carbon tetrachloride-induced intoxication in mouse liver.

Carrots contain the highest concentration of beta-carotene amongst most common vegetables and fruits. More recently, beta-carotene’s role in animal and human nutrition as an antioxidant has been heightened after about two dozen studies showed less incidences of various forms of cancer and heart diseases amongst people consuming high amounts of beta-carotene rich fruits and vegetables.

Antioxidants are chemicals that neutralize free radicals which can damage cells, playing a role in several degenerative ailments such as cancer and cardiovascular diseases. One study even found that plant-sourced carotenoids accumulate in the skin and gave test subjects some measurable protection from UV radiation.


Most data indicate that the vegetable and the seed oil are nontoxic


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Plihari (Tephrosia purpurea)


Plihari (Tephrosia purpurea)

Latin Name Tephrosia Purpurea, Galega Purpurea
Sanskrit Name Sarapunkha, Plihasatru
English Name Purple Tephrosia, Wild indigo
Common Name Sarphoka, Sarphunkho, Ghodakan, Kolingi, Dhamasia


Ayurvedic Properties and Action:
Rasa Tikta, Kashaya
Guna Laghu, Ruksha, Tikshna
Virya Usna
Vipaka Katu
Karma Sothaghana, Dipana, Jvaraghna, Vishaghna,Vranaropaka, Rochna, Pittasaraka, Dantya etc.


B-sitosterols, lupeol, rutin, delphinidin chloride, isoflavone, 7,4′-dihydroxy-3′,5′-dimethoxyisoflavone, and a chalcone, (+)-tephropurpurin, both novel compounds, as well as six constituents of known structure, (+)-purpurin, pongamol, lanceolatin B, (-)-maackiain, (-)-3-hydroxy-4-methoxy-8,9-methylene-dioxypterocarpan, and (-)-medicarpin, 3′-methoxydaidzein, desmoxyphyllin B, and 3,9-dihydroxy-8-methoxycoumestan, caffeic acid, palmitic, palmitoleic, stearic, oelic, linoleic, linolenic acids, calcium, amino acids like lysine, histidine, threonine, leucine, isoleucine, valine, phenylalanine, tyrosine, methionine, and cystine, tephrone etc.
Pharmacological Actions:

It is Bitter, astringent, thermogenic, anthelmintic, digestive, laxative, diuretic, uterine tonic, antiinflammatory, immunomodulatory, antioxidant, antifungal, antibacterial, depurative, styptic, deobstruent, etc.
Medicinal Use:

It is useful in inflammations, blood disorders, diarrhoea, vomiting, dysentery, renal disorders, dyspepsia, stomachache, hepatosplenomegaly, haemorrhoids, viral hepatitis4 and as liver stimulant etc.
It is considered specific for the treatment of inflammation of spleen and liver. It is given for the treatment of insufficiency of the liver and jaundice. Also used as a gargle.
Ayurvedic classical texts describe it as a special drug for treating sterility in women.
It has antibacterial actions and Useful in toothache.
Clinical / experimental study:

Powdered aerial parts prevented elevation of SGOP, SGPT and bilirubin levels.
Hepatoprotective effect of aerial parts was evaluated against (+)-galactosamine-induced and carbon tetrachloride-induced hepatotoxicity in rats.
It contains rutin which has blood purifying property.
Flavonoid provides significant protection against the toxic effect of CCl4 on liver. Preventive action of liver damage induced by the CCl4 has widely been used as indicator of the liver protective in general.
T. Purpurea has ability to modulate both the cell-mediated and the humoral components of the immune system.

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Nutmeg (Myristica fragrans)


Latin Name Myristica fragrans
Sanskrit Name Jatisasya, Jatiphala
English Name Nutmeg
Common Name Jaiphal, Kanivish, Jaitri, Jayfar, Jaykai, Jatika, Sathikkai, Jauzbuwa


Ayurvedic Properties and Action:
Rasa Katu, Tikta
Guna Laghu, Tiksna
Virya Usna
Vipaka Katu
Karma Dipana, Grahi, Vrsya, Mukhakledanasaka, Mukhadaurgandhyanasaka, Kaphavatapana



Seeds contain about 0.24% myristicin, whereas volatile oil about 3.12%

It also contains volatile oil, licarin B, lignans and isolignans, fatty acids like lauric, myristic, palmitic, stearic, hexadecenoic, oleic and linoleic acids, pectin, vitamins and mucilage.

It contains volatile oil, fixed oil, proteids, fat, starch, mucilage, resin, myristin and myristic acid, essential oil and myristicol.

It contains volatile oil, fixed oil, proteids, fat, starch, mucilage, resin, myristin and myristic acid, essential oil and myristicol.

Pharmacological Actions:

It is stimulant carminative, spasmolytic, antiemetic and orexigenic.

It is an aromatic stimulant, antioxidant, analgesic, aphrodisiac, antiinflammatory, antipyretic, anthelmintic, digestive, carminative, antispasmodic, hypolipidemic, antibacterial, febrifuge and sedative.

It is aromatic, sedative, antispasmodic and stimulant.

Medicinal Use:

It is used in flatulency, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting, chronic bowel complaints, spermatorrhoea, impotency, amenorrhoea, menorrhagia, dysmenorrhoea, ulcers, liver and splenic disorders, rheumatism, asthma, colic, flatulence and dyspepsia .
It helps to improve the sex performance.
It is useful as tonic for the heart and brain and in sexual debility and general debility

Clinical / experimental study:

An aqueous extract of nutmeg is reported to show anti-secretory activity against E. coli heat-labile enterotoxin; the hexane soluble fraction of the alcoholic extract inhibited the heat-labile and heat-stable-enterotoxin-induced secretory response in animal studies.

The hexane extract contains myristicin, an anti-inflammatory principle, and licarin-B and dehydro diisoeugenol which exhibited CNS depressant properties. The extracts of nutmeg decreased kidney prostaglandin levels in rats. They also inhibited platelet aggregation (due to eugenol and isoeugenol). The anti-inflammatory activity observed in carrageenan-induced oedema in rats and enhanced vascular permeability in mice, is attributed to myristicin present in mace.

The occurrence of dental caries is mainly associated with oral pathogens, especially cariogenic Streptococcus mutans. Antibacterial screening revealed that the extract of Myristica fragrans possessed strong inhibitory activity against S. mutans. The anticariogenic compound was successfully isolated from the methanol extract of M. fragrans was identified as macelignan. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of macelignan against S. mutans was 3.9 μg/ml, which was much lower than those of other natural anticariogenic agents such as 15.6 μg/ml of sanguinarine, 250 μg/ml of eucalyptol, 500 μg/ml of menthol and thymol, and 1000 μg/ml of methyl salicylate. Macelignan also possessed preferential activity against other oral microorganisms such as Streptococcus sobrinus, Streptococcus salivarius, Streptococcus sanguis, Lactobacillus acidophilus and Lactobacillus casei in the MIC range of 2–31.3 μg/ml. In particular, the bactericidal test showed that macelignan, at a concentration of 20 μg/ml, completely inactivated S. mutans in 1 min. The specific activity and fast-effectiveness of macelignan against oral bacteria strongly suggest that it could be employed as a natural antibacterial agent in oral care products.

Mace which is the aril of the fruit of Myristica fragrans has been used as analgesics, etc. The results of the study suggest that the antiinflammatory action of Mace is due to the myristicin that it contains.

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Almond oil (Prunus amygdalus)

Latin Name Amygdalus communis, Amygdalus dulcis, Prunus amygdalus, Prunus communis
Sanskrit Name Vaataama, Vaataada
English Name Almond
Common Name Badam, Loz, Vaadumai


It is nutrient, emollient and nervine tonic.
Almond nuts are a source of protein, unsaturated fats, minerals, micronutrients, phytochemicals, alpha-tocopherol, and dietary fiber.
Almonds are considered a good source of tocopherol (vitamin E).
Pharmacological Actions: It is stimulant nervine tonic and sedative and applied externally in prurigo senilis.
It is stimulant, nutritive and nervine tonic. It is useful to kill the lice.

Medicinal Use:

It is often used in soaps and cosmetics because it has a softening effect on the skin.
Externally, the oil is applied to dry skins and is also often used as carrier oil in aromatherapy.
It used to relieve neuralgic pains, irritable sores and skin eruptions.

Clinical / experimental study:

More recently, almond oil has been used externally for its cleansing and protective properties for the skin.

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Alfalfa (Medicago sativa)

Latin Name Medicago sativa
Sanskrit Name Alfalfa, Vilaayatigawuth, Lasunghaas
English Name Alfalfa, Lucerne
Common Name Barsem, Lusan



The herb contains carotinoids (including lutein), triterpene saponins, isoflavonoids coumarins, triterpenes (including sitgmasterol, spinasterol); also cyanogenic glycosides (corresponding to less than 80 mg HCN/ 100 g); pro-vitamins A, B6, B12, D, K, E and P; calcium, phosphorus, iron, potassium, magnesium, choline, sodium, silicon and essential enzymes. The seeds contain 33.2%protein and 4.4% mineral matter; saponins with the aglycones, soyasapogenol B and E and polymines, diaminopropane and norspermine. Two storage globulins, alfin and medicagin are found in the seeds. The flowers contain flavonoids, kaempferol, quercetin, myricetin and laricytrin. The fruits contain betaamyrin, alpha- and beta-spinasterol, beta-sitosterol, stigmasterol, myrsellinol, scopoletin and esculetin. The saponin, medicagenic acid, is found in leaves and roots (leaves 1.49%, roots 2.43% of dry matter) .
Alfalfa is a natural rejuvenator & known As a Father of All Foods. It is one of the best sources for protein Fibre vitamin A, C, D, E, K, P & B complex, Thiamine (B1), Riboflavin (B2), Niacin and Minerals calcium, phosphorus, iron, potassium, magnesium, choline, sodium, silicon and essential digestive enzymes and Amino acids.

Alfalfa contains vitamin A, E, K, B and D. It also contains phosphorus, iron, potassium, chlorine, sodium, magnesium and many additional trace elements. Alfalfa has eight known enzymes that promote chemical reactions that enable food to be assimilated properly within the body. It has also been reported to raise the basic nitrogen exchange. This, plus its stimulating properties, makes alfalfa a unique tonic.
Pharmacological Actions:

It is anticholesterolemic.
Medicinal Use:

It is rich in essential enzymes, minerals and vitamins, a preventive of high blood pressure, diabetes, peptic ulcer, to strengthen the digestive system. Alfalfa seed extracts prevented hypercholesterolemia, triglyceridaemia and atherogenesis in cholesterol-fed rabbits and cynomologus monkeys.
The saponins in the extract reduce intestinal absorption of cholesterol in rabbits. Human trials have indicated the use of the herb in menopause.

It contains 4-Amino-Butyric-Acid, Trimethylamine, Tryptophan, Amylase, Adenine, Adenosine, Guanine, Guanosine, Ribose, Saponin and Tannin. Because of its deep root system, alfalfa is a rich source of the minerals calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, iron, potassium, Manganese and trace minerals. Specifically, it is one of the best sources for protein and is very high in chlorophyll, carotene, Niacin, Choline, Octacosanol, Peroxidase, Protein, Pyridoxine, Riboflavin, Thiamin, Alpha-Tocopherol, Vitamin-E, Vitamin-K, Xanthophylls, Hypoxanthine, Xylose, Zeaxanthin A, vitamin D and several digestive enzymes. This may be why it is said to help reconstitute bone and is beneficial for rickets. Research suggests that it may inactivate dietary chemical carcinogens in the liver and small intestine before they have a chance to do the body any harm. It is used for bladder infections, fatigue or muscle tenderness. It is also used to reduce the pain and inflammation of rheumatism and arthritis. Alfalfa is used as an appetite stimulant, a vitality augmenter (tonic), a digestive stimulant, for insomnia, and to relax the nervous system.

Because of a long root system which absorbs abundant minerals, alfalfa is very high in minerals and vitamins, particularly iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, trace minerals and vitamin K. It helps to remove toxins and neutralizes acids. It is good for anemia, menopause, arthritis, gout, stabilizing blood sugar levels, balancing the pituitary gland, and detoxifying the blood and kidneys. Alfalfa helps soothe ulcers, the liver and acts as a heart tonic. It helps with estrogen production and morning sickness. It has in it a natural fluoride and is a mild diuretic. Alfalfa may be used for reducing fevers and rheumatism and has a mild laxative effect. It is good for cystitis or an inflamed bladder and relief from bloating and water retention.

The leaves are rich in vitamin K which is used medicinally to encourage the clotting of blood. This is valuable in the treatment of jaundice.

Alfalfa leaves, either fresh or dried, have traditionally been used as a nutritive tonic to stimulate the appetite and promote weight gain.
Clinical / experimental study:

Alfalfa appears to lower total cholesterol, triglycerides, low density lipoproteins, (LDL) and very low density lipoproteins (VLDL) while not significantly lowering desirable HDL. This leads to a significant reduction of the total cholesterol/HDL ratios, one of the major predictors of cardiovascular risk. This action appears to be due to the reduced intestinal absorption of both endogenous and exogenous cholesterol.

Alfalfa leaves contain approximately 2–3% saponins. Animal studies suggest that these constituents block absorption of cholesterol and prevent the formation of atherosclerotic plaques.

One small human trial found that 120 grams per day of heat-treated alfalfa seeds for eight weeks led to a modest reduction in cholesterol.

Cholesterol reduction

Alfalfa plant saponins and fiber bind significant quantities of cholesterol in vitro; sprout saponins interact to a lesser degree. In vitro bile acid adsorption is greatest for the whole alfalfa plant, and this activity is not reduced by the removal of saponins from the plant material.

Several studies indicate that the ingestion of alfalfa reduces cholesterol absorption and atherosclerotic plaque formation in animals1. In 1 study, the ability of alfalfa to reduce liver cholesterol accumulation in cholesterol-fed rats was enhanced by the removal of saponins. Therefore, alfalfa plant saponins appear to play an important role in neutral steroid excretion, but are not essential for increasing bile acid excretion. In a study with prairie dogs, the lowest incidence of cholesterol gallstones was obtained with the diet of the higher fiber content (85% alfalfa).

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Amla (Phyllanthus emblica)

Amalaki (Phyllanthus emblica)

Latin Name Emblica officinalis, Phyllanthus emblica
Sanskrit Name Amrtaphala, Amalaka, Dhatriphala
English Name Emblic Myrobalan, Indian Gooseberry
Common Name Amla, Dhatri, Ambala, Aonla, Nellikayi, Bela nelli, pottadenollikayi, Amli, Avalkathi, Ainla, Aula, Amlaj


Ayurvedic Properties and Action:1
Rasa Madhura, Amla, Katu, Tikta, Kasaya
Guna Laghu, Ruksa
Virya Sita
Vipaka Madhura
Karma Caksusya, Rasayana, Tridosajit, Vrsya


It contains protein, fat carbohydrates fibre, minerals, and vitamin, Phyllemblin, Gallic acid, Tannins, Pectin, essential oil with linolenic, linoleic, oleic, stearic, palmitic, myristic acids, and proteolytic and lipolytic enzymes etc. The fruit gave cytokinine-like substances identified as zeatin, zeatin riboside and zeatin nucleotide; suspension culture gave phyllembin.

The major amino acids present are; alanine, aspartic acid, glutamic acid, lysine, and proline.

Vitamin: Vitamin-C, Vitamin-K, Vitamin-A, Riboflavin (Vitamin-B2), Niacin, Nicotinic acid (Vitamin-B2), Vitamin-B12.

Mineral: calcium, magnesium, potassium, silica, sodium, sulfur, zinc, phosphorus, iron, chromium and copper.

The edible fruit tissue contains protein concentration threefold and vitamin C (Ascorbic acid) concentration 160-fold than those of apple. The fruit also contains considerably higher concentration of most minerals and amino acids than apple.

Pharmacological Actions:

It is potent antioxidant, Astringent, cooling, astringent, aperient, anodyne, antianaemic, anabolic, antiemetic, carminative, digestive, stomachic, laxative, alterant, alexeteric, aphrodisiac, diuretic, antipyretic, tonic, antihaemorrhagic, antidiarrhoeal, diuretic, antidiabetic, carminative, and andtrichogenous.

Medicinal Use:

It is used in jaundice, dyspepsia, bacillary dysentery and as a gastrointestinal tonic.

It is antifungal and antimicrobial and useful in greyness of hair2. It strengthens and promotes the growth of hair.

It is useful in ulcerative Stomatitis, gastric ulcer, dyspepsia, hyperacidity, peptic ulcer and as immunostimulant.

Phylanthus Emblica has beneficial effects such as memory improving property, cholesterol lowering property and anticholinesterase activity.
Clinical / experimental study:

Phylanthus emblica has pronounced adaptogenic properties, and has been shown to be active in vivo against free radical damage induced during stress.

Phylanthus emblica is stated as one of the highest naturally occurring sources of vitamin C, its antioxidant properties have also been attributed to the tannoid complexes (emblicanin A [37%], emblicanin B [33%], punigluconin [12%] and pedunculagin [14%].

Overall, the antioxidant effect of Amalaki is significantly greater than that of vitamin C alone.

Overall, the antioxidant effect of Amalaki is significantly greater than that of vitamin C alone10.

Aqueous and ethanol extracts of Phylanthus emblica have been found to be both antifungal and antimicrobial, without any indication of cellular toxicity.

Emblica officinalis exhibited potent antibacterial activity against E. Coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, K. ozaenae, Proteus mirabilis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella typhi, S. paratyphi A, S. paratyphi B, and Serratia marcescens


Methanol extract of the fruit of Phylanthus emblica (putranjivain A) has potent inhibitory action against human immunodeficiency virus-1 reverse transcriptase.


Supplementation of Phylanthus emblica to mice in vivo significantly reduced the cytotoxic effects of a known carcinogen, 3,4-benzo(a)pyrene, in much smaller doses than the carcingogen.

When an aqueous extract of Phylanthus emblica is administered prior to radiation treatment, it has been found to have a protective effect upon radiation induced chromosomal damage.


Phylanthus emblica has lipid lowering and antiatherosclerotic effects.

Phylanthus emblica was found to reduce serum cholesterol, aortic cholesterol and hepatic cholesterol in rabbits, but did not influence euglobulin clot lyses time, platelet adhesiveness or serum triglyceride levels.

Amalaki demonstrated significantly lower mean serum cholesterol levels.

It has lipid lowering and antiatherosclerotic effects and can reduce high serum cholesterol levels.

GI Track:

Phylanthus emblica significantly inhibited hepatocarcinogenesis induced by N-nitrosodiethylamine (NDEA) in experimental animals.

In addition to its hepatoprotective activities, Phylanthus emblica also appears to be functional in acute necrotizing pancreatitis, reducing inflammation and the damage to acinar cells.
The study showed that Emblica officinalis has significant ulcer protective and healing effects and this might be due to effects both on offensive and defensive mucosal factors.


Phylanthus emblica has been found to enhance natural killer cell activity and antibody dependent cytotoxicity in tumor bearing mice, enhancing lifespan to 35% beyond the control animals.

Phylanthus emblica has been shown to significantly reduce the cytotoxic effects of sodium arsenite when administered orally in experimental animals.

Amla resulted in an enhanced cell survival, decreased free radical production and higher antioxidant levels similar to that of control cells. 

Phylanthus Emblica enhance cell survival, increases phagocytosis and gamma-interferon (Γ-IFN) production. 

Phylanthus Emblica has beneficial effects such as memory improving property, cholesterol lowering property and anticholinesterase activity.


A standard extract of Phyllanthus emblica was found to have a long lasting and broad spectrum antioxidant activity. Emblica helps protect the skin from the damaging effects of free radicals, non-radical and transition metal-induced oxidative stress. Emblica is suitable for use in anti-aging, sunscreen and general purpose skin care products.
A standardized extract of Phyllanthus Emblica was found to have a long/lasting and broad/spectrum antioxidant activity. The product has no pro/oxidation activity induced by iron and/or copper because of its iron and copper chelating ability. Emblica helps protect the skin from the damaging effects of free radicals, non/radicals and transition metal/induced oxidative stress. Emblica is suitable for use in anti/aging, sunscreen and general purpose skin care products.
Treatment of Dyspepsia

The therapeutic efficacy of Amalaki in cases of dyspepsia was evaluated and the results clearly indicate the efficacy of Emblica officinalis, in relieving the dyspeptic symptoms as well as in promoting ulcer healing.

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Turmeric (Curcuma Longa)

Haldi (Curcuma Longa)
Latin Name Curcuma longa, C. domestica
Sanskrit Name Haridraa, Priyaka, Haridruma, Kshanda, Gauri, Kaanchani, Krimighna
English Name Turmeric
Common Name Varavarnini, Yoshitapriyaa, Hattavilaasini, Naktaahvaa, Sharvari, Zard Chob, Manjal


Ayurvedic Properties and Action:2



Katu, Tikta


Laghu, Ruksha






Varnya, Kushthaghna, Raktaprasadana, Kandughna, Pandughna, Raktavardhaka, Rakastambhana, etc,


The rhizomes gave curcuminoids, the mixture known as curcumin, consisting of atleast four phenolic diarylheptanoids, including curcumin and monodesmethoxycurcumin; volatile oil (3–5%), containing about 60% of turmerones which are sesquiterpene ketones, and bitter principles, sugars, starch, resin.

Pharmacological Actions:

It is anti-inflammatory, cholagogue, appetizer, haematic, hepatoprotective, blood-purifier, antioxidant, detoxifier and regenerator of liver tissue, antiasthmatic, anti-tumour, anticutaneous, antibacterial, antifungal, antiprotozoal, stomachic and carminative.

Medicinal Use:

It is useful in inflammations, ulcers, wounds, skin diseases, pruritus, allergic conditions and discolouration of skin, anorexia, dyspepsia, flatulence, colic, constipation, anaemia, haemorrhages, strangury, hepatomegaly, splenomegaly, urethrorhoea, fever and general debility.
With its anti microbial action it resists microorganisms to grow; it has powerful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory properties.
It is used to remove liver obstructions.
It purifies blood by destroying the pathogenic organisms. A paste of turmeric is used to cure ringworm, obstinate itching, eczema and other parasitic skin diseases and in chicken pox and small pox.

Clinical / experimental study:

Curcumin related phenolics possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, gastroprotective and hepatoprotective activities. The antioxidant activity of curcumin is comparable to standard antioxidants-vitamin C and E, BHA and BHT.

Skin conditions

Ischemia and tissue hypoxia in burn injuries or chronic wounds, such as venous leg ulcers, generate free radicals that give rise to further tissue necrosis. An in vitro study demonstrated protective effects of curcumin against hydrogen peroxide in human keratinocytes and dermal fibroblasts.

Oral pretreatment with curcumin 100 mg/kg hastened wound healing in mice exposed to postoperative gamma-radiation. Enhancement of collagen synthesis and markers of wound healing were demonstrated. Histological assessment of wound biopsy specimens showed improved collagen deposition as well as increased fibroblast and vascular densities.

A combination of turmeric and Neem (Azadirachta indica) applied topically effectively eradicated scabies in 97% of 817 people treated for 3 to 15 days.

Curcuma longa rhizome extracts were evaluated for antibacterial activity against pathogenic strains of Gram-positive (Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis) and Gram-negative (Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella typhimurium) bacteria. Essential oil was found to be most active and its activity was compared to standard antibiotics gentamycin, ampicillin, doxycycline and erythromycin in these strains. The clinical isolate of S. aureus showed more sensitivity towards essential oil fraction. The use of essential oil from turmeric as a potential antiseptic in prevention and treatment of antibacterial infections has been suggested.

Turmeric powder has healing effect on both aseptic and septic wounds in rats & rabbits.

Curcumin, isolated from turmeric, has been known to possess many pharmacologic properties. To further understand its therapeutic mechanisms on wound healing, the antioxidant effects of curcumin on hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and hypoxanthine-xanthine oxidase induced damage to cultured human keratinocytes and fibroblasts were investigated. Cell viability was assessed by colorimetric assay and quantification of lactate dehydrogenase release. Exposure of human keratinocytes to curcumin at 10 [mu]g/mL showed significant protective effect against hydrogen peroxide. Interestingly, exposure of human dermal fibroblasts to curcumin at 2.5 [mu]g/mL showed significant protective effects against hydrogen peroxide. The findings indicate that curcumin indeed possessed powerful inhibition against hydrogen peroxide damage in human keratinocytes and fibroblasts1.
The wound-healing, antiinflammatory and antimutagenic activities of turmeric have been demonstrated convincingly.

Many of the pharmacologic actions of turmeric have been attributed to its antioxidant activity, primarily because of curcumin. In a study of 34 vegetables common in the Indian diet, turmeric had the highest antioxidant activity.

Topical application of curcumin inhibited chemically induced carcinogenesis on mouse skin.

Curcuma longa rhizome extracts were evaluated for antibacterial activity against pathogenic strains of Gram-positive (Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis) and Gram-negative (Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella typhimurium) bacteria. Essential oil was found to be most active and its activity was compared to standard antibiotics gentamycin, ampicillin, doxycycline and erythromycin in these strains. The clinical isolate of S. aureus showed more sensitivity towards essential oil fraction. The use of essential oil from turmeric as a potential antiseptic in prevention and treatment of antibacterial infections has been suggested.
Curcuma longa, Azadirachta indica and Rubia cordifolia shows anti-inflammatory activity by suppressing the capacity of P. acnes-induced ROS and pro-inflammatory cytokines, the two important inflammatory mediators in acne pathogenesis.

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