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Botanical Name: Hydnocarpus laurifolia/wightianus
Synonym: Hydnocarpus laurifolia
Indian Name: Garudphal
Common name: Jangli almond
Bengali name: Choulmogara
Hindi:Calmogara, Chalmogra, Chaulmoogra, Jangli badam
Kannada: Chalmogra yenne mara, Mirolhakai, Surti, Suranti, Toratti, Garudaphala
Malayalam: Kodi, Maravatty, Marotti, Nirvatta, Nirvetti
Marathi: Kadu Kawath
Sanskrit: Tuvaraka, Turveraka, Tuvrak, Kushtavairi
Tamil: Maravetti, Maravattai, Marotti
Habitat: This tree found in tropical forests and western ghats of South India.
Description and Composition
Chalmogra is a tall evergreen tree with whitish wood. It has sharply-toothed, smooth and shining leaves, spherical fruits, about the size of an apple, with a rough thick brown rind. Within the fruit there are 10 to 20 angular seeds, embedded in a scanty white pulp. The trade name chalmogra is based on the local name of the tree. It is leathery-leaved tree of western India bearing round fruits with brown densely-hairy rind enclosing oily pulp that yields hydnocarpus oil.
Chalmogra has been used in the Ayurvedic system of medicine for leprosy since many centuries. In ancient Buddhist literature the efficacy of raw chalmogra seeds in treating leprosy is mentioned. Records show that the oil extracted from its seeds has been used in the treatment of leprosy and other skin diseases since 1595. In the Makhzanel-Adwiya, one of the oldest books on Mohammedan materia medica, mention is made of the use of the seeds under the name of chalmogri
By 1868, the curative effects of chalmogra were so wellÂ known that it was made official in the Pharmacopoeia of India. It was, however, not till 1904, when Fredrick B. Power and his collaborators published in detail the chemistry of chalmogra oil, that the attention of the scientific world was drawn to this valuable drug. Experiments have proven its bactricidal properties. The seeds of chalmogra yield a fatty oil. The oil contains hydnocarpic acid, oleic acid and palmitic acid.
It contains hypnocarpic acid, chaulmoorgic acid and its homologues. It also contains oleic acid and palmitic acids.
The oil is unusual in not being made up of straight chain fatty acids but acids with a cyclic group at the end of the chain. Seeds are ovoid, irregular and angular, 1 to 1 1/4 inches long, 1 inch wide, skin smooth, grey, brittle; kernel oily and dark brown. A fatty oil is obtained by expression, known officially as Gynocardia oil in Britain, as Oleum Chaulmoograe in the U.S.A
Benefits and Healing Power of Chalmogra Herb:
A local stimulant, useful in correcting disordered processes of nutrition.
The bark of the tree contains tannins, which are beneficial in the treatment of fever. The oil extracted from the seeds is useful in leprosy and skin disorders.
The oil from the seeds has medicinal properties. It is a tonic, useful in correcting disordered processes of nutrition and in restoring the normal function of the system. It is also a local stimulant.
Fevers :– The bark of the tree contains tannins, which are beneficial in the treatment of fevers.
Leprosy :- The oil extracted from the seeds is useful in leprosy. It should be applied locally to the affected parts. Recently chalmogra has been recognized in the allopathic medicine as a valuable remedy for leprosy.
Skin Disorders :– Chalmogra oil is a specific medicine for treating skin diseases. It is locally used in rheumatism and phthisis or tuberculosis. It is an effective dressing for scaly eruptions and chronic skin diseases, even those of syphilitic origin. A liniment made of equal parts of the oil and lime water is applied to scald heads, leprous ulcerations, rheumatic pains and scruf, or a scaly condition, on the head.
A paste of the seeds is a domestic remedy for wounds and certain skin diseases like eczema, ringworm and scabies. The infusion is used as a disinfectant for vaginal infection in gonorrhea and foetid discharges, especially after childbirth.
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.