Herbs & Plants

Brunfelsia uniflora

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Botanical Name : Brunfelsia uniflora
Family: Solanaceae
Genus: Brunfelsia
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Solanales

Common Name: Manaca

Habitat : Brunfelsia uniflora  is native to
Caribbean: Trinidad and Tobago – Trinidad
Northern South America: Guyana; Venezuela – Bolivar, Carabobo, Guarico, Nueva Esparta
Brazil: Brazil – Bahia, Ceara, Espirito Santo, Goias, Minas Gerais, Pernambuco, Rio Grande do Norte, Rio de Janeiro, Roraima, Sao Paulo
Western South America: Bolivia – Cochabamba, Santa Cruz
Southern South America: Argentina – Jujuy, Salta

Typical habitat is light woodland and thickets.

Brunfelsia uniflora is a neotropical shrubs and small trees.The leaves are alternate and simple, with shapes generally elliptic to ovate. The flowers are large and tubular, with five broad petals.  Species in cultivation include Brunfelsia americana (“lady of the night”) and Brunfelsia pauciflora. Linnaeus named the genus for early German herbalist Otto Brunfels (1488–1534). The cultivated plant is commonly called “yesterday, today, and tomorrow” due to its color changes

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Medicinal Uses:
Brunfelsia uniflora is  used by native healers both medicinally and as hallucinogens.  Internally used as an alterative, and of the greatest value for the treatment of arthritis.  It eases pain and restores mobility quickly. In Peru, indigenous peoples apply a decoction of leaves externally for arthritis and rheumatism; they also employ a root decoction for chills. The root of manacá is said to stimulate the lymphatic system. It has long been used for syphilis, earning the name vegetable mercury. Though the aerial parts of the plant have active compounds, the root has been used primarily.

Two of the constituents,  manaceine and manacine are thought to be responsible for stimulating the lymphatic system, while aesculetin has demonstrated analgesic, antihepatotoxic, antimutagenic, and anti-inflammatory activities in laboratory tests.

Disclaimer : 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


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