Categories
Herbs & Plants (Spices)

Maranta arundinaceae (Arrowroot)

Botanical Name: Maranta arundinaceae
Family: Marantaceae
Genus: Maranta
Species: M. arundinacea
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Zingiberales

Synonyms:

*Maranta indica Tussac
*Maranta minor Chantrier ex André
*Maranta ramosissima Wall.
*Maranta sylvatica Roscoe ex Sm.
*Maranta tessellata var. kegeljanii E.Morren
*Phrynium variegatum N.E.Br., nom. illeg.

Comon Names: Arrowroot, Maranta, West Indian arrowroot, Obedience plant, Bermuda arrowroot, Araru, Ararao or Hulankeeriya
Habitat: Maranta arundinacea is native to Mexico, Central America, the West Indies (Cuba, Hispaniola, Puerto Rico, Trinidad, Lesser Antilles) and South America (Brazil, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Suriname, Guyana, French Guiana). It is widely cultivated in the many warm countries and is considered naturalized in Jamaica, Bahamas, Bermuda, the Netherlands Antilles, India, Sri Lanka, China (Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, Taiwan, Yunnan), Kazan Rett?, Mauritius, Réunion, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Florida, Cambodia, Indonesia and the Philippines.

The Caribbean island nation of St. Vincent and the Grenadines is the world’s largest grower of arrowroot and producer of arrowroot flour. In Kerala , India, arrowroot, locally called bilathi koova, is cultivated to produce an easily digestible starch.

The arrowroot plant probably originated in the Amazon rainforest of north-western Brazil and neighboring countries. It grows best between temperatures of 23 °C (73 °F) and 29 °C (84 °F) with annual precipitation between 1,500 millimetres (59 in) and 2,000 millimetres (79 in). The dormant rhizomes can withstand temperatures as low as 5 °C (41 °F).

In the United States, arrowroot is cultivated as an outside plant only in southern Florida

Parts Used:  Fecula (starch) of the tuberous root.

Description:
Arrowroot is a perennial plant growing to a height of between .3 metres (12 in) and 1.5 metres (59 in). Its leaves are lanceolate. The edible part of the plant is the rhizome. Twin clusters of small white flowers bloom about 90 days after planting. The plant rarely produces seed and reproduction is typically by planting part of a rhizome with a bud. Rhizomes are ready for harvesting 10–12 months after planting as leaves of the plant begin to wilt and die. The rhizomes are fleshy, cylindical, and grow from 20 centimetres (7.9 in) to 45 centimetres (18 in) long.
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Edible Uses:
Arrowroot was very popular in the Victorian era, and Napoleon supposedly said the reason for the British love of arrowroot was to support the commerce of their colonies. It can be consumed in the form of biscuits, puddings, jellies, cakes, hot sauces, and also with beef tea, milk or veal broth. Kudzu arrowroot (Pueraria lobata) is used in noodles in Korean and Vietnamese cuisine. In the Victorian era it was used, boiled with a little flavouring added, as an easily digestible food for children and people with dietary restrictions. With today’s greater understanding of its limited nutritional properties, it is no longer used in this way. In Burma, arrowroot tubers, which are called artarlut, are boiled or steamed and eaten with salt and oil.

Arrowroot makes clear, shimmering fruit gels and prevents ice crystals from forming in homemade ice cream. It can also be used as a thickener for acidic foods, such as Asian sweet and sour sauce. It is used in cooking to produce a clear, thickened sauce, such as a fruit sauce. It will not make the sauce go cloudy, like cornstarch, flour, or other starchy thickening agents would.

The lack of gluten in arrowroot flour makes it useful as a replacement for wheat flour in some baking uses. Like other pure starches, however, arrowroot is almost pure carbohydrates and devoid of protein, thus it does not provide a complete substitute for wheat flour for bread-making, which requires gluten.

Arrowroot thickens at a lower temperature than flour or cornstarch, is not weakened by acidic ingredients, has a more neutral taste, and is not affected by freezing. It does not mix well with dairy, forming a slimy mixture. It is recommended that arrowroot be mixed with a cool liquid before adding to a hot fluid. The mixture should be heated only until the mixture thickens and removed immediately to prevent the mixture from thinning. Overheating tends to break down arrowroot’s thickening property. Two teaspoons of arrowroot can be substituted for one tablespoon of cornstarch, or one teaspoon of arrowroot for one tablespoon of wheat flour.
Constituents:
An 1887 analysis of the root of the St. Vincent Arrowroot gave starch 27.17 per cent, fibre, fat, albumen, sugar, gum, ash, and 62.96 per cent water.

Of the starch was given: starch 83’70 per cent., fibre, fat, sugar, gum, ash and sand, and water 15.87 per cent.

The official granules, according to Pereira, are ‘rarely oblong, somewhat ovate-oblong, or irregularly convex, from 10 to 70 microns in diameter, with very fine lamellae, a circular hilium which is fissured in a linear or stellate manner.’

Medicinal Uses:
Arrowroot is chiefly valuable as an easily digested, nourishing diet for convalescents, especially in bowel complaints, as it has demulcent properties. In the proportion of a tablespoonful to a pint of water or milk, it should be prepared by being first made into a smooth paste with a little cold milk or water, and then carefully stirred while the boiling milk is added. Lemon-juice, sugar, wine, or aromatics may be added. If thick, it will cool into a jelly that usually suits weaning infants better than other farinaceous foods.

It is said that the mashed rhizomes are used for application to wounds from poisoned arrows, scorpion and black spider bites, and to arrest gangrene.

The freshly-expressed juice, mixed with water, is said to be a good antidote, taken internally, for vegetable poisons, such as Savanna.

Arrowroot has been used as an infant formula in place of breast milk or to help the baby adjust after weaning. A jelly made from arrowroot is often preferred by recently weaned infants to infant cereal or other farinaceous foods. Compared to other starches, arrowroot is believed to be the easiest to digest.

It is believed that the herb is an effective treatment against poisoned wounds, including scorpion stings, snake bites, and spider bites. Additionally, arrowroot has been used to treat gangrene.

Fresh arrowroot juice mixed with water, if drunk, is said to be an antidote to vegetable poisons.

The plant is used as an herbal remedy to alleviate nausea and to replenish nutrients lost through diarrhea and vomiting.

Used as a foot powder to combat excess moisture that may lead to athlete’s foot or other foot problems. Arrowroot does not have antifungal properties, so its use is restricted to moisture control alone.

Potential Side Effects of Arrowroot:

As with any herbal remedy, caution should be exercised when taking arrowroot. While a doctor should always be consulted before using herbal remedies, use special caution before giving it to children, pregnant or nursing mothers, or anyone with kidney or liver disease.

If considering arrowroot for an infant formula, consult the child’s pediatrician first and monitor closely for allergic reactions.

There are no known side effects linked to arrowroot, and it is not known to have any adverse interactions with drugs or chemicals in food.

When using the herb to alleviate diarrhea, it should not be taken with any other medication or supplement for diarrhea, as this may lead to constipation.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.
Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maranta_arundinacea
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arrowroot
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/a/arrow064.html
http://www.herbal-supplement-resource.com/arrowroot-herb.html

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Herbs & Plants

Simaruba amara

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Botanical Name: Simaruba amara
Family: Simaroubaceae
Genus: Simarouba
Species: S. amara
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Sapindales

Synonyms: Dysentery Bark. Mountain Damson. Bitter Damson. Slave Wood. Stave Wood. Sumaruppa. Maruba. Quassia Simaruba.

Part Used: Dried root-bark.

Habitat: French Guiana, the Islands of Dominica, Martinique, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and Barbados

Description:
The name given by the founder of the genus was Carib Simarouba, but later writers adopted the present spelling.

The tree is 60 feet or more in height, with many long, crooked branches covered with smooth, greyish bark, leaves 9 to 12 inches long, and flowers growing in small clusters, with rather thick, dull-white petals. The bark is usually found in pieces several feet long, the roots being long, horizontal, and creeping. Very often the outer bark has been removed, when it shows a pale yellowish or pinkish-brown surface. It is odourless, difficult to powder, and intensely bitter. It is usually imported from Jamaica, in bales.

Constituents: Simaruba root-bark contains a bitter principle identical with quassin, a resinous matter, a volatile oil having the odour of benzoin, malic acid, gallic acid in very small proportion, an ammoniacal salt, calcium malate and oxalate, some mineral salts, ferric oxide, silica, ulmin, and lignin.

It readily imparts its virtues at ordinary temperatures to water and alcohol. The infusion is as bitter as the decoction, whichbecomes turbid as it cools.

Medicinal Uses: A bitter tonic. It was first sent from Guiana to France in 1713 as a remedy for dysentery. In the years 1718 and 1725 an epidemic flux prevailed in France, which resisted all the usual medicines. Simaruba was tried with great success, and established its medical character in Europe. It restores the lost tone of the intestines, promotes the secretions, and disposes the patient to sleep. It is only successful in the latter stage of dysentery, when the stomach is not affected. In large doses it produces sickness and vomiting. On account of its difficult pulverization, it is seldom given in substance, the infusion being preferred, but like many bitter tonics, it is now seldom used. From its use, it has been called ‘dysentery bark.’

Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simarouba_amara
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/s/simaru50.html

Categories
Herbs & Plants

Nutmeg ( Myristica fragrans)

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Botanical Name : Myristica fragrans
Family: Myristicaceae
Genus:     Myristica
Species: M. fragrans
Kingdom: Plantae
Order:     Magnoliales

Synonyms: Nux Moschata. Myristica officinalis (Linn.). Myristica aromata. Myristica.

Common Name :Nutmeg, Jatiphal, Jajikaya, Jatiphala, Jayaphala.

Bengali:  Jayphal

Manipuri: jayfal
Marathi: jatiphala, jayaphala
Nepali: jaiphal
Oriya:  jaiphala
Punjabi: jafal
Sanskrit: jatiphala
Tamil: cati-k-kay
Telugu: jajikaya
Tibetan: dza ti pha la
Urdu: jayaphal

Habitat: Nutmeg  is native to Banda Islands, Malayan Archipelago, Molucca Islands, and cultivated in Sumatra, French Guiana. It is widely grown across the tropics including Guangdong and Yunnan in China, Taiwan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Grenada in the Caribbean, Kerala in India, Sri Lanka and South America.

Description:
Myristica fragrans is a small evergreen tree, usually 5–13 m (16–43 ft) tall, but occasionally reaching 20 m (66 ft). The alternately arranged leaves are dark green,5–15 cm (2.0–5.9 in) long by 2–7 cm (0.8–2.8 in) wide with petioles about 1 cm (0.4 in) long. The species is dioecious, i.e. “male” or staminate flowers and “female” or carpellate flowers are borne on different plants, although occasional individuals produce both kinds of flower. The flowers are bell-shaped, pale yellow and somewhat waxy and fleshy. Staminate flowers are arranged in groups of one to ten, each 5–7 mm (0.2–0.3 in) long; carpellate flowers are in smaller groups, one to three, and somewhat longer, up to 10 mm (0.4 in) long.

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Carpellate trees produce smooth yellow ovoid or pear-shaped fruits, 6–9 cm (2.4–3.5 in) long with a diameter of 3.5–5 cm (1.4–2.0 in). The fruit has a fleshy husk. When ripe the husk splits into two halves along a ridge running the length of the fruit. Inside is a purple-brown shiny seed, 2–3 cm (0.8–1.2 in) long by about 2 cm (0.8 in) across, with a red or crimson covering (an aril). The seed is the source of nutmeg, the aril the source of mace.

The tree  has a greyish-brown smooth bark, abounding in a yellow juice. The branches spread in whorls – alternate leaves, on petioles about 1 inch long, elliptical, glabrous, obtuse at base – acuminate, aromatic, dark green and glossy above, paler underside and 4 to 6 inches long. Flowers dioecious, small in axillary racemes. Peduncles and pedicles glabrous. Male flowers three to five more on a peduncle. Calyx urceolate, thick and fleshy, covered with an indistinct reddish pubescence dingy pale yellow, cut into three erect teeth. Female flowers differ little from the male, except pedicel is often solitary. Fruit is a pendulous, globose drupe, consisting of a succulent pericarp – the mace arillus covering the hard endocarp, and a wrinkled kernel with ruminated endosperm. When the arillus is fresh it is a brilliant scarlet, when dry more horny, brittle, and a yellowish-brown colour. The seed or nutmeg is firm, fleshy, whitish, transversed by red-brown veins, abounding in oil. The tree does not bloom till it is nine years old, when it fruits and continues to do so for seventy-five years without attention. In Banda Islands there are three harvests, the chief one in July or August, the next in November, and the last in March or April. The fruit is gathered by means of a barb attached to a long stick. The mace is separated from the nut and both are dried separately. The nutmeg or kernel of the fruit and the arillus or mace are the official parts.
After the mace is removed, the nutmegs are dried on gratings, three to six weeks over a slow charcoal fire – but are often sun-dried for six days previously. The curing protects them from insects.

When thoroughly dried, they rattle in the shell, which is cracked with a mallet. The nutmegs are graded, 1st Penang, 2nd Dutch (these are usually covered with lime to preserve them from insects), 3rd Singapore, and 4th long nutmegs.

Nutmegs have a strong, peculiar and delightful fragrance and a very strong bitter warm aromatic taste.

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES….
Edible Uses:
Nutmeg and mace have similar sensory qualities, with nutmeg having a slightly sweeter and mace a more delicate flavour. Mace is often preferred in light dishes for the bright orange, saffron-like hue it imparts. Nutmeg is used for flavouring many dishes, usually in ground or grated form, and is best grated fresh in a nutmeg grater.

In Penang cuisine, dried, shredded nutmeg rind with sugar coating is used as toppings on the uniquely Penang ais kacang. Nutmeg rind is also blended (creating a fresh, green, tangy taste and white colour juice) or boiled (resulting in a much sweeter and brown juice) to make iced nutmeg juice.
In Indian cuisine, nutmeg is used in many sweet, as well as savoury, dishes (predominantly in Mughlai cuisine). It is also added in small quantities as a medicine for infants. It may also be used in small quantities in garam masala. Ground nutmeg is also smoked in India.
In Indonesian cuisine, nutmeg is used in various dishes,  mainly in many soups, such as soto soup, baso soup or sup kambing.

In Middle Eastern cuisine, ground nutmeg is often used as a spice for savoury dishes.

In original European cuisine, nutmeg and mace are used especially in potato dishes and in processed meat products; they are also used in soups, sauces, and baked goods. It is also commonly used in rice pudding. In Dutch cuisine, nutmeg is added to vegetables such as Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and string beans. Nutmeg is a traditional ingredient in mulled cider, mulled wine, and eggnog. In Scotland, mace and nutmeg are usually both essential ingredients in haggis.

In Italian cuisine, nutmeg is almost uniquely used as part of the stuffing for many regional meat-filled dumplings like tortellini, as well as for the traditional meatloaf.

Japanese varieties of curry powder include nutmeg as an ingredient.

In the Caribbean, nutmeg is often used in drinks such as the Bushwacker, Painkiller, and Barbados rum punch. Typically, it is just a sprinkle on the top of the drink.

The pericarp (fruit/pod) is used in Grenada and also in Indonesia to make jam, or is finely sliced, cooked with sugar, and crystallised to make a fragrant candy.

In the US, nutmeg is known as the main pumpkin pie spice and often shows up in simple recipes for other winter squashes such as baked acorn squash.

Essential oils:
The essential oil obtained by steam distillation of ground nutmeg is used widely in the perfumery and pharmaceutical industries. This volatile fraction typically contains 60-80% d-camphene by weight, as well as quantities of d-pinene, limonene, d-borneol, l-terpineol, geraniol, safrol, and myristicin. In its pure form, myristicin is a toxin, and consumption of excessive amounts of nutmeg can result in myristicin poisoning. The oil is colourless or light yellow, and smells and tastes of nutmeg. It contains numerous components of interest to the oleochemical industry, and is used as a natural food flavouring in baked goods, syrups, beverages, and sweets. It is used to replace ground nutmeg, as it leaves no particles in the food. The essential oil is also used in the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries, for instance, in toothpaste, and as a major ingredient in some cough syrups. In traditional medicine, nutmeg and nutmeg oil were used for disorders related to the nervous and digestive systems.

After extraction of the essential oil, the remaining seed, containing much less flavour, is called “spent”. Spent is often mixed in industrial mills with pure nutmeg to facilitate the milling process, as nutmeg is not easy to mill due to the high percentage of oil in the pure seed. Ground nutmeg with a variable percentage of spent (around 10% w/w) is also less likely to clot. To obtain a better running powder, a small percentage of rice flour also can be added

Nutmeg butter:
Nutmeg butter is obtained from the nut by expression. It is semisolid, reddish-brown in colour, and tastes and smells of nutmeg. About 75% (by weight) of nutmeg butter is trimyristin, which can be turned into myristic acid, a 14-carbon fatty acid, which can be used as a replacement for cocoa butter, can be mixed with other fats like cottonseed oil or palm oil, and has applications as an industrial lubricant.

Medicinal Uses:

Part Use: Dried kernel of the seed.

Constituents: They contain lignin, stearin, volatile oil, starch, gum and 0.08 of an acid substance. By submitting nutmegs and water to distillation, a volatile oil is obtained. The small round heavy nutmeg is the best. Those that are larger, longer, lighter, less marbled, and not so oily, are inferior.

The tonic principle is Myristicin. Oil of Nutmeg is used to conceal the taste of various drugs and as a local stimulant to the gastro-intestinal tract.

Powdered nutmeg is rarely given alone, though it enters into the composition of a number of medicines. The expressed oil is sometimes used externally as a gentle stimulant, and it was once an ingredient of the Emplastrum picis.

The properties of mace are identical to those of the nutmeg.

Both nutmeg and mace are used for flatulence and to correct the nausea arising from other drugs, also to allay nausea and vomiting.

Nutmeg is an agreeable addition to drinks for convalescents.

Grated nutmeg mixed with lard makes an excellent ointment for piles.

In some places roasted nutmeg is applied internally as a remedy for leucorrhaoea.

It is  carminative, stimulant, and tonic, mace aids the digestion, is beneficial to the circulation and is used to mollify febrile upsets and in Asia to relieve nausea.  Mace butter is employed as a mild counter-irritant and used in hair lotions and plasters.  As with nutmeg, large doses of mace can lead to hallucination and epileptiform fits, myristin being poisonous, but dangerous doses are unlikely to be taken in the course of everyday use.  Taken in a toddy, it was a cure for insomnia, but prolonged over-indulgence is now avoided as addictive.

Click & see :

* Herbal remedies using nutmeg (Myristica fragrans)
also known as jatiphala:

*Health Benefits of Nutmeg (Myristica fragrans):

*Different medicinal uses of Nutmeg  :

Medical research:
Nutmeg has been used in medicine since at least the seventh century. In the 19th century, it was used as an abortifacient, which led to numerous recorded cases of nutmeg poisoning. Although used as a folk treatment for other ailments, unprocessed nutmeg has no proven medicinal value today.

One study has shown that the compound macelignan isolated from M. fragrans (Myristicaceae) may exert antimicrobial activity against Streptococcus mutans, and another that a methanolic extract from the same plant inhibited Jurkat cell activity in human leukemia, but these are not currently used treatments.

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.

Resources:
http://medplants.blogspot.in/search/label/Myristica%20fragrans
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/n/nutmeg07.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myristica_fragrans

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nutmeg

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_LMN.htm

Categories
Herbs & Plants

Quassia amara

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Botanical Name :Quassia amara
Family: Simaroubaceae
Genus: Quassia
Species: Q. amara
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Sapindales

Common Names :Amargo, Bitter-ash, Bitter-wood,Quassia, Jamaica Quassia

Habitat :Quassia amara is native to Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, Brasilia, Peru, Venezuela, Suriname, Colombia, Argentinia, French Guiana and Guyana. Q. amara is widely planted outside its native range.

Description:
Amargo is a shrub or rarely a small tree, growing to 3 m tall (rarely 8 m). The leaves are compound and alternate, 15–25 cm long, and pinnate with 3-5 leaflets, the leaf rachis being winged. The flowers are produced in a panicle 15–25 cm long, each flower 2.5-3.5 cm long, bright red on the outside, and white inside. The fruit is a small drupe 1-1.5 cm long.  It has beautiful red flowers and fruits that turn red as they mature.

click to see the pictures…>..…(01)...(1)..(2).…....(3).…….(4)…

Quassia amara is marketed and used interchangeably with another tree species, Picrasma excelsa. Sharing the common name of quassia (and many of Quassia amara’s constituents and uses), P. excelsa is much taller (up to 25 m in height) and occurs farther north in the tropics of Jamaica, the Caribbean, the Lesser Antilles, and northern Venezuela. In herbal medicine in the United States and Europe, very little distinction is made between the two species of trees; they are used identically and just called quassia. The name amargo means “bitter” in Spanish and describes its very bitter taste.

Chemical Constituents:
In the wood a share of 0.09 to 0.17% of quassin and 0.05 to 0.11% of neoquassin was detected in Costa Rician plants. Quassin is one of the most bitter substances found in nature.

Other identified components of bitterwood are: beta-carbolines, beta-sitostenone, beta-sitosterol, dehydroquassins, gallic acid, gentisic acid, hydroxyquassins, isoparain, isoparaines, isoquassins, malic acid, methylcanthins, methoxycanthins, methoxycantins, nigakilactone A, nor-neoquassin, parain, paraines, quassialactol, quassimarin, quassinol, quassol and simalikalactone D.

Medicinal Uses:
In the Amazon rainforest, Quassia amara is used much in the same manner as quinine bark: for malaria and fevers and as a bitter digestive aid. It grows at lower elevations (where quinine does not) and contains many of the same antimalarial phytochemicals (plant chemicals) as quinine. In addition, it is used as an insecticide and tonic, and for hepatitis. Brazilian Indians use the leaves in a bath for measles as well as in a mouthwash used after tooth extractions. Indians in Suriname use the bark for fever and parasites. Throughout South America, amargo is a tribal remedy for debility, digestion problems, fever, liver problems, parasites, malaria, snakebite, and back spasms. In the rainforests of Suriname, carved cups made out of amargo wood can be found in local markets. They are called “bitter cups” and they used medicinally in indigenous Saramaka traditional medicine systems. Drinking from these cups are thought to help digestion with the “bitters” leached from the wood.

In current Brazilian herbal medicine systems, Quassia amara is considered a tonic, digestion stimulant, blood cleanser, insecticide, and mild laxative. It is recommended for diarrhea, intestinal worms, dysentery, dyspepsia, excessive mucus, expelling worms, intestinal gas, stomachache, anemia, and liver and gastrointestinal disorders. In Peru, amargo is employed as a bitter digestive aid to stimulate gastric and other digestive secretions as well as for fevers, tuberculosis, kidney stones and gallstones. In Mexico, the wood is used for liver and gallbladder diseases and for intestinal parasites. In Nicaragua, amargo is used to expel worms and intestinal parasites as well as for malaria and anemia. Throughout South America, the bitter principles of amargo are used to stimulate the appetite and secretion of digestive juices, as well as to expel worms and intestinal parasites.

In herbal medicine in the United States and Europe, amargo is employed as a bitter tonic for stomach, gallbladder, and other digestive problems (by increasing the flow of bile, digestive juices, and saliva); as a laxative, amebicide, and insecticide; and to expel intestinal worms. In Europe, it is often found as a component in various herbal drugs that promote gallbladder, liver, and other digestive functions. In Britain, a water extract of the wood is used topically against scabies, fleas, lice, and other skin parasites. U.S. herbalist David Hoffman recommends it as an excellent remedy for dyspeptic conditions, to stimulate production of saliva and digestive juices, and to increase the appetite (as well as for lice infestations and threadworms). He also notes, “It may safely be used in all cases of lack of appetite such as anorexia nervosa and digestive sluggishness.”

The preparation of a tea out of young leafs is used traditionally in French Guyana. Experiments showed a high inhibition of Plasmodium yoelii yoelii and Plasmodium falciparum.

Other Uses:
Insecticide:
Extracts of Quassia wood or bark act as a natural insecticide. For organic farming this is of particular interest. A good protection was shown against different insect pests (eg. aphids, Colorado potato beetle, Anthonomus pomorum, Rhagoletis cerasi, Caterpillars of Tortricidae).[3] Quassin extract works as a contact insecticide. Adverse effects on beneficial organism were not found.

For Switzerland, a licensed formulation available for organic farming.

Formulation:
Around 200 gramms of Quassia wood chips are put together with 2 liters of water. It is allowed to stand for 24 hours and then it is cooked for 30 min. It is then diluted with 10 to 20 liters of water and used as a spray.  The use of approximately 3-4.5 kg wood extract per hectare seems to be optimal to minimize the damage of Hoplocampa testudinea on apple trees.

Flavouring:
Extracts of Q. amara wood or bark are also used to flavor soft drinks, aperitifs and bitters which can be added to cocktails or to baked goods.

Contraindications:
•Amargo should not be used during pregnancy.

•Amargo has been documented to have an antifertility effect in studies with male rats. Men undergoing fertility treatment or those wishing to have children probably should avoid using amargo.

•Large amounts of amargo can irritate the mucous membrane of the stomach and can lead to nausea and vomiting. Do not exceed recommended dosages.

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

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quassia_amara
http://www.rain-tree.com/amargo.htm#.UgY4yL7D92Y
http://www.anniesremedy.com/herb_detail488.php

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Herbs & Plants

Carapa guianensis

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Botanical Name  : Carapa guianensis
Family  :MELIACEAE(Mahogany family)
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Sapindales
Genus: Carapa

Synonym(s): Carapa nicaraguensis C. DCCarapa slateri StandleyGranatum guianense (Aublet) KuntzeXylocarpus carapa Spreng.

Common Names  : Andiroba Oil,(English) : bastard mahogany, carapa, crabwood
(French) : andiroba, bois rouge, cabirma de Guinea, carapa
(Spanish) : andiroba, cabrima de guiana, caobilla, cedro macho, masábalo, najesi
(Trade name) : andiroba, bastard mahogany, crabwood

Habitat:Carapa guianens  is native  to Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Panama, Peru, Puerto Rico, Surinam, Trinidad and Tobago, Venezuela
Exotic : Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore

Description:
Carapa guianensis is a deciduous or semi-evergreen, monoecious, medium-sized to large trees up to 35 (max. 55) m tall; bole straight and cylindrical; branchless up to 20 (max. 30) m; up to 100 (max. 200) cm in diameter, sometimes fluted, with short buttresses up to 2 m high. Bark surface flaking into squarish scales or in horizontal strips, light grey to greyish brown or dark brown, sometimes reddish; inner bark fibrous, red or pinkish brown. Young plants produce taproots but the trees tend to become surface rooted. Leaves alternate, paripinnate with a dormant glandular leaflet at the apex, exstipulate; leaflets opposite, entire. Shows gigantic leaves in the monocaulous juvenile stage, decreasing in size when branching is initiated. Flowers small, white, borne in a large, axillary or subterminal thyrse; unisexual but with well-developed vestiges of the opposite sex; tetramerous to pentamerous (max. sextamerous); calyx lobed almost to the base; petals slightly contorted. Fruit dehiscent, 4-lobed, pendulous, subglobose, woody capsule containing 2-4 seeds in each lobe. Seeds smooth, pale brown, angular, with woody sarcotesta

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Medicinal Uses:
Constituents:andirobin, arachidic acid, acetoxy-gedunins, epoxyazadiradiones, deacetoxygedunins, hydroxylgedunins, gedunins, hexadecenoic acid, linoleic acid, linolenic acid, oleic acid, palmitic acid, palmitoleic acid, and stearic acid

Andiroba oil is an anti-inflammatory oil rich in omega-3 fatty acids that promote skin healing from cuts and may slow the growth of skin cells in psoriasis and age spots. It promotes normal circulation to the skin and relieves pain and swelling. Andiroba oil is used in heated massage to relieve arthritis.,1

Traditionally it is used by the Amerindians to treat skin problems (rashes, boils and ulcers) and as an insect repellant.
This oil accelerates healing of skin damage by providing myristic acid, one of the chemical building blocks that form the skin’s protective outer layer.
The oil, which has anti inflammatory properties, is rich in essential fatty acids, such as omega-3 fatty acids, limonoids, triterpenes and contains among others: linoleic acid (9%), oleic acid: (50.5), linolenic acid: (0.3%).Linoleic acid has shown to lower cholesterol levels and reduce elevated blood pressure.
Andiroba is an all-natural product, does not contain any preservatives and other chemicals. Andiroba oil can be applied directly to the skin.

The Northwest Amazons use the bark and leaves for fever-reducing and worm-inhibiting tea, and externally as a wash for skin problems, ulcers, and insect bites, and as an insect repellent.2

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:
http://www.worldagroforestrycentre.org/sea/products/afdbases/af/asp/SpeciesInfo.asp?SpID=1738
http://www.anniesremedy.com/herb_detail413.php
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carapa

http://www.tropilab.com/carapa-gui.html

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