Tag Archives: Traditional medicine

Solidago canadensis

Botanical Name: Solidago canadensis
Family: Asteraceae
Tribe: Astereae
Genus: Solidago
Species: S. canadensis
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales

Synonyms : Aster canadensis. Doria canadensis. Solidago anthropogena

Common Name: Canadian Goldenrod, Shorthair goldenrod, Harger’s goldenrod, Rough Canada goldenrod, Common Goldenro

Habitat:Solidago canadensis is native to northeastern and north-central North America but established as an invasive plant in in other parts of the continent and in other countries as well.
It grows in dry to damp thickets, roadsides, slopes and clearings, avoiding acid soils.

Description:
Solidago canadensis is a perennial plant growing to 1.8 m (6ft) by 1 m (3ft 3in) at a medium rate. The plant is erect, often forming colonies. Flowers are small yellow heads held above the foliage on a branching inflorescenc It is in flower from Aug to October, and the seeds ripen from Sep to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.The plant is self-fertile. It is noted for attracting wildlife.

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Cultivation:
Landscape Uses:Border, Container, Foundation, Seashore, Specimen, Woodland garden. Succeeds in any moderately fertile moisture retentive soil in sun or semi-shade. Grows well in heavy clay soils. A rather greedy plant, it is apt to impoverish the soil. The flowers attract butterflies and moths. The plant also attracts various beneficial insects such as ladybirds, lacewings and hoverflies to the garden, these insects will help to control insect pests in the garden. Special Features: Attractive foliage, North American native, Naturalizing, Suitable for cut flowers, Suitable for dried flowers.

Propagation :
Seed – sow spring in a cold frame. Only just cover the seed and do not allow the compost to become dry. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle, and grow them on for their first winter in pots. Plant them out into their permanent positions in spring or early summer. Division in spring or autumn. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found it best to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in a lightly shaded position in a cold frame, planting them out once they are well established in the summer.

Edible Uses :
Edible Parts: Leaves; Oil; Seed.
Edible Uses: Oil; Tea.

Young leaves and flowering stems – cooked. Seed. Used as a thickener in soups. The seed is very small and is only used as a survival food when all else fails. A tea can be made from the flowers and/or the leaves.
Medicinal Uses :

Antiseptic; Haemostatic; Kidney; Salve; Styptic.

Haemostatic, styptic. The root is applied as a poultice to burns. An infusion of the dried powdered herb can be used as an antiseptic. The blossoms are analgesic, astringent and febrifuge. They have been chewed and the juice slowly swallowed to treat sore throats. A tea made from the flowers is used in the treatment of diarrhoea, body pains, fevers and snakebites. The plant contains quercitin, a compound that is reportedly useful in the treatment of haemorrhagic nephritis. This plant is said to have similar medicinal properties to S. virgaurea. These are:- Goldenrod is a safe and gentle remedy for a number of disorders. In particular, it is a valuable astringent remedy treating wounds and bleeding, whilst it is particularly useful in the treatment of urinary tract disorders, being used both for serious ailments such as nephritis and for more common problems such as cystitis. The plant contains saponins that are antifungal and act specifically against the Candida fungus which is the cause of vaginal and oral thrush. It also contains rutin which is used to treat capillary fragility, and phenolic glycosides which are anti-inflammatory. The leaves and flowering tops are anthelmintic, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, aromatic, astringent, carminative, diaphoretic, mildly diuretic, febrifuge and stimulant. A good vulnerary herb, it has also proved of value when used internally in the treatment of urinary infections, chronic catarrh, skin diseases, influenza, whooping cough, bladder and kidney stones etc. Due to its mild action, goldenrod is used to treat gastro-enteritis in children. It makes an excellent mouthwash in the treatment of thrush. The plant is gathered in the summer and dried for later use. The seed is anticoagulant, astringent and carminative. A homeopathic remedy is made from the plant. It is used in the treatment of kidney and bladder disorders, rheumatism and arthritis. The German Commission E Monographs, a therapeutic guide to herbal medicine, approve Solidago canadensis for infections of the urinary tract, and kidney and bladder stones .

Other Uses : Mustard, orange and brown dyes can be obtained from the whole plant. The source of ‘Canadian goldenrod’ oil. We have no further details, but it is likely to be an essential oil.
It is often grown as an ornamental in flower gardens.
Known Hazards : Weak potential for sensitization. Irrigation therapy is contraindicated in cases of oedema due to renal or heart disease. Care needed with chronic kidney disease

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.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Solidago+canadensis
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solidago_canadensis

Clerodendrum infortunatum(Ghentu ful in bengali)

Botanical Name :Clerodendrum infortunatum
Family: Lamiaceae /Verbenaceae.
Genus: Clerodendrum
Species: C. infortunatum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Lamiales

Common Names: hill glory bower, Saraswaty’s leaf, sticky glorybower • Bengali: bhant, ghentu • Hindi: bhant • Kannada: ibbane • Lepcha: kumboul kung • Malayalam: peruku, vattaparuvalam • Manipuri: kuthap manbi • Marathi: bhandira • Sanskrit: bhandika, bhandira, bhantaka • Tamil: perugilai, vattakanni • Telugu: kattiyaku, saraswati-yaku ;

Habitat:  Clerodendrum infortunatum is native to tropical regions of Asia including Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Pakistan, Thailand, Malaysia, the Andaman Islands, and Sri Lanka.

Description :
Clerodendrum infortunatum is a perennial flowering shrub or small tree, and is so named because of its rather ugly leaf. The stem is eresct, 0.5–4 m high, with no branches and produce circular leaves with 6 inch diameter. Leaves are simple, opposite; both surfaces sparsely villous-pubescent, elliptic, broadly elliptic, ovate or elongate ovate, 3.5–20 cm wide, 6–25 cm long, dentate, inflorescence in terminal, peduncled, few-flowered cyme; flowers white with purplish pink or dull-purple throat, pubescent. Fruit berry, globose, turned bluish-black or black when ripe, enclosed in the red accrescent fruiting-calyx. The stem is hollow and the leaves are 6-8 inch (15–20 cm) long, borne in whorls of four on very short petioles. The inflorescence is huge, consisting of many tubular snow white flowers in a terminal cluster up to 2 ft (0.6 m) long. The tubes of the flowers are about 4 inch (10 cm) long and droop downward, and the expanded corollas are about 2 inch (5 cm) across. The fruits are attractive dark metallic blue drupes, about a half inch in diameter. Fruit usually with 4 dry nutlets and the seeds may be with or without endosperm. It flowers from April to August.

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Chemical composition: The major compounds are sterols, sugars, flavonoids and saponins. Novel crystalline compounds such as clerodolone, clerodone, clerodol and a sterol designated clerosterol have been isolated from the root. Seven sugars namely raffinose, lactose, maltose, sucrose, galactose, glucose and fructose were identified. Fumaric acid, caffeic acid esters, ?-sitosterol and ?-sitosterol glucoside were isolated from the flowers. Apigenin, acacetin and a new flavone glycoside, characterised as the methyl ester of acacetin-7-0-glucuronide are isolated from the flowers. Saponin is one of the major compounds of the leaf. 24 beta-ethylsterols, clerosterol and 22-dehydroclerosterol, 24-methyl-sterols (24-methylcholestanol, 24-methylcholesterol, 24-methyl-22-dehydrocholesterol, and 24-methyllathostero) and 24 beta-ethyl-22-dehydrocholestanol are found in the seeds.Scutellarin and hispidulin-7-O-glucuronide are present in the leaf. Poriferasterol and stigmasterol are the components of the aerial parts.

Properties and uses: The juice of the leaves is believed to possess anthelminitic properties-

Medicinal Uses:
Saponin (SN1) isolated from Clerodendrum  infortunatum leaves in doses of 30, 50, 75 and 100 mg/kg, ip provided 36.28, 60.47, 90.71, 100% protection respectively from writhing induced by 1.2% v/v acetic acid. In hot plate method, SN1 not only produced analgesia in mice but also potentiated the analgesic action of pentazocine and aspirin. The anticonvulsant activity was tested by leptazol-induced seizures. SN1 decreased the duration of seizures and gave protection in a dose dependent manner against leptazol-induced convulsions. The results suggest that saponin has significant analgesic and anticonvulsant effects.
In Ayurvedic and Siddha traditional medicines, the leaves and roots of C. infortunatum are used as herbal remedy for alopecia, asthma, cough, diarrhoea, rheumatism, fever and skin diseases. It is also known to have hepato-protective and antimicrobial activities.[FROM :unreliable medical source] The roots and bark of stem of this plant prepared as decoction and given in the dose of 60-80 ml twice daily for respiratory diseases, fever, periodic fever, cough, bronchial asthma, etc. The leaves are ground well and applied externally to induce ripenning of ulcers and swellings. A paste of leaves and roots are applied externally over skin diseases especially fungal infections and alopecia. Fresh leaves are given for diarrhoea, liver disorders and headache.
Traditional practices:
The leaf and root are widely used as antidandruff, antipyretic, ascaricide, laxative, vermifuge, and in treatments of convulsion, diabetes, gravel, malaria, scabies, skin diseases, sore, spasm, scorpion sting, snake bite and tumor. In Thai medicine the leaves and root are known to be diuretic; and used for treatment of intestinal infections and kidney dysfunction; when boiled or ground with water, it is taken to increase milk secretion for post-labor. In many traditional practices the leaves and root are widely used as antihyperglycemic.

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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:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clerodendrum_infortunatum
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https://sites.google.com/site/efloraofindia/species/a—l/l/lamiaceae/clerodendrum/clerodendrum-infortunatum

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Bhringaraj (Eclipta alba)

Botanical Name: Eclipta alba
Family: Compositae, Asteraceae
Synonyms: Eclipta prostrata, Cotula alba
Therapeutic Catagory: Hepatoprotective
Ayurvedic Names : Bhringraja, Keshraja
Unani Name: Bhangra
Indian Names: Bhangra, Kalkeshi, Maka

Description:
It is an annual, erect or prostate entirely pubescent herb, often rooting at nodes with opposite, sessile, usually oblong, 2.5 – 7.5 cm long leaves with white appressed hairs. Floral heads 6-8 mm in diameter, solitary, white, achene compressed and narrowly winged.
It grows commonly in moist places as a weed all over the plains of India.Root well developed, cylindrical, greyish. Floral heads 6-8mm in diameter, solitary,white,achenecompressed and narrowly winged.

The herb Eclipta alba contains mainly coumestans i.e. Wedelolactone (I) and Demethylwedelolactone (II), Polypeptides Polyacetylenes, Thiophene-derivatives, steroids, triterpenes and flavonoids. Coumestans are known to possess estrogenic activity (Bickoff et al. 1969) Wedelolactone possesses a wide range of biological activities and is used for the treatment of hepatitis and cirrhosis (Wagner et al 1986:), as an antibacterial, anti-hemorrhagic (Kosuge et al. 1985), as an antidote for snake venom (Mors et al , 1989) and direct inhibition of IKK complex resulting in suppression of LPS-induced caspase-11 expression (Kobori et al 2004)

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Habitat/Occurrence: It is widely distributed throughout India, China, Thailand, and Brazil. In paddy growing areas of India, it occur as common weed. In many parts of India it is grown commercially as a medicinal crop.

Related Species: Four species have been reported so far in warmer parts of America, Africa, Asia and Australia.

Botany: An annual herb.
Stem: Stems and branches are strigose and hairy.
Leaves: Opposite, sessile, oblong- lanceolate; also strigose and hairy.
Flowers: In heads, involucral bracts, axillary, ray flowers ligulate; disk ones tubular.
Fruit: Achene.
Flowering Time: October to December in Indian conditions.
Useful Parts: Whole plant.
Season: Kharif (June, July in Indian conditions)
Propagation: Through seeds

Traditional and medicinal uses:
Plant is bitter, hot, sharp, dry taste and is used in ayurveda for the treatment of Kapha and Vata imbalances. In ayurvedic medicine, the leaf extract is considered to be powerful liver tonic, rejuvenative, and especially good for the hair.A black dye obtained from Eclipta alba is also for dyeing hair and tattooing. Eclipta alba also has traditional external uses, like athlete foot, eczema and dermatitis, on the scalp to address hair loss and the leaves have been used in the treatment of scorpion strings. It is used as anti-venom against snakebite in China and Brazil (Mors, 1991). It is reported to improve hair growth and colour (Kritikar and Basu 1975.and Chopra et al 1955)The expressed leaf juice is applied along with honey is a popular remedy for catarrh in infants. A preparation obtained from the leaf juice boiled with sesamum or coconut oil is used for anointing the head to render the hair black and luxuriant. Plant is rubbed on the gums in toothache and applied with a little oil for relieving headache. Applied with sesamum oil in elephantiasis. Roots of Eclipta alba are emetic and purgative.

In Taiwan, entire plant is used as a remedy for the treatment of bleeding, heamoptysis, haematuria and itching, hepatitis, diphtheria and diarrhoea. In China, as a cooling and restorative herb, which supports the mind, nerves, liver and eyes. The leaf extract is considered to be powerful liver tonic, rejuvenative, and especially good for the hair. A black dye obtained from Eclipta alba is also for dyeing hair and tattooing. Eclipta alba also has traditional external uses, like athlete foot, eczema and dermatitis, on the scalp to address hair loss and the leaves have been used in the treatment of scorpion strings. It is used as anti-venom against snakebite in China and Brazil (Mors, 1991).
Medicinal Properties and Uses: The herb is an Ayurveda and Yunani medicine. According to Ayurveda philosophy Eclipta is bitter, hot fattening, alterative, anthelminticum, and alexipharmic. It is useful in inflammations, hernia, eye diseases, bronchitis, asthama, leucoderma, anaemia, heart and skin diseases, right blindness, syphilis etc. It is reported as beneficial for complexion, hair, eyes, and teeth.

Eclipta alba is mainly used in hair oils, but it has been considered a good drug in hepatotoxicity. In hair oils, it may be used alongwith Centela asiatica (Brahmi) and Phyllanthus emblica (Amla). It may be used to prevent habitual abortion and miscarriage and also in cases of post-delivery uterine pain. A decoction of leaves is used in uterine haemorrhage. The juice of the plant with honey is given to infants with castor oil for expulsion of worms. For the relief in piles, fumigation with Eclipta alba is considered beneficial. The paste prepared by mincing fresh plants has got an anti-inflammatory effect and may be applied to insect bites, stings, swellings and other skin diseases. In Ayurveda, it is mainly used in hair oil, while in Unani system, the juice of Eclipta alba is used in ‘Hab Miskeen Nawaz’ alongwith aconite, croton tiglium, triphala, piper nigrum, piper longum, zinziber officinale, and minerals like mercury, sulphur, arsenic, borax etc. for various types of pains in the body. It is also a constituent of ‘Roghan Amla Khas’ for applying on hair, and of ‘Ma’jun Murrawah-ul-arwah’.

Popular Ayurvedic Formulations: Bhringraj ghrit, Bhringraj taiil, Bhringrajadi churana etc.
Chemical Constituents: The plant contains the alkaloid ecliptine. Other chemicals identified are wedelolactone, wedelic acid, apigenin, luteolin, b-amyrin etc.
Cultivation .

The dried leaves of Eclipta alba have been reported to contain wedelolactone, a complex coumarin and its derivatives dimethylewedelolactone – 7 – glucoside and nor-wadelolactone.

The roots contain polyacetylene substituted thiophenes and leaves have been reported to contain 2.2:5.2:5-terthienylmethanol. The arial part of the plant has been reported to contain phytosterol, ß-anyrin in the n-hexane extract and luteolin – 7 – glucoside, ß-glucoside of phytosterol, a glucoside of a tritepenic acid and wadelolactone in polar solvent extract.

Hentriacontanol and heptacosanol are reported from the roots. The polypeptides isolated from the plant yield cystime, glutamic acid, phenyalanine, tyrosine and methionine on hydrolysis.

Juice: useful to teeth, skin and hairs, indicated for the treatment of Kaphha-vata disorders, cough, bronchitis, worms, asthma, skin diseases, oedema, mucous disorders, anemia, digestive, support and nourished body, choleggue, hepatomegaly, liver disorders, loss of appetite, vertigo, hepatospleenomegaly, piles, indigestion, headache, weak vision, Externally for burns, skin diseases, leucoderma, hair loss, alopecia.

Ayurvedic Uses:
Essential hair tonic .Buy Bhringaraj and supplements on line

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For Thick, dark hair : Apply a mixture of bhringaraj, gooseberry, coconut, almond and olive.

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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://www.banlab.com/eclipta.htm
http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/CropFactSheets/eclipta.html
www.allayurveda.com
www.en.wikipedia.com

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_herbs_and_minerals_in_Ayurveda

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