Kasmarda plant is a much branched, smooth, half woody herb or shrub one to two meters tall and pointed leaves upto 22cm long, consisting of 3 to 7 pairs of leaflets. Inflorescence is a terminal and the flower is of small size of yellow color about 2 cm long. Fruit is a pod / legume, compressed, 8 to 12 cm long and curved slightly upwards. Each pod contains 20 to 30 seeds, which are ovoid in shape, smooth, shiny, and dull brown to dark olive-green in color.
Since the plant oozes a strong unpleasant odour, it is pretty easy to identify kasmarda even from a distance. In Sanskrit, phlegm is kasa, and mardan means to destroy, hence Kasamarda. Also known by vernacular names as kasondi, coffee weed, stinking weed, karkash, and vimarda.
It’s botanical name is Cassia occidentalis which belongs to Leguminosae family.
The seeds of the tree are roasted, and powdered to prepare strongcoffee due to which it is also known as Coffee Senna or Negro Coffee. Roasting destroys the purgative property of seeds. This coffee is given as a substitute to coffee.
Chemical Constituents –
The seeds contain fatty matter, tannic acid, sugar, gum, cellulose, calcium sulphate, and phosphate, crysophanic, and malic acids, sodium chloride, magnesium sulphate, iron, silica, and achrosine.
Parts Used –
Kasmarda plant root, seeds and leaves can be used for medicinal purposes.
• Leaves – 5 to 10 grams
• Seeds – 1 to 3 grams
• Fresh leaf juice – 10 to 20 ml
• Root bark decoction – 50 to 100 ml
Bark infusion of kasmarda is used to keep control of insulin levels. Keeping your blood sugar in the healthy range manages the symptoms of diabetes as well.
Kasmarda contains several bioactive compounds that promote the secretion of sputum by the air passages. It is widely used to treat all kinds of coughs.
Kasmarda helps manage Asthma due to its Kapha-Vata balancing properties. These properties also help remove the obstruction in the respiratory pathways, thereby making breathing easy.Take few fresh leaves of this herb. Grind them and extract the juice by using a juicer.
Take 5-10ml of this juice once a day to get rid of the symptoms of asthma.
• Skin Infections
Skin infections generally occur due to an imbalance of Pitta dosha. This might lead to some conditions like itching, irritation or sometimes burning. Kasmard inspite of being Ushna (hot) in nature, helps manage skin infections due to its Pitta balancing properties. This helps in healing up of skin problems, thus providing relief.
Take few leaves or seed of Kasmarda. Grind them to make a paste.
Apply it on the affected area once or twice a week.
Roots of this plant can be used in intermittent fever and also it acts as diuretic.
Topical application of kasmarda plant in the form of leaves, or juice or paste is very helpful to nullify the poisoning due to snake bite.
Side Effects –
Due to its laxative properties, an overdose of kasmard can cause diarrhoea or loose motions. Sometimes it can also lower blood pressure levels. So use it under your doctor supervision.
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