Nirgundi is a large aromatic shrub found mostly in the warmer zone of India. In Indian traditional medicine system, it is referred as Sarvaroganivarani – the remedy for all diseases.
The botanical name of Nirgundi is Vitex negundo and it belongs to the Family Verbenaceae. Nirgundi is a large aromatic shrub or small tree up to 4.5 m height, common throughout the country to an altitude of 1500 m in the outer Himalayas. It is also known by the name Sambhalu in Hindi and Neelmanjari in Sanskrit.
Chemical Constituents –
Nirgundi contains atleast 0.25 percent of negundoside and 1.0 percent of agnuside.Phenol, Dulcitol, Alkaloid-Vitricine, B-sitosterol, Camphene, a- And B- Pinenes, Angoside, Acunbin, Casticin, Artemetin, Orientin etc. are also found in nirgundi plant. The phytoconstituents d-guaiene, germacrene D, and hexadecenoic acid found in nirgundi are responsible for this anti-bacterial activity.The leaved extracts possesses a new flavone glycoside, which has antifungal activity.
Leaf, root and seeds are the parts of plant used for medicinal purposes.
• Nirgundi Juice – 10 – 20 ml in a day or as per your requirement.
• Nirgundi Powder – 1.5 – 3gm as per requirement in a day
• Nirgundi Oil – 2 – 3 drops applied externally twice or thrice a day.
• Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis is known as Amavata in Ayurveda, is a disease in which vitiation of Vata dosha and accumulation of Ama takes place in the joints. It helps to increase the digestive fire which enhances the digestive system and prevents the formation as well as the accumulation of Ama, thereby reducing the symptoms of Amavata.
The cough is generally caused by the formation and accumulation of mucus in the respiratory tract. Nirgundi helps in managing cough due to its Kapha balancing and Ushna (hot) properties. It helps the accumulated mucus to pass out easily and prevent, thereby providing relief from Cough.
Epilepsy involves all the three doshas – Vata, Pitta and Kapha, especially the Vata dosha which affects the nerves. Nirgundi helps manage epilepsy due to its Vata balancing and Medhya (brain tonic) properties. It helps in the relaxation of nerves and prevents further attacks of Epilepsy.
• Grey Hair
Grey hair generally occurs due to an imbalance of Kapha dosha. Applying Nirgundi oil on the scalp helps prevent grey hair due to its Kapha balancing and Keshya (hair tonic) properties. It helps prevent grey hair and also maintain good quality of hair.
• Premenstrual Syndrome ( PMS)
Women often experience severe emotional, mental and physical turmoil in the days before they start menstruating. Symptoms of PMS such as anxiety, depression and fluid retention can be dealt more smoothly with nirgundi.
Nirgundi promotes progesterone secretion and hence aids in the transition process and prevents its side effects such as mood swings, vaginal dryness and hot flashes.
• Skin Diseases
A range of skin diseases can be treated using nirgundi leaves oil. Vitiligo, leucoderma and leprosy are treated using thus plant and its products.
Side Effects –
The common side effects of consuming it are dry mouth, headache, nausea, stomach upset, tachycardia and urticaria. These effects have been seen to be mild, reversible and occur in a small number of cases.
Its ability to regulate hormone secretions makes it a bad option for pregnant women. It interferes with oral contraceptives and may reduce its efficacy. It has also been seen that lactating women have faced alteration in the amount of milk production.
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