Utangan or Aankuri, is a herbaceous plant native to various parts of Africa and Asia. It holds significance in traditional medicine systems, particularly in Ayurveda and traditional African medicine.
– Leaves: Narrow, lance-shaped leaves with a rough texture.
– Flowers: Small, usually purple or blue, arranged in spikes.
– Habitat: Typically found in dry regions.
1. Eye Health: In traditional medicine, Blepharis edulis is used for its purported benefits in treating eye conditions. The leaves and seeds are believed to have properties that support eye health.
2. Digestive Health: It may be used to address digestive disorders and promote overall gastrointestinal well-being.
3. Anti-inflammatory: Some traditional uses involve the plant as a natural anti-inflammatory agent.
4. Wound Healing: In certain traditions, Blepharis edulis is used topically for wound healing.
5. Anti-microbial: It is believed to have natural antimicrobial properties.
6. Laxative Properties: Some preparations may be used as a mild laxative.
7. Anti-diabetic (in certain traditions): It may be used to support blood sugar management.
8. Respiratory Health: In some cultures, it is employed for respiratory conditions.
Note: While Blepharis edulis has a history of traditional use, it is crucial to approach it with caution. Scientific studies on its efficacy and safety are limited, and it’s always advisable to consult a qualified healthcare professional or herbalist before using it for medicinal purposes. This is especially important if you have underlying health conditions or are taking other medications.
Useful plant parts:
In India, the seeds, leaves, and roots of the plant are employed for diverse medicinal applications. The seeds are recognized as an aphrodisiac. Ground seed powder is used as a sexual enhancer, typically consumed in portions of 2 to 3 grams with lukewarm milk.
This species contains phytochemicals like benzoxazine glucosides and banzoxazolone, along with antioxidants including phenolic acids and flavone glycosides (source needed). Additionally, the plant demonstrates confirmed anticancer activity.
In Ayurveda, Utangan (Blepharis edulis) is recognized for its therapeutic properties. It is used in various formulations to address specific health concerns. Here are some of its traditional medicinal uses:
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