Sunday, 13 February 2011

Plumbago zeylanica: Chitrak provides relief from rheumatic pains

By Syed Aklbar
C
hitrak (Plumbago zeylanica) is a wild herb whose secret medicinal properties have been known to tribes for ages. This herb widely used in tribal medicines  the world over is also prescribed by Ayurveda and Unani
practitioners. Chitrak or white leadwort is considered the best natural medicine for treatment of rheumatism, and shedding extra body weight.
Like many wild herbs used in tribal medicine, Chitrak, when taken in large proportions,  may cause severe poisoning. Herbal doctors advise extreme care while dealing with this  herb. In small quantities the herb provides wonderful results for a plethora of health  problems ranging from white patches on the skin (leucoderma) to "jelly" motions  (dysentery) and from piles to scabies. It helps in fast absorption of nutrients and  digestion of accumulated fat, and hence considered good for people, who want to shed  extra fat.
Pregnant women should observe extra care while taking Chitrak even in small quantities. It is notorious for causing miscarriage. Other medical uses of Chitrak  are its ability to fight stomach, liver and spleen problems, improve appetite and  clearing the air passage from accumulated mucous in case of cold or bronchitis. Unani 
doctors prescribe Chitrak for skin infections like ring worm. Herbal tonic, prepared from  Chitrak, is sold in herbal stores as an appetiser.
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Home remedies
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Powder obtained from the roots of Chitrak can be consumed with honey to improve digestive  system. Chitrak root powder is readily sold in leading herbal shops. You can purchase  Chitrak root and make powder at home. It also improves appetite and boost the general health of the body.
Those suffering from skin problems like ring worm may apply crushed fresh roots on the  affected portion. Take fresh roots of Chitrak plant, wash them properly to remove soil  impurities. Dry the roots and crush them. Apply the paste for relief from itching. Herbal  doctors also suggest root paste of Chitrak for quick healing of wounds.
Take Chitrak bark, make it into paste and apply on the joints. Tie gently with  gauze.  You may also gently massage the paste mixed with coconut oil on the affected portion for  relief from rheumatic or joint pains. Ready-made ointment for rheumatic pains is also  available.
Chitrak root powder is often prescribed for obesity. The herbs helps in the improvement  of body physiology and fights excess fat, thus reducing the overall weight.
There have been some research studies at laboratory level wherein Chitrak extract has  been found to contain anti-carcinogenic properties. The result is yet to be extrapolated on human beings.

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