If you thought Neem was the ‘King of the Bitters’, let me correct you! Kalmegha is your answer! Kalmegh meaning ‘dark cloud’ interestingly has white flowers with dark purple streaks and seeds being of yellowish brown colour.
A small annual herb exhibits a taste which is similar to that of the large Neem tree. That certifies the name ‘Maha-Tikta’ which literally means the ‘King of Bitters’It is also known as Nila-Vembu in Tamil, meaning "neem of the ground". When immunity is challenged, a little unpleasant bitterness provides innumerable benefits to mankind. The herb Chirota / Swertia Chirayta also bears similar bitterness.
There is a section of people in this world who turn to Ayurveda or organic healing when battling an illness. With abundant research, we have known that Ayurveda teaches us fundamentally simple ways to build up a healthy way of living. Kalmegh is used in Ayurveda and Chinese medicine. Traditionally, natural plant products have been the source in the search for new drugs by pharmaceutical companies.
To begin with, herbal medicines like Kalmegha is well known in Eastern herbalism and is native to India. For thousands of years it has been used under many different names for many different healing effects.
Interesting facts about Kalmegha:
- In China it is named as Chuanxinlian, Yijianxi or Lanhelian and is considered to be antipyretic, anti-inflammatory, de-toxicant and detumescent
- In India, the entire plant is used to cure a snakebite. Where immunity is challenged, Kalmegh comes to the rescue. Hence, incorporating Kalmegh in your routine boosts an all-around health and well-being
- For the sake of home use, herb is sold in the form of dried powdered leaves or alcoholic or hydro-alcoholic extracts which is often taken at daily morning under fasting condition
- Kalmegh can show tendencies and produce light, dry and rough qualities inherent to the vata dosha (one of the three functional energies alongside vatta & pittapresent if present in appropriate quantities supports the entire balance of the body and when used in excess, causes illnesses)
- Ayurveda has a plethora of balancing herbal allies to use in formulation with Kalmegh to balance its effect and enhance its supportive actions Kalmegh’s bitter and cooling aspects infused with other herbal elements detoxify and rejuvenate the liver and gallbladder
The Medical actions of Kalmegha;
India is known to have many life-threatening diseases like Cancer, Diabetes and many more. Ayurveda or herbal medicines has shown great potency in treating them. With its excellent results the healing qualities of Ayurveda are here to stay! We will emphasize here on a couple of such diseases where Kalmegha has made an indelible impact:
- The aqueous extract of fresh leaves is often given to the children in case of appetite loss, bowel irregularities or griping.
- Andrographis impacts positively on Premature Skin
- Andrographis treats Rheumatoid Arthritis where it reduces the number and intensity of swollen joints in patients
- With age-old observation indicates that it is a good agent either to prevent or treat the Diabetes.
- Andrographis or Kalmegha is effective in controlling the spread of Colon, Skin, Lung and Breast Cancer. It also helps in controlling Leukemia.
Point to remember:
- Excess use of Kalmegh powder can cause nausea and lower blood pressure
- Kalmegh powder should not be given any women trying to conceive as it prevents ovulation