Thursday, March 19, 2009

Mucuna pruriens Linn.

English Name : Bengal bean, cow itch, florida velvet bean, velvet bean

Family : Fabaceae

Origin : India

M.pruriens is an herbaceous twining annual. The leaves are trifoliolate; the leaflets, broadly ovate, elliptic or rhomboid ovate and unequal at the base; the flowers, purple and in axillary, pendulous racemes; the pods, curved, longitudinally ribbed, turgid and densely clothed with persistent pale brown or grey, irritant bristles; the seeds, black, 4 to 6 in a pod and ovoid.

The plant can grow in a range of habitats and could become naturalised in grasslands, bushland, riverine forest and forest edges throughout tropical and subtropical regions.

Parts Used : Roots, seeds and fruits.

Herb Effects
Anabolic, androgenic, analgesic (pain-reliever), anti-inflammatory, anti-Parkinson's, antispasmodic, antivenin, aphrodisiac, febrifuge, hormonal, hypocholesterolemic (lowers cholesterol), hypoglycemic, immunomodulator, nervine (balances/calms nerves), anti-neurasthenic.

Active Ingredients
L-DOPA (plant); mucunine, mucunadine, mucuadinine, pruriendine and nicotine, besides ß-sitosterol, glutathione, lecithin, oils, venolic and gallic acids (plant/seeds); tryptamine, alkylamines, steroids, flavonoids, coumarins, cardenolides, etc (seed with seed coat).

Medicinal Use
To treat roundworm, sterility, difficult urination and emaciation (seed and root);useful in increasing sperm count, ovulation in women, etc.; in leucorrhoea, menorrhagia, spermatorrhoea, Parkinson's (seed); in facial paralysis and nervous disorders (root); purifies the blood, cures rheumatism, asthma, cough, stone in the bladder and improves vitality (root decoction). Leaf paste is applied to ulcers. This herb is being investigated as a possible remedy for AIDS.

For seeds as 3 - 6 gm and 10 % L-dopa extract 300 - 600 mg

Contraindicated during Pregnancy.


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