Herbs-Treat and Taste is about herbs and spices and their uses in medicine and cookery.We give recipes and information which enable people to have a healthier diet which can prevent certain illnesses and alleviate symptoms such as a cough, sore throat etc.There is information on different herbs,their history ,what other people think or thought about them and what we think.
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Aak in Urdu, Sodom’s Apple or Swallow-wort in English has the Latin name Calotropis procera. It is highly poisonous and should be treated with great care. If you get the juice in your eyes it causes instant blindness. Suicides have used it and it is an arbortifacient. Despite this it also has amazing healing powers and has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries. It is native to Pakistan and parts of India.
Modern medical research is still underway on the properties of this plant, but it has been found to have antifungal properties and can be used to cure skin fungal diseases such as athlete’s foot and ringworm. It has also been found to have anti-carcinogenic properties in laboratory tests. It is also an effective anti-inflammatory agent. It contains the toxic glycosides uscharin, Calotropis and calotoxin. Uscharin is an effective killer of land snails if they become pestilential.
It also has anti-coagulant properties, so could help prevent blood clots although it has so far not been tested on humans.
In Ayurvedic medicine it is used for many purposes: the powdered leaves help wounds heal quickly are good for indigestion, liver disorders, constipation, intestinal worms and skin problems.
The flowers are used as a drink with milk to cure colds, coughs, catarrh and asthma. They are also used to cure piles.
The leaves can be boiled and used as a hot poultice to relieve stomach pains, headaches and sprains. A tincture made from the leaves is said to be good for fevers.
Parts of the plant are also given as an aphrodisiac and a sedative, and as it was found to stimulate the blood flow, it probably can help men with erectile dysfunctions.
The skin from the root is used in decoctions for skin problems.
It grows prolifically here and is considered a weed, although it was a sacred plant in Vedic times as the leaves were used in sun-worshipping ceremonies. The ancient Arabic nomadic tribes also had superstitions regarding this plant and may also have used it in sun-worshipping rituals.
The best advice I can give you though is to stay away from the plant if you don’t know what you are doing; it is highly dangerous and can kill.