The Banaba Tree or Pride of India has many other names including Queen’s Flower and Crape Myrtle.  It is native to the Indian subcontinent where it grows wild and cultivated, and to the Philippines, South East Asia, Indonesia and Australia. It has been introduced into parts of tropical Africa, Jamaica and the USA. At the beginning of the year it starts to lose its leaves which have turned bright red or orange by that season. It can reach heights of up to 25 metres and is fast-growing (so is used as a nurse tree for slower growing saplings) with an extensive root system so is useful to stop soil erosion. It is also used as a living fence, and various items are made from its wood, including poles, decorative items and furniture. It is also used for construction and cut down for fuel by local people, who also use it for charcoal. Its bark produces a yellow dye too. However since its medicinal properties have been recognized by the West it is now an important medicinal plant and has been used for thousands of years in the Indian subcontinent as well as the Philippines and the rest of South East Asia to treat diabetes and low blood sugar levels.
   It contains corosolic acid, ellagitannins (in the fruit and leaves), triterpenoids, amino acids and flavonoids. Extensive studies of the leaves made in Japan confirmed the use of extracts from the leaves for diabetes. The corosolic acid lowers blood pressure and has insulin-like properties as do some of the amino acids, and this is what makes it so attractive to researchers. The leaves contain the minerals manganese and zinc among others, and it has been discovered that one of the side effects of banaba is very positive as it helps reduce weight and so banaba can be found in many weight control formulae in the US. Extracts obtained from the seeds (said to be narcotic) have powerful antioxidant properties and the ellagic acid compounds in banaba are being researched to discover if they can help in the treatment of HIV. Banaba may have antibiotic properties too. In fact it might provide a few “wonder drugs” after more research has been done into its properties and their effects on people. The whole plant can be used medicinally but not all parts have been researched as yet.

1 cup chopped banaba leaves
2 cups boiling water

Boil the leaves in water for 30 mins.
Strain and drink.
This has Taste and is a Treat(ment).


  1. Hello . I am interested to know the exact URDU name of BANABA . Is it grown in Pakistan as well & if so then in which area . Waiting foryour reply asap please . Thanks

  2. These trees are cultivated in Pakistan, ie planted in gardens because they are ornamental. They are not native trees. There is a name for them in West Bengal, India which is jarul. However, if you wanted to buy one you would have to ask for the Latin name, Lagerstroemia speciosa, which is grown in Pakistan.

  3. Hi, the recipe says to boil the leaves with water ~
    Should the leaves be dry or fresh?
    What is a recommended dosage?

    This article says the seeds are supposedly narcotic.
    Is there a medicinal value to this? (many medicine plants have a psychoactive component)
    How would one prepare the seeds if to ingest them?

    Thank you

  4. Fresh leaves and you drink one or two cups per day.
    Yes the seeds have antioxidant properties which means that they help fight the scavenging free-radicals which damage healthy cells and can turn them cancerous. However, most fruit and vegetables have these properties. As stated in the post, the seeds are still the subject of research.

  5. Is the species Lagerstroemia Indica the same in medicinal properties as Speciosa?

  6. No.The bark can be used for fevers, a styptic and stimulant, and it is a drastic purgative and also the leaves and flowers with the bark are diuretic, but there are other remedies for urine retention which would not have side effects, as this one might.
    A decoction of the flowers is used for colds.

  7. Is the trunk also as a medicine? i heard that the trunk is good for urine infection?pls.let me know if it is good for UTI thanks.

  8. What to actually call banaba in hindi or in local market of india????? Plz reply

  9. Where do I find this plant here in the USA or in Mexico??

  10. Can you please tell me the taste of the leaves or the the water after boiling the leaves

  11. any specific place where i can buy jaarul in bengal or kolkata

  12. My cousin drinks 2 litters using dried banaba leaves everyday after a month the banaba flushes her stone kidney. She also advised me to drink boiled banaba leaves because something blocked on my fallopian. There is no harm in trying.


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  14. En Puerto Rico le llaman reina de las flores y no conocía sus propiedades para bajar la azúcar en la sangre, aunque frente a mi casa hay un árbol de ellos.

  15. Where can i get banaba leaves in new zealand