Citrullus Colocynthis

Citrullus Colocynthis 

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Common name: Bitter Apple, Colocynth, Bitter cucumber, Egusi, Vine of Sodom
Bengali: indrayan, panjot, indrabaruni
Hindi: badi indrayan, ghorumba, indarayan
Kannada: hamekkae, hara-mekki-kayi
Malayalam: kattuvellari
Marathi: kadu-indravani
Sanskrit: atmaraksha, brihadvaruni, brihatphala
Tamil: kumatti, pey-komatti
Telugu: chitti-papara
Urdu: hanzal, indyaran, shahme-hinzal
Botanical name: Citrullus colocynthis     
Family: Cucurbitaceae (Pumpkin family)
Synonyms: Cucumis colocynthis, Colocynthis vulgaris

Medicinal use of bitter apple

Colocynth or Bitter apple is an annual or perennial creeper growing wild in the warm, arid and sandy tracts of North West, Central and Southern parts of the India. Colocynth is, in moderate doses is drastic, hydrogogue, cathartic and diuretic. In small doses, it is expectorant and alterative. Colocynthin is a cathartic and intensely bitter principle. It has a purgative action. All parts of the plant are very bitter. The fruit has been described as cathartic.

General Information

  • Latin name: Citrullus colocynthis (Linn. ) Schrader. syn. Cucumis colocynthis Linn
  • Family: Cucurbitaceae
  • Ayurvedic: Indravaaruni, Indravalli, Indravaarunikaa, Gavaakshi, Chitraa, Chitraphalaa, Indraasuri, Mrigaani, Mrigairvaaru,
  • Vishaalaa, Vishaalyka, Indraayana,  Aindri
Bengali: Rakhal
English: Colocynth, Bitter apple
Gujarati: Indrayan
Hindi: Badi indrayan, Makkal
Kannada: Havumekke
Malyalam: Kattu Vellarikkai, Valiya Pekkummatti
Indrayanalata, Garukhiya
Punjabi: Indrayana
Tamil: Peitummatti
Telgu: Chedupuchcha, Peikummatti
Urdu: Hanjal
Unani: Hanzal.
Siddha: Kumatti
Marathi: Endrayana
Oriya: Gothakakudi

Medicinal uses of bitter apple

  • Boils, pimples

    Externally apply fruit pulp at affected area.
  • Pimples, Acne

    Wash to clean roots of herb. Then extract its juice by crushing and adding water. Apply externally at affected areas.
  • Constipation

    Take its fruit juice (150 ml), add (1/4 teaspoon each) of hing, ajwain, elaichi, rock salt. Mix this juice (1/4 tsp) in lukewarm water and drink.
  • Piles, rheumatism

    Prepare pills by grinding Piper longum and Roots of citrullus colocynthis in eqaul quantities. Dry in sun. Take one pill with water.
  • Breast inflammation, joint pain

    Apply paste of root on affected area.
  • Cough, intestinal worm

    Wash and dry roots of herb. Grind to make powder. Add thus prepared churna (one pinch) in hot water and drink.

Dosage of bitter apple

The safe dosage of this herb, dried fruit 125-500 mg powder, root: 1-3 gm powder

Side effects of bitter apple

In large doses it can cause stomach problems, It is emetic and gastro-intestinal irritant.
The white pulp of Citrullus colocynthis extracted in water has diverse healing properties few of which are;
1. VERMIFUGE action, that is worm expelling action .
2. Administered in cases of CHRONIC CONSTIPATION to procure free evacuation of the bowel.
3. The extract of the fruit pulp is utilized in the treatment of URINARY TRACT INFECTIONS.
4. It is effective in the treatment of ASCITES.
5. Research shows that it helps in SHRINKING TUMORS , BENIGN as well as CANCEROUS tumors.
6.When challenged by SKIN ERUPTIONS , there is no better herb to administer in our geographical zone comparable to Citrullus colocynthis . For BOILS, a poultice of the fruit’s pulp is applied topically twice daily.
9. This plant has ANTI CANDIDA ACTIVITY.
10. Can be relied on for the treatment of LUNG INFECTIONS.
11. It STIMULATES and INCREASES MENSTRUAL l FLOW and as such is useful for ladies suffering from SCANTY MENSES . However, this plant is prohibited in pregnancy
13. It can help to REESTABLISH FLOW of menses in cases of ceased menses also referred to as AMENORRHEA .
14. It induces INSULIN SECRETION n from pancreas.
15. It STIMULATES HAIR GROWTH when applied on scalp.
16. This herbs has a deep BLOOD CLEANSING effect.
17. Bitter apple assists the treatment of ARTHRITIS and RHEUMATISM .
18.This plant possesses strong ANTI INFLAMMATORY property.
19. It promotes BILE secretion.
20. Bitter apple is utilized in the treatment of LEUKEMIA.

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