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Tamarind (Imli, tentul)


Tamarind is botanically known as Tamarindi indica. It is also known as 'Jamdutika'. Chemically it contains vitamin C, tartaric acid, polysaccharide and oxalic acid. It is a tonic, carminative, laxative, dagestive, febrifuge, refrigerant and antiseptic. It is very useful in habitual constiveness, alcoholic intoxication, dhatura poisoning, bilious vomiting, febrile disorders and dysentery. The tender leaves and flowers are eaten as vegetable which are very cooling and antibilious; their decoction is given to children as an anthelmintic; it is also useful in jaundice. A, poultice of the fresh leaves is locally applied over inflammatory swelling of ankles and joints, sprains, boils, sore eyes and scabies. The pulp of the fruit is stimulant to the liver and cures digestive disorders. It is also very useful in curing burning sensation of the hands and feet during autumn and spring seasons.

Tamarinds are largely used in Indian cookery­in curries, salads and chutney. They contain vitamin C and are very useful in preventing and curing scurvy. The pulp of the ripe fruit is used in acute constipation and liver disorders like jaundice. The powdered seeds are given in dysentery. They are also applied locally for contracting the vaginal passage.

Dr. C.C. Thakur in his book 'Introduction to Ayurveda' has said that sweet tarmarind subsides pitta (bile). It is an appetiser, digestive, stimulant to the liver, stomachic, good for heart and satisfies thirst. It is also good for retention of semen. It cures acidity, digestive disorders, dysentery, stomach troubles, arthritis, and all sorts of pains.

According to J.F. Dastur, the pulp of the ripe fruit is very useful in sun-stroke, heat-stroke, bilious fevers, alcoholic intoxication, dhatura poisoning, vomiting, car-sickness and travel sickness.

Ayurvedacharya Sivakali Bhattachazjee in his book 'Chiranjib Banaushadhi' has described tamarind as very useful in alcoholic intoxication, dhatra poisoning, sun-stroke, heat-stroke, allergy, loss of memory, bilious vomiting and bilious disorders.

Dr. S.K. Jain in his book 'Medicinal Plants' has said that the pulp of the ripe fruit is generally given in bilous fevers, vomiting, alcoholic intoxication, acute constipation, sun-stroke, and heat-stroke. It has got laxative properties. Its infusion in water forms a very refreshing drink in summer days.

Benefit and uses of Tamarind.

  • The tamarind pulp, leaves, and bark also have medical applications. Tarmarind uses in herbal tea for reducing malaria fever. Due to its medicinal value, tamarind is used as an Ayurvedic Medicine for gastric and/or digestion problems.
  • Tamarind is used most frequently in tamarind juice, which is a natural coolant for the body and enjoyed by many during these hot Caribbean days.
  • The pulp is used for making sauces, curries and beverages. It cures dysentery and boils on human skin. A preparation from the seed is useful for sizing cotton, woolens and jute fabrics and dying silk. The seed oil serves as a varnish for toys, dolls, idols.
  • Tamarind is used in cases of gingivitis and asthma and eye inflammations; and lotions and poultices made from the bark are applied on open sores and caterpillar rashes.
  • The tamarind powdered seeds are made into a paste for drawing boils and, with or without cumin seeds and palm sugar, are prescribed for chronic diarrhea and dysentery.
  • The leaves are some times used in subacid infusions, and a decoction is said to destroy worms in children, and is also useful for jaundice, and externally as a wash for sore eyes and ulcers.
  • Tamarind pulp, being rich in vitamin C, is valuable in preventing and curing scurvy. It is significant that tamarind does not lose its antiscorbutic property on drying as in case of other fruits and vegetables.
  • Tamarind crushed with water and made into a poultice, the leaves are applied on inflamed joints and ankles. It reduces swelling and pain.


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