Also known as
Latin : Melia azaderach
English : Margosa tree
Sanskrit : Nimbah
HJindi : Neem
Marathi : Nimba
Tamil : Vempu, Veppai
Telugu : Kondavepa
Malayalam : Veppu
Kannada : Turagavepu
Neem is probably one of the oldest and most widely used medicinal plants in India. It has been an inherent part of traditional festivals like "Ugadi", the Telugu new year's day,
where a chutney is made of the flowers. It is the most recognized and medicinally valued tree in India
How it looks—It is a moderate sized deciduous tree with a cylindrical dark grey trunk with shallow furrowed bark. The leaves are serrated and the flowers are lilac, fragrant with a
prominent staminal tube. The fruits are globose and 4-seeded and turn yellow when ripe.
What we use—Roots, leaves, seeds, flowers.
What it does—Roots—bitter, astringent, anodyne, depurative, antiseptic, anthelmintic, constipating, expectorant, urinary astringent, emmenagogue, tonic.
Leaves—astringent, expectorant, vermicidal, diuretic, emmenagogue, stomachic.
Seeds—expectorant, anthelmintic, aphrodisiac
Flowers—astringent, refrigerant, stomachic, vermifuge, diuretic, emmenagogue.
How we use it—
In intestinal parasites—Take about 10 drops of neem oil in a glass of your favourite beverage to get rid of worms and other infestations.
You could also use the fresh leaf juice of neems with a pinch of rock salt for the same effect.
In eruptive fevers—Drink neem decoction from time to time in chicken pox and measles to get rid of vesicles and stroke the itching lesions with neem leaves. Making a bed of neem leaves
is a very useful idea. When the lesions dry up, grind turmeric rhizome and neem leaves and paste it on the healing boils to hasten recovery and as a disinfectant Use neem - boiled
water to take bath in.
In mumps—Make a paste of neem and turmeric to apply on the swellings for reduction of pain and inflammation.
In ear inflammation—Instill a drop or two of neem oil in the painful- ear to bring down infection and dry any collection of pus and wax.
In itching vagina—Wash the area with warm water and then with neem decoction. This helps to immediately relieve itching and keeps the area germ-free.
Teeth care—Neem twigs as toothbrushes have been popular for centuries. They act by virtue of their natural astringent, antiseptic and anthelmintic activities to keep the oral cavity
clear of gum and tooth infections, pyorrhoea and ulcers.
In skin infection—The best known use of neem is its property of keeping the skin clear and free of infections, which is why neem-boiled water was used for bath until recent times.
The internal use of neem decoction too helps control even obstinate skin diseases like leprosy and psoriasis, while curing scabies, urticaria, allergic rashes and the like.
Using neem oil for external application is a surefire remedy for wet, oozing lesions and accompanying inflammation and itching.
In jaundice—Drink the diluted juice of the tender neem leaves with a tsp of honev to flush out toxins in liver disorders.
Recent experimental studies in Delhi on leaf extracts of neem showed its immunopotentiating and adaptogenic effects in mice.
1. Anti hyperglycemic activity of neem leaf extract was observed in experimental studies on non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus - induced rats.
2. Antifertility effects of aqueous and steroidal extract of neem leaf were observed in an experimental study in West Indies.
3. Immunomodulatory effects of NIM-76, a volatile fraction of neem oil were found in experimental studies in Delhi.
4. Anti diabetic and antihyperlipemic effects of neem seed powder were observed in experimental studies in Baroda.
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