Benefits of Indian Acalypha
Herbs a to z
Indian acalypha is an erect annual herb, growing up to 75 cms. It has numerous long, angular, branches covered with soft hair. Its thin egg-shaped leaves have a smooth surface. The flowers are in erect, long spikes. It has small hairy fruits; and minute pale brown seeds. The whole plant is collected in its flowering stage and dried.
The plant contains the alkaloid acalyphine which is an active principle.
The roots, leaves and young shoots of the plant have medicinal value. The drug increases the secretion and discharge of urine and is a laxative. The juice of the leaves is an efficient emetic for inducing vomiting. The root in small doses is expectorant and nauseant It helps remove catarrhal matter and phlegm from the bronchial tubes.
The herb is of special value in treating croup, a disease mostly occuring in children. It is characterized by cough and difficulty in breathing and is caused by an obstruction in the larynx. The herb is safe to use in this condition and also acts fast. The juice can be administered in doses of I teaspoon. The dose may be increased to 4 teaspoons according to age.
The herb is useful in killing intestinal worms. The juice of the leaves or their decoction, mixed with a little garlic, can be given for such symptoms.
A decoction of the leaves is an effective laxative and thus is useful in constipation. A suppository of the fresh leaves, introduced in the rectum of small children suffering from constipation, induces free motions.
The drug is useful as an external application in skin diseases. A paste of its fresh leaves is applied to the affected parts. The juice of fresh leaves can be applied for scabies and other skin diseases, such as syphilitic ulcers, bedsores, maggot- infested sores and wounds.
Indian acalypha is a popular remedy in rheumatism. The juice of the fresh leaves is applied mixed with lime and onion. A mixture of the fresh juice and oil can be applied in rheumatic arthritis.