English Name : Psoralea
Botanical Name : Psoralea corylifolia Linn
Commercial Name: Babchi
Tamil Name : கார்போகரிசி (pronounced as Kaarbokarisi)
Psoralea corylifolia is a very important plant in the Ayurvedic and Siddha (ancient Tamil medicine system). [quote_right]Psoralea is a power herb that can cure many diseases that are not cured by western medicine[/quote_right]Even in Chinese medicine Psoralea is a significant herb, the legend says that Damo (Bodhi Dharma), one of the great Buddhist monks took with him several herbs from the Tamil speaking South India to China to treat certain diseases. Psoralea is one of those herbal plants.
According to Ayurveda it pacifies vata, and directly cures a lot of diseases affecting the skin. This plant grows well in central and southern India. In the ancient Siddha texts there are several verses which explain about the power of this herb.
This herb is refered as குஷ்டனஷினி, in the siddha texts which literally means, destroyer of leprosy.
This plant has numerous bio-active compounds, and has high concentration of flavonoids and coumarins. It also has a chemical agent named genistein, which is a very power anti-cancer agent. It can also be used as an exfoliating agent, and when taken internally also detoxifies the body and especially liver.
Psoralea in Dermatology:
It detoxifies the skin and rejuvenates it. It controls hair fall (especially alopecia). It is an exceptionally powerful medicine for skin diseases like eczema, vitiligo, acne and psoriasis, the oil should be applied on the affected portion.
It treats leucoderma (vitiligo) and other skin diseases related to problems with pigmentation. The oil stimulates the melanoblast cells. Melanoblasts are the precursor cells of melanocytes, which are responsible for proper pigmentation in the skin. Hence psoralea acts a good cure for leucoderma (vitiligo) and dermatoses. These diseases don’t have a cure in modern medicine
A tonic for Reproductive organs:
This herb is a known aphrodisiac, and helps cure infertility, premature ejaculation and impotence. In childred it cures urinary disorders.
Other Medicinal benefits of Bakuchi:
- It cures cough and asthma and improves overall health of lungs and heart.
- It cures indigestion, stomach pain; it acts as an anthelmintic (an agent that kills the parasitic worms in our body).
- It is a known anti-bacterial agent and helps prevent several infections.
- It also cures lower back pain and other chronic pain in the joints.
The fruit of this plant is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent and an analgesic and hence can be consumed by people with allergies and inflammations. It is also destroys Helicobacter pylori, the germ responsible for stomach ulcers.
- Though this herb can be used seperates, most Ayurvedic and Siddha doctors advise a combination of herbs. The generally used combinations are:
- Black pepper, ginger and Psoralea for coughs
- Psoralea, Sida Cordifolia and Ashwagandha together cures a lot of reproductive disorders.
- Psoralea and Myrobalan treats urinary problems and diarrhea.
- Neem, turmeric and psoralea treats skin disorders.
This herb should not be taken by pregnant women. It should also be avoided by people undergoing PUVA therapy for skin diorders. Psoralean an agent present in the seeds is used in PUVA (PUVA is actually Psoralean UVA treatment) for treating, eczema, psoriasis and vitiligo. Since PUVA already has Psoralean, one should not consume or use this herb in addition to PUVA.