Ayurveda recommends neem for acne, pimples, psoriasis, dandruff , obesity and diabetes. Ayurvedic Home remedies with neem Leaves, bark, seeds and flower help in these conditions.
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About Neem Plant
Neem which has its botanical name as Azadirachta indica is a famous tree which is equipped with numerous medicinal properties, beneficial to treat many diseases and serves as ingredients in many home remedy. It is usually grown in the Indian subcontinent and now in some parts of the Middle East. It belongs to a mahogany family named Meliaceae.
It is a fast growing, ever green tree which reaches the height of 15 to 20 meters. Its trunk is short and straight . Leaves are alternate, and Pinnate. It needs hot climate to grow and grown mainly in Burma, India and Pakistan
The trees of neem grow faster and spread leaves broadly to bring out white and fragrant flowers and small drupe fruits which are characterized by bittersweet pulp. Neem leaves are the most important parts of the neem tree, and they are widely used in many subcontinent industries for many medicinal products such as oil, herb, pest repellent, and much more.
Chemical composition of neem:
Neem tree has numerous medicinal properties by virtue of its chemical compounds. Seeds of the Neem tree contain the highest concentration of Azadirachtin. Apart from Azadirachtin , salannin, gedunin, azadirone, nimbin, nimbidine, nimbicidine, nimbinol, etc are other important liminoids of neem.
Uses of neem in horticulture:
Neem has been the most traditionally used plant in India , Pakistan and Africa to protect grains and cereals from pests. Fresh neem leaves are mixed with grains and cereals before storing. A paste of fresh neem leaves is rubbed against the wall of large mud bins or gunny bags in which the grains and cereals are stored. Some times a thick layer of dry neem leaves are spread over grains. Neem oil extracted from seeds acts as best bio-pesticide. Jute sacks treated with neem oil or extracts of neem are used to store food grains. Neem oil is a very cheap and effective house hold pesticide to protect grains and legumes from pests. Neem is being used to protect stored roots and tubers from potato moth.
Azadirachtin is available in high concentration in neem seeds. It is used as “botanical pesticide” which is environmentally friendly. It prevents insects from feeding on plants and regulates the growth of insects. Neem extracts do not harm the insects like bees, spiders and butterflies which help in pollination.
Neem in Ayurveda
Neem is known for its immeasurable medicinal properties and is used as a main ingredient in many home remedies. Commending the medicinal properties of neem, numerous sanskrit names have been coined by our ayurveda acharyas . Few of them are mentioned here. Neem is known as Nimba in ayurveda. It means it boosts health. It is praised as Pichumarda as it destroys skin diseases. As it is used to ward off evil powers that harm our body , it is known as Arishta.
The Indian languages have different names for this plant. LOCAL NAMES(in India) :neem (Hindi), nim (Bengali), kadunimb (Marathi), margosa tree (English), vembu (Tamil), Bevu (Kannada), limado (Gujarati)
Ayurvedic Medicinal Properties of neem
Texts of ayurveda describe medicinal properties of neem as follows
It is light to digest Laghu (lite), and has tikta rasa (bitter taste) and katu rasa (spicy taste) . It acts as a body coolant and balances kapha dosha and pitta dosha. It is mainly recommended for treatment of skin diseases and for ayurvedic liver detox
Ayurveda Health Benefits and Uses of Neem
The tree of neem contains numerous chemical compounds to provide many medicinal properties such as anti-arthritic, spermicidal, anti-inflammatory, antipyretic, antibacterial, diuretic, antimalarial, hypoglycaemic, and anti-fungal properties. The seeds, leaves, flower, and bark of neem are employed in the Ayurvedic medicinal preparations and as well as home remedies for many health problems.
Heals wound fast
Neem oil ,Flowers bark leaves leaves are all used to treat wounds on skin. It cleanses the wound and accelerates healing process. It speeds up granulation tissue generation and helps to reduce scars. Neem helps to dry wounds.
Cleanses Digestive system.
This plant increases appetite, eliminates intestinal parasites, improves taste, and detoxifies liver. It balances pitta which in turn balances agni (digestive fire). Hence it is praised as agnikrut . Due to its detoxifying properties it helps to keep organ systems healthy, especially circulatory, digestive, respiratory and urinary systems.
Clears Skin Diseases
The neem is proved to be beneficial in treating skin diseases because of its antibiotic, anti-fungal and blood purifying properties. According to ayurveda principles, vitiated Kapha and pitta cause skin diseases. Neem pacifies vitiated kapha and pitta, thus helps to cure skin ailments.
Its fresh leaves’ juice helps treat skin diseases. Its blood purifying, and anti-fungal properties help to heal ailments like Acne, pimples and fungal infection.It promotes wound healing as it is antibacterial and astringent. It reduces infection and inflammation of acne. Neem also acts as anti-dandruff herb when used with oil. Neem helps to maintain the health of scalp skin and prevents dandruff. It helps to remove scalp acne and reduce dandruff . It is also useful to get rid of back acne.
Useful in Psoriasis
In psoriasis it reduces itching, irritation, roughness of skin and heals the psoriatic patches. In same way it heals eczema too. Neem when used internally along with herbs like Turmeric (Curcuma longa), Tulsi (Ocimum sanctum), Vidanga (Embelia Ribes) helps to reduce skin ailments like psoriasis . Its anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritic properties helps in psoriatic arthritis too.
Helps in fever, cough and cold
Bark of neem is very useful in fever, cough and cold. Its decoction reduces thirst and acts as body coolant.
Its oil is used in joint and muscular pain. Neem oil is very useful in arthritis (amavata).
Maintains oral hygiene
Tender branches of neem tree are used for brushing teeth. Its oil is useful to massage gums and reduces inflammation of gums.
Reduces Cholesterol and Obesity
Using Neem in Diabetes
Neem is household name in India when home remedies are concerned. Ayurveda acharyas have quoted lengthy verses in praise of neem. Neem with its medicinal properties rejuvenates liver and normalizes its function. The toxins accumulated in liver are regularly expelled with continuous consumption of neem. This helps to regularize the varying blood cholesterol and blood sugar level.
Neem also helps to rejuvenate the skin. Diabetic patients are more prone to itchy skin and dry skin. Regular use of neem, assists skin to slowly overcome this condition.
In my clinical practice I have obtained positive feed backs from diabetic patients after using preparations and home remedies of neem.
Here are few home remedies of neem which may help diabetic patients. (Please consult your family physician before using these home remedies, as neem quickly reduces blood sugar level. )
For uncontrolled blood sugar:
Please note that following a strict diet is very important to keep this condition under control. Uncontrolled blood sugar leads to erectile dysfunction, low sperm count, low libido, and heart and kidney problems.
Collect 2-3 tea spoons of fresh neem flowers and tender neem leaves. Soak them overnight and crush it in blender with little water. Squeez the juice and mix ½ cup of water .Drink this in empty stomach in morning. Neem flowers and neem leaves can be collected during blossoming season and dried powder of this mixture can be used when the season ends. Take care to dry this mixture in hot sun and store in cool dry place.
Diabetic Skin infection
Diabetics usually experience frequent skin infections due to bacteria, fungus and yeast. Applying a pack of crushed neem leaves once in a week help to prevent these infections. Collect fresh neem leaves and blend it to a fine paste. Apply this paste as body pack and wash it off after 20 minutes. Dried neem powder can be used if fresh neem leaves are not available. Mix plain water to dried neem powder and allow it to soften for 15 minutes before applying. This body pack may cause dry skin. Apply moisturizer after bath to overcome dryness of skin.
Add few drops of neem oil to bathing water. This helps to keep the microbes away.
In Diabetic foot:
When you have fungal infection between toes wash your feet with luke warm water and dry completely with a soft towel (pat dry). Take care to dry thoroughly between toes. Apply turmeric mixed with neem oil at night between toes and wash it off with luke warm water and mild soap in morning. Repeat the same in morning.
Ayurvedic Home remedies with neem
- Apply Crushed fresh leaves of neem on acne. In case of body acne mix fine paste of fresh neem leaves in little water and smear this mixture on back, chest and shoulders.
- In itching, application of neeem oil on affected areas helps. Boil neem leaves in a big bowl of water and mix this in bathing water. This reduces body itch.
- Massaging neem oil to scalp removes head lice and prevents formation of dandruff.
- Mix dry neem powder, shikakai and amla in water and apply this as pack on head . This pack has to be kept for 45 minutes and washed off later. This prevents hair loss and dandruff. Fresh neem leaves can also be used instead of dry neem powder.
- A freshly prepared paste of turmeric, neem and sesame seeds is recommended in ayurveda for fungal infection between toes.
- Fumigating the house with smoke of dried neem leaves in evenings for 1-2 minutes is an excellent ayurvedic method to keep mosquitoes away.
Neem flower recipe
Neem flower pachidi is prepared from roasted neem flower and is a famous dish in South India which is prepared during ugadi. Neem flower rasam improves digestion and is very popular in Andhra and Tamilnadu.
Extract of skin friendly neem is being used in manufacturing bathing soaps, hair gels, body lotions etc. These products are gaining popularity in market.
Neem is blessed with many essential properties that arrive at its numerous health benefits as stated above. However, despite these incredible benefits, it is worthy of mention that neem is not advisable to be used by toddlers or infants and those with liver or kidney problems should consult their health care professionals before using any part of this tree. Neem also contains a little sedative nature, and because of this, it should be consumed in moderation especially when taking along with other prescribed drugs. Apart from this, neem is beneficial to both body and soul to enhance overall body health.
Consult Dr.Savitha Suri for ayurvedic remedies. Email [email protected] . WhatsApp + 91 6360108663
Author : Dr. Savitha Suri Consultant Ayurvedic Physician
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