Tuvaraka – Hydnocarpus laurifolia – Qualities, Research

Tuvaraka plant is an ancient Ayurvedic herb used mainly in the treatment of skin diseases. It is in use since the time of Sushruta.
Its botanical name is Hydnocarpus wightiana / Hydnocarpus laurifolia.
It belongs to Flacourtiaceae family. 

Vernacular names, Sanskrit synonyms

Common names:
Hindi name – Chalmogra, Chalmoogra
Bengali name – Choulmogara
Kannada name – Garuda Phala
Marathi name – Kadu Kaveet
Malayalam name – Kodi
Tamil name – Maravattai
Farsi name – Phiranjamogra
Telugu name – Adavi Badam

Sanskrit synonyms:
Katu Kapittha – Has pungent tasting fruit that looks similar to Kapittha fruit. 
Kushta Vairi – Enemy of skin diseases
Alasakaapaha – useful in indigestion

Classical categorization

Sushruta and Vagbhata have classified this herb as  Ubhayato bhagahara – being useful both in Vamana and Virechana treatment, capable of expelling Doshas from both oral and anal routes. 

Distribution

It is a tree found in tropical forests and Western ghats of South India.

Chemical constituents

It contains hypnocarpic acid, chaulmoorgic acid and its homologues. It also contains oleic acid and palmitic acids.

Part used

fruit rind, seeds, seed oil.

Dosage

Seed powder – 1 – 3 grams, in divided doses per day
Seed oil – 3 – 30 drops, based on doctor’s advice, usually administered along with ghee or butter.

Tuvaraka

Properties, indications

Medicinal qualities of Hydnocarpus laurifolia
Rasa – Katu, Tikta (pungent and bitter tastes)
Guna (qualities) – Snigdha (unctuous, oily), Teekshna (piercing)
Vipaka – taste conversion after digestion – Katu (pungent)
Veerya (Potency) – Ushna – hot in nature.
Effect on Tridosha – Balances Kapha Doshas.

It is useful in the treatment of
Krimi – Intestinal worms, helminthiasis, infected wounds,
Kushta – skin diseases
Jwara – Fever
Anaha – bloating
Meha – diabetes
Arsha – piles
Vranashopha – wounds with inflammation
Because of its pain relieving quality, it is used in treating neuropathy, rheumatoid arthritis and gout.

Chalmoogra oil obtained from this plant is used in the treatment of skin diseases including leprosy.

External application:
It is extensively used for external application to relieve skin disorders, itching, non healing wounds, sinuses and abscesses.  It also relieves pain.

Ayurvedic medicines

Important medicines with Tuvaraka ingredient:
Tuvaraka Taila
 (Tuvaraka Oil)
Eladi tailam –  used in hair treatment for skin diseases like allergic dermatitis, ring worm infection, urticaria.
Jatamayadi Choornam – helps to relieve burning sensation, pain and edema when applied externally.
Nisosiradi Thailam – heals wounds quickly

Research, side effects

Scientific research:
Insecticidal activity, cytogencity and metabolism of fatty acid rich fraction of Hydnocarpus laurifolia, Toxicological and Environmental Chemistry, Volume 87, Number 1, January–March 2005 , pp. 91-98(8) reference
Anti-diabetic Activity of Ethanolic Extract

Side effects:
There are no known side effects with this herb.
It is safe to use this during lactation and in children. Seek medical advice for usage during pregnancy.

Interaction with medicines, supplements

Can this be used while taking Homeopathic medicine?
Yes. This product does not react with homeopathic medicine.

Can this medicine be continued while taking supplements like multivitamin tablets, Omega 3 fatty acids etc?
Yes. Generally, this product goes well with most of the dietary supplements. However, if you are taking more than one product per day, please consult your doctor for an opinion.

With western medicines
Seek your doctor’s advice if you are taking this product along with other western (allopathic / modern) medicines. Some Ayurvedic herbs can interact with modern medicine.
If both Ayurvedic and allopathic medicines are advised together, then it is best to take Allopathic medicine first, wait for 30 minutes and then take the Ayurvedic medicine.

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