Babool tree or Babbula – Acacia nilotica Linn.is an ayurvedic herb used in the treatment of skin diseases, dhat syndrome, bleeding disorders and to treat intestinal worms.
Botanical Name-Acacia nilotica Linn. Acacia arabica, Mimosa nilotica
Vachellia nilotica, Acacia scorpioides, Mimosa arabica Mimosa nilotica
Names in different languages:
English name – Babul, Indian gum Arabic tree
Hindi name – Babbul, Keekar
Bengali name – Baabla
Kannada name – Jaali Mara
Tamil name- Karuvel
Telugu name – Nallatumma
Sanskrit Synonyms of Babul Tree
Yugmakanta- Two spikes are seen together
Dridaruha- The stem and branches of the plant are strong
Sookshma patra- The leaves are small in appearance
Malaphala- The fruit pods resemble a chain
Kantaki – has spikes,
Sapeetaka, Peetapushpa – yellow flowers
Kashayakaha – natural astringent
Classical categorization, Habitat
Kaiyyadeva Nighantu- Oushadhi varga
Shodala Nighantu- Amradi varga
Bhava Prakasha- Vatadi varga
Babbula is a small tree growing to a height of up to 8-10 m containing small spikes. This tree is found in the dry regions of whole of India.
Properties, part used, dose
Acacia arabica medicinal Properties:
Rasa (taste) – Kashaya – Astringent
Veerya – Sheeta – Coolant
Guna (qualities) – Guru – Heavy to digest, Rooksha – Dry in nature
Vipaka- Katu – Undergoes pungent taste conversion after digestion
Karma- Kapha Hara – Balances Kapha Dosha.
Babbula plant – part used- Stem bark, fruit, gum, seeds.
The Niryasa (Gum resin) is Pitta- Vatahara (reduces pitta and vata dosha). It helps in reducing the swelling of the uterus.
The stem bark and the pods act against the intestinal worms and help in coagulation of the blood.
20-30 g for decoction, 50 – 100 ml of Decoction per day, in divided doses.
3-6 g of seed powder
Acacia gum – 2 – 3 grams per day.
Major chemical constituents
The bark and pods contains 12-20% of tannin. Several polyphenolic compounds have been reported from the bark and pods of the plant Acacia nilotica. The gum resin of the plant contains galactose, aldobio uronic acid and arabinobioses. It also contains about 52% of calcium and 20% of magnesium. The flowers contain flavonoids- kaempferol-3-glucoside, iso-quercitrin and leucocyanidin.
Uses of Acacia nilotica:
- The paste of the bark of the plant Acacia nilotica is applied over oozing eczemas.
- The powder of the dried leaves is sprinkled over fresh wounds to control bleeding.
- In case of rectal prolapse, the patient is advised sitz bath over the decoction prepared from the bark of the Indian Babbul plant.
- The decoction prepared from the bark of the plant Acacia nilotica is used for gargling in the diseases of mouth ulcer and bleeding gums.
- The paste from the leaves of the plant is applied over wound and injury caused due to contact with fire.
- The decoction of the plant is given in a dosage of 40-50 ml to treat diarrhea and to treat intestinal worms.
- The decoction prepared from the pods of the plant Babbul is used to treat excessive bleeding during menstruation.
- The decoction of the pods and bark, in a dosage of 45-50 ml is given to treat bleeding piles and hemorrhoids.
- The leaves are crushed – 2 – 3 grams, and consumed along with a teaspoon of sugar, once or two times a day, for the treatment of spermatorrhoea / Dhat syndrome or nightfall.
Babool for arthritis:
Babool gum powder – 3 grams is added to a cup of water, heated for 2 – 3 minutes and consumed once a day. This is useful in relieving arthritis. This can be continued for 1 month time.
Kikar pod powder is made paste with pain relieving oils such as Mahanarayana taila and applied locally to treat painful joints, arthritis, muscular pain, etc.
Traditional indications of Babbul plant:
Kaphaja Kasa – cough, cold with sputum and heaviness, due to Kapha Dosha
Ama – A product of indigestion and altered metabolism
Raktatisara – diarrhea with bleeding, as in ulcerative colitis
Pittahara – useful in Pitta imbalance disorders such as gastritis, burning sensation, etc.
Daha – burning sensation, as in gastritis, neuropathy, burning sensation in eyes etc
Arti – relieves pain
Kushta – skin diseases
Krimi – worm infestation
Visha – Toxic conditions, poisoning
Vrana – Ulcers, wounds
Karnaroga – ear disorders with discharge
Asya roga – mouth ulcers
Nadivrana – sinuses
Sara – induces mobility, causes diarrhea, purgation, relieves constipation
Babbul fruit is –
Rooksha – dryness
Vishada – has clarity
Stambhana – blocks the channel, useful in diarrhea, bleeding disorders
Guru – heavy to digest
Ayurvedic medicines containing Babul tree:
Dasanakanti churnam- It is an herbal toothpowder sued for strengthening of the gums and tooth.
Trayodashang guggulu- It is an ayurvedic tablet used for low back ache, sciatica, arthritic pain, locked jaw.
Pepcer capsule- It is a capsule used to treat peptic ulcer, gastritis, heart burn condition.
Khadiradi gutika- The decoction of babbula plant bark is used in binding the powders used to prepare khadiradi tablet, which is used to treat cough.
Research, Side effects
Research articles on Babool tree:
Multiple health benefits: Different parts of this plant such as the leaves, roots, seeds, bark, fruits, flowers, gum and immature pods act as anti-cancer, antimutagenic, spasmogenic, vasoconstrictor, anti-pyretic, anti-asthamatic, cytotoxic, anti-diabetic, anti-platelet agregatory, anti-plasmodial, molluscicidal, anti-fungal, inhibitory activity against Hepatitis C virus (HCV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-I and antioxidant activities, anti-bacterial, antihypertensive and anti-spasmodic activities, and are also engaged for the treatment of different ailments in the indigenous system of medicine.
Anti-cancer activity: The outcome of the animal study indicates that Acacia nilotica extract could be used as natural anticancer agent for human health. – reference: APOC control, Volume 13-8, 3989-95.
Anti-microbial and anti oxidant: The study suggest that the phytochemical properties of the herb possess potential antimicrobial, antioxidant property.
Anti-fungal activity: The bark of the plant showed anti-fungal activity on in vitro study. It proved its action on candida albicans.
- Antimicrobial activity: O. Solomon-Wisdom et al (2010) has investigated in vitro antimicrobial activity of the crude ethanolic leaf extract of Acacia nilotica Linn. against Campylobacter coli isolated from goats.
- Anti-bacterial activity: Mahesh et al (2008) has observed antibacterial activity study of methanolic extracts of Acacia nilotica, showed highest antibacterial activity against B. subtilis. and Staphylococcus aureus.
- Anti- malarial activity: The root extracts of A. nilotica was active against Plasmodium berghei and Plasmodium falciparum in mice (42). In vitro Antimalarial activity against CQ sensitive (3D7) and CQ-resistant (Dd2 and INDO) strains of P. falciparum in culture using the fluorescence-based SYBR. A. nilotica was reported with significant activity and IC50 was found as 13μg/mL.
- Anti- helminthic activity: In vitro methanolic extract of Acacia nilotica fruit exhibit anthelmintic activity against Haemonchus contortus.
There are no known side effects with this medicine.
It is best to avoid this herb during constipation.
Interaction with medicines, supplements
Can this be used while taking Homeopathic medicine?
Yes. This product does not react with homeopathic medicine.
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.
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.
Babul for strong bones
Kind of formulation: This is a medicated powder.
Abha-Acacia arabica -Stem bark- 50 gram – Wound healing, stabilizer, strenghthener, tissue binding etc.
Madhu (Honey)-100 gram – Energizer, stabilizer, adaptiogenic, rejuvinative, scraping etc.
Method of preparation: The stem bark is made into fine powder and kept on immersion in honey for 3-5 days. Daily this is stirred well with a spatula or a rod. There after it is used for intake.
Dose: Altogether it is taken in the dose of 5-6 grams daily twice, after food.
Vehicle and indications: As honey is already added no separate vehicle is needed.
If the patient feels dryness, lightness of the body parts or limbs, aching pain in the extremities, neuritis/neuralgia etc followed with the features of calcium deficiency etc this is better to administer along with ghee or jaggery or both altogether.
Action: Strengtheners of the bone tissues, healing ability of the un union joints/fractures
My experience with this formulation – Dr MS Krishnamurthy
This is a confident formulation that can be used in cases like osteoporosis, sub-luxation of the joints, minor fractures, ligamental tear etc. In menopausal age this can be used daily for possible complaints what they are prone to get. The action will be multi-fold when the proper adjuvants or formulations are prescribed along with this. Abha guggulu, Lakshadi guggulu, Gandha taila etc are such formulations which will surely enhance the effect of this formulation.
Dr.B.K.Prashanth M.D (Ayu), Ph.D | E mail: [email protected]