By Dr MS Krishnamurthy MD (Ayu), PhD
Kakamachi, an excellent source of natural iron and multiple vitamins. It is known as Black Nightshade in English and Makoi in Hindi. Its botanical name is Solanum nigrum. It is a perennial shrub found in wooded areas. The plant is characterized by its white flower and purple-black berries.
In fact Kakamachi is a classical ayurvedic herb which is having the reference from hundreds of years.
Read related: Black Nightshade Solanum nigrum: Uses, Remedies, Research, Side Effects
Vernacular names of Black nightshade:
Sanskrit – Kakamachi
Kannada- Ganikayeagida, Ganikegida, ganike, Ganikesopu, Kage hanninagids
Malayalam-Karinthakkali, Manatakkali, Manjathakkali
Tamil: Manarthakkali, Manaththakkali, Manitakkali, Maniththakkali
Urdu: Makoh, mako
The plant is well known for its potent anti-inflammatory, cholegogue, antioxidant,haemetenic diuretic, diaphoretic, anodyne, expectorant and anti-hyperlipidemic effects.
The plant Kakamachi is used as home remedy in several health issues and important ones are explained here below-
Tooth ache, sore throat
1. Fresh juice gargling in tooth ache and sore throat:
A fist full of fresh fruits are collected and juice is made. This is retained in the mouth or gargled. This helps to reduce the repeated episodes of tooth ache and sore throat.
Post jaundice debility
2. Fruit juice with pepper powder in post jaundice debility:
The fruit of Kakamachi is taken and fresh juice is obtained. To this a pinch of pepper (or long pepper) is added and taken in empty stomach. This is very effective in promoting the appetite in jaundiced patients and to relieve the post jaundice debility.
3. Leaf juice gargling in sore throat:
The fresh juice of the leaves is taken and used to gargle. This relieves the repeated occurrence of mouth sores.
4. Plant decoction in dysuria:
The whole plant of Kakamachi is taken – cut into small pieces. – 2 tablespoon of this is added to 2 cups of water, boiled and reduced to half a cup. This is consumed once or twice a day, to relieve dysuria and such other urinary troubles.
5. Fine paste of kakamachi leaf in skin diseases:
Mature leaves are taken and fine paste is made. This is applied over the joints in gouty arthritis and eruptive skin lesions. This has shown significant benefits in these conditions.
6. Fresh leaf subji (curry without salt and spice) in leucoderma:
Mature leaves are cooked by sprinkling 1-2 pinch of turmeric powder and half spoon of organic jaggery. This kind of subji is well indicated in leucoderma and in Rajasthan this kind of unique dietary recommendation is found.
The tiny fruits of Kakamachi are similar to the iron pills. Regular intake of the fresh fruits surely help to the anemic patients in large.Much awareness and education to use the chemical free, non adulterant, nutritious fruits like Kakamachi will undoubtedly fulfill the dietary need also. Developing the attitude towards such an approach is the need of the hour.
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