Euphorbia hirta medicinal benefits and pictures
Euphorbia hirta is a common herb mostly found in Suriname (a state in South America). It’s a hairy plant and grows as tall as 2’ in length. It bears several flowers and is clustered along with oblong leaves. The leaves appear on either side of the stem. It produces yellow fruits which appear like capsules with reddish seeds. As it’s an annual herb, it produces fruits and flowers throughout the year. Milky latex is present in every part of the plant. Its chemical composition includes tannins, sterols, glycosides, alkenes, alkaloids, triterpenoids, choline, quercetin and shikimic acid.
It is non-resistant to winters and can be easily damaged with the onset of winters. It bears monoecious flowers (which means that the flowers are either male or female and both the sexes cannot exist in the same plant) and pollination is facilitated by insects. It is well suited for well-drained soils. The plant does not grow in shade. It requires moist or dry soil.
Asthma Weed, Cats hair. It is also known as Bara dudhi in hindi.
Botanical Name and Family
Botanical Name: Euphorbia hirta
Family: Euphorbiaceae (Spurge family)
Geological area where Euphorbia hirta grows
It grows in tropical countries and is most likely native to India. Asthma Weed can be seen growing in the wild, unmanaged gardens. It mostly grows on its own in waste places. It grows in areas ranging from East Asia to Himalayas.
Medicinal uses of Euphorbia hirta
As the name suggests, it is primarily used against chronic asthma, bronchitis, emphysema and other respiratory problems. It is used against many other diseases and has endless medical benefits as listed below:
- Euphorbia hirta plant is used in treating eye related problems like conjunctivitis. This is possibly because the leaves possess an alcoholic extract, which is fairly effective against negative gram bacteria.
- A concentrated liquor form of the plant is used for gargle as a treatment for fevers, and the paste made from leaves is used on swelling, sores and skin problems.
- It is also effective against intestinal amoebic dysentery in some tropical countries. It is also known to be useful for people suffering for vomiting, diarrhea and also for constipation in some cases.
- Euphorbia hirta can also be used to control blood flow from bruises and helps to stop the bleeding.
- It is diuretic in nature. The leaf extracts has diuretic effects, which can increase the output of urine in the body.
- It can prove to be helpful against dengue fever. It has properties to re-balance the platelet count in the body, which is often reduced in dengue. It has the ability to manage electrolyte excretion, which may be the main reason for its curative properties against dengue fever.
- It has also been tried for treating syphilis. The sap is used on the blisters so as to destroy them. This process should be repeated a couple of times in a day and for several weeks to see desired results.
It may be noted that it should always be taken under proper guidance and consultation as it can also become a cause for vomiting and gastro-intestinal pain in some cases.