Cassia Angustifolia (senna plant) benefits, uses and side effects

Cassia Angustifolia is a small, perennial plant which remains branched and drought resistant. It grows as an under-shrub to a height of 60-75 cm. The pale-green erect stems have long spreading branches, each with 4-5 pairs of leaves. The leaves are complex, feathery, and mutual. Fully edged leaflets have a sharp top. The big, yellow coloured interior raceme blossoms tend to brown. The broadly oblong, compressed, and flat, legume fruit has horns. They contain 6 six seeds.

Cassia Angustifolia plant medicinal uses and side effects (Senna)

Common name

The common name of this plant is Senna. People also call it Alexandrian senna or Egyptian senna. It is also popular as Tinnervelly Senna and Cassia Senna. In India, we call it as Swarna Patri.

Botanical name or family

It has the botanical name Cassia Angustifolia. It belongs to the Caesalpiniaceae family.

Common geological places where senna plant grows

It is a native to Sudan. It also grows in India in the southern states of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Karnataka.

Cassia Angustifolia Medicinal uses

The leaves of the plant have found a use for curing medical conditions since the olden times. The medicinal property is due to the anthraquinone glycosides.

Laxative: The dried leaves of the Senna plant find use as a powerful purgative. It is good for treating indigestion and constipation. Casia Angustifolia restores the metabolic imbalances that arise from indigestion. It cures abdominal distention. Abdominal distention occurs mainly due to disturbances in the bowel function but may also occur as a result of malabsorption, IBS, or other diseases. Find constipation home remedies.

Blood purifier: It clears the toxins from the blood. Take one glass of the decoction of the leaves of the Senna plant daily in the morning.

Good to fight inflammation: It gives relief for those suffering from gout, rheumatoid arthritis, and osteoarthritis. You can apply the paste of the leaves on the region of the joints to get good relief. Find home remedies for rheumatoid arthritis.

Improve general condition: By having the tea prepared from Senna leaf, you can improve the general condition of the body. People who feel weak or less energetic in the morning should take the tea. It will give them pep and keep them energetic right through the day.

senna seeds, fruit and leaf

Treat headaches: For slight to medium headaches, use Senna tea. Drink the tea when a headache comes. Wait for ten minutes and see whether a headache disappears. If not, have another cup after half an hour.

Treat skin diseases: If you have skin diseases, you must apply the paste of the leaves with vinegar to the affected parts of the body. This is good for treating the condition and giving relief from scratching and pain. Do this whenever there is an outbreak of the symptoms or until the symptoms vanish.

Cathartic: You get relief from stress and emotions by having the preparation made from the leaves. This is useful for all the office goers who have too much pent up emotions. Take the tea prepared from the leaves of the Senna plant. This will help ease the tensions immediately.

Antipyretic: You can use the decoction made from the leaves to treat fever. Take 20 grams of the powdered leaves and steep it in hot water. Let it remain for 10 minutes. Then, filter, cool, and drink the decoction. Do this morning and evening until the fever passes.

Improve the complexion: You can improve the skin tone by applying the paste on the face and hands. This is a beauty preparation. For best effect, add some sandal powder and neem oil to make the paste. It will improve the skin tone and brighten the skin. Through the continuous application, you can lighten dark spots and remove blemishes.

Vermifuge: For those suffering from an infestation of worms in the intestine, the best cure is the powder of Senna taken early in the morning. The Cassia Angustifolia plant induces intestinal peristalsis that removes the worms immediately.

Diuretic: Senna induces urination in the person. This is useful for people who have infections of the bladder.

Good for the liver: The action of the Senna leaves in removing the toxins from the liver and making liver function normal is useful. It relieves excess pitta from the body and is useful for treating conditions of Hepatomegaly and abnormal enlargement of the spleen (Splenomegaly). The dried leaves or pods of the plant find a use for this. It stimulates the liver to produce the enzymes needed by our body.

Good for a cough: Take the powdered leaves and put it in 3-4 cups of water. Bring the water to a boil, filter, and cool the water. Have this two to three times a day to get relief from coughs and blocked nostrils.

Carminative: It helps relieve flatulence. If you have a problem with gas, take the tea prepared from the leaves of the Senna plant. It will stimulate your GI tract and remove excess gas immediately.

Heal skin wounds: If you have a skin wound, you can apply the paste of the leaves on the skin to get relief. The wound heals fast. It has good antimicrobial action.

Anti-dysenteric: People suffering from dysentery will find relief by using Senna. The Senna preparation in the form of tea will help to improve bowel conditions.

Good for the appetite: The Senna leaf has substances that improve the digestive system. By having the decoction of the leaves of Senna, you can improve your appetite.

Anaemia: You can use the leaves of the Cassia Angustifolia plant to cure anemia. Take the decoction of the leaves thrice a day. This will induce the production of blood platelets. You will soon get relief for your anemia.

Continued use of Senna will lead to severe purgation and abdominal cramps. You will have symptoms of dehydration. The side effects of Senna are excessive salivation and thirst. Use Senna with ginger powder, sugar candy, and rock salt, so the side effects remain minimized.

People who have spasmodic constipation, fever, piles, or inflammatory conditions of the alimentary canal should not take Cassia Angustifolia. Even otherwise frequent use is not recommended as this may lead to dependence on the system. In the case of breastfeeding women, the action of Senna is to induce mild purgation in the infant.

References

  1. http://www.101herbs.com/
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/
  3. http://www.planetayurveda.com/

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