Nux vomica plant medicinal uses, benefits and side effects

Strychnos nux vomica is a medium-sized deciduous tree that grows up to a height of 50 feet. You find in open habitats. The trunk is short and crooked. It has green, ovate leaves 5.1-8.9 cm long. The leaves are arranged in an opposite decussate arrangement. The fruits are of an orange colour. The seeds are used when they are dry. The flowers are small and green-white and bloom in winter. The wood is hard and white. The tree loves dry and humid climes and laterite, sandy, and alluvial soils.

Nux vomica medicinal uses

Common name

The common name is Kochila, Kupilu, strychnine tree, poison nut, semen strychnos and Quaker buttons.

Botanical name or Family

The botanical name is Strychnos nux-vomica, and it belongs to the Loganiaceaea.

Geographical areas where Nux vomica plant grows

It grows in India and on the Malayan Archipelago. Other than that, you can find it in northern Australia, Sri Lanka, and South East Asia. In India, you find it growing in the moist deciduous and semi-evergreen forests of Maharashtra and in the foothills of the Western Ghats.

Nux vomica leaves

Medicinal uses of Nux vomica for curing diseases

The strychnine and brucine are highly bitter and poisonous alkaloids contained in the seeds and bark. In most countries, the strychnine finds a use for killing foxes, rodents, and wild dogs. Accidental deaths happen due to absorption of the powder through the skin. The strychnine has use in alternative medicine for the treatment of various conditions.

Since it has strychnine poison, traditional doctors do not recommend the use of the Nux-vomica for medicinal purposes. In Ayurveda, they use it after first soaking the seeds in water for 5 days followed by soaking the seeds for 2 days in milk. Then the seeds are boiled in milk. The milk-boiled seeds are dried and then fried in ghee. This is powdered and used for medical purposes.

Body paralysis: For those afflicted by paralysis, the Nux-vomica seeds that have been treated and powdered is used with honey and milk to help relieve the symptoms. The action of the Nux-vomica regenerates the nerves and nervine function.

Nux vomica fruits

Liver cancer: The seeds have good cancer-fighting properties. You get favorable results when you use the powder along with your meal for a long time.

Insomnia: Have a small amount of the powder with milk before you go to bed. This will help you get good sleep. Do not use continuously.

Abdominal pain: For those suffering from abdominal pain, vomiting, and related symptoms, the use of Nux vomica seeds will provide relief. Just use half a teaspoon of the powder with honey. Have it whenever you have pain or before you go to bed.

Poison rats: A few houses use high doses of Nux vomica sold as rat poison to kill wild animals and rats. One must be careful while handling the poison.

Anemia: You can get rid of the symptoms of anemia by having controlled doses of Nux vomica. The herb will stimulate the production of red blood cells and help overcome the symptoms of anemia.

Liver problems: The health of the liver improves when you use small amounts of the powdered seed of Nux vomica once a week. It flushes out the toxins and makes the liver healthy.

Nux vomica flowers

Impotence and erectile dysfunction: The aphrodisiac nature improves the sexual health of the person who suffers from erectile dysfunction. Impotence is alleviated in people after they consume the Nux vomica seeds.

Symptoms of menopause: Women in their menopausal stage get relief from the symptoms by having the powdered seeds. It cures the blood vessel disorder that results during the menopause, and this gives much relief.

Migraine: You can relieve all kinds of headaches, depression, and mental agony by having controlled doses of the Nux vomica seeds. They improve brain clarity and functioning. However, one must keep a strict watch on the dose as an overdose might prove dangerous.

Lung diseases: You can clear the respiratory tract and the chest of congestion and infections if you use the powdered seeds. Have half a teaspoon with honey early in the morning and before going to bed.

Eye treatment: To cure infections of the eye use a poultice made of the powdered seeds and place it over the eye. Have a half spoonful of the powder with milk daily.

Circulatory system problems: Take the powder daily with honey and milk early in the morning. This will improve your blood circulation and make you healthier than before.

Nux vomica seeds

Cardiac problems: Improved circulation of blood and lower cholesterol levels makes the heart healthy. Take the powder with ginseng and honey once a day.

Constipation: By improving the bowel movement, the Nux vomica helps you overcome constipation. This helps to augment the metabolic system, and the person becomes healthier.

Treat the digestive tract: If you have problems with the digestive tract, the Nux-vomica helps to correct the symptoms. It will help you control the muscle contractions of the intestinal lining. This will make your bowel movement regular.

Atonic dyspepsia: This is indigestion accompanied by the impaired tone in the stomach walls. By having the powder taken as a decoction with water, this ailment can be brought under control. Have it just before your meal.

Body pain: The various pains in the body muscular and otherwise can be alleviated by using the Nux vomica seed powder. Have it with honey and milk twice a day until the symptoms vanish.

Heals wounds: Apply the paste of the powder on the wounds to get fast relief and improve the healing time.

Skincare: This powder can be applied with gingelly oil on the skin to make the acne and pimples disappear. Leave the oil on for 20 minutes. Then, wash it off with soap and water. Alternatively, you can use basin flour to wash instead of soap.

Respiratory problems: Clears the blood and strengthens the respiratory system

Reduce obesity: You can reduce the obesity by including a dose of the Nix vomica daily. It will speed up your metabolic activity and make you shed weight.

Side Effects

Due to the toxic nature of the Nux vomica, one must not take it continually for more than one week. The dosages more than 30 mg will cause side effects such as stiff back, convulsions, spasms of the jaw and neck, dizziness, liver failure, breathing problems, restlessness, or even death. You should not give it to lactating mothers or pregnant women. It is best avoided for children.


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Anoop Sharma

About Anoop Sharma

Anoop Sharma is an IT professional, freelance health writer and creator of He is passionate about helping others learn about health issues and their natural remedies, yoga and healthy food.

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