Health Benefits, Uses & Side Effects of Datura Flowers, Seeds & Leaves
Datura plant grows in abundance in our place and you can practically find it everywhere. Out of the many species of datura, the one that is commonly found in India is called Datura Metel. Datura can be found easily in all tropical countries and the main attraction of this plant is the beautiful flowers in the shape of trumpets that ranges from white to pink color. It also has a beautiful smell, but all species of datura are very very poisonous. Datura plant has a long history and was used by our ancestors for variety of reasons. Correct dosage of datura was used by ancient healers to heal. Apart from medicinal uses it was used for bad purposes too, actually it was used more for bad purposes than good. It was used to induce insanity in thieves and robbers as even a slight increase in internal dosage causes hallucination and trance like state and a bit more, the person goes insane! Datura preparations when taken internally in certain doses first produces hallucinations and then repetitive crazy behaviors like uncontrolled talking and chattering. When the person comes out of it after some days depending on the dosage he or she will not remember a thing of what happened in those days. It was because of this hallucinating property of datura that it became famous among people, it was also banned in some countries because teenagers started using it for wrong reasons. But like with most things in life, if we learn to look at the positive side and use it for only it's medicinal properties this plant can be really beneficial. Datura can be used for treating asthma, to induce sleep, oil made from datura seeds are used to regrow hair, for treating depression and in India we also use it as an offering for lord Shiva. I would suggest practicing extreme caution if you are taking it internally and only do so under the supervision of an experienced herbalist. For using it as a home remedy I would strongly suggest using the plant only for external application, because internal dosage of this plant can vary from person to person and each one might react differently to the same dosage. Here in my place, black datura flower smoke is used for treating asthma. Because I feel 100% safe and confident using the plant only for external applications, I have recorded only the external application of this plant. This remedy is very very safe and can be used by everyone. Since datura is an analgesic, a compress made with the leaves is very effective in easing the pain and inflammation. This poultice is a very popular remedy for stopping lactation in feeding mothers and easing the pain. When a mother stops breast feeding when the child is old enough (usually when the child is around 1.5 to 2 years) she will experience intense pain in the breasts for a few days and the breast will be swollen and hard. Some women will develop a fever because of the intense pain. The best way to stop breast feeding with less pain is to stop the process gradually. If you are feeding 2 times, reduce it to once and then alternate days and then slowly stop. But still some women will still experience pain, if so apply this warm compress with datura leaves on the breasts daily for a few days and slowly the pain will stop. This poultice can be used for treating boils too.
1. Collect the largest leaves of datura that you can find. Wash and pat dry to remove all the moisture.
2. Warm few drops of unrefined sesame oil in a pan. Place a leaf on top of the oil and warm it for few seconds and remove it.
3. If you over fry the leaves, the leaves will not be supple and you will have difficulty applying it. The leaf on top in the below picture is over fried in the oil.
4. Place the warm leaf over the breasts. You can use this poultice for boils too and they will mature fast.
5. Take a thick towel and dip it in hot water, squeeze the water completely and place it over the leaf to retain the heat. Remove once it cools down.
Try applying the leaf compress 2 to 3 times per day till the pain and discomfort stops.
After you have decided to stop feeding, don't start feeding the child again because of the pain, the pain will go in a few days. No matter when you stop you will have to go through with it. Especially after applying the datura leaves never start feeding the child again.
For treating boils, follow the same procedure...
If you have small children in the house make sure they don't accidentally bite or swallow the leaves or flowers. It can be fatal....