Babul tree has been used for medicinal purposes from ancient times. The leaves, bark, seeds and the gum are used for medicinal purposes and here in India babul is well known for it’s amazing use in treating gum problems. In Tamil Nadu Babool | Babul | Kikar | Karuvelam tree is very common and especially you will find babul tree very commonly in almost all the villages.
Babool | Babul Tree:
The tree is native to Africa, Middle East and India and grows wild. The botanical name of babul tree is called Vachellia Nilotica (formerly Acacia Nilotica | Acacia Arabica). The tree belongs to the genus Vachellia. Since babul tree is found in plenty along the Nile river, it was given the species name of Nilotica.
The tree grows to a height of 15 to 20 meters and has thorns on it’s branches and produces yellow flowers with spherical heads, has dark bark and long constricted pods that almost look like a necklace.
Babul Tree Common Names:
The tree yields a gum called Gum Arabic and so it is also popularly called Gum Arabic tree in English, some other common English names for it are Egyptian Thorn tree, Prickly Acacia and Sant Tree. It is very popularly called Karuvela Maram in Tamil, Karuvolam in Malayalam, Babul | Kikar | Babool | Keekar in Hindi, Nalla Tumma in Telugu, Babla in Bengali, Baval in Gujarati, Gobli Mara in Kannada, Babhul in Marathi.
Babul Tree Chemical Constituents :
Leaves and flowers contain tannin, bark contain tannin and other polyphenolic compounds, fruits contain gallic acid. Almost all parts of babul tree including leaves, bark, pods and roots are used for medicinal purposes.
Babul Tree Medicinal Properties:
In addition to the below mentioned medicinal uses, it has anti spasmodic, anti mutagenic, anti plasmodial, anti hypertensive, anti diabetic and very interestingly it also has galactagogue properties (increases breast milk).
1. Anti Fungal & Anti Viral Properties:
Babul leaves have wonderful anti fungal & anti viral
Properties. Both the methanolic and water extract showed strong anti fungal and anti viral properties.
2. Anti Diarrhoeal Properties:
Traditionally the bark extract of the plant is used for treating diarrhea and it has been proven through clinical research
. Both chloroform and ethanolic bark extracts inhibits Escherichia Coli very effectively. At home, we can boil the bark in water and drink for treating diarrhoea.
3. Antioxidant Properties:
Babul tree is rich in polyphenols and all parts of the tree including leaves, bark and pods are known to exhibit strong antioxidant properties
and can help prevent diseases caused due to oxidative stress. An extract of any part of babul tree has amazing antioxidant properties.
4. Anti Bacterial & Anti Malarial Properties:
Babul tree root has been clinically proven to have antibacterial properties especially against 3 of the common ones (Escherichia Coli, Staphylococcus Aureus and Salmonella Typhi). The root extract showed effective anti malarial
5. Analgesic, Anthelmintic & Anti-inflammatory Properties:
Babul leaves have wonderful pain relieving, inflammation reducing and parasite expelling properties. The leaf got by boiling the leaves in water can be taken to reduce pain and inflammation. It can also be taken to expel worms.
Babul Tree Side Effects:
Babul has abortifacient and anti fertility properties (you can find the study that proves it here
) so pregnant women should never consume babul extracts. Also since it has anti diabetic properties, diabetic patients should be cautious as it will lower blood sugar levels…..
5 Top Medicinal Uses & Health Benefits Of Babool(Babul):
1. Homemade Babool Tooth Powder:
This homemade babul tooth powder made using babul powder, baking soda and salt will prevent and treat plaque and tartar from teeth. It is also very very easy to make at home. You can find the recipe for the tooth powder here.
2. Babul Leaf Paste For Wounds:
Babul leaf paste heals wounds and traditionally the leaves are ground in a mortar and pestle and applied as a poultice. Works really well….
3. Babul For Diarrhea:
Babul has wonderful anti diarrhea properties. For the remedy, take a small piece of the bark of babul and boil in a cup of water till it reduces in half and strain. Take around 30 to 45 ml of the decoction to stop diarrhea.
4. Babul Leaf Rinse For Eyes:
Babul leaves decoction when used as an eyewash reduces watering of eyes also called Epiphora. It also reduces, redness and swelling. For the remedy, boil a handful of fresh babul leaves in 2 cups of water till it reduces in half and strain. Use it as an eyewash…
5. Babul Bark Tooth Brush:
Like neem, babul sticks can also be used as a tooth brush. For using it as a tooth brush, break a small tender branch of babul. Be careful while breaking as it is filled with thorns. Use the branch to brush your teeth. Brushing with babul stick will keep the teeth and gums healthy…