Encyclopedia of Vedic Astrology: Remedies: Notable Herbs in Human Welfare, Chapter XV, Part – 3



Continuation…
Dr. Shanker Adawal

Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)

Dandelion plant is six inches to one feet tall and perennial plant that grows wild. The roots, leaves and flowers are used as a general tonic and for specific treatments. The leaves may be cooked as greens, and the roots may be used as a substitute for coffee.

The main constituent is taraxacin, an acrid resin that contains insulin, gluten, gum and potash. In the spring the sugar is uncrystallizable laevulin. In the fall it becomes insulin. Dandelion is high in vitamin C. It helps in the problems of the breast and mammary glands, breast sores, tumours cysts, swollen lymph glands.

Dandelion is a cholagogue, diuretic, aperients, stomachic, stimulant and tonic is used to treat liver disorders, diabetes and anaemia. It promotes formation of bile and removes excess water from the body. It is good for removing poisons from the body, primarily a detoxifying herb for pitta and ama conditions or from a meat diet and over eating of fatty and fried foods. It relieves fever and insomnia. It gives emotionally plenty of energy and helps to balance inner forces. An infusion of fresh roots is good for gallstones, jaundice.

Dill (Anethum graveolens)

The plantis three feet tall planted annually. It may be planted near cabbage, lettuce, onions or cucumbers but not near carrots. There will be a seven to fourteen day germination period. Harvest the leaves before the plant flowers. Harvest seeds when the lower part of the seed cluster is ripe. The parts used are basically seeds. It is spicy and warm.

Dill is used for pickling, sauces and salads. It is not cooked; just soaked. It helps to appreciate and enjoy all the gifts of life on a daily basis.

The fatty oil in dill is a pale yellow colour that darkens with age, a mixture of a paraffin hydrocarbon and 40 to 60 per cent of d-carvone with d-lionere. Phellandrine is present in few varieties.

Dill is a carminative, diuretic, antispasmodic, calmative, stomachic and galactagogue. Dill tea is good for upset stomach. The herb also helps stimulate appetite. It helps in treatment of colic, gastrologia, gas, indigestion and insomnia due to indigestion. It increases the flow of breast milk. Chewing the seeds is good for halitosis.

Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)

The plant is four feet tall and planted biennial in spring, alone as it may affect other plants. There is a 14 to 21 day germination period. Harvest seeds just after they have changed colour. All parts are useful.

Its grains or seeds are used with breads, soups, fish and marinades.

Fennel contains a volatile oil called 50 p.c. anethol and 2 p.c. fenchone, fatty oil, which has a pungent camphoraceous smell and taste. Also present in the oil are dipinene, phellandrine, anisic acid and aldehyde. Limonene is sometimes present. The plant gives off ozone, which repels fleas. It is perhaps the mildest and safest of herbs stimulants for digestion, strengthening agni without aggravating pitta, stopping creamping and dispelling flatulence.

Fennel is an aromatic, anti-spasmodic, carminative, expectorant, galactagogue, diuretic, stimulant and stomachic. Both seeds and roots are good intestinal and stomachic remedies. It relieves from indigestion, colic, abdominal cramps, gas and flatulence, increases peristalsis of the stomach and intestine and helps bring phlegm from lungs. It is good for expelling mucus. It stimulates the flow of milk in nursing mothers. It may be rubbed on to relieve rheumatic pains. It is very helpful for cancer patients after treatment. As a decoction it is good eyewash.

Horehound (Marrubiurn vulgare)

The plant is two to three feet tall, perennial, usually called white horehound. Sown in the spring. The plants will germinate in 10 to 20 days. Flowers will appear in the second year because of cold winters. The part used are leaves and flowering top.

White horehound contains a bitter principle called marrubium, with a small amount of volatile oil, resin, tannin, wax, fat and sugar. It is a diuretic, expectorant, diaphoretic, stimulant and tonic. It is excellent for coughs, lung problems, or bronchial problems in general. It has also been used for typhoid fever especially for those with liver imbalances. It restores the normal balance of glandular secretions and organs. And it is good for mild nervousness conditions.

As an expectorant and for coughs and hoarseness it can be taken as a tea, syrup with honey or a diluted alcohol extract. Taken cold, it is good as a stomach tonic; warm, it is diaphoretic and diuretic. Both tea and crushed leaves can be applied externally for skin problems and insect bites.

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