Usage & advantages of Boerhavia diffusa

Boerhavia diffusa is an herb that is found in different places of the world. And has been used traditionally in the form of Ayurveda. Historically, Boerhavia diffusa has been used for its extreme anti-diabetic and diuretic properties, even it is also been using for pain relief, anti-inflammation, and indigestion. Boerhavia diffusa is a tropical root plant, with bioactive compounds that are present in the leaves and the roots. The Indian species of this plant is an indigenous herb that can be mainly found in the Himalayan region up to an altitude of 2000m.

Furthermore, the Boerhavia diffusa plant is also commonly known as Punarnava in Ayurveda and is one of the fantastic herbs. Do you know why it is called Punarnava? Punar means again and Nava means new, usually, the plant dies off within a year and it regrows from the same root. Hence it is named Punarnava. It is effective to treat a large number of diseases. It is one of the best natural diuretics and is beneficial in renal and urinary conditions. It is also used to treat liver disorders such as hepatitis and jaundice.

Boerhavia diffusa

Description of Boerhavia diffusa plant-

  • It is a perennial diffuse herb that has a stem and is purple in color.
  • Plant length- 0.75-1m but sometimes it rises up to 4m in the rainy season.
  • The plant is white and soft at the bottom with rough green hair on the upper part.
  • The flowers are red in color.
  • Fruits that are grown in the plant are round in shape and 1cm long.

However, this is to be noted that, it is said that the tests have not been conducted to study human bodies on Boerhavia diffusa, but animal studies have shown that it is very effective on a diuretic, and can reduce the proliferation of immune cells, but this could be harmful in some cases. Meanwhile, like during the flu, but beneficial if the immune system is hyperactive. Boerhavia diffusa plant also has an anti-proliferative effect on some cancerous cells and it will prevent them from spreading further in the body.

The Scientific classification of the plant

  • Kingdom- Plantae
  • Clade- Tracheophytes & Angiosperms
  • Clade- Eudicots
  • Order- Caryophyllales
  • Family- Nyctaginaceae
  • Genus- Boerhavia
  • Species- B. diffusa
  • Binomial name- Boerhavia diffusa

Here are some of the health benefits of the Boerhavia diffusa plant or Punarnava.

1. Helps in easy digestion– Boerhavia diffusa is very beneficial in reducing inflammation. It improves digestion and ulcerative colitis. This herb is a digestive agent, and it stimulates the secretion of digestive juices which helps in increasing the absorption of nutrients and helps to improve and correct the digestion process.

2. Relieves in Arthritis– the plant help in reduces the chances of chronic autoimmune inflammatory diseases like rheumatoid arthritis as the plant has extremely powerful analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties which are essential in reducing joint and muscle pain.

3. Helps in preventing Urinary Disorders– this herb has anti-spasmodic, anti-microbial, and anti-inflammatory properties which help in preventing bacterial infections in the urinary tract, hence reducing inflammation and pain while urinating.

4. Prevent Cancer– Boerhavia diffusa plant contains alkaloid properties which have an anti-carcinogenic effect.

5. Congestive Heart Failure– as the plant has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, it helps to produce edema which decreases the risk of heart failure.

6. Healthy liver– the plant also has a hepatoprotective property which stimulates the bile secretion that helps to keep the liver healthy and improves its function of the liver.

7. In Kidney Stones– this herb has a diuretic property of Punarnava, that helps to improve regular urination and reduces the build-up of fluids in the tissues.

8. Fights against Obesity– this herb also helps to fight against obesity. It helps to pass extra body fluids from the body which is good for reducing obesity.

But, hold on, there are some side effects of this plant-

  • Punarnava can increase the blood pressure
  • It can create a burning sensation in the throat if taken on an empty stomach or without water.
  • You must not use this herb if you have any ethanol-related allergies.
  • Pregnant women should be avoided to take this herb.
  • Children below 12 years should avoid the use of this herb.

How to use this herb?

  • This herb should be taken only with water after meals only.
  • It should not be taken on an empty stomach as it can cause burning sensations.
  • Most importantly, do not consume this herb with milk.

Even though, this herb can be taken accordingly, depends on what form you are consuming.

  • If you are taking whole plant decoction then it should not exceed 20-30g.
  • If you are taking as a form of fresh juice then 10-20ml is enough quantity.
  • And, if you are consuming this in the form of root powder then 1-3g is enough.

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