Nochi ( Vitex negundo ) is one of the very useful plant in Indian System of medicine, widely used in all systems of treatment – Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha, Homeopathy, and Allopathy. It is also commonly used in folk medicine in India, Bangladesh, China, Philippines, Sri Lanka, and Japan.
True to its meaning in Sanskrit (that which keeps the body free from all diseases). Nochi is considered as an effective Analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and anti-fungal. It is used to treat a wide range of ailments, ranging from Sinus Infection, headache, to migraine, from skin affections to wounds, and swelling, asthmatic pains, male and female sexual and reproductive problems.
Referred to as sindhuvara in Ayurveda, Nochi has been used as medicine since ancient times. It is taken both internally and externally. The whole plant, leaves, leaf oil, roots, fruits, and seeds are administered in the treatment of specific diseases. However, in Ayurveda, the leaves, roots, and bark are the most important parts.
People sleep on pillows stuffed with Vitex negundo leaves to get rid of catarrh (secretion of excess mucus through nose and throat because of cold) and headache and smoke the leaves for relief. Crushed leaf poultice is applied to cure headaches, neck gland sores, tubercular neck swellings and sinusitis. A leaf decoction with Piper nigrum is used in catarrhal fever with heaviness of head and dull hearing.
Detailed studies have established anti-inflammatory properties of Vitex negundo extracts in acute and sub-acuteinflammation. Anti-inflammatory and pain suppressing activities of fresh leaves of the plant are attributed to prostaglandin synthesis inhibition, antihistamine, membrane stabilizing and antioxidant activities
Vitex negundo has been found to highly effective against the fungus Altenaria alternate, Curvularia lunata, Trichophyton mentagrophytes, Cryptococcus neoformans, Aspergillus niger, Candida albicans, Fusarium solani, Microsporum canis etc*
A popular quote of the Western Himalayas says that a man can not die of disease in a region where Nochi (Vitex negundo), Adhatoda vasica and Acorus calamus are found, obviously, if he knows appropriate usage of the plants. Even in the Indian traditional community, Vitex negundo is also known as “sarvaroganivarini”, the remedy for all diseases. A large inventory of literature is available regarding this plant that includes traditional, biochemical, ethnobotanical and pharmacological experiments, observations and inferences.
Besides being a popular home remedy for sinus infection, Nochi is reported to have expectorant, carminative, digestive, antiseptic, antipyretic, diuretic and , Analgesic, Anti-Inflammatory, Antioxidant, Antifungal, rejuvenating, and tonic properties. The oil prepared with the juice of the leaves is very popular for relieving pains. Roots and leaves are used in eczema, ringworm and other skin diseases, liver disorders, spleen enlargement, rheumatic pain, gout, abscess, backache; seeds are used as vermicide. This plant is also proved for its cardioprotective property. It is also used to control population of mosquitoes.
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