Pueraria tuberosa or Vidari herbs
Vidari has been used throughout the ages as a tonic and rejuvenator. It is one of the herbs mentioned in all ancient scriptures of Ayurveda. It has various synonyms portraying its peculiarities, viz. svadulata, kandaphala, sukla, gajavajipriya, sita etc. Maharishi Charka has categorized it as balya – strength giving herb, kanthya beneficial for the throat, varnya complexion improving herb, snehopaga oleating adjunctive and brmhaniya – bulk promting herb. Maharishi Susruta has mentioned it as stanyavardhana – augments the breast milk.
The plant grows throughout the warm and moist regions of India, up to 1200 meters elevation. A large spreading herbaceous twiner has large tuberous roots. The stem is around 12 cm in diameter. The leaves are palmate divided, leaflets 10-15 cm long and 7-10 cm broad, broadly ovate to rhomboid and silky beneath. The flowers are blue or purplish blue in 15-45 cm long racemes. The fruits pods, 5-7 long, hairy, 3-6 seeded. The rhizomes 30-60 cm long and 30 cm broad, milky, sweet-odored.
The botanical name of vidari is Pueraria tuverosa and it belongs to family Fabaceae. Another variety of vidari mentioned in Samhitas is ksiravidari, botanically known as Ipomoea digitata belonging to family Convolvulaceae. From roots of vidari P. tuberosa, Sitosterol, stigmasterol, daidzein, puerarin and a new isoflavone C-glycoside-4, A new pterocarpantuberosin – isolated from roots and tubers and its structure determined. A new pterocarpanone- hydroxy tuberosone – isolated from tubers and its structure determined. Isolation of two pterocarpenes and a coumestan-tuberostan-from tubers and their characterization. A new isoflavone-purerarone and a coumestan puerarostan – isolated from tubers and their structure established.
Vidari is sweet in taste, sweet in the post digestive effect and has cold potency. It alleviates vata and pitta doshas. It possesses heavy and oily attributes. It has diuretic, anabolic, rejuvenative and galactogogue properties. It is used in the blood diseases, diseases of the throat and urinary bladder, burning sensation etc.
The tuberous roots of vidari have great medicinal value and are used for medicinal purpose. Vidari is seldom used externally. Internally, it is used in vast range of diseases. As a general tonic, the powder of dried roots (daily 5 gm) is given along with ghee or milk, with sugar. The combination of root juice, powder of jiraka seeds and sugar is recommended as an adjunct in diabetes. In polyuria, vidari root powder works well with ghee. In nursing mothers, the roots mashed in milk are given along with sugar to augment the breast milk. In bleeding hemorrhoids, the mixture of vidari roots and tila seeds, mashed together, is advised with honey and milk. The fresh juice of roots with milk and ghee, works well as an anorexient. Vidari enhances the complexion of the skin. It is an effective mucolytic agent useful in cough, and also beneficial for voice. In cardiac debility, blood disorders and hepatosplenomegaly, it is salutary. It alleviates burning sensation of the body and fever. It is salubrious in tuberculosis and dehydration. It is one of the best aphrodisiac herbs.
Classical Ayurvedic Preparations
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