Friday, May 6, 2011

Rosas (Rose) - Halamang Gamot / Herbal Medicine

Gen info
The Damask rose is the national flower of Iran and has been called the "Flower of the Prophet Mohammad." The use of rose oil dates back to ancient Persia. Petal steam distillation produces rose water and rose oil; 2000 petals yield a mere drop of rose oil. source Many medicinal benefits have been attributed to the rose, from the healing properties, to treatment of respiratory problems to skin health. The genus consists of many species, estimates ranging from thirty to over two hundred.

One of the most extensive genus in the plant kingdom, with some botanical reports of over 4,000 species. A prickly shrub, most grow upright, some are creeping. Flowers are yellow, white, pink or red, solitary or in branched clusters or corymbs at the end of short branches. four to five petals and sepals. Leaves are alternate, pinnnate, usually with five to nine leaflets with a terminal leaflet.

Cultivated in all climates and places.

Parts utilized:
Flowers and hips.

Chemical constituents and characteristics
  • Sudorific, antispasmodic, emetic.
  • Petals are astringent, containing quercitrin and volatile oils.
  • Also contains a coloring agent and flavor that makes them useful for syrup, eyewashes, tonics.


  • Rose-water made from some species (Rosa centifolia) is used as ointment for ophthalmia.
  • Infusion or powder used for excessive bleeding.
  • The water is soothing to dry skin.
  • Infusion of lofwers used for lavage in leukorrhea and blennorrhagia.
  • Infusion also used as gargle for laryngitis, stomatitis.
  • Decoction of flowers used for phthisis, hemoptysis, diarrhea and dysentery.
  • Rose hips commonly used as a source of vitamin C.
  • Rosehips are a good source of vitamin C and used for making syrups, jams, jellies, wines and tea blends.
  • Rose petals are used in salads, garnishes, pastry decorations, and making rose water.

• Antioxidant: Study concludes dried rose petals may be used for preparing antioxidant-rich caffeine-free beverages. Various flavonoids in rose hips have potent antioxidant action.
• Cox-1 and -2 Activity: In a study to investigate the use of rose hips in the treatment of osteoarthritis, the extracts of rose hip showed good inhibition of both cox-1 and -2.
• Galactolipid / Anti-inflammatory: Study isolated a galactolipid from dried and milled fruits of Rosa canina which showed antiinflammatory activity with inhibitory effects on chemotaxis of human peripheral blood neutrophils in vitro. The presence of the galatolipid in rose hips may explain the antiinflammatory properties of rose hip herbal remedies.

Widely cultivated for its flower and rose-water.

Talong (Eggplant) - Halamang Gamot / Herbal Medicine

 Scientific name: Solanum melongena L.
English: Eggplant
Tagalog: talong
 Talong is cultivated throughout the Philippines, and is common on Mt. Banahaw. In the Philippines, the Talong roots are taken as a decoction internally as an antiasthmatic and general stimulant. The roots are also used in treatment of skin diseases.

A coarse, branched, prickly or unarmed, erect, half-woody plant, growing to a height of 0.5 to 1 meter. Leaves are ovate to oblong-ovate, 10-25 cm long, hairy beneath, with shallowly lobed margins. Flowers are axillary, purplish, about 2.5 cm long. Fruit is fleshy, smooth, purple, up to 25 cm long, variable in shape, round, oblong, or cylindric-oblong.

Cultivated throughout the Philippines for the edible fruit; the elongated variety, the most cultivated.

Constituents and properties

  • Fruit contains trigonelline; choline; vitamins A. B, and C; fat, 01%; and protein, 2.2 %.
  • Phytochemical studies have yielded flavonoids, alkaloids, tannins and steroids.
  • Study isolated stigmasterol 1, stigmasterol-ß-D-glucoside 2, ß-sitosterol-ß-D-glucoside 3, dioscin 4, protodioscin 5 and methly protodioscin 6.
Parts used and preparation
Fruits, roots.


  • Fruit is an excellent vegetable and popular in the rural day-to-day cuisine.
  • A good source of vitamins A, B, and C.
  • A good source of calcium, phosphorus, and iron; carbohydrates and fiber.
  • Decoction of roots taken internally for asthma and as a general stimulant.
  • Leaves are used for piles.
  • The boiled root of the wild plant, mixed with sour milk and grain porridge has been used for the treatment of syphilis.
  • Decoction of roots, dried stalk, and leaves is used for washing sores, exudative surfaces.
  • The juice of leaves used for throat and stomach troubles.
  • The fruit, bruised with vinegar, is used as a poultice for abscesses and cracked nipples.
  • In Taiwan folk medicine, roots are used for rheumatism, inflammation and foot pain.
  • In India, juice of various plant parts and pulp of fruits of S. melongena and its wild allies used for various ailments: diabetges, otitis, toothaches, cholera, bronchitis, asthma, dysuria, among many others.
• Hypocholesterolemic: (1) Study on human volunteers showed that S. melongena infusion showed a significant reduction of the blood levels of total and LDL cholesterol and apolipoprotein B. (2) Study of New Zealand hypercholesterolemic white rabbits fed with diets supplemented with SM fruits showed significant reduction of TC, triglycerides, and LDL, with a 24.7% increase in HDL cholesterol. The strong hypolipidemic effect with the improved HDL/LDL ratio suggests a potential benefit for its use in the treatment of hyperlipidemic-associated ischemic heart disease and arteriosclerosis.
• Bronchospasmogenic: Methanol extract of fresh leaves of SM exerted a bronchospasmogenic rather than a bronchospasmolytic effect, probably through muscarinic receptor stimulation.
• Bone Marrow Protection: Study showed animals treated with both SM extract and Doxorubicin, a potent antitumor drug, developed significantly fewer micronucleus assay and chromosomal aberrations than those treated with DXR alone. SM are rich in flavonoids with antioxidant activities.
• Antipyretic / Analgesic : Study showed the dry residue of fresh juice produced significant antipyretic (dose-dependent) and analgesic effect. The results support its use in traditional medicine.
• Analgesic : Study of hydroalcoholic extract on formalin injection-induced pain showed an analgesic effect not significantly different from that of 4 mg/kg of morphine sulfate
• Hypotensive: Study of SM extract on normotensive rats showed dose-dependent hypotensive responses possibly through its influence on the renin-angiotensive system and SME-induced diuresis. It suggests SME could be a potent hypotensive agent.
• Visual Benefits / Glaucoma : Study showed that Solanum melongena may be of benefit for patients suffering from raised intraocular pressure (glaucoma) and convergence insufficiency.
• Phytochemicals / Xanthine Oxidase Inhibition: Study yielded stigmasterol, stigmasterol-ß-D-gluvoside, dioscin, protodioscin and methyl protodioscin. The that phytosterols 1, 2 and 3 that showed strong inhibition of xantine oxidase.
• Antifungal: Different extracts of S melongena leaf were evaluated against three human pathogenic dermatophytes (Tricophyton mentagrophytes, T rubrum and T tonsurans) and two opportunistic fungi (C albicans T beigelli). Except for the water extract, all extracts showed significant antifungal property.
• Birth Control: Plant and allies yield glucoalkaloids (solasodine) that are under investigation as oral contraceptive for birth control.

Cultivated for its edible fruit.

Kaymito - Halamang Gamot / Herbal Medicine

 Scientific name: Chrysophyllum cainito L.
English: Star apple
Tagalog: Kaymito

Spreading crown, grows to a height of 15 meters with numerous slender branches. Young tips are copper-collored and covered with hairs. Leaves are leathery, pointed at the tip, blunt or rounded at the base and covered with silky, golden-brown soft hairs.

Medicinal properties
Tonic, refreshing, antihelminthic

Cultivated for its edible fruit.

Parts used and preparation
Seeds, leaves, bark, fruit.

Medicinal uses:
  • Dysentery: Decoction of the bark.
  • Tonic: Infusion of the bark is tonic and refreshing.
  • Abscesses: Latex.
  • Antihelminthic: Dried latex.

Abukado (Avocado) - Halamang Gamot / Herbal Medicine

A tree up to 10-15 meters high with leathery leaves; small yellow flowers in compact clusters. The flowers have 12 stamens in groups of threes in 4 whorls. Nutritious fruit has a nutty flavor, color varying from yellow-green to purple.
Usually grown from seeds, but may be propagated by budding, grafting, and marcotting.

Fruit: fixed oil, 6-10%; protein 1.3-6%.

Parts used
Bark, fruit, leaves and seeds.

Medicinal properties
Digestive, emmenagogue, antibacterial, antioxidant, antifungal, pectoral, stomachic, anthelmintic, antiperiodic, antidiarrheal.


• A good source of vitamins A, some B, C and E, potassium (higher than bananas) and fiber ; fair source of iron; low in calcium. A fruit with high-energy producing value, each edible pound allegedly provides an average of 1,000 calories.
• High in fat, about 25-35 gms on average. however, about 65% of it is health-promoting monosaturated fat, particularly oleic acid.
• The pulp is thought to promote menstruation.
• Decoction of pulverized seeds used as gargles for toothaches.
• The leaves and bark promote menstruation; the tea has been used to expel worms.
• Used for diarrhea and dysentery.
• Rheumatism and neuralgia: Pulverize seeds or bark, mix with oil and apply on affected area as
• Beverage: Take decoction of leaves as tea.
• Pulp is applied to shallow cuts, prevents infection.
• Flesh of ripe fruit is soothing to sunburned skin.
• In different parts of the world, has been recommended for anemia, exhaustion, high cholesterol, hypertension, gastritis and duodenal ulcers. The leaves have been reported effective as antitussive, antidiabetic, antiarthritic and antiinflammatory.
• Juice from seeds used to make permanent ink for fabric lettering.

• Lactating livestock eating avocado leaves may develop non-infectious mastitis and agalactia.

• Anticonvulsant: Anticonvulsant effect of Persea americana Mill (Lauraceae) (Avocado) leaf aqueous extract in mice: In African traditional medicine, Persiana americana has been used in various human ailments including childhood convulsions and epilepsy. A study showed that avocado leaf aqueous extract (PAE) produces anticonvulsant effect by the enhancement of GABAergic neurotransmission and/or action in the brain.
• Hypoglycemic: Hypoglycemic activity of aqueous leaf extract of Persea americana: A Nigerian study revealed that the leaf extract contained various pharmacologically active compounds such as saponins, tannins, phlobatannins, flavanoids, alkaloids and polysaccharides. Although the results were incomparable to the reference drug (chlorpropamide), it confirms the ethnomedical use of the plant for diabetes management. More studies are needed to identify the hypoglycemic principles and its mechanism of action.
• Hypoglycemic / Hypolipidemic: Hypoglycemic and Hypocholesterolemic Potential of Persea americana Leaf Extracts: A effect of aqueous and methanol extracts of Persea americana on plasma glucose, total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-CHOL), and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-CHOL) in rats was investigated. Results suggested lowering effects on glucose and lipid metabolism influences with lowering of Total and LDL cholesterols, an effect of HDL-chol and a potential protective mechanism against atherosclerosis.
• Antiobesity / Hypolipidemic: Effects of Persea Americana leaf extracts on body weight and liver lipids in rats fed hyperlipidimic diet: The study results hypothesize that P. americana leaf extract increases catabolism of lipids accumulated in adipose tissue causing a decrease in mean body weight gain and raises the question if higher concentrations of the leaf extract would reduce liver levels in obesity and fatty liver conditions.
• Hypotensive: Leaf constituents of Persea americana given intravenously induced a marked fall in mean arterial blood pressure lasting 2-3 mins. The short duration was assumed due to rapid metabolism.
• Toxicity / Persin: Study of avocado leaves isolated an active principle, persin. Previously shown to have antifungal properties and to be toxic to silkworms. At high doses, persin can induce mammary gland necrosis and myocardial fiber necrosis, the mechanism for which still remain to be resolved.
• Cytotoxic/ Antitumor / Pesticidal: (1) Study of unripe avocado fruit isolated three major bioactive constutuents which showed activity agaiinst six human tumor cell lines with selectivity for human prostate adenocarcinoma, with one compound being as potent as adriamycin. also, one compound was shown to be more effective than rotenone, a natural botanical insectiside, against yellow fever mosquito larva.
• Toxicity / Larvicidal / Antifungal: Study of extracts of avocado seeds showed toxicity towards Artemia salina, activity against Aedes aegypti. Extracts were also active against all yeast strains, Candida spp, Cryptococcus neoformans and Malassezia pachydermis.
• Vasorelaxant: Study of aqueous leaves extract on isolated rat aorta produced significant vasorelaxation, an effect attributed to the synthesis or release of endothelium-derived relaxing factors and/or release of prostanoids. Extract also reduced vasocontstriction probably through inhibition of Ca influx through calcium channels.
• Antimicrobial / Antimycobacterial: Study demonstrated antimycobacterial activity and suggests a potential source for antituberculosis drugs.
• Persealide / Cytotoxicity: Study of ETOH extract isolated 'persealide' which showed moderate cytotoxicity against three solid tumor cell lines: human lung carcinoma, human breast carcinoma and human colon adenocarcinoma.
• Anti-Viral : Study showed infusion of P. americana leaves strongly inhibited herpes simplex virus type 1, Adenovirus type 3 and Aujeszky's disease virus.
• Acute and Subacute Toxicity Studies: Acute toxicity study showed a relatively low LD50 for the seed extract. Treatment for 14 days decreased food consumption, body weight, blood glucose, Hb and hepatic cholesterol levels.
• Hypoglycemic / Pancreatic Protective: Study showed restorative effect of the ethanolic extract on pancreatic islet cells. Results suggest a potential for the management of diabetes.
• Immunomodulating / Anti-Adhesion Property: Study showed that P americana has the potential to interefere with the adhesion of all the oral bacteria in host epithelial surfaces. Its significant inhibition property suggests that like cranberry juice, avocado juice can also be consumed to avoid urinary tract infections with E coli.

Seasonal fruiting and ubiquitoous market produce.

Okra - Halamang Gamot / Herbal Medicine

 Scientific name: Abelmoschus esculentus L.
English: Okra
Tagalog: Okra
Coarse, erect, branched, annual herb, 0.6 to 1.5 meters high. Leaves are long-petioled, orbicular or orbicular-ovate, about 25 cm long; heart-shaped base; margins, 3- to 5-lobed. Flowers are axillary and solitary; corolla, large and yellow, and inside, deep purple at the base. Fruit is elongated, 10-25 cm long, 1.5 – 3 cm in diameter, tapering to a blunt point and containing rows of rounded, kidney shaped seeds.

Medicinal Properties
Demulcent, emollient, sudorific, cooling, carminative, stimulang, cordial, antispasmodic

Cultivated for its edible fruit. Ubiquitous in market places.
Parts utilized
  • Roots, leaves, young pods, seeds.
Contains vitamins A and C. A good source of iron and calcium. Also contains starch, fat, ash, thiamine and riboflavine.

Medicinal uses
  • Decoction of roots and leaves as a tea or for washing.
  • Decoction of young fruit useful for catarrh, urinary problems.
  • Syrup from mucilaginous fruit used for sore throat.
  • Poultice of roots and leaves for wound healing.
  • Young pods for fevers, difficult urination and diarrhea.
  • Decoction of roots for headaches, varicose veins, arthritis, fevers.
  • Decoctions of leaves for abdominal pain.
  • Leaves also useful as emollient poultice.
  • Seeds used a coffee substitute. Paste of seeds, mixed with milk, used for pruritic skin lesions.

Pandan - Halamang Gamot / Herbal Medicine

 Scientific name: Pandanus odoratissimus L.
English: Fragrant screwpine
Tagalog: Pandan
Erect, branched small tree, growing 3-5 meters, the trunk bearing many prop roots. Leaves are spirally crowded toward the ends of the branches, linear lanceolate, slenderly long-acuminate, up to 1.5 meters long, 3-5 cm wide, the margrins and midrib armed with sharp spiny teeth pointing toward the apex of the leaf. The male inflorescence is fragrant, pendulous, up to 0.5 meter long. Fruit is solitary, pendulous, ellipsoid to globose-ellipsoid, about 20 cm long, composed of 50-75 obovoid, angular, fibrous and fleshy drupes, 4-6 cm long, narrow below and truncate at the apex.

In thickets along seashores throughout the Philippines.

Parts utilized
Leaves and roots.

Constituents and characteristics
  • Essential oil, alkaloids, glycosides and tannin.
  • The prop roots possess diuretic properties.

Medicinal uses
  • Diuretic: Take decoction of fresh or dried prop root as tea.
  • Headache, arthritis, stomach spasms: Decoction of leaves. Poultice of fresh leaves mixed with oil also used for headaches.
  • Culinary: An aromatic leaf used to perfume rice dishes.
  • Wound healing: Pulverized dried leaves used to facilitate wound healing.
  • Poultice of mash of cabbage of plant, mixed with salt and juice of Citrus microcarpa, for abscesses.

  • Decoction of roots believed to have aphrodisiac and cardiotonic properties.
  • Also used for arthritis and to prevent spontaneous abortion.
  • Chewing the roots strengthens the gums.
  • Decoction of roots combined with sap of banana plant for urethral injections for variety of urinary complaints.

Sampaguita - Halamang Gamot / Herbal Medicine

 Scientific Name: Jasminum blancoi Hasak
English Name: Sampaguita, Jasmin
Tagalog Name: Sampagita

Parts used and preparation
Flowers, roots and leaves.
Collect buds and newly opened flowers, sun-dry after harvest.

  • A favorite floral offering and adornment for altars.
  • Fever or cough: Take decoction of flowers or leaves as needed.
  • Ulcers: Pound flowers or leaves and apply on affected areas.
  • Fever, abdominal distention, and diarrhea: use 3 to 6 gm of dried flowers or leaves, combined with other drug materials, use in decoction form.
  • Reddening and swelling pain in the eye, use decoction of dried flowers as eyewash.
  • Sprains and fractures: use root material in combination with other drugs and apply as external poultice.
  • Flavor: Use flowers to flavor tea.
  • Lactifuge: Bruised leaves are applied to the breasts.
  • Infusion of flowers used as a face wash because of its fragrance, cleansing and soothing properties.
  • Flowers in ben oil or coconut oil for hair, facial or body use or as a perfume oil or perfume base.
  • Digestion with vegetable oil to make oil tinctures or liniments.
Cultivated for ornamental use.

Tsaang Gubat - Halamang Gamot / Herbal Medicine

Tsaang gubat is an erect, very branched shrub growing up to 1.5 - 4 m high. Leaves are in clusters on short branches, 3-6 cm long, entire or somewhat toothed or lobed near the apex and pointed at the base, short stalked and rough on the upper surface. Flowers are white, small, axillary, solitary, 2 or 4 on a common stalk. Fruit is yellow when ripe, 4-5 mm in diameter, fleshy, with a 4-seeded stone.

Easily found in thickets and secondary forests, at low and medium altitudes.

Parts utilized


Tea made from the leaves.


- Leaf decoction or infusion for abdominal colic, cough, diarrhea and dysentery.
- Root decoction used as an antidote for vegetable poisoning.
- For diarrhea: Boil 8 tbsp of chopped leaves in 2 glasses of water for 15 minutes; strain and cool. Use 1/4 of the decoction every 2 or 3 hours. Decoction has also been used as a dental mouthwash.
- Decoction of leaves used as disinfectant wash after childbirth.
- In Sri Lanka, used for diabetes: 50 gm of fresh leaves or roots are chopped; 100 cc of water is added, and 120 cc of juice is extracted by squeezing, and given once or twice daily.
New Application
• Being promoted by the Department of Health (DOH) as an antispasmodic; for stomach/abdominal pains.
• One of a few herbs recently registered with the Bureau of Foods and Drugs as medicines.

• Antiallergic Activity: Tsaang gubat, together with Lagundi and Sambong, were studied for possible anti-allergic subtances to counter the histamine release from mast cells that cause type-1 reactions. From tsaang-gubat, rosmarinic acid and microphyllone were isolated.
• Antibacterial / Antinocicpetive / Anti-inflammatory: Study of CR leaves yielded an intractable mixture of triterpenes– a-amyrin, ß-amyrin and baurenol and a wide range of bioactivity. The mixture showed analgesic, anti-inflammatory, anti-diarrheal and antibacterial activities.
• Antimutagen: An antimutagenic principle was extracted from the leaves of C retusa with ethyl alcohol.
• Triterpene Bioactivities/ Analgesic / Anti-inflammatory / Anti-diarrheal / Antimicrobial: Study OF Carmona retusa leaves yielded an intractable mixture of triterpenes, a-amyrin (43.7%), ß-amyrin (24.9%) and baurenol (31.4%). The mixture exhibited analgesic activity (51%), some anti-inflammatory activity (20%), anti-diarrheal activity (29%), and moderate antimicrobial activity against S aureus, C albicans and T mentagrophytes.
• Anti-Tumor: Carmona retusa leaf extracts were tested for anticancer property and results showed it can be used as an anticancer agent.


Wild crafted.
Commercial: Tablets and tea bags

Sampalok - Halamang Gamot / Herbal Medicine

Scientific name: Tamarindus Indica L.
English: Tamarind
Tagalog: Sampalok
Sampalok is a fruit tree found throughout the Philippines, and is common on Mt. Banahaw. Sampalok fruit is used as a laxative, for bilious vomiting, and against cholera. It is also a refrigerant, and used to reduce fevers. The bark is astringent and tonic, and used for asthma and amenorrhoea. The leaves are used to destroy worms in children, and are useful for jaundice.
  • A large tree 12 to 20 m high, nearly glabrous.
  • Leaves: even-pinnate, 6 to 10 cm long; leaflets 20 to 40, rather close, oblong, obtuse, 1 to 2 cm long.
  • Flowers: calyx about 1 cm long. Petals yellowish with pink stripes, obovate-oblong, less than 1 cm long. Calyx tube turbinate, the teeth lanceolate, much imbricated, the lower 2 connate. Only the 3 upper petals developed, the 2 lateral ones ovate, the upper hooded, the 2 lower ones reduced to scales. Stamens monadelphous, only 3 developed, ovary many-ovuled. Racemes mostly axillary, sometimes panicled, 5 to 10 cm long.
  • Fruits: pods oblong, thickened, 6 to 15 cm long, 2 to 3 cm wide, slightly compressed, the exocarp thin, crustaceous, the mesocarp pulpy acid and edible.
Widely distributed in the Philippines, commonly cultivated, flowering from April to October.
Propagation by seed, soaked in water for 8 to 9 days before transplanting.

Astringent, tonic, digestive, antiasthmatic, febrifuge, carminative, antiscorbutic, antibilious.

Fixed oil, 15-20%; citric, acetic, butyric and oxalic acids; tannin; pectin.
Various studies have shown high amounts of crude protein and essential amino acids, carbohydrates, minerals, potassium, phosphorus, calcium and magnesium.

Parts used and preparation
· Leaves, fruits, flowers, and bark.
· Gather fruits from March to June when fruits ripen.
· Remove rind, dry under the sun.


  • Fever: Macerate pulp or ripe fruit in water, sweeten to taste, and drink.
  • Laxative: Eat pulp of ripe fruit liberally and follow with plenty of water.
  • Asthma: Bark; chop and boil a foot-long piece of bark in 3 glasses of water for 10 minutes. Adults, 1 cup after every meal and at bedtime; children, 1/2 cup 4 times daily; Babies, 2 tbsps 4 times daily.
  • Aromatic bath: Use decoction of leaves, especially after childbirth and during convalescence.
  • Decoction of ash: For colic, indigestion; as gargle for sore throats, aphthous sores.
  • Ash preparation: Fry the bark with common salk in an earthen pot until it turns to white ash; heaping teaspoon of the ash to half-cup of boiling water; cool and drink.
  • Poultice or lotion from bark applied to ulcers, boils, and rashes.
  • Poultice of leaves to inflammatory swellings of ankles and joints.
  • Decoction of leaves as postpartum tea; also used as a wash for indolent ulcers.
  • Flowers for conjunctival inflammation. Internally, as decoction or infusion, for bleeding piles (4 glasses of tea daily).
  • Pulp surrounding the seeds is cooling and laxative.
Culinary / Nutrition
  • As a souring condiment.
  • Source of vitamins B and C.
  • Sweetened, candied.
  • Young leaves and very young seedlings and flowers are cooked and eaten as greens and used in curries in India. In Zimbabwe, leaves used in soups, flowers in salads.
  • Dyeing / Mordant: Leaves and flowers useful as mordants in dyeing. Yellow dye from the leaves colors wool red and turns indigo-dyed silk to green. Leaves used in bleaching buri palm to prepare it for hat making.
  • Fodder: Leaves eaten by cattle and goats. Also, a fodder for silkworms.
  • Nectar: Flowers are considered a good source of nectar for honeybees in South India.
  • Seeds: Powder from tamarind kernels used in the Indian textile industry in several processes - sizing, finishing cotton, jute and spun viscose.
  • Wood: Highly prized for furniture, panelling, wheels, axles, mill gears, planking, mallets, handles, walking sticks, etc.
  • Oil: Seeds yield an amber oil, useful as illuminant and a varnish.
• Antibacterial: (1) Aqueous pulp extract study showed antibacterial activity against all strains tested.Phytochemical screening yielded saponins, alkaloids and glycosides. Study confims the traditional use of the plant for the treatment of infections. (2) Study evaluated the antibacterial activity of extracts from T. indica ripe fruit and Piper nigrum seed against S aureus, E coli, P aeruginosa and Salmonella typhi. The ethanol extract of T indica showed higher activity against all test bacteria than that from P nigrum.
• Hepatoprotective: Study showed a significant hepatoprotective effect with the aqueous extracts of tamarind leaves, fruits and unroasted seeds on paracetamol intoxicated rats.
• Anti-venom activity: Extracts of tamarind inhibited the major hydrolytic enzymes of early envenomation (local tissue damage, inflammation, hypotension). It also neutralized indirect hemolysis. It presents an alternative to serum therapy.
• Aspirin Bioavailability: Study showed Tamarindus indica fruit extract significantly increased the bioavailability of aspirin.
• Cosmetic Potential: Seed husk extract with polyphenolic components (Polyant-T) was tested for antioxidant efficiency and provides a potential use for color cosmetics and sunscreens.
• Hypolipidemic: Study showed a beneficial effect on the lipid profile with a significant lowering of the total and LDL-chol without affecting the HDL level. There was also a reduction of diastolic blood pressure.
• Chemical Constituents: Study revealed the presence of 21 saturated (67.5%) and 11 unsaturated fatty acids (30.15%). The results showed great variation in fatty acids, elemental composition and total protein attributed to environmental and ecological factors.
• Anti-Diabetic: (1) Study of aqueous extract of Tamarindus indica seeds against STZ-induced damages in pancreatic islands showed AETIS partially restores pancreatic beta cells and repairs STZ-induced damages in rats. (2) Study of aqueous extract of seed showed potent antidiabetogenic activity that reduces blood sugar in streptozotocin-induced diabetic male rat. (3) Study showed extracts of both fruit and seeds significantly lowered blood glucose levels in mice compared to control.
• Anti-Melioidosis: Melioidosis, caused by Burkholderia pseudomallei, is a life-threatening infection common among paddy cultivators in Southeast Asian countries. Study showed the methanolic extracts of T indica has anti-B. pseudomallei inhibitory potentials under invitro conditions.
• Spasmolytic: Study of the methanolic extract of fruits of Tamarindus indica on rabbit's jejunum preparations showed relaxing effects probably through calcium channel blockade.
• Genotoxicity Study: Study of extract made with T. indica was devoid of clastogenic and genotoxic activities in cells of rodents, when administered orally at three acute doses.
• Antioxidant: Study of T indica seed coat extract was found to possess strong antioxidant activity attributed to free radical scavenging activity.
• Analgesic: Study showed the aqueous extract of T indica possesses potential antinociceptive activity at both peripheral and central levels, mediated via an opiodergic mechanism.
• Fluoride Toxicity Amelioration: Fluoride is a cumulative poison, toxicity leading to bony and dental lesions developing over a period of time. Study showed the extracts of both T. indic a and M. oleifera have some potential to mitigate fluoride toxicity. Changes in plasma biochemistry suggested lesxz hepatic and renal damages in animals receiving plant extracts along with fluorinated water compared to those receiving fluorinated water alone.


Cultivated for fruiting and culinary use.
Sweetened and candied.

Kamatsile - Halamang Gamot / Herbal Medicine

 Other scientific names
Inga camatchili
Inga dulcis
Inga lanceolata
Mimosa dulcis
Mimosa unguis
Acacia dulcis Roxb.

Common names

Camachile (Pamp)
Chamultis (Ig.)
Damortis (Ilk.)
Damulkis (Bon.)
Kamachili (Tag., Bik)
Kamachilis (Tag.)
Kamanchilis (P. Bis., Mag.)
Kamansile (Tag.)
Kamantilis (Pang.) 
Kamarsiles (Tag.)
Kamatsele (Tag.)
Kamonsiles (Tag.)
Kamunsil (P. Bis.)
Karamansili (Ibn.)
Komonsili (P. Bis.)
Komontos (Ting.)
Komontres (Ting.) 
Madras thorn (Engl.) 
Sweet tamarind (Engl.)

Tree 5-18 meters high, with pendulous branches, with short, sharp stipular spines. The leaves are evenly 2-pinnate, 4 to 8 cm long. The flowers are white, in dense heads, 1 cm in diameter. Pods are turgid, twisted, and spiral, 10 to 18 cm long, 1 cm wide, and dehiscent along the lower suture. Seeds are 6-8, with an edible, whitish, pulpy aril. The arillus is sweet when the fruit is ripe.

Medicinal uses:
Frequent bowel movements: Decoction of bark taken as tea. The leaves, when applied as plasters, used for pain, venereal sores. Salted decoction of leaves, for indigestion; also used as abortifacient.

Gen info / Etymology
Referred to as manila tamarind because of the sweet-sour tamarind-like taste. Genus Pithecellobium derives from from the Greek words 'pithekos' (ape) and 'lobos' (pod), and the species name 'dulce' from the Latin 'dulcis' meaning sweet.

Tree 5-18 meters high, with pendulous branches, with short, sharp stipular spines. The leaves are evenly 2-pinnate, 4 to 8 cm long. The flowers are white, in dense heads, 1 cm in diameter. Pods are turgid, twisted, and spiral, 10 to 18 cm long, 1 cm wide, and dehiscent along the lower suture. Seeds are 6-8, with an edible, whitish, pulpy aril. The arillus is sweet when the fruit is ripe.

Found throughout the Philippines at low or medium altitudes.


Tannin, 25.36%; fixed oil, 18.22%, olein.
A glycoside quercitin has been isolated.
Seeds have been reported to contain steroids, saponins, lipids, phospholipids, glycosides, glycolipids and polysaccharides.
Roots reported to be estrogenic.

Considered abortifacient, anodyne, astringent, larvicidal, antibacterial, antiinflammatory, febrifuge, antidiabetic.

Parts used and preparation
Bark, leaves.

    Pulp around the seed is edible.


  • Frequent bowel movements: Decoction of bark taken as tea.
  • The leaves, when applied as plasters, used for pain, venereal sores.
  • Salted decoction of leaves, for indigestion; also used as abortifacient.
  • Bark used in dysentery, dermatitis and eye inflammation.
  • In Brazil, P. avaremotem, used as a cancer elixir.
  • In Mexico, decoction of leaves for earaches, leprosy, toothaches and larvicide.
  • In India, bark of the plant used as astringent in dysentery, febrifuge. Also used for dermatitis and eye inflammations. Leaves used as abortifacient.
  •  In Guiana, root bark used for dysentery and as febrifuge.


  • Anti-Inflammatory / Antibacterial: Study of the fresh flowers of Pithecellobium dulce yielded a glycoside quercitin. The activity of the flavonol glycoside confirmed its antiinflammatory and antibacterial properties.
  • Phenolics / Antioxidant: Free Radical Scavenging Activity of Folklore: Pithecellobium dulce Benth. Leaves: Study of the aqueous extract of Pithecellobium dulce leaves revealed phenolics including flavonoids and showed potent free radical scavenging activity..
  • Anti-inflammatory Triterpene: Anti-inflammatory triterpene saponins of Pithecellobium dulce: characterization of an echinocystic acid bisdesmoside. A new bisdesmodic triterpenoid saponin, dulcin, was isolated from the seeds of PD
  • Genotoxicity: Mutagenic and Antimutagenic Activities in Philippine Medicinal and Food Plants: In a study of 138 medicinal plants for genotoxicity, Pithecellobium dulce was one of 12 that exhibited detectable genotoxicity in any system.
  • Anti-tuberculosis / Antimicrobial: Hexane, chloroform and alcoholic leaf extracts were studied for activity against Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains. The alcoholic extract showed good inhibitory activity and antimicrobial activity against secondary pathogens.
  • Anti-Diabetic: Study of ethanolic and aqueous leaf extract of P dulce in STZ-induced diabetic model in rats showed sigificant activity, aqueous more than the alcoholic extract, comparable to glibenclamide.
  • Anti-Ulcer / Free Radical Scavenging: Study of the hydroalcoholic extract of PD was found to possess good antioxidant activity and suggests possible antiulcer activity with its free-radical scavenging and inhibition of H, K-ATPase activities comparable to omeprazole. Phytochemical screening yielded flavonoids - quercetin, rutin, kaempferol, naringin, daidzein.
Wild crafted.

Kampanilya - Halamang Gamot / Herbal Medicine

 Scientific name: Allamandra cathartica L.
English: Yellow bell
Tagalog: Kampanilya

Vigorous vine, smooth, slightly hairy. Leaves are opposite, in whorls, lanceolate or oblong-lanceolate, 8 ro 12 cms longs, 2.5 to 4 cm wide, pointed on both ends. The flowers are yellow and short-stalked. Calyx teeth are lanceolate green.

Cultivated as ornamental garden plant. Also found wild in thickets near settlements.

Parts utilized:
Leaves and bark.

Purgative, cathartic with hydrogogue effect.
The whole plant is reported to be poisonous.

  • Infusion of leaves for colic; also purgative and emetic.
  • Decoction of leaves in small doses used as antidote for poisoning.
  • Decocotion of bark in decoction, in small doses, has a cathartic and hydrogogue effect. In large doses, the bark and latex are poisonous.
  • Extract of leaves used for colic and as laxative; in large doses causes diarrhea and vomiting.