Tree: Cinnamon

Cinnamon-FieldandHerbsCinnamon is a familiar kitchen spice used around the world, adding fragrance and warmth to everything from oatmeal to curries. What many don’t realize is it is also used for its powerful medicinal properties.

Cinnamon is actually the bark of fast-growing trees, members of the laurel family, native to Sri Lanka and India. The bark is harvested from young shoots that sprout from the stumps of the trees, which are cut back every couple of years. The bark is high in essential oils, coumarins, tannins, and other chemical constituents that help define its medicinal uses. Continue reading “Tree: Cinnamon”

Tree: Arjuna

Arjuna-Tree Arjuna

Terminalia arjuna (Arjuna) is a well-known medicinal extract whose bark is extensively used in ayurvedic medicine, particularly as cardiac tonic. Arjuna refers to the bark of Terminalia Arjuna; this tree is an evergreen tree that grows in Himalayan forests. Arjuna is a medicinal herb, used in Ayurveda treatment to treat numerous disorders particularly used as a cardiac tonic. Demand for Arjuna bark, both in India and abroad has been growing rapidly for over a decade. Continue reading “Tree: Arjuna”

Tree: Guggulsterone

GuggulsteronesGuggulsterone

The mukul myrrh (Commiphora mukul) tree is a small, thorny plant distributed throughout India. Guggul (aka Guggulsterone) and gum guggulu are the names given to a yellowish resin produced by the stem of the plant. This resin has been used historically and is also the source of modern extracts of guggul (aka guggulsterone).

There are about eighty species in the Commiphora genus that grow from India to Greece, but two of the most well-known are guggul (C. mukul) and myrrh (C. myrrha). Both plants produce a resin that has been used both as a perfume or incense, and as a medicine. Guggul has a long history of use in India as an aid for weight loss, as an anti-inflammatory in arthritis rheumatism, and as a remedy for skin disorders such as acne. It has also been used for neurological diseases, hemorrhoids and water retention. Continue reading “Tree: Guggulsterone”