KRSNAJIRAKA (Carum bulbocastanum)
Krsnajiraka is one of the herbs mentioned in ancient scriptures of Ayurveda. The two varieties together called as Jiraka Dvyam are sveta jiraka the white (Cuminum cyminum), commonly known as cumin seeds in English and the other, krsnajiraka the black seeds, which is known as black cumin. Krsnajiraka has various synonyms in Samhitas like jarana, nilakana, krsnajaji, vantisodhini, kasmira jiraka etc. portraying its peculiarities. The group of four seeds together called as caturbija includes methika, candrasura, krsnajiraka and yavanika, whigh alleviate the vata dosa and are used in anorexia, dyspepsia, flatulence, lumbago and various vata diseases. It is mentioned to be useful in chronic fevers, as astringent in diarrhea and beneficial for the eyes – caksusya.
The plant grows throughout India, mainly in western regions and is cultivated in Punjab, Bihar and Assam. It is a pretty small herb growing up to 0.5 meter in height. The leaves are compound, 2.5-5 cm long, 2.3 pinnatisect, cut into linear segments. The flowers, pale blue in color, solitary, 2.5 cm in diameter. The seeds are trigonous, black, numerous and fragrant.
The botanical name of krsnajiraka is Carum bulbocastanum and it belongs to Umbelliferae family.
Krsnajiraka is pungent in taste, pungent in the post digestive effect and has hot potency. It alleviates kapha and vata doshas. It possesses light and unctuous attributes. It is astringent, febrifuge, and beneficial to the eyes and is used in the diseases like tumors, chronic fever, edema, diseases of the digestive system and diseases of the eyes.
The seeds of krsnajiraka have great medicinal value and are used in vast range of diseases, seldom externally. The seeds because of the fragrance are chewed as deodorant and mouth freshener in halitosis. Internally, it is a keen stimulant for digestive system and is used with great benefit to improve the appetite and taste. It also alleviates flatulence, dyspepsia, diarrhea and vomiting. Krsnajiraka is benevolent as a galactogogue for nursing mothers and is useful in puerperal fever. In combination with a few other drugs, a decoction of the seeds is given in postpartum period, as it is said to stimulate uterine contractions as it is said to stimulate uterine contractions. As it is a cardiac stimulant, it is benevolent in cardiac debility, Krsnajiraka mitigates the kleda and clears if off through urine, hence is salubrious in edema. Further, it also prevents the formation of kleda, by stimulating agni. The seed oil is beneficial in treating the abdominal distention, due to flatulence, in children.
Classical Ayurvedic Preparations
- Krsnajiraka taila
- Krsnajiraka sattva.