SALAPARNI (Pseudarthria viscida)
Salaparni is one of the herbs mentioned in all ancient scriptures of ayurveda. It has numerous synonyms, especially describing the peculiarities of its leaves, viz. triparni – 3 – foliate leaves, dirghaparni – large leaved, subhapatrika – holy leaves and suparnika, sriparni, salaparni – has beautiful leaves etc. The great sage Charka has categorized the herb as sothahara – relieves oedema, vayahsthapana – promotes longevity and preserves youth, balya – tonic, angamarda prasamana – relieves body ache, and snehopaga – oleating adjunctive. Salaparni is one of the herbs from group (laghu pancamula)
The plant grows all over India up to 1000 meters elevation. A perennial viscid under shrub attains the height about 60-120 cm. The branches are slender and covered with minute white hair. The leaves are 7.5-15 cm long and 2.5-5 cm broad, trifoliate, ovate-oblong, hairy and densely grey-silky beneath. The flowers purplish or pink, in 15-30 cm long axillary racemes. The fruits, pods, oblong, flattened, covered with sticky hairs. The seeds 4-6, compressed and brownish black in color. The plant flowers in May and fruits in June.
The botanical name of salaparni is Pseudarthria viscida (synonym- Desmodium gangeticum) and it belongs to family Fabaceae. The plant yields petrocarpanoids gangetin, gangetinin and desmodin. Seven alkaloids viz. N, N-dimethyltryptamine and its Nb-oxide, hypaphorine, hordenine, candicine, N-methyltyramine and phenylethylamine have been reported from roots. A new antifungai isoflavonoid phytoalexin desmocarpin – isolated together with genistein, 2- hydroxygenistein, dalbergioiden, diphysolone and kievitone from fungus – inoculated leaflets, its structure determined.
Salaparni is sweet and bitter in taste, sweet in the post digestive effect and has hot potency. It alleviates all the three doshas. It possesses heavy and oily attributes. It has antipyretic, aphrodisiac and rejuvenative properties and is used in the diseases like fever, bronchial asthma, hemorrhoids, edema, diabetes mellitus, diarrhea and tuberculosis.
The whole plant of salaparni is used for medicinal purpose. The herb is seldom used externally. Internally it is useful in vast range of diseases Dasamularista is one of the widely used preparation of salaparni in vata diseases. The decoction of dasamula is used in pain, hysteria, rheumatism, asthma and heart diseases. The decoction works well, with asafetida and salt, in paralysis. In asthma and cough, the decoction of dasamula is given along with the powder of errand roots. The decoction of laghu pancamula (five minor roots) i.e. roots of salaparni, prsniparni, kantakari, brhati and goksura, is benevolent in the treatment of urinary calculi (stones) and dysuria. N hysteria, the decoction of dasamula is given along with ghee, with great benefit. Salaparni is a keen stimulant for digestive system and is used in digestive ailments like anorexia, flatulence, diarrhea, vomiting and piles. As it effectively arrests the bleeding and alleviates edema, it is a valuable panacea from heart diseases and blood disorders. It is rewarding in sexual debility and premature ejaculation. Salaparni is salutary in general debility as a general tonic and in tuberculosis as well. It is salubrious as a pain-killer in general body ache. It also works well as anti-toxin in poisoning. The herb is widely used in vata disorders and is the best nervine. In tuberculosis, especially with tissue and works as mucolytic also. In heart diseases, allociated with palpitations, Salaparni ksirapaka – medicated milk preparation of the herb, is extremely beneficial. The herb is useful in fever, especially in typhoid.
- Salaparnyadi kvatha,
- Dasamula rista etc.