Known as Priyala in Ayurveda, Chironji is an almond kind of nut which grows on Buchanania lanzan, a deciduous tree. The tree produces small fruits which contain a kernel called the Chironji seed. These nuts are of the size of lentils and brown in colour. Containing around 52% oil, their oil also known as charoli oil can often be substituted for almond oil. This oil is many a times used in the treatment of a number of skin disorders.
Chironji is beneficial in a number of other disorders too like constipation and urinary problems. All parts of the Chironji tree – the fruits, seeds, leaves as well as the roots are used in the manufacture of a number of traditional medicines.
Chironji: Anatomy And Distribution
Buchanania lanzan is a deciduous tree of the Anacardiaceae plant family and is also known as Almondette tree. The plant is a deciduous tree which can grow up to the height of 15 m. Belonging to the family Anacardiaceae, Buchanania lanzan is cultivated across India, primarily in the northwest. Their family is same as that of cashew nut but they taste like almonds. The tree originated in the Indian sub continent and is primarily grown in the North West India. It is not suited to grow in waterlogged areas.
Uses And Properties
Chironji is mostly used for consumption. It can be consumed raw or can be slightly roasted and eaten. It is used as an ingredient in making a number of sweet dishes and is also used in the manufacture of traditional Ayurveda and Unani medicines.
The medicinal properties of Chironji are:
- Anti inflammatory
- Anti septic
- Anti diarrhea
- Anti microbial
- Cooling in action
- Strength booster
Ayurvedic Properties or Gunadharma of Chironji
- Physical property (Guna) – heavy (guru) and oily (snigdha)
- Taste (Rasa) – madhura or sweet
- Potency (Veerya) – sheeta or cool
- Conversion after digestion (Vipaka) – sweet after digestion
- Pravbhava (Action) – calming effect on mind
- Effect – helps in balancing Vata and Pitta doshas
Charaka classifies Chironji as:
- Shramahara – group of herbs which provide energy and relieve tiredness
- Udarda Prashamana – group of herbs that help cure skin allergies
- It is one of the 26 Phala Asava Yoni that is fruits which are used in the manufacture of alcohol
For Skin Whitening & Skin Diseases
Packed with a number of vitamins and minerals Chironji is one of the best herbs available for skin. It is an excellent moisturizer and resplendent with anti oxidants, chironji helps in preventing signs of ageing. The anti inflammatory properties of chironji help in dealing with a lot of skin problems like acne breakout. Its anti microbial properties ensure that microbes do not sit for long on the skin thus preventing any infections.
Chironji seeds can be used as face scrubs to exfoliate the skin and when mexied with aloevera, it can help one get the desired flawless and blemish free skin. charoli seed oil is added in a number of cosmetic products and forms a major part of the cosmetic industry.
DIY Chironji Face Scrub
Ground chironji seeds and mix them with gram flour and curd or rose water and multani mitti (Fuller’s earth). This paste can be used as a face scrub.
DIY Chironji Face Mask For Skin Whitening & Acne Scars
Add chronji seed powder in milk and make a fine paste. Apply this on your face and let it sit for fifteen minutes before washing it off. Applying this paste regularly can ensure a glowing, healthy, blemish free and lightened skin. This remedy also helps remove pimples and acne scars if used for a few months.
Suggested Remedy for Atopic Dermatitis
Mix 100 g Chironji seed powder and 15 g Borax in rose water. Apply this paste on the affected area once daily. One can see improvement within a week.
Is A Natural Coolant
Possessing a natural cooling action on the body, Chironji seeds form a special part of dishes cooked in the summer season. It is even used as a part in a number of medicines which help in providing relief from sunburns and prickly heat.
Good For The Digestive System
Since the Chironji seeds have astringent and expectorant properties, they help in regularizing bowel movement and treating digestive system related problems. It can prove to be quite helpful herb when suffering from diarrhea as it helps in binding the particles of the stools together.
It is suggested to add a few drops of Chironji seed oil in the ORS or Oral Rehydration Solution for quick relief. Chironji gum collected from the bark of the Chironji tree when consumed along with buttermilk can help relieve diarrhea. Dried leaves and root powder are equally helpful. Blessed with anti inflammatory properties, Chironji is also helpful when affected with peptic ulcers. It saves from any kind of infections that might occur as a result of the improper functioning of the gall bladder.
Helps In Losing Weight
Including Chironji in your diet can prove to be quite helpful if you’re planning losing weight. This is because it being high in fibre and protein but being low in calories. This is why it helps in keeping a full stomach for longer time periods.
For Sexual Wellness And Healthy Reproductive System
It is considered is one of the best aphrodisiacs. They are so popular for their aphrodisiac properties that many people in traditional Indian households initiate their married lives by eating products containing Chironji. They can help in dealing with premature ejaculation, loss of libido and impotence.
Roasted chironji seeds not only help in dealing with the problem of premature ejaculation but also enhance the quality of sperms and increases their motility. It is recommended to consume roasted and ground chironji seeds with milk for best results.
Chironji seeds are also known to be used for post natal care of new mothers. They are usually given to women who have just gone through child birth so that they are able to re gain their lost immunity quickly.
The oil extracted out of the Chironji seed is excellent in reducing inflammation. It can be applied on swollen and painful regions for relief and can even be helpful in treating skin inflammation like an acne breakout due to inflammation, insect bites and over exposure to the sun. It has been known for its ability to provide relief from the symptoms of joint pains.
The gum obtained from the Chironji plant when consumed along with cow’s milk can help in treating rheumatic pains naturally. Chironji plant’s anti inflammatory properties also make them beneficial in treatment of stomach and mouth ulcers. Traditionally its root extract has been used in the treatment of mouth ulcers. Charoli oil is used to relieve the pain and burning sensation of the tongue due to inflammation. The cooling effect that Chironji has helps in providing relief from stomach ulcers.
Suggested Remedy: In case of joint pain and swelling, it is recommended to mix 5 ml Chironji oil, 5 ml Peppermint oil and 2 ml Turmeric oil in 100 ml Sesame oil. Store this mixture in a jar and use it to massage the affected area for quick relief.
Faster Wound Healing
Apart from its anti inflammatory properties, Chironji also possesses anti microbial and anti biofilm properties. It prevents infections on wounds by microbes and thus promotes faster healing. Healing is generally delayed due to growth of microorganisms on wounds.
Boosts The Immune System
Chironji seeds are often considered as super food for its ability to stimulate the immune system and enhance its functioning. Regularly consuming these seeds can help one remain protected against a number of diseases. It improves the natural resistance of the body and eliminates the need to consuming drugs with precarious side effects to the body every now and then.
With exponential rise in unhealthy eating habits among all and our progress towards a lifestyle that involves little to no movement, diabetes is becoming a common problem among elderly and children alike. However this disorder is not that easy to deal with and in extreme cases can even lead to multiple organ failure.
Chironji leaf extract has an anti diabetic effect and can be a helpful medicine for type II diabetes patients. This is due to its ability to lower blood sugar levels. However, diabetes patients already on medication must always consult a doctor.
Works Against Stress And Anxiety
Chironji has a cooling property and has a calming effect on the body. Thereby it is used to relieve the buildup of stress and anxiety in the body.
Suggested Remedy: To mix 10 ml coconut oil, 10 drops Chironji oil and 5 drops Lavendar oil and gently massage your head before going to bed.
Chironji For A Healthy Respiratory System
In case respiratory system issues are disturbing you, you can always consider Chironji for quick relief. It has anti inflammatory and anti oxidant properties and thus inhaling steam from hot water mixed with Chironji oil helps loosen the mucus and clear nasal and chest congestion. When affected with severe cold, anti oxidant property of Chironji acts by re building a layer of tissues.
- Chironji seeds have anti toxin properties and help in blood purification. They thus help in improving blood circulation and ensure that all the organs of the body are supplied with clean and oxygenated blood. So this way all the organs of the body benefit and function better.
- Chironji seeds can work as memory enhancing herb. One of the best ways to use them is to feed them to your children as their brain development is still going on.
- Consuming Chironji seeds with milk an help provide relief from excessive thirst.
Recommended Dosage Information
The general recommended dosage of Chironji is:
- Seeds, nuts or kernels – 3 g to 20 g per day
- Decoction prepared from leaves – 20 ml to 80 ml
- Chironji Oil (oral use) – 3 to 10 drops
- Chironji gum – 500 mg to 1 g
- Chironji root powder – 3 g to 5 g
Side Effects And Precautions
Though as a naturally obtained herb, Chironji does not have any serious side effects; but due to variation in body types it might affect some people negatively. Also consuming it in higher quantities can cause some trouble. A few precautions must always be taken.
- People with a weak digestive system might be unable to digest the seeds if consumed in large amount and might suffer with loss of appetite. Some people might even suffer with constipation. Otherwise normally it helps in boosting digestion.
- One of the lesser known side effects is the need to frequently urinate but this is not bound to happen to everyone who consumes it. It mostly occurs to those who consume the seed oil.
- Precaution must be taken when the seeds are consumed along with allopathic medicines, other herbs or health supplements. It is always better to consult a doctor.
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