Gond Katira is a crystalline herb that is extracted from the sap of the Gond/Locoweed plant. This herb is obtained from the stems and roots of the plant and is then dried to form crystal-like balls. It acts as a natural gum for all intents and purposes. Note that this ingredient is tasteless and odourless, and swells up on soaking it in water. In terms of its, etymology, the Greek word “Tragacanth” can be broken into two words: “Tragos” (Goat) and “Akantha” (Horn).
Commonly known as Tragacanth Gum (Botanical name), Goat’s Thorn/Gum Dragon (English name) or Galgal (Sanskrit name), Gond Katira is native to Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, and Middle-Eastern parts of the world. In fact, Iran is touted to be the largest producer of tragacanth gum in the world. The Gond balls extracted from the gond katira plant can be made into the paste, gel, or powder forms. The dried root sap is the plant part that’s used extensively. Nutritionally, it comes power-packed with calcium, magnesium and 3% protein along with alkaloids.
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Gond Katira’s Delicious Recipes (गोंद कतीरा)
Gond Katira as an ingredient has multi-dimensional applications. It can be mixed with lemonades, beverages, juices, milkshakes or even used as a topping on kulfi and ice-cream. If you’re someone who’s big on making nutritious seasonal delicacies, try this super-quick and easy Gond Katira recipes:
Recipe 1: The Best Summer Drink for your Body: “Gond Katira Sharbat”
- Crystals of Gond Katira (3 large crystals)
- Rooh Afza/gulkand/honey (1 tbsp or as preferred)
- Chilled milk (150 ml )
- Cold Water (400 ml)
- Soak the Gond Katira crystals overnight in 250 ml water.
- Mix all the ingredients and stir till completely dissolved.
- Pour into glasses and serve immediately.
Recipe 2: The Winter Favourite: Healthy “Gond Ke Laddoo”
- Gond (300 g)
- Wheat/jowar flour (250 g)
- Powdered jaggery (250 g)
- 200 gm each of coarsely powdered/chopped:
– Melon seeds
- Poppy seeds (100 g)
- Turmeric powder (100 g)
- Dry ginger powder (50 g)
- Pepper powder (50 g)
- Nutmeg powder (5 g)
- Pure, organic desi ghee (1 kg)
- Heat the ghee on medium flame and deep fry the Gond Katira crystals till they stop increasing in size. Take them out and keep in a separate bowl.
- Then, add the flour to the ghee and roast on low heat till it turns golden. Make sure to not burn it.
- Next, put all the chopped nuts to the mixture and let it roast till the nuts turn pink.
- After this, add the turmeric till you can smell its aroma.
- Add the remaining spices mentioned above and turn off the gas.
- Let the mixture cool and then add the jaggery powder.
- Finally, crush the bloomed gond crystals and add to the mix.
- Create small round balls and store in an airtight container.
- Enjoy on a cold, wintery morning!
Did You Know?
Today, Gond Katira doubles up as an additive in food products as a thickener, stabilizer, texturizer as well as an emulsifier in different food items such as ice-creams, salad dressings, sauces, mayonnaise etc.
Gond Katira’s Uses & Application For A Healthy Body
Gond Katira is one of the few herbs that have the power to cool down your body during the summers and warm it during the winters. Additionally, you’ll be surprised to know that ‘superfood’ offers a host of health advantages such as:
- Treats diarrhoea and constipation.
- Cures Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and dehydration during summers.
- Cools down the body and prevents nose bleeds during heat strokes.
- Treats cough and cold.
- Stimulates the digestive system due to its purgative properties.
- Boosts the body’s immunity and aids in cell regeneration as well as recovery.
- Treats a host of skin issues such as acne/pimple, dullness, pigmentation, etc.
- Treats mouth ulcers.
- Promotes lactation in mothers post-delivery and boosts the body’s internal strength.
- Provides instant energy to the body.
- Prevents involuntary urination.
- Helps control heavy blood flow during periods.
- Lowers blood pressure in hypertensives.
- Reduces pain sensation and acts as an analgesic.
- Displays anti-cancer properties and slows down the rate of cancerous cell division.
- Acts as a natural breast-enhancer and adaptogenic reducing stress.
Some of its other uses include:
- Acts as a thickening agent in dyes for calico printing, textile dyes, and dressing fabrics.
- Helps in making glues, developing watercolours, and producing the gloss in ink.
- Acts as a binder and is used in incense-making and paper manufacturing.
Gond Katira’s Health Benefits: An Overview
It is easy to confuse Gond Katira with Guggul however, they are both very different in nature and use. So if you’re wondering about gond’s benefits, keep reading:
Gond Katira Benefits For Male Sexuality
If premature ejaculation is on your list of worries, don’t fret. Consuming Gond Katira can prevent erectile dysfunction, low semen count, and premature ejaculation.
Suggested Remedy: Make powder in equal amounts of Badam, Jaiphal, Salai Guggul, Vidari, Kawanch (processed), and Tragacanth gum. Now, take 6 gm of the resulting powder with milk. Alternatively, you can consume half teaspoon powder of sugar and a gram of Gond Katira with cold water, 3x a day for the first week, 2x a day for the second week, and once a day for the third week.
Gond Katira For Bones
Gond is rich in calcium and protein as stated above. Naturally, this helps in developing strong bones and preventing back pain. One of the best and tastiest ways to consume Gond Katira is by eating Gond ka laddoo (recipe shared above).
Gond Katira For Diabetes And Related Symptoms
Gond Katira can help treat diabetes and its relating symptoms such as diabetes-induced urinary issues. Plus, it prevents and delays the absorption of simple sugars from the gut.
Gond Katira For Hair
Get this: In Saudi Arabia, the residents use a combination of Tragacanth gum, water, and dried and ground Christ’s thorn jujube as a shampoo. Your favourite essential oil can also be added to this mixture for a sweet-smelling scent. In terms of the benefits, it is known to strengthen the hair, add more volume, make it thicker and prevent hair loss – after one single wash! That’s the power of this gel-like ingredient.
Gond Katira Benefits For Skin
Owing to its anti-ageing properties, it prevents the emergence of wrinkles, fine lines, and dry/rough skin. Additionally, it also helps to treat wounds and burns. In fact, according to the International Journal of Biological Macromolecules, this gum along with aloe vera extracts can speed up wound recovery and heal the skin instantaneously. Create your own anti-ageing mask with this
Suggested Home Remedy: Soak 3-4 gond katira seeds in water overnight and strain in the morning. Now, add egg white (2 tbsp), milk powder (1 tbsp), almond powder (2 tbsp) and green vegetable powder (1 tbsp) to 10 teaspoons of rose water. Mix well till the paste thickens. Apply on face, neck, and hands and wash off after 20 minutes.
Gond Katira For Weight Loss
Unknown to many, this miraculous ingredient helps to flush out toxins from the body and boosts metabolism as well. Plus, its high-fibre content keeps you full for much longer. Additionally, it also is known to improve one’s gut health.
Suggested Remedy: Soak a tablespoon of gond katira in a glass of water overnight. Next, add the swollen crystals of gond to a glass of milk along with honey/jaggery (little) and some ice. Drink this tonic every day to reduce weight.
Gond Katira For Constipation
Offering laxative properties, Gond Katira provides immediate relief from constipation.
Suggested Remedy: Soak a small piece of gond katira in water overnight. Add the bloated piece to a glass of cold water and teaspoon of lemon juice. You can add honey to this mixture for added taste.
Gond Katira For Mouth Ulcer
To reduce inflammation, redness, and pain caused by ulcers, try this remedy: Make a finely ground paste of Gond Katira and apply on your ulcers for immediate relief.
Gond Katira For Nightmares / Re-energizing the Body
If you’re someone who has nightmares or suffers from bodily weakness, try this home remedy: Mix Gum Katira and jaggery in a glass of milk. Drinking this regularly increases energy in the body and removes weakness.
Gond Katira for Natural Breast Enhancement
You’ll be surprised to know that Gond Katira acts as a natural breast-enhancer. Plus, it is known to balance the body’s hormonal levels as well.
Suggested Remedy: Start by soaking 5 gram of Gond Katira in water, overnight. The following morning, add the swelled up Gond Katira in a glass of milk and add sugar (optional). You can also add ice. Consume this every day for the best results.
Gond Katira’s Side-Effects & Precautionary Measures
- It is recommended that you hydrate yourself well after consuming Gond Katira in any form to prevent it from blocking the intestines.
- It does not have any side effects, and can be consumed orally in little amounts and applied topically.
- It may cause breathing problems in people who have a quillaia bark (Soapbark) allergy, so please consult your doctor before consuming it.
- Pregnant and lactating women can consume it under expert guidance.
- It is recommended you consume this herb at least an hour prior to consuming any allopathic medication.
Where To Buy It Online?
You may be wondering about Gond Katira’s price, given its multi-functional health benefits and widespread application. There are numerous brands that sell it, some of which include: