Medical Reviewer: Dr Surabhi Rawat
Jamun, known in Latin (Botanical Name) as Syzygium Cumini is an evergreen fruiting tree which is indigenous to India and forms a part of many Ayurvedic remedies. The evergreen tropical tree belongs to the family Myrtaceae and is also found in China, South East Asia and Queensland apart from the Indian subcontinent. It is also present as a naturalized species (not native but introduced) in different parts of the world like the USA. In fact, the plant has become an invasive species in Hawaii.
The fruit of the plant is called Jamun in Hindi and Java Plum in English. It is a slow-growing tree and can reach up to 30 m and can live even up to 100 years. The fruit of the Jamun tree is sour to sweet in taste and has an astringent nature. The fruit which is oval in shape is green in colour when in its immature stage, however, it turns to crimson black when ripe.
The seed of the Jamun fruit is regarded as extremely beneficial in Indian, Chinese as well as Unani medicine systems. The tree is considered sacred by Buddhists and Hindus. It is often found growing near Hindu temples as it is considered as an abode of Lord Krishna.
Jamun which is quite beneficial in curing numerous disorders contains the following phytochemicals:
- Ellagic Acid
- Gallic Acid
- Phenolic Acid
The black plum is a storehouse of:
- Vitamin C
- Vitamins of the B family
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin E
- Dietary fibre
The medicinal properties of Jamun include:
- Anti dysentery
- Ant helminthic
- Mild Anti hemorrhagic
- Mild digestive
- Digestive stimulant
- Liver stimulant
Ayurvedic Properties or Gunadharma of the Jamun tree
- Physical property (Guna) – light and dry
- Taste (Rasa) – astringent, sour and sweet
- After Taste (Anu Ras) – astringent
- Potency (Veerya) – shita or cool
- Conversion after digestion (Vipaka) – pungent after digestion
- Effect on doshas – reduces and pacifies Kapha and Pitta doshas but can increase Vata
Jamun’s Medicinal Uses
Jamun being packed with so many nutrients and phytochemicals help in curing numerous disorders. It can help in innumerable skin conditions and disorders like diabetes and cancer.
Ayurveda regards fruits, seeds, bark, and leaves of the tree as beneficial in the treatment of bleeding disorders.
Jamun’s Commercial Uses
Jamun, just like many other fruits is used to manufacture products like candies, squash jam, wines and coloured jelly. It is also used in the production of wine and vinegar.
The wood of the Jamun tree is water-resistant and is used to install motors in wells and as railway sleepers. It is also used to construct cheap furniture.
Dried leaves of Jamun are used to make cigarettes by wrapping them around tobacco.
Jamun: Recommended Dosage
How to Consume
3 to 4 tablespoons per day
With the same quantity of water after breakfast
1 to 2 tablets twice a day
With water after lunch and dinner
One fourth to a half teaspoon per day
With water and honey after lunch and dinner
1 to 2 capsules twice a day
With water after lunch and dinner
Benefits of Jamun
Can Help Fight Diabetes
It is the Jamun seeds which prove to be most effective if one is suffering from diabetes. Consuming Jamun seeds powder prevents the conversion of starch into sugar. This property of Jamun is attributed to glucose like substance present in its seeds, called Jamboline. Symptoms of diabetes like frequent urination are reduced by consuming Jamuns and diabetes patients are recommended to consume Jamun on a daily basis as it has a low glycemic index and it contains no sucrose. CDRI Lucknow conducted research and found that the alcoholic extract of Jamun seeds was able to control blood sugar level.
Works Wonder On Oily Skin
Jamun is quite beneficial for the skin and helps in getting a clearer, smoother and glowing skin. Although it is beneficial for all skin types, it must definitely be used by people with oily skin. Jamun which has astringent properties can help regulate the oil secretion which can be a cause of blackheads and acne.
Suggested Remedy: To get rid of the problems you face due to your oily skin, prepare a face mask containing the pulp, amla juice, rose water and barley flour. Apply this face mask on your skin regularly for best results.
Jamun For Treating Acne
No one likes an acne break out. If you too are looking for the ultimate remedy, you are at the right place. Yes, Jamun can help you relieve the acne and get clearer skin. It is the Jamun seeds which are particularly used to get rid of acne.
Suggested Remedy: To get rid of your acne, prepare a paste containing Jamun seeds and cow’s milk. Apply this paste on the affected area each night. Yet another option is to apply a paste of Jamun seed powder, orange seed powder, masoor dal, rose water and a few drops of almond oil. Both remedies will work effectively if followed consistently.
Apart from this, Jamun can also be helpful in decreasing dark spots and treating pigmented skin. One can apply a paste of the seed powder, lemon juice and besan(gram flour) for best results.
Can Help Raise The Haemoglobin Level
It is the women who mostly suffer from a low haemoglobin level which might give rise to other problems like anaemia. Jamun consists of a good amount of iron which is why it can help in raising the haemoglobin level. Consuming Jamun during menstruation helps in recovering the loss of blood.
Jamun For Oral Health
The ash content obtained out of the burnt leaves of Jamun tree is often present as an ingredient in dant manjans (tooth powders). Anti-bacterial properties of the herb also make it a useful part of many oral health-related medicines. It can provide relief against spongy gums, gum infections and gum bleeding. It also helps strengthen the teeth and keeps bad breath at bay.
Suggested Remedy: One can make their own tooth powder at home easily with minimum ingredients. Mix one part of ash of Jamun tree leaves with one part of the outer almond shell. Dry some peppermint leaves, powder them and mix peppermint powder with the other powder. Use this as your teeth cleanser regularly.
Jamun And Digestive System
Ancient medicine systems like Ayurveda and Unani recommend Jamun as a remedy against indigestion. If one is suffering from diarrhoea, ulcers and other digestive system related disorders, one should chew the leaves of the Jamun tree. Consuming Jamun with black salt and cumin powder can help cure acidity.
Suggested Remedy: Jamun is effective in handling diarrhoea and dysentery. If suffering from any of these conditions, take one fourth or half a teaspoon of seed churna (powder) along with water after a light meal.
Jamun’s heart-protective properties are due to its constituents like potassium. Potassium which is a vasodilator helps in reducing the risk of atherosclerosis (building up of plaque inside arteries) and heart attack. Being rich in antioxidants and with the ability to improve haemoglobin production, Jamun also ensures in maintaining blood circulation and transportation of Vitamins and other nutrients to all parts of the body.
Ayurveda says that poor functioning of the digestive system leads to incomplete digestion which is responsible for the accumulation of toxins or Ama in the body. These toxins cause the formation of cough or mucus in the lungs. Jamun proves to be extremely beneficial in fighting such conditions like bronchitis. It is also effective in Asthma which causes breathlessness.
Suggested Remedy: If suffering with a condition related to the respiratory system, consume 3-4 tablespoon of the ras/juice with water after having breakfast. Continue consuming until the condition is cured.
Jamun has an immunomodulatory function due to the presence of a sufficient amount of VitaminC as well as a few antioxidants in Jamun. It stimulates the production of white blood cells and negates the need for consuming too may medicine regularly. People who suffer from low energy levels and fatigue are recommended to consume Jamun pulp regularly. Apart from strengthening the immune system, Jamun also improves the stamina of the body.
Jamun Is Packed With Antioxidants
Antioxidants are those substances which help in the elimination of free radicals from the body. Free radicals are dangerous as they might lead to the formation of malignant cancerous tumours. Polyphenols in the herb release a cancer-fighting enzyme called anthocyanin.
The herb, which is quite rich in Vitamin C is considered very beneficial for the eyes. It helps in maintaining the health of the connective tissue as well as collagen of the cornea aiding in enhanced eyesight.
Inflammation means swelling and is generally a symptom of a condition. For instance, insect bites, ulcers etc can cause inflammation. Certain vitamins and minerals present in Jamun possess anti-inflammatory properties and help in reducing pain caused due to inflammation. Jamun is also effective in case of arthritis which causes swollen joints which are quite painful in nature.
The liver performs the important role of detoxification of the body. It is also responsible for the synthesis of proteins which aid in clotting of blood. When the liver is unable to produce bile juice in requisite amounts, it results in a condition called cholestasis. The condition accompanies symptoms like darkened urine, yellow eyes and skin and excessive itchiness. The herb’s intake can help relieve the symptoms of cholestasis and restore the proper functioning of the liver.
Jamun has anti-microbial properties and aids in fighting many kinds of bacterial infections. It especially proves to be helpful when affected by E coli which can cause severe stomach infection. Regular intake of Jamun can help in eliminating bacterial infections.
Side Effects And Precautions
The herb which is otherwise considered safe for consumption can have certain side effects if consumed in very large quantities:
- It can cause constipation and nausea.
- It has the ability to lower blood sugar level and hence diabetic patients already on medication must be careful while consuming the fruit. Doctor’s consultation is a must.
- Eating the fruit in large quantities can damage the lining of the lungs and intestines. It can also cause bloating and aggravate cough.
According to Ayurveda, Jamun is Anaha or it can cause constipation and abdominal gas. It is recommended to consume the fruit or its juice with rock or black salt to prevent its side effects. Also, one must ensure not to consume tea or milk along with Jamun.