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Herb of the Month

Kaunch Beej

Botanical Name: Mucuna pruriens  
Family Name : Fabaceae Family

Description of Herbs:

Mucuna pruriens or Kaunch is one of the popular medicinal plant of India. It is widespread over most of the subcontinent and is found in bushes and hedges and dry-deciduous, low forests throughout the plains of India.

Mucuna is an annual twinning plant.. Leaves are trifoliate, gray-silky beneath; petioles are long and silky, 6.3–11.3 cm. Leaflets are membranous, terminal leaflets are smaller, lateral very unequal sided. Dark purple flowers (6 to 30) occur in drooping racemes. Fruits are curved, 4–6 seeded. The longitudinally ribbed pod, is densely covered with persistent pale-brown or grey trichomes that cause irritating blisters. Seeds are black ovoid and 12 mm long

All parts of Mucuna posses valuable medicinal properties and there is a heavy demand of Mucuna in markets. 

Healing options:   

Mucuna pruriens have been long used to increase the sexual libido in both men and women.

The beans of Mucuna pruriens is being also used on sportspersons to increase their muscle mass. These seeds also help in improving the memory power and help to gain weight which is lost due to excessive exercise. 

Prolactin is a hormone released by the pituitary gland which is considered to be the cause for erection failure in men. The beans of Mucuna pruriens are known to release L-dopa which combines with dopamine to restrict the release of prolactin hormone by the pituitary glands. Oral intake of Mucuna pruriens seed helps in promoting fertility and improves erection. Some people also use Mucuna pruriens seeds for treating intestinal gas, diarrhea, cough, rheumatic disorder, muscular pain, diabetes, menstrual pain and tuberculosis.

The main constituent of Mucuna pruriens seeds is L-dopa or Levadopa which acts as a natural dopamine. 

The seeds of velvet bean are high in protein (20-29 %), lipids (6-7%), dietary fiber (8-10%), ash (3%), carbohydrates (50-60%) and minerals. Also they are extremely rich in alkaloids, saponins, and sterols. Mucuna seeds (as well as the seeds of all Mucuna species) contain high concentration of L-dopa (7-10%) - a direct precursor of the neurotransmitter dopamine. The hairs of the seed pots contain the phytochemical mucunain, the very constituent that irritates the skin when in contact. The serotonin is also has been found in the pod (as well as in the leaf and fruit).

Main use of the plant are following:

  • It contain L-Dopa which is used as anti-Parkinson's, help increases testosterone
  • Aphrodisiac - increases libido and it is very good for impotency and erectile dysfunction
  • It is used to stimulate growth of hormone - anabolic/androgenic
  • It help reduces spasms and relieves pain - analgesic/ antispasmodic
  • Help lowers blood sugar and blood pressure (hypo tensive)
  • It increases urination (uterine stimulant), help reduces fever (febrifuge) and it is a good cough suppressant
  • It calms nerves (nervine), reduces nerve pain (neurasthenic)
  • It help lowers cholesterol (hypo cholesterolemic)
  • it act as a weight loss aid
  • It reduces inflammation - anti-inflammatory

Other important Mucuna properties:

  • It help prevents or eliminates kidney stones (antilithic)
  • It help kills parasites (antiparasitic) and expels worms (vermifuge)
  • It expels gas (carminative)
  • It is a menstrual stimulant
  • It is a central nervous system stimulant

Sexual Disorder:

It is recognized as an aphrodisiac in Ayurveda and helps increase testosterone levels, leading to deposition of protein in the muscles and increased muscle mass and strength. Mucuna has been used as an aphrodisiac, it is used to increase libido in both men and women, and help in erectile dysfunction. It also help in  impotency.

The benefit of Mucuna pruriens in sexual disorder :

  • It release bound up testosterone
  • Increase blood circulation to the genitals.
  • Eliminate stress and anxiety
  • Strengthen and tone the sexual glands
  • Support the healthy production of the sex hormones
  • Increase stamina and sex drive
  • Act as a restorative nutrient for the nervous system

Nervous System Disorders :

It is used as a nervine tonic for nervous system disorders. Because of the high concentration of L-dopa in the seeds. It has been studied for its possible use in Parkinson’s disease. It was found to slow the progression of Parkinson’s symptoms (such as tremors, rigidity, slurring, drooling, and imbalance), and to have none of the side-effects of the current pharmaceutical L-dopa. 

Reduction of cholesterol and blood sugar :

Research shows mucuna extract is beneficial for reducing cholesterol , lowering blood sugar levels and enhancing mental alertness all without stimulating the central nervous system.

Cautious : Contraindicated during Pregnancy.

Ayurvedic Supplements that contains Kaunch Beej :

Vigor-100 stamina (Gold) Capsule
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Vita-ex Gold Plus Capsule
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Kaunch beej Powder
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