Common Natural Medicinal Plant Drugs
Cold and Cough :
Senega, Ipecac, Squill, Glycyrrhiza and Ginger contain expectorant activity. The leaves of Angelica archangelica, Pimpinella anisum (Anise fruit), Allium saiiuum (Garlic), Thymas vulgaris, Mentha spicata (Mint), Ocimum sanctum (Tulsi), Viola odorata (Banafsha) and Eucalpytus sp. are used to treat cough, cold and bronchitis. Dried stigma of Crocus sativus (Saffron or Kesar) are used in cough preparations. Most of these drugs contain essential oils which are responsible for the biological activity.
Gastrointestinal Disorders :
Gastrointestinal disorders include colitis, constipation, diarrhea, duodenal ulcers, dyspepsia and hyperacidity. Dried extract of Acacia catechu and Geum urbanum, leaf and bark of Hamamlis virgmiana and root bark of Myrica cerifera are used to treat the inflammation of colon (colitis). Constipation is treated by seed husk of Plantago, leaves of Senna, bark of Cascara, Aloe juice. Rhubarb and Honey. Stomachic drugs include Chirata, Garlic, Kalmegh, Kapur kachari, Saffron, Nux-vomica and Picrorhiza. Agar, Aloe. Cascara, Guar gum. isapgol. Myrobalan, Rhubarb and Senna.
Carminative drugs contain volatile oils and they are Asafoetida, Black pepper, Capsicum. Caraway. Cardamom, Cinnamon, Coriander. Dill, Fennel. Garlic and Mentha oil. The herbal drugs like Ipecac. Isapgol. Kurchi and Sankhpusphi are anti-dysenteric drugs which generally contain mucilage or alkaloids. Diarrhea is treated with Bael, Isapgol, Kurchi. Pale Catechu and Pectins.
Soxifroga liquLata and TribuLus terrestris (Gokhru) are used to break and disintegrate urinary stones. Guargum, Gurmarbuti and Vijayasar are employed as anti-diabetic drugs. Cholagogue disorder is treated with Eclipta alba (Bhringraj. Phylianthus Fracternus (Jar-amlaj. Kaimegh and Picrorhiza.The crude drugs like Gokhru. Arjuna and Punarnava are used to cure diuretic ailments.
There are about 33 formulations containing traditional drugs for the treatment of liver ailments. Some of them are Liv 52, Stimulive, Liomyn, Livergen, Livotrit and these formulations are prepared from Kaimegh, Picrorhiza, Bhringraja, Sarponkha (Tephrosia purpurea), boerhaavia diffuse. (Punarnava), Trianthema portulacastrum and Chirata.
Rasna (Alpinia officinarum, Pluchea lanceolata, Vanda roxburghii. and Vitex negundo) is used as a traditional remedy to cure rheumatism and arthritis. The resin obtained from commiphora mukul (Gugul and the exudate of Boswellia serrata (Sallai gugul) are also employed as anti arthritic agents. Aconitum napelus also contains anti-rheumatic activity.
Sedative and Tranquillizers:
The sedative traditional drugs include Aswagandha, Belladonna, Brahmi, Datura, Cannabis, Hyoscyamus, Jatamansi, Myrrh,Rauwolfia, Valerian, vaj, and Wild Chery-bark. Most of these drugs are the source of alkaloids. Celery, Chamomile and Valerian exhibit mild sedative effects. Indian Valerian is superior than European one due to higher concentration of active constituents Valepotriates are more tranquillizers and sedatives than meprobamate. Jatamans contains safe sedative and spasmolytic agent.
Cardiovascular diseases are the major cause of mortality all over the world. The most popular drug is digoxin isolated from Digitalis. The cardiotonic glycoside, peruvoside. obtained from an Indian ornamental plant Kaner. Thevetia peruviana. (fam. Apocynaceae), has been introduced in German under the trade name 'Encordin', Forskolin (Coleoncl) is another antihypertensive compound isolated from a fragrant herb. Coleus forskohlii (fam. Labiatae). Asclepin obtained from Asclepias curassavica, is more potent than digoxin. The popular Ayurvedic drug 'Sarpgandha' (Rauwolfia serpentina) shows hypotensive and tranquillizing effect. Strophanthus and Urginea are also used as cardio tonic.