What are the Health Benefits and Uses of Curry Leaves (Murraya koenigii)?
What are Curry Leaves?
Curry leaves are widely used natural flavoring agent in Indian kitchens. It gives a pleasant aroma to your food. Curry Leaves has a natural taste which makes your food both healthy and tasty. The curry tree is native of India and Sri-Lanka. The leaves are botanically classified as Murraya Koenigii and belong to the Rutaceae family. The curry leaves contain antioxidant property that has the ability to cure various digestive problems such as diarrhea, excessive acid secretion, peptic ulcer, diabetes, and also have cancer-fighting properties. The main parts of the plant are leaves, roots, and its bark.
Curry tree is growing up to 4-6 cm in height and the flower of the plant is white in color and shows self-pollination, leaves are aromatic and green in color. Each leaflet of curry leaves is 2-4cm long and 1-2 cm broad.
Along with antioxidant property, the curry leaves also contains anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic, anti-microbial, anti-diabetic and hepatoprotective properties. The main Micro-nutrients and trace elements in curry leaves are:
- Minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, iron, magnesium, copper, and potassium
- Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Vitamin B, and Vitamin E
- Amino acids
- Plant sterol
- Glycosides and flavonoids
- Kingdom: Plantae
- Subkingdom: Tracheobionta
- Superdivision: Spermatophyta
- Division: Magnoliophyta
- Class: Magnoliopsida
- Subclass: Rosidae
- Order: Sapindales
- Family: Rutaceae
- Genus: Murraya
- Species: M. koenigii
What are the Main Chemical Constituents of Curry Leaves?
The leaves of curry tree contain alkaloids, carbazole alkaloid include mahanimbine, mahanineoenimbine, murrayanol, O-methylmurrayamine A, isomahanine, bismahanine O-methylmahanine, and bispyrayafoline. Leaves also contains residual glucoside known as koenigin.
What are the Health Benefits of Curry Leaves?
There are many alkaloids, glucosides, and minerals present in curry leaves which helps to protect many stomach problems. The alkaloids mainly carbazole has the anti-diarrheal properties which control the castor oil-induced diarrhea. For this, you should ground the curry leaves to a fine paste and mixed with buttermilk. Drink it with an empty stomach. It acts as a mild laxative. It serves well in the treatment of constipation, diarrhea, and dysenteries.
Curry leaves contains a very good anti-hyperglycemic property which helps to reduce the blood sugar level in your body, which ultimately treats type 2 diabetes in patients. The therapeutic activities of curry leaves reduce the pancreatic cell death in your pancreas. The pancreatic cells secrets the insulin in your body which helps in the uptake of glucose by the cells as energy & ultimately reduce the blood glucose level. The antioxidant property of curry leaves protects the oxidative damage of pancreatic cells.
Help to lose weight
Curry leaves contains alkaloid "mahanimbine", which has anti-obesity property. It also helps to reduce the number of lipids, bad cholesterol, and triglyceride in your body. Which finally helps you to control your body weight. For this, you should add 5 gram of curry leaves powder in Luke warm water and drink it every in morning with an empty stomach.
The Vitamin A, Vitamin B, Vitamin C and Vitamin E act as great antioxidants in the curry leaves which reduces oxidative damage and free radical scavenging activity. The fresh juice of curry leaves with lime juice manage the indigestion problem.
Protects the hair loss
All the chemical which are present in cosmetic products such as shampoos and conditioners, causes the hair follicles to become weak and poor dietary habits, lack of vitamins and minerals also shows some bad effects on your hair. Curry leaves are the rich source of beta-carotene and proteins which directly shows some great effects on your hair. Beta-carotene stimulates the hair follicles, and due to its antifungal property, it helps to prevent the spreading of Malassezia furfur fungal scalp infection.
Lowers high cholesterol
Curry leaves has a great property to reduce the bad cholesterol LDL level in the body. When the LDL level is high in your body, then it starts the formation of plaque like substance on the wall of the cardiovascular system with further blocks the natural flow of blood into the heart. This will leads to increase the risk of heart attack and stroke. Regular consumption of 8-10 leaves of curry helps to reduce the level of LDL in the body.
The tannins and carbazole alkaloids in curry leaves act as hepatoprotective agent. They protect the liver from oxidative damage caused by free radicals. Curry leaves also prevent the liver from diseases such as hepatitis and cirrhosis.
Radio and chemo-protective
The pure natural extracts of curry leaves result in reducing the effect of chemotherapy and radiotherapy. They prevent the chromosomal damage, protection of bone marrow and reduce the free radical damage.
Good for eyesight
Curry leaves are the rich source of vitamin A, which contains carotenoids. The carotenoids protect the cornea, the eye surface and improve your eyesight. The deficiency of Vitamin A in the human body may lead to the formation of cloud in front of eyes, night blindness and even loss of vision in rare case.
Along with all these health benefits curry leaves are also used for skin care, detoxify the body, fight cancer, premature greying of hairs, insect bites, and for the kidney disorders.