Anar (Pomegranate)

Anar: fruit and medicine

Dadima or dantabeeja literally means a fruit whose seeds resemble the teeth and Lohitpushpa stands for red flowers; that is how anar — the popular fruit — has been mentioned in Ayurveda. Though it is a native of Afghanistan, Baluchistan and Persia, its small trees are cultivated in large parts of India. The root bark, flower bud, fruit and fruit rind of anar are used as medicine.

Almost all ancient texts of Ayurveda, including the works of Charaka and Sushruta have eulogised the medicinal qualities of anar. Though it has been categorised under three types — sweet, sweet-sour and sour, the Kandahari anar is considered best.

Anar is sweet, astringent and sour in taste and light, unctuous and slightly hot in effect. It pacifies vata, pitta and kapha — all the three doshas.

Different medicinal benefits are attributed to the various parts of the anar tree. The root and stem bark are astringent, cooling and anthelmentic, killing specially the tape worm. The flowers are styptic to gums and the fruit and seeds are astringent, stomachic, aphrodisiac — and a heart tonic. The fruit juice is rich in vitamins and citric acid and is antioxidant whereas the rind and the stem bark contain tannin and many alkaloids.

Ayurvedic texts have prescribed the use of anar in several diseases. The anar fruit is a drug of choice for treating anorexia, hyperacidity, anaemia, urethritis, excessive thirst, general debility and fatigue. The flowers and the fruit rind are used as a mouthwash and also in diarrhoea, dysentery, bleeding piles and epistaxis. Apart from medicinal purposes, the dried seeds of the fruit are commonly used as a souring agent in chutneys and pickles. Some of the important medicinal uses of anar are as under:

Diarrhoea and dysentery — As a home remedy, the dried and crushed rind of anar, which is known as naspal, is perhaps the most commonly used medicine for controlling diarrhoea. In dysentery, one gram of its powder, with an equal quantity of dry ginger, can be taken two or three times a day. A decoction of anar rind is a good and safe remedy for infantile diarrhoea.

Anorexia and acidity — Dried anar seeds (anardana) are famous for stimulating the salivary glands, thus promoting digestion and appetite. Unlike other citrus fruits, anar juice, if taken in a small quantity, relieves acidity. Morning sickness, excessive thirst, burning sensation, exhaustion and weakness respond well to the intake of anar juice.

Dental care — Whereas the ash of anar rind is used in many traditional tooth powders, gargles of the decoction of anar flowers is recommended for curing spongy and bleeding gums as well as mouth ulcers. Rural people use anar twigs for oral and dental hygiene.

There are various classic ayurvedic formulations in which anar is used. The famous Dadimashtaka Churna is an effective home remedy for various digestive problems like the loss of appetite, gas trouble, indigestion, diarrhoea and dysentery. This churna can be made at home by mixing dried and powdered anardana 80 gm, bach, sonth, kali mirch and magha (pippali) 40 gm each, banshaalochana, dalchini, tejpatra and chhoti elaichi 20 gm each. Two grams of this churna can be taken two or three times a day with satisfactory results.

  1. Its nice.

    • shailendra
    • September 24th, 2013


  1. September 29th, 2014

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