Chitraraththai or Swertia Chirata is known as Chirayata in India. This annual herb is found all across India and grows up to the height of 1.5 meters. It is known to have leaves in opposite pairs which are about 10 cms in length with no stalks. In Hindi the herb is called Chiretta and in Sanskrit it is called Bhunimba or Kirata tikta.
This ancient herb is also sometimes known as the Nepali Neem because it is a common tree in the forests of Nepal. Chirayata was introduced to Europe in 1839 and has been used widely since. It is majorly found in the Himalayas majorly between the heights of 1200 to 1500 meters.
Chirayata has flowers that are pale green in color with a ting of purple. The plant has long pink or white colored haired and sharp pointed fruits. The entire plant is used in medicines for over centuries.
The tonic made from this plant is used to relieve general weakness and also during convalescence. The infusion prepared from the Chitraraththai must be taken in doses of 60 ml twice a day before means for relieving fever. The infusion can be prepared with the herb, cloves and cinnamon.
Chirayata contains glycoside chiratin which yields on hydrolysis. The ophidic acid in the plant is brown in color and is identified as a hydroscopic substance. This is a substance that is soluble in both water and alcohol. It contains tannin, resin and ash.
The chemical compounds Chitraraththai contains are amarogentin, chiratin, chiratogenin, enicoflavine, gentianine, swertianin and swerchirin.
Chitraraththai has been seen to reduce fever caused due to cold and flu very efficiently. It also works on malarial fever, hysteria and convulsions. So the next time you feel unwell and run a temperature try having some Chitraraththai extract to get well sooner.
Chirayata has hepatoprotective properties in abundance. The word hepatoprotective is self-explanatory (Hepato- related to liver + protective). It helps to get rid of toxins from the body and also contributes towards a healthy liver. Chirayata also helps in the regeneration of new liver cells.
Chitraraththai helps to eliminate parasites like helminthes, roundworms, tapeworms and flukes from the body. It also helps to heal the symptoms caused due the parasite invasion in the body. Diarrhoea, anaemia of the lungs and liver and other such terrible side effects can be treated using Chirayata.
Chitraraththai is the skins best friend. Their antioxidant property helps clear the skin. It comes handy in treating various skin conditions such as rashes, inflammation, itching, burning sensation and redness. It can also be diluted by mixing with water and used for cleaning oozing on the skin.
Chirayata helps create more blood in the body. Anaemia can be treated using this plant. Anaemic conditions can lead to a list of health problems which can become serious to the extent of being life threatening. Anaemia is common in women as losing blood is a monthly affair for them. This takes a heavy toll on their body especially during and after pregnancy.
Diabetes is a lifestyle disease that has spread like wild fire due to increased stress, irregular food habits and improper lifestyle of this generation. Chirayata helps reduce the amount of sugar present in the blood by stimulating the pancreatic cells to secrete more insulin.
Chitraraththai due to the presence of powerful antioxidants prevents the precancerous lesions from progressing and puts a check on cancer. It is most effective in case of liver cancer. This is one of the most important properties of this plant as the search of remedies for cancer has been a matter of great priority among doctors and scientists.
Chirayata must be used only after consulting a certified herbalist. It should not be consumed by people who suffer from allergies from ethanol. We recommend that the herb must be used only after consulting a certified herbalist.