Basonym of Drug
The esteemed medicinal plant Bilva is botanically referred to as Aegle marmelos. This nomenclature forms the foundation of its identification and classification in the world of botany.
Main Sanskrit Synonyms
Bilva, a revered herb in Ayurveda, is associated with a range of Sanskrit synonyms, each capturing its distinct attributes and uses. Some of the primary Sanskrit synonyms for Bilva are:
- Bilva: The primary name highlighting the plant’s significance and spiritual connotations.
- Shivadruma: Referring to the divine tree of Lord Shiva, underlining its sacred symbolism.
- Shriphala: Recognizing it as a fruit cherished for its divine properties.
- Brihatphala: Emphasizing its large and nutritious fruit.
- Kantaki: Highlighting its thorny nature, signifying protection and potency.
Regional Name (Vernacular Names)
Bilva’s profound impact is mirrored in its various vernacular names, reflecting its widespread recognition and utilization. Some regional names for Bilva include:
- Hindi: Bael, Bel
- Bengali: Bel
- Marathi: Bel
- Tamil: Vilvam
- Telugu: Maredu
- Kannada: Bilva
- Gujarati: Bael, Bilimba
- Punjabi: Bel
- Urdu: Bel
Scientific Classification of Dravya
Bilva is classified as follows:
- Kingdom: Plantae
- Sub-Kingdom: Phanerogamia
- Division (Phylum): Angiosperms
- Class: Dicotyledons
- Order: Sapindales
- Family: Rutaceae
- Genus: Aegle
- Species: Marmelos
Classical Classification of Dravya (Gana)
- Sushruta Samhita: Brihat Panchmoola, Dashmoola, Ambashtadi, Varunadi
Bilva boasts distinct external features that contribute to its recognition:
- Leaves: The leaves are alternate, large, and trifoliate, resembling the trident of Lord Shiva.
- Fruits: The fruits are round, woody, and filled with aromatic pulp, known for their cooling and nutritive properties.
- Bark: The bark is greyish-brown, often used in herbal preparations.
- Flowers: The flowers are pale green and possess a unique fragrance.
- Thorns: The tree is adorned with sharp thorns that add to its protective symbolism.
Various parts of the Bilva tree are valued for their medicinal properties:
- Leaves: The leaves are commonly used in traditional remedies and rituals.
- Fruits: The ripe fruits are consumed for their nutritional benefits and cooling effects.
- Bark: The bark is utilized for its therapeutic properties in Ayurvedic preparations.
Bilva harbors an array of essential phytochemicals that contribute to its healing potential:
- Marmelosin: A bioactive compound with anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory properties.
- Limonoids: Phytochemicals with antioxidant and anti-cancer effects.
- Tannins: Responsible for astringent properties, contributing to its therapeutic uses.
- Alkaloids: Active compounds known for their potential health benefits.
Rasa (Predominant Taste): “Katu” (pungent), “Tikta” (bitter) and “Kashaya” (astringent)
Guna (Property): “Grahi” (Absorbent), “Snigdha” (Unctuous) and “Teekshna” (Sharp)
Veerya (Potency): “Ushna” (Hot)
Vipaka (Post-digestive effect):“Katu” (pungent)
Prabhava: Bilva is known for its special potency or “Prabhava” in supporting digestive health and managing gastrointestinal concerns.
Action on Dosha, Dhatu, and Mala:
Dosha: Bilva primarily balances the “Pitta” and “Kapha” doshas due to its bitter and astringent tastes; also balances “Vata” due to its Hot potency.
Dhatu: The primary action of Bilva is on the “Rasa” and “Rakta” dhatus (plasma and blood), supporting their purification and optimal functioning.
Mala: Bilva aids in maintaining healthy elimination of waste products (Mala) by supporting digestion and promoting regular bowel movements.
Prayogarha Vyadhi (Therapeutic Indications):
Bilva holds a significant place in Ayurveda for addressing various health concerns, making it a versatile and valuable herb with diverse therapeutic indications:
Digestive Health: Bilva is renowned for promoting digestion, alleviating indigestion, and managing conditions like dyspepsia and gastritis.
Gastrointestinal Disorders: It is used to manage diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and other gastrointestinal issues.
Respiratory Health: Bilva’s expectorant and antitussive properties make it beneficial for managing cough, bronchitis, and asthma.
Fever: It is employed in managing fever and supporting the body’s natural defense mechanisms.
Diabetes Management: Bilva may assist in regulating blood sugar levels and supporting individuals with diabetes.
Skin Disorders: Bilva’s cooling properties are utilized in managing skin conditions like itching and inflammation.
Heart Health: It is believed to have cardio-protective effects and may support overall cardiovascular well-being.
Eye Health: Bilva’s astringent properties make it beneficial for eye health and managing eye-related discomfort.
Menstrual Disorders: Bilva is used in managing irregular menstrual cycles and related discomfort.
Stress and Anxiety: Its calming effects are employed to manage stress, anxiety, and promote mental well-being.
Amayikaprayoga and Matra (Therapeutic Administration and Dose):
Bilva can be administered in various forms and dosages, including:
Bilva Powder: 3-6 grams per day, often taken with water or honey.
Bilva Churna: Used to make decoctions or infusions, benefiting digestive and respiratory health.
Dosages may vary based on the formulation and the guidance of an Ayurvedic practitioner.
Vishishta Yoga (Names of Important Formulations):
Bilva is a pivotal ingredient in several renowned Ayurvedic formulations, including:
Bilvadi Churna: A powder blend used for digestive support and managing gastrointestinal disorders.
Bilva Taila: An herbal oil infusion, often used for external application in managing skin conditions.
Bilwadi Gutika: Tablets containing Bilva and other herbs, supporting digestion and managing digestive discomfort.
Bilwadi Leha: A herbal jam with Bilva, beneficial for enhancing digestion and promoting overall gastrointestinal well-being.
Dantyarishta: A fermented tonic containing Bilva, promoting oral health and addressing dental issues.
Vishakta Lakshan (Adverse Effects):
When used within recommended dosages, Bilva is generally safe for most individuals. However, excessive consumption may lead to:
- Constipation: Due to its astringent properties, excessive intake may lead to dryness and constipation.
Chikitsopachara (Remedial Measures):
In case of adverse effects, the following remedial measures can be taken:
Hydration: Increase fluid intake to counteract the potential drying effects.
Dietary Adjustments: Incorporate hydrating and moistening foods into the diet.
Shodhana (Purification Method):
Bilva is typically not subjected to specific purification methods due to its generally safe nature. However, it can be included in certain formulations where shodhana procedures are applied.
Always consult a qualified Ayurvedic practitioner or healthcare professional before using Bilva or any herbal remedies, especially if you have underlying health conditions or are taking medications.
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Note: The information provided in this article is for educational purposes only and should not be considered as a substitute for medical advice. Please consult with a qualified healthcare professional for proper diagnosis and treatment of any other medical condition.