Gymnema sylvestre B. Br.

Family : Asclepiadaceae.

Gymnema sylvestre

Habitat _ Central and Peninsular


English _ Australian Cow Plant,

Ipecacuanha (Indian).

Ayurvedic _ Meshashringi, Meshavishaanikaa,

Meshavalli, Chhaagalshrngi.

Ajashringi (also equated

with Dolichandrone falcata and

Pergularia extensa).

Unani _ Gurmaar Buuti.

Siddha/Tamil _ Kannu Minnayamkodi,

Passaam, Shirukurinja.

Action _ Leaf—antidiabetic. Stimulates

the heart and circulatory

system, activates the uterus. Used

in parageusia and furunculosis.

Plant—diuretic, antibilious. Root—

emetic, expectorant, astringent,


Gymnemagenin, the main sapogenin

in the leaves, yielded 12% of

total gymnemic acids.

Gymnemic acids are antisweet principles

and exhibit inhibitory effect on

levels of plasma glucose.

The extract of dried leaves, given to

diabetic rats at a dose of 100 mg/day

per rat for weeks, was found to bring

about blood glucose homoeostasis by

increasing serum insulin levels. Increased

glycoprotein level and the resultant

nephropathy, retinopathy and

micro-and macro-angiopathy were also


. The efficacy

and antiatherosclerotic potential of

the extract were comparable

to that of a lipid lowering agent,


In homoeopathy, a drug obtained

from the leaves and roots is prescribed

for both diabetesmellitus and insipidus

Gymnemic acid is reported to inhibit

melanin formation in vitro. It also

inhibits dental plaque formation.

Dosage _ Root, leaf—2-3 g powder;

10-20 ml decoction.

Medicinal plants of India ; Ayurveda

Encyclopedia of Indian Medicinal Plants/Herbs mainly using in Ayurveda with good quality pictures and information like therapeutic usage of Medicinal Plants, cultivation, morphology, habitat, flower characters, Chemical content, parts used, research works etc.

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