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Ayurvedic View By
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Bamboo

Bamboo
Bamboo, also known as Bans, belongs to the grass family. It is a long stick-like, non-wood plant found mostly in forests. All parts of this plant (seed, root, shoot, leaf) provide various health benefits.
Bamboo is considered to be beneficial in managing skin diseases. It helps maintain elasticity and provides strength to the skin due to the presence of certain minerals and essential amino acids. Bamboo helps in managing acne, skin eruptions and wounds due to its anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. In Ayurveda, Bamboo is referred to as Vanshalochana which is secreted from nodes of bamboo trees. It has Kapha-Pitta (balancing) property that helps in improving skin quality.
Bamboo is beneficial in lowering blood glucose levels due to the presence of antioxidants i.e., flavonoids when taken internally. It also helps manage respiratory problems such as asthma due to its expectorant property which promotes the secretion of sputum and helps ease breathing.
It is advisable not to consume bamboo shoots during pregnancy, especially in the first trimester as it might cause pregnancy-related problems which may even lead to abortion[2][7][11][12].

What are the synonyms of Bamboo?

Bambusa arundinacea, Toncor, Wans, Vanskapur, Vas-nu-mitha, Banschlochan, Bamboo manna, Giant Thorny Bamboo, Banskapur, Vanoo, Banz, BansKapur, Baans, Baansh, Baroowa Bans, Tabashir, Bansa, Baambii, Bansamitha, Munga-luppa, Mullumangila, Mulmunkil, Mungil, Veduruppu, Mulkas Veduru, Mullu Veduru, Moleuppa, Bidaruppu, Tavakshira, Vanshalochana, Venulavanam[1].

What is the source of Bamboo?

Plant Based

Benefits of Bamboo

What are the benefits of Bamboo for Asthma?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo might be considered good for Asthma due to its anti-inflammatory and expectorant properties. It reduces inflammation in the lungs and decreases mucus production in the air passages. This helps clear the congestion and eases breathing[5][6].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Asthma is a condition characterised by inflammation of the air passages making it difficult for a person to breathe. In this condition, a person faces repeated attacks of breathlessness and wheezing sounds from the chest. According to Ayurveda, the main doshas involved in Asthma are Vata and Kapha. An aggravated Kapha dosha imbalances Vata dosha in the lungs. This creates an obstruction in the air passages which makes breathing difficult. Bamboo helps to manage Asthma due to its Kapha balancing property. It helps prevent the imbalance of Vata dosha and thus reduce the symptoms of Asthma such as difficulty in breathing.

What are the benefits of Bamboo for Cough?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo helps manage Cough due to its expectorant activity. It increases the sputum secretion by the air passages which helps ease breathing and gives relief from Cough[6].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Cough is quite a common ailment, which usually occurs along with cold. It is commonly known as Kapha disorder in Ayurveda. Cough is generally caused by the accumulation of mucus in the respiratory tract. Bamboo helps manage Cough due to its Kapha balancing property. It helps prevent the accumulation of mucus in the respiratory tract, thereby providing relief from Cough.

How effective is Bamboo?

Insufficient evidence
Asthma, Cough

Precautions when using Bamboo

Advice from Experts
Important
scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo contains certain constituents that have antithyroid properties. So, it is advisable for patients with thyroid problems to avoid the use of Bamboo[3][14].
Uncooked or partially cooked Bamboo might be toxic in nature. Therefore, consume Bamboo only when it is properly cooked[4].
Breastfeeding
scientific
Modern Science View
Enough scientific evidence is not available for the use of Bamboo during breastfeeding. So, it is advisable to avoid or consult a physician before using Bamboo during Breastfeeding[3].
Pregnancy
scientific
Modern Science View
It is recommended to avoid the use of Bamboo during pregnancy as it may induce a miscarriage. It is advisable to always consult a physician before taking Bamboo during pregnancy[3][9].

Recommended Dosage of Bamboo

  • Bamboo Powder - ¼ - ½ teaspoon once a day or as recommended by a physician.
  • Bamboo Capsule - 1-2 capsules once a day or as recommended by a physician.
  • Bamboo Leaves - 1 teaspoon a day or as recommended by a physician.

How to use Bamboo

1. Bamboo Powder
a. Take ¼ - ½ teaspoon of Bamboo powder.
b. Add honey to it or take with lukewarm water.
c. Consume it daily to get relief from cough.

2. Bamboo Decoction
a. Take 10-20 teaspoons of Bamboo decoction.
b. Add same quantity of water to it.
c. Drink it preferably in the morning.
d. Consume it regularly to get relief from menstrual cramps (dysmenorrhea).

3. Bamboo Capsules
a. Take 1-2 capsules of Bamboo.
b. Swallow it with water once a day.
c. Take it to prevent vomiting.

4. Bamboo Tea
a. Take 1½ cup of water in a pan.
b. Add 1 teaspoon of dried leaves of Bamboo to it.
c. Boil on medium flame till the water reduces to half of its quantity.
d. Add honey and squeeze a bit of lemon for flavour when it becomes lukewarm.
e. Enjoy the tea on a regular basis to strengthen your hair, nails and skin.

Precautions when using Bamboo

Side Effects
Important
scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo may cause cuts, abrasions, and wounds[10].

Recommended Dosage of Bamboo

  • Bamboo Paste - ½ - 1 teaspoon or as recommended by a physician.

How to use Bamboo

1. Bamboo Root Paste
a. Take ½ - 1 teaspoon of Bamboo root paste.
b. Add honey to it.
c. Apply on the affected area to get rid of eczema and hyperpigmentation.

2. Bamboo Shoot Paste
a. Take ½ - 1 teaspoon of Bamboo shoot paste.
b. Add honey to it.
c. Apply on the affected area to get rid of ringworm and other skin infections.

Frequently asked questions

Q. Do Bamboo plants clean the air?

scientific
Modern Science View
According to Chinese mythology, Bamboo is used to clean the air inside the house and this is the reason it is used as an indoor plant. Bamboo works by removing the toxins in the air and makes the in-house air fresh and pure.

Q. Can a person eat Bamboo?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo shoots are the only part of the plant that can be consumed. However, there are few things that need to be considered while eating it. The shoots needs to be free from all the attachments and should be properly cooked. Improperly or partially cooked Bamboo shoots are harmful to eat.

Q. Is Bamboo shoot rich in carbohydrates?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo shoots are mainly fibrous and they do contain very less amount of carbohydrates.

Q. What does Bamboo shoot taste like?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo’s taste is very delicious and savory. It has a characteristic spicy taste. It is great for vegetarians as it add new flavours into their set of taste.

Q. What is Bamboo tea good for?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo tea made from fresh Bamboo leaves has many health benefits. It contains silica which is useful for bone health. It also strengthens hair and nails. Bamboo leaf tea is low in calories and free from caffeine so it helps to improve metabolism of the body without any side effects[15].

Q. Is Bamboo poisonous?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo shoots are safe to eat in cooked or processed form. However, Bamboo shoots contain a certain constituent (taxiphyllin) that might show cyanide like properties. Consuming raw or improperly cooked Bamboo shoots might lead to formation of toxins. So, it is advisable to use properly cooked or processed Bamboo shoots[4][16].

Q. Q. Why does Bamboo smell bad?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bad smell from Bamboo could be due to rotting, caused by overwatering or exposure to extreme temperatures.

Q. Q. How are Bamboo shoots grown and harvested?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo is a fast-growing plant. In fact, it is one of the fastest-growing plants in the world. It can be invasive, so it needs to be contained or it will spread very fast and might take over nearby areas as well. You can do this by digging a trench and placing a barrier below the ground.

Bamboo shoots are harvested for food, usually no more than 2 weeks after they have emerged. You might need a sharp trowel or knife to cut them from the ground[17].

Q. Q. How to store and keep bamboo shoots?

scientific
Modern Science View
You can store your fresh, unpeeled bamboo shoots in the crisper section of your fridge (drawer used to place vegetables and fruits). They can be kept for about 2 weeks. If you keep them longer, they may develop a bitter taste[17].

Q. Is Bamboo good for health?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo is considered to be healthy as it possesses antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These properties reduce the risk of long term illnesses such as heart diseases. The shoot of Bamboo helps in managing weight as well as the levels of cholesterol and also boosts the immune system[7][8].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Yes, Bamboo is good for health as it helps manage the conditions (such as cough, cold, bleeding or even inflammation) that occur due to an imbalance of Pitta and Kapha dosha because of its Pitta-Kapha balancing properties.

Q. Does Bamboo help manage diabetes?

scientific
Modern Science View
Yes, Bamboo might help in the management of diabetes due to its antioxidant property. The antioxidants such as phenolic acids and flavonoids prevents the damage of pancreatic cells and enhance insulin secretion. This helps lowers blood glucose levels, thereby managing diabetes[13].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Diabetes occurs due to an imbalance of Vata and Kapha dosha. This leads to disturbed insulin level in the body. Bamboo helps manage diabetes due to its Kapha balancing and Katu (pungent) properties. It helps maintain a normal insulin level in the body and reduces the symptoms of diabetes.

Q. Is Bamboo toxic to humans?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo, when taken in properly cooked or processed form, is safe to eat. But, using unprocessed or uncooked Bamboo for consumption might lead to certain side effects due to the presence of certain constituents which have cyanide like properties[4][16].

Q. What is the taste of Vanshlochana (Bamboo extract)?

scientific
Modern Science View
Vanslochana is basically collected from the nodes of Bamboo, where it is present in the secretion form. According to Ayurveda, it has Kashaya (astringent) property and is Madhura (Sweet) and Tikta (bitter) in taste[20].

Q. How to make a dish using Bamboo?

scientific
Modern Science View
- Peel and boil fresh bamboo shoots for 20 minutes before using (raw shoots are bitter and hard to digest).
- Shred fresh bamboo shoots and stir-fry them with other vegetables, garlic, ginger, chili, lemongrass and coriander leaf.
- You can serve bamboo shoots as a side dish with fish or meat. Just pour a sauce of melted butter, flour and grated cheese over boiled and finely sliced bamboo shoots. Now, bake and sprinkle with paprika before serving.

Q. What is the role of Bamboo (Vanshlochana) in Ayurvedic medicines?

scientific
Modern Science View
In Ayurveda, many herbal preparations contain Vanshlochana as one of the main ingredients. One such commonly suggested Ayurvedic medicine which uses Vashlochana for the treatment of cough and cold is Sitopiladi. Vanshlochana due to its Kapha balancing nature helps to reduce the symptoms of cough and cold[19].

Q. What is Bamboo murabba?

scientific
Modern Science View
Murabba is basically a sweet preserve of any fruit. It is generally prepared by boiling and mixing fruits, sugar and spices. It contains the benefits of the original fruit being used and added flavors of the mixed spices. Bamboo murabba is made by boiling bamboo shoots for 300 minutes and then adding lemon and cardamom for taste. Murabba made from fresh ingredients can last for 15-20 days when kept at room temperature.

Q. Q. What are the benefits of Bans/Bamboo murabba?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo murabba made from fresh bamboo shoots is somewhat equally beneficial as the raw Bamboo shoots. It is a rich source of proteins, fiber and minerals. The presence of fiber in large quantities helps in managing gut issues. However, the quantity being eaten should be kept in mind as the content of sugar in murabba increases during its making.

Q. How do you make bamboo murabba?

scientific
Modern Science View
Here are some steps which you can follow:
Take a few fresh Bamboo shoots and cut them in a ring shape.
Boil these Bamboo shoots in water for at least 30 minutes.
After boiling wash them 3-4 times in freshwater to avoid a bitter taste.
Prick all Bamboo shoots with a small stick so that sugar can easily be absorbed.
Now, make the Chasni with sugar and put all boiled Bamboo shoots in it (stir it often).
Add 2 spoons of lemon juice (around 1 lime) and 3-4 cardamom pods (tear them into 2 pieces).
Transfer all the content to a jar or bottle and let it cool down.
Keep the content untouched for 2 days so that all the ingredients mix well.
That’s it, our fresh Bamboo Murabba is ready to be enjoyed.

Q. Do Bamboo shoots increase human height?

scientific
Modern Science View
Enough evidence is not available to suggest any direct effect of bamboo shoots on human height. However, the shoots have a good profile of minerals, consisting mainly of potassium (K), calcium (Ca), manganese, zinc, chromium, copper and iron (Fe)[21]. All these important nutrients can help in the overall growth and development of the body.

Q. Is Bamboo good for acne?

scientific
Modern Science View
Yes, Bamboo might help control acne formation due to its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It prevents the growth of bacteria that causes acne. Also, the presence of high magnesium content in Bamboo helps reduce pain and inflammation of the skin. It removes toxins, dead cells and dirt particles present in the pores as well[8].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Yes, Bamboo is good for acne due to its Kashaya (astringent) and Pitta-Kapha balancing properties. Acne generally occur due to an imbalance of Pitta or Kapha dosha. Bamboo helps prevent excessive oil secretion and thus reduces acne formation. It also helps in quick healing of the skin.

Q. Is Bamboo useful for skin problems?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo cream is considered to be good for the skin due to its skin-softening activity. It is rich in minerals that make the skin smooth. It also protects the skin against bacterial and fungal skin infections[8].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Bamboo is good for the skin due to its Kashaya (astringent) property. It is beneficial in some conditions like acne or oily skin as it helps absorb the excess oil from the skin. It also helps in the healing process and maintains the natural complexion and health of the skin.

Q. Is Bamboo good for hair?

scientific
Modern Science View
Bamboo shampoo is good for hair due to the presence of a number of essential minerals. The minerals prevent hair cell damage and help strengthen hair[8].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Hair problems like hair fall or greying generally occur due to an imbalance of Kapha and Pitta dosha. Bamboo has Pitta and Kapha balancing properties. It helps reduce hair fall and prevent your greying of hair.

References

  1. Soni V, Jha AK , Dwivedi J. Traditional uses, phytochemistry and pharmacological profile of Bambusa arudinacea Retz. TANG.2013;3(3):e20.External Link
  2. Rathaur JD, Pathak NL, Patel RG, et al. Phytopharmacological Properties of Bambusa arundinacea as a Potential Medicinal Tree: An Overview.Journal of Applied Pharmaceutical Science.2011; 01(10):27-31.External Link
  3. WebMD.Bamboo: Uses, Side effects, Doses, Interactions [Internet].Atlanta [last updated in 2016].External Link
  4. Sang-A-Gad P, Guharat S, Wananukul W.A mass cyanide poisoning from pickling bamboo shoots.Clin Toxicol (Phila). 2011;49(9):834-9.External Link
  5. Muniappan M, Sundararaj T.Antiinflammatory and antiulcer activities of Bambusa arundinacea. J Ethnopharmacol.2003;88(2-3):161-167.External Link
  6. Shukla R, Sumit G, Sajal S, et al.Medicinal Importance of Bamboo.International journal of biopharm and phytochemical research.2012;1(1):9-15.External Link
  7. Hossain MF, Islam A, Numan SM.Multipurpose uses of Bamboo plants: A review.International research journal of biological sciences.2015;4(12):57-60.External Link
  8. Latti BR, Birajdar SB,Kalburge JV, et al.Bamboo salt- A review.International journal of innovation sciences and research.2015;4(12):556-560.External Link
  9. Nongdam P, Tikendra L.The nutritional facts of bamboo shoots and their usage as important traditional foods of Northeast India.Hindawi publishing corporation.2014:1-17.External Link
  10. Marino C. Phytodermatitis: Skin reactions caused by plants.Washington State Department of Labor and Industries.External Link
  11. Jhariya MK, Banerjee A, Meena RS et al. Sustainable Agriculture, Forest and Environmental Management. 2019.External Link
  12. Philip TE. Thangam Philip’s Vegetarian Recipes for Healthy Living. 2011.External Link
  13. Joshi RK, Patil PK, Mujawar MHK, et al. Hypoglycemic activity of Bambusa Arundinacea leaf aqueous extract in Euglycemic and hyperglycemic wistar rats. Pharmacologyonline.2009;3:789-795.External Link
  14. Chandra AK, Ghosh D, Mukhopadhyaya S, et al. Effect of bamboo shoot, Bambusa arundinacea (Retz.) Willd. on thyroid status under conditions of varying iodine intake in rats.Indian journal of experimental biology.2004;42:781-786.External Link
  15. Abdul Khalil HPS.Bamboo: Current and Future Prospects. BoD – Books on Demand. 2018.External Link
  16. Ulbricht CE.Natural Standard:Herb and Supplement Guide, An Evidence Based Reference.Elsevier;2010.
  17. Victoria State Government. Bamboo shoots. External Link
  18. Centre for Food Safety. Food contaminants. External Link
  19. Kumar V, Manjunath K, Narayana, A. Formulations of sitopaladi churna granules and tablets by dry granulation technique for enhancing patient compliance. IJPRS. 2014 External Link
  20. Ranjan P, Singh R, Singh, AK. Pharmacognostical study of vanshlochan (Bamboo Manna). WJPPS.External Link
  21. Chongtham N, Bisht MS, Haorongbam S. Nutritional Properties of Bamboo Shoots: Potential and Prospects for Utilization as a Health Food. Wiley. 2011. External Link
Disclaimer
The content is purely informative and educational in nature and should not be construed as medical advice. Please use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified medical or healthcare professional.

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