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M.Tech (Biotechnology), B.Tech
Ayurvedic View By
BAMS
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MD (Pharmacology), MBBS
Last updated on:
23 Aug 2019 | 01:21 PM (IST)
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Karanja

Karanja
Karanja is a medicinal herb mainly used for skin disorders. It is also widely used in managing constipation as it helps to improve gut motility and has laxative property. It might also be used for piles due to its astringent and anti-inflammatory properties.
According to Ayurveda, Karanja oil is mainly applied on the skin to manage boils and eczema as well heal wounds due to its Ropan (healing) and antimicrobial property. The paste of its leaves can also be applied on cuts and wounds to help promote healing. Karanja oil is also useful in arthritis due to its anti-inflammatory activity. Regularly bathing with Karanja leaf infusion helps to manage pain and inflammation.
Karanja stem has been used for cleaning teeth and strengthen gums since ancient times[1][2].

What are the synonyms of Karanja?

Pongamia pinnata, Indian beech, Pongam oil tree, Karanj, Honge, Karajata, Pungai, Kanuga, Karach, Naktamala, Magul karanda, Sukh Chain, Ghrtakarauja, Karanjaka, Naktahva, Dahara, Natakaranja, Korach, Hulagilu, Naktamala, Kantaki, Kanaji[2].

What is the source of Karanja?

Plant Based

Benefits of Karanja

1. Indigestion
Karanja helps to manage indigestion. According to Ayurveda, indigestion means the state of an incomplete process of digestion. The main reason for indigestion is aggravated Kapha that causes Agnimandya (weak digestive fire). Karanja helps to improve Agni (digestive fire) due to its Ushna (hot) potency and digests food easily.
Tips:
a. Take 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of Karanja Churna (powder).
b. Take it with water after meals twice a day to manage indigestion.

2. Loss of Appetite
Karanja helps to improve appetite when it is made a part of the daily diet. In Ayurveda, loss of appetite is due to Agnimandya (weak digestion). It is caused by an aggravation of Vata, Pitta, and Kapha doshas leading to incomplete digestion of food. This causes insufficient secretion of gastric juice in the stomach resulting in loss of appetite. Karanja stimulates digestion and improves appetite due to its Deepan (appetizer) property.
Tips:
a. Take 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of Karanja Churna.
b. Take it with water after meals twice a day to improve appetite.

3. Osteoarthritis
According to Ayurveda, osteoarthritis occurs due to an aggravation of Vata dosha and is known as Sandhivata. It causes pain, swelling and difficulty in moving. Karanja has Vata balancing property and gives relief from the symptoms of osteoarthritis like pain and swelling in the joints.
Tips:
a. Take 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of Karanja Churna.
b. Take it with water after meals twice a day to get relief from the symptoms of osteoarthritis.

4. Cough and Cold
Karanja is iseful to manage cough and cold especially whopping cough. This is due to its Kapha balancing property. Karanja powder helps to melt thick mucus due to its Ushna (hot) potency. It also helps to expel out from the lungs thus giving relief from cough.
Tips:
a. Take 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of Karanja Churna.
b. Mix it with honey and have it after meals twice a day.

Precautions when using Karanja

Advice from Experts
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Use Karanja oil in small quantity if you have acidity and other gastric problems since it is hot in potency.
Breastfeeding
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Consult your doctor before taking Karanja during breastfeeding.
Pregnancy
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Consult your doctor before taking Karanja during pregnancy.

Recommended Dosage of Karanja

  • Karanja Churna - ¼-½ teaspoon twice a day.
  • Karanja Capsule - 1-2 capsules twice a day.

How to use Karanja

1. Karanja Churna
a. Take ¼ - ½ teaspoon of Karanja churna.
b. Mix it with honey or take with water after taking meals twice a day.

2. Karanja Capsule
a. Take 1-2 Karanja capsule.
b. Swallow it with water after meals twice a day.

Benefits of Karanja

1. Skin disorders
Karanja oil is widely used in skin disorders like boils, abscess, and eczema. This is due to its Ropan (healing) and antiseptic properties.
Tips:
a. Take 3-5 drops of Karanja oil and mix it with coconut oil as per your requirement.
b. Apply on the affected area 1-2 times a day.
c. Repeat till you do not get relief from the symptoms of skin disorders.

2. Piles Mass
Karanja or its oil helps to control swelling and inflammation of pile mass when applied externally. This is because of its Ropan (healing) property.
Tips:
a. Take 3-5 drops of Karanja oil and mix it with coconut oil as per your requirement.
b. Apply on the pile mass once or twice a day after clearing the bowel.
c. Repeat till you do not get relief from swelling and pain in case of piles.

3. Arthritis
Karanja oil helps to reduce pain and improve healing on rheumatic arthritis and psoriatic arthritis when applied externally due to itsRopan ( healing ) and Ushna (hot)potency.

4. Joint Pain
Karanja oil helps to reduce bone and joint pain when applied to the affected area. According to Ayurveda, the bones and joints are considered a site of Vata in the body. Pain in the joints is mainly due to Vata imbalance. Applying Karanja helps to reduce joint pain due to its Vata balancing property.
Tips:
a. Take 3-5 drops of Karanja oil and mix with Sesame oil.
b. Massage on the affected area.
c. Repeat to get complete relief from joint pain.

5. Ulcer
Juice of Karanja roots helps in quick healing of sinus ulcer due to its Ropan (healing) property.
Tips:
a. Take 3-5 drops of Karanja oil and mix with coconut oil.
b. Massage on the affected area.
c. Repeat for quick healing of ulcer.

6. Wound healing
Karanja or its oil helps in quick healing of wound, decreases swelling and brings back the normal texture of the skin. It also works on skin problems like cuts due to its Ropan (healing) property.
Tips:
a. Take 3-5 drops of Karanja oil and mix it with coconut oil.
b. Massage on the affected area.
c. Repeat for quick healing of wounds.

Precautions when using Karanja

Allergy
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
1. Use Karanja root juice or leaves paste with rose water due to its Ushna (hot) potency.
2. Use Karanja oil with coconut oil if your skin is hypersensitive.
3. Avoid the application of Karanja oil on the face.
Pregnancy
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Consult your doctor before using Karanja oil externally during pregnancy.

Recommended Dosage of Karanja

  • Karanja Oil - 2-5 drops or as per your requirement.
  • Karanja Powder - ½-1 teaspoon or as per your requirement.

How to use Karanja

1. Karanja Oil
a. Take 3-5 drops of Karanja oil and mix with coconut oil.
b. Apply on the affected area 1-2 times a day to get rid of boils, eczema and other skin infections.

2. Karanja Powder
a. Take ½-1 teaspoon of Karanja powder.
b. Add honey to it and apply on the affected area.
c. Wait for 10-15 minutes.
d. Wash thoroughly with tap water.
e. Use this remedy once a day to control fungal infections.

3. A poultice of paste Karanja leaves
a. Make a poultice (substances that is wrapped in a piece of cloth, heated and placed on the skin) of paste Karanja leaves.
b. Apply on the affected area 1-2 times a day.
c. Repeat to get relief from pain and swelling.

Frequently asked questions

Q. What are the forms of Karanja available in the market?

scientific
Modern Science View
Karanja is available in the market in various forms such as:
1. Oil
2. Powder (Churna)
3. Kwath
4. Capsules
Average Price of Karanja oil is about Rs 100 per litre.

Q. What is the shelf life of Karanja Oil?

scientific
Modern Science View
The shelf life of Karanja oil is 2 years.

Q. Can Karanja cause constipation?

ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
No, in fact Karanja helps to relieve constipation due to its laxative nature. Karanja also improves digestion due to its Deepan (appetizer) and Pachan (digestive) properties.

Q. Can Karanja help to cure arthritis?

scientific
Modern Science View
Yes, Karanja may be useful in managing the symptoms of arthritis. Certain compounds present in Karanja have anti-inflammatory property. They inhibit the production of chemicals that cause inflammation. Also, Karanja leaves contain certain compounds that have pain-reducing property. Bathing with a hot infusion of Karanja leaves may reduce arthritis pain[4].

Q. Does Karanja help to cure fever and cough?

scientific
Modern Science View
Yes, Karanja may be useful in managing fever. Karanja has antipyretic (reduces fever) and anti-inflammatory properties. Due to this, it reduces as well as prevents fever. Moreover, it also reduces inflammation and pain associated with fever[5].

Q. Does Karanja help in curing piles?

scientific
Modern Science View
Yes, Karanja may be useful in managing piles. It has digestive, laxative and anti-inflammatory properties. Certain compounds present in Karanja aid the bowel movement and help in easy excretion of stool[4].
ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Yes, Karanja helps to manage piles when it is taken orally. This is because Karanja has Rechana (laxative) property which helps to improve bowel moment and correct constipation. This helps reduce the risk of piles.

Q. Does Karanja help to cure gastric ulcers?

scientific
Modern Science View
Yes, Karanja may be useful in reducing the risk of ulcers. It reduces the production of acid and other factors that contribute to ulcer-formation. Additionally, it increases the production of mucosal cells as well as the secretion of mucin that protects the lining of the stomach[2][6].

Q. Does Karanja helps to cure constipation?

scientific
Modern Science View
Yes, Karanja might help manage constipation. Karanja contains certain compounds that enhance gut motility[3].

Q. Can Karanja cause rashes in the skin when applied externally?

ayurvedic
Ayurvedic View
Karanja can cause rashes due to its Ushna (hot) nature. So, Karanja should be used with rose water or coconut oil.

Q. Does applying Karanja paste cures cuts and bruises?

scientific
Modern Science View
Karanja has analgesic and anti-inflammatory activities due to which it can be used to manage the pain in case of cuts and bruises. It reduces the production of inflammation-causing chemicals thereby reducing inflammation and pain. Moreover, due to the antimicrobial activity of Karanja, the wound healing process is accelerated by reducing the risk of infection at the site[7].

References

  1. Chopade VV, Tankar AN , Pande VV,et al.Pongamia pinnata: Phytochemical constituents, traditional uses and pharmacological properties: A review.International Journal of Green Pharmacy.2008;2(2):72-75.
  2. Yadav RD, Jain SK, Prajapati A.Pongamia pinnata: An overview.Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research.2011;3(3):494-500.
  3. Singh KD, Chetia D.Phytochemical screening and gut motility activity of Pongamia pinnata bark in experimental animal models.International Journal of Pharma and Bio Sciences.2013;4(1):63-69.
  4. Bansod MG, Kagathara VG, Somkuwar AD.Evaluation of analgesics and anti-inflammatory activity of a poly-herbal formulation.Int J PharmTech Res.2010;2(2).1520-1527.
  5. Pillai N, Vijayamma N.Some pharmacological actions of Pongamia pinnata linn (Karanja).Anc Sci Life.1988;8(2):133-137.
  6. Prabha T, Dorababu M, Goel S, Agarwal PK, Singh A, Joshi VK, et al.Effect of methanolic extract of Pongamia pinnata Linn seed on gastro-duodenal ulceration and mucosal offensive and defensive factors in rats.Indian J Exp Biol.2008;41(4):304-310.
  7. Badole SL, Zanwar AA, Ghule AE, Ghosh P, Bodhankar SL.Analgesic and anti-inflammatory activity of alcoholic extract of stem bark of Pongamia pinnata (L.) Pierre.Biomed Aging Pathol.2012;2(1):19-23.
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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