Curcuma longa L
Synonyms: Amomum curcuma Jacq.
Species: C. longa
Sindhi Name: Hait
Local Name: Haldi
English Name: Turmeric
Part Used: Rhizomes
C. longa is a large perennial herb. Leaves are lanceolate, long, petioled, and tapering at each end. Flowers are pale yellow while bracts of flowers are pale green. Roots have an aromatic and spicy fragrance when fresh, but on drying it gives a medicinal aroma.1,2
C. longa is extensively cultivated in China, India, Indonesia, Thailand, and throughout the tropics, including tropical regions of Africa.3,4 In Pakistan, it is cultivated in many parts of the Hazara and Punjab province.5
Ethnomedicinal Uses in Skin Diseases
C. longa is mix with hot oil and applied topically on the infected areas for the treatment of various infections in District Umerkot (Sindh).
- Mixture of longa, jaggery, and ground leaves of P. glandulosa is applied on infected areas in District Umerkot (Sindh).
- Mixture of longa, Triticum aestivum L. (Wheat), and Allium cepa L. (Onion) is tied in muslin cloth on the area of infection in District Umerkot (Sindh).
C. longa and honey is spread on the half cooked unleavened bread. It is tied in muslin cloth and massaged the infected areas for 3 days for the treatment of leprosy in District Mirpurkhas (Sindh).
Major constituents of C. longa are curcumin-I (diferuloylmethane), curcumin-II (caffeoylferuloylmethane), curcumin-III (dicaffeoylmethane), and dihydrocurcumin. It also contains zingiberene, α-phellandrene, sabinene, tumerone, borneol, and cineole. Plant also contains arabinose, fructose, glucose, starch grains, 1-methyl-4-acetyl-1-cyclohexene, p-α-dimethylbenzyl alcohol, and caprylic acid.6
Medicinal Uses and Pharmacological/Scientific Studies
C. longa is used for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, angina pectoris, and heart diseases.7
Herb is used as a tonic for the treatment of gonorrhea, dysentery, catarrh, leech bite, and colic. It is applied topically for the treatment of psoriasis, eczema, acne, and other inflammatory skin conditions.8 It is also used for the treatment of headaches, bronchitis, colds, lung infections, fibromyalgia, leprosy, fever, menstrual problems, and cancer. It is also used for the treatment of depression, alzheimer’s disease, water retention, worms, and kidney problems.9 Plant possessed antiinflammatory, antidiabetic, antidermatophytic, antiallergic hepatoprotective, cardioprotective, neuroprotective, and chemoprotective properties.10
- Baquar, S. R. (1989). “Medicinal and Poisonous Plant of Pakistan”, p: 150, Printas Karachi, Pakistan, First Edition.
- Khare, C.P. (2007). “Indian Medicinal Plants”, p: 189, Springer Science Publication, New York, U.S.A.
- Ali, M. (2007). “Textbook of Pharmacognosy”, p: 262-263, CBS Publishers and Distributors, New Delhi, India Second
- Krup, V., Prakash, L. H., and Harini, A. (2013). “Pharmacological Activities of Turmeric (Curcuma longa Linn): A Review.Journal of Homeopathy and Ayurvedic Medicine, 2(4). p: