A CRITICAL REVIEW OF POTAKI (BASELLA ALBA) IN AYURVEDIC TEXTS WITH RECENT STUDIES
Sipika Swati1, Prateek Agarwal2*
1M.D, Scholar, Dept. of Stree avum prasuti tantra, Faculty of Ayurveda, IMS, BHU, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India.
*2M.D, Scholar, Dept. of Kayachikitsa, Faculty of Ayurveda, IMS, BHU, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India.
Potaki (Basella alba) commonly known as Malabar spinach, is a soft stemmed perinneal vine. It is an edible vine in the family Basellaceae. It is found in tropical Asia and Africa where it is widely used as a leaf vegetable. It is known under various common names like Vine spinach, Climbing spinach, Creeping spinach, Buffalo spinach and Ceylon spinach among others. It grows well under full sunlight in hot, humid climates and in areas lower than 500 metres above sea level. Typical of leaf vegetable, Malabar spinach is high in vitamin A, C and Iron. It is low in calories by volume, but high in protein per calorie. The succulent mucilage is particularly rich source of soluble fiber. In the Indian system of medicine, the plant has immense potential in androgenic activity, antioxidant, nephroprotective, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial activity. The plant has been known to be a demulcent, a diuretic and an emollient action. The entire plant is used in Chinese medicine where it is claimed to reduce fever and neutralise poison. To cure human disease, medicinal plants have been a major source of therapeutic agents since ancient times. The revival of interest in natural drugs started in last decade mainly because of the wide spread belief that natural medicine is healthier than synthetic products. As per WHO, 80% of the population in the world relays on the traditional medicine for treatment of various disease. Therefore evaluation of rich heritage of traditional medicine is essential. In this regard one such plant is Basella alba.Keywords: Potaki, Basella alba, Basellaceae, Ayurveda, Health.
Dr. Prateek Agarwal, M.D, Scholar, Dept. of Kayachikitsa, Faculty of Ayurveda, IMS, BHU, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India. Mob: 09452350026, 9889501569