Feb 12, 2014
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(Mill.) Airy-Shaw.

Synonym ► Apium crispum Mill.

Family ► Umbelliferae; Apiaceae.

Habitat ► Native to Europe, now cultivated throughout India.

English ► Parsley.

Unani ► Fitraasaaliyum, Karafs-e- Kohi.

Action ► Diuretic (used for bladder disorders, painful urination, retention of excess fluid in the tissues), antispasmodic, uterine tonic, emmenagogue, sedative (used for PMS and menopausal hot flushes, also in prostatitis), carminative, expectorant, aperient, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory.

Key application ► For flushing out the efferent urinary tract in disorders of the same and in prevention and treatment of kidney gravel. (German Commission E.) Contraindicated in kidney inflammations.

The British Herbal Compendium approves the internal use of the herb for flatulent dyspepsia, dysuria and rheumatic conditions.

The leaves and roots contain furo- coumarins—psoralen, 5-and 8-meth- oxy psoralen, imperatorin, oxypeuce- danin, iso-pimpinelin. Myristicin has been isolated from the leaf oil. The plant gave flavonoids—apiin, luteolin, apigenin-7-glucoside, luteolin-7-glu- coside among others.

Myristicin showed high activity as an inducer of the detoxifying enzyme system, Glutathione S-transferase (GST) in the liver and small intestines of female mice (may be considered as a cancer chemoprotective agent).

The flavonoids, particularly api- genin, have been shown to be anti- inflammatory, to inhibit histamine release and to act as a free radical scavenger. Apiole, a constituent of the volatile oil, is reportedly antipyretic and phthalides of the root, seed and leaf are sedative in mice.

Both apiole and myristicin exhibit aquaretic and uterine stimulant activity, while sodium retention has been observed. (Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, 2007.)

In homoeopathy, the herb is used for the treatment urinary disorders—sudden urge to urinate with severe pain, dribbling of urine after urination, gleet discharge and for amenorrhoea and neuralgic dysmenorrhoea.

Article Categories:
Indian Medicinal Plants

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