Padmak: Benefits, Uses and Side effects
Padmak (Prunus cerasoides) is often called Himalayan Cherry tree and commonly named as Padam, Padma gandhi, Pitarakta, Pajja, Sour cherry, and Pathimukam. It has a variety of traditional uses and its gum is used for various medicinal applications.
The bark and seeds of the Padmak plant are used for their healing properties. The seeds are consumed in the treatment of kidney stones and are also useful for burns, bleeding disorders and skin diseases. The branches are crushed and soaked in water and the inside part is consumed to prevent abortion. It is also useful in treating scorpion stings. The charcoal from the shell is used as tooth powder. Padmak is considered diuretic and laxative.
Importance of Padmak in Ayurveda
According to Ayurveda, Padmak reduces vitiated Kapha and Pitta dosha. It has a bitter taste and is cold in potency. The bark and seeds of the Padmak plant are used in Ayurveda for their healing properties. Padmak includes beta-sitosterol, stigmasterol, ursolic acid, prunetinoside, and neosacuranine. It also has snigdha (oily), kashaya (astringent), and anti-inflammatory properties.
Benefits of Padmak
An unbalanced pitta leads to the formation of ama (toxins), which causes damage to the deepest tissues of the body. This can eventually lead to a loss of skin pigmentation. Padmak helps prevent and reduce the appearance of white or pink spots on the skin, due to its pitta balancing properties.
Asthma is a condition caused by an imbalance of kapha and pitta dosha. This leads to the formation and accumulation of mucus in the airways. This creates a barrier in the airflow, making it difficult to breathe. Due to its sputum balancing properties, Padmak prevents mucus buildup, reduces asthma symptoms and makes breathing easier.
Irregular menstrual cycle-
Oligomenorrhea or amenorrhea, also called irregular menstrual cycles, is a condition caused by an imbalance of vata and pitta dosha that causes irregular menstruation. In Ayurveda it is called Artava Kshaya. Padmak helps control irregular menstruation with its balancing properties of kapha and pitta.
Excessive sweating can occur due to increased pitta and kapha dosha in the body. Applying Padmak paste can help prevent excessive sweating due to its pitta and kapha balancing properties.
Padmak is a wonderful herb that is used to treat fractures. Applying a paste made from the stem bark of Padmak to the fractured area, promotes faster healing of the bone. It can also provide relief in back pain.
Padmak has Kapha balancing and Mutral (diuretic) properties which increases urine production, resulting in easy and frequent urination, during which small kidney stones are removed from the body.
Uses of Padmak
- The powdered form of Padmak can be applied in the form of paste for the treatment of skin diseases.
- Padmak powder is used to treat nausea, vomiting and stomach problems.
- The seed powder of Padmak is used to treat renal stones.
- Padmak extract is used to treat vagina bleeding and uterus weakness.
- Adding bark of the Padmak in boiled water, and providing it to the patients suffering from excessive sweating and burning sensation is helpful in controlling excess sweat and burning sensation.
Side effects of Padmak
Padmak can have certain side effects when taken in higher doses.These are-
- Pupils dilation (larger pupils than normal)
- Spasms and convulsions
- Causes excitation
Where is it found?
This plant is distributed in the temperate Himalayan region, stretching from Kashmir to Bhutan, Akka and the Hassi Hills of Assam and Manipur at an altitude of 900-2300 m. It finds adequate shade and thrives in the shaded temperate latitudes of other trees. The Padmak requires mild light conditions and does well in shady hills and in the fields. It is grown in temperate and humid climates.