Herbs have been used for decades to promote the overall health of the body. The herbs are categorized into innumerable classes based on genus and scientific family. Herbs have many medicinal properties and help in the treatment of many health conditions. In this article, we discussed the Eucommia herb which has many therapeutic benefits. It is a native of China, here we have also discussed the best substitute of Eucommia which is Arjuna herb. Arjuna is a very famous herb which is loaded with medicinal values and health benefits.
What is Eucommia?
Eucommia herb belongs to the Eucommiaceae family and its botanical name is Eucommia ulmoides. This herb is native to China and generally known as Du Zhong. It is a traditional Chinese herb that has been advised for increasing vitality and longevity. It is the only latex-bearing tree that naturally originates in a temperate climate zone. Eucommia includes many active components and many medicinal values which makes it effective in many health conditions. Eucommia bark works as a cardiac tonic.
This plant grows about 15 meters. The leaves are deciduous, oval with acicular tip, 8–16 cm long and organised alternately and with a serrated edge. The flowers are green, small and inconspicuous. The fruit is a winged samara that looks like an elm samara and has a seed. Fruits are 2-3 cm large and 1-3 cm wide. The flowers appear from March to May and the fruits ripen in June and November.
Medicinal Properties of Eucommia
This herb holds many medicinal properties such as:
- Anti Aging
- Antiviral properties.
Chemical Constituents of Eucommia
The Eucommia herb contains any active components such as Iridoids (Eucommides-A and -C), Lignans (bisepoxylignans, sesqui lignans, and neolignans), Steroids and Terpenoids, Phenolic substances and Polysaccharides. It also includes vitamins, fatty acids, amino acids and microelements.
Health Benefits of Eucommia
- Cardiovascular system: Eucommia acts as a cardiac tonic and has cardioprotective properties. It also gives antihypertensive action and maintains the blood pressure level in the body
- Neuroprotective: It helps in strengthening and revitalisation of brain cells and represses cytotoxic activity.
- Antioxidant property: It helps to reduce free radicals and oxidative stress in the body.
- Antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties: It helps to decrease inflammation and also inhibits bacterial and viral infections.
- Anti-obesity property:It encourages the weight loss process and is beneficial in obesity.
- On bones and muscles:It helps in strengthening muscles and bones and is so useful in arthritis.
Best Substitute to Eucommia in Ayurveda
Arjuna herb is considered as the best substitute in Ayurveda for Eucommia. Both herbs are very useful in many health problems. The bark of both herbs is mainly used for medicinal purposes and mostly it acts as a cardiac tonic. The bark of Eucommia bark is more expensive and some studies also show its side effects such as nausea, headache, sleep disruptions, dizziness, edema, and cold onset. Arjuna bark is safe and effective and does not cause any side effects like Eucommia. Due to the easy availability of Arjuna it can be considered the best alternative to Eucommia.
What is Arjuna Herb ?
Arjuna herb is native to India. It belongs to the family Combretaceae and its latin name is Terminalia arjuna. It is also accessible in Myanmar, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, etc. The Arjuna bark is mostly used for remedial purposes. It is popular for its cardioprotective action and also has many therapeutic properties.
Arjuna is a large-sized deciduous tree, 70–85 feet in length. It has green uniform bark, sharp leaves, and yellow flowers. Fruits are bright and fibrous woody, and 2-3 cm large. The leaves are blue from the top and brown from the bottom.
Arjuna contains many potent phytochemicals such as glycosides (Arjunetin and Arjunosides I–IV), phenolic compounds (Arjunolic acid and Turmeric acid), phenolic acids (ellagic acid and gallic acid), flavones, oligomeric proanthocyanidins, tannins, casuarinin, B-Sitosterol, and Lactones. It also includes magnesium and calcium.
Medicinal Properties of Arjuna
It possesses various medicinal properties such as
- Cardiac Stimulant
- Cardiac tonic
Health Benefits of Arjuna
- Effect on heart-Arjuna is well known as a cardioprotective herb and acts as a cardiac tonic, the following are some benefits of Arjuna in heart disorders.
- Cardioprotective action-It holds cardioprotective properties and supports the normal functioning of the heart. It helps in strengthening the heart muscle and promotes the capacity of the heart to pump blood.
- Myocardial infarction-Arjuna is effective in the treatment of myocardial infarction. This herb is loaded with antioxidants and enables the heart against myocardial injury.
- Tachycardia & Palpitation-Arjuna helps to keep heartbeat normal and also reduces palpitation.
- Atherosclerosis-Arjuna has anti-atherogenic and hypolipidemic properties and is useful in reducing the atherosclerotic lesion and preventing the progression of atherosclerosis.
- Shortness of breath-Arjuna reduces the contraction of blood vessels and the formation of plaque, so it helps treat respiratory problems in heart patients.
- Bleeding disorders-Arjuna contains astringents and possesses anti-hemorrhagic properties. It can produce vasoconstriction and helps in reducing bleeding, thus useful in bleeding disorders.
- Strengthens bones-Arjun bark helps to accelerate the bone fracture healing process and helps strengthen muscles and bones.
- Maintains blood pressure-Arjuna possesses antihypertensive properties and due to the presence of astringent, it helps to contract blood vessels and supports normal heartbeat and reduces blood pressure.
- Treat dysentery-Arjuna is useful in dysentery. It reduces blood discharge in the stool and defecation frequency and also helps to treat the infection.
From complete information, it has been concluded that Eucommia has many health benefits but is quite expensive and some studies suggest that it also has side effects. But there is also the best option in Ayurveda i.e. Arjuna herb which is safe and effective to use in place of Eucommia.