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ETHNOPHARMACOLOGICAL PROPERTIES OF CURCUMA LONGA: A REVIEW

Keywords: Curcuma longa , Turmeric , Haldi , Curcumin , Medicinal properties

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Abstract:

Curcuma longa (Turmeric) is a member of the ginger family (Zingiberaceae) and is thought to be indigenous to the Indian subcontinent. It is grown and harvested commercially in India, China, and many regions of tropical Southeast Asia. Turmeric is an approved food additive and is commercially available at low cost. Indigenous systems of medicine, including the Ayurvedic systems, have widely used turmeric for centuries in the treatment of many inflammatory conditions and diseases such as biliary disorders, anorexia, cough, diabetic wounds, hepatic disorders, rheumatism and sinusitis. Turmeric’s active constituents are yellowish orange volatile oils called curcuminoids known as curcumin, which has demonstrated antioxidant, antineoplastic, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antifungal, antidiabetic, anticoagulant, antifertility, cardiovascular protective, hepatoprotective, and immunostimulant activity in animals. Curcuminoids inhibit leukotriene biosynthesis via the lipoxygenase pathway and decrease prostaglandin formation. Some workers observed that Curcumin has caused apoptosis in various cancer cell lines and animal tumor cells and may inhibit angiogenesis. Today, turmeric has found application all over the world in various purposes such as medicinal purpose, cosmetic purpose, dyeing, skin care and coloring purpose. Present review indicating that Curcuma longa (Turmeric or Haldi) is a versatile indigenous plant to the Indian subcontinent having economic importance and can be promoted for diversified applications like medicinal and other potential uses.

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