Note: This article is for informational purposes only. This is not an attempt to suggest any kind of cure and medication. This information in this article is based on the experience and traditional medicinal knowledge of Adivasis. Please consult your doctor before consuming these medicines.
Ayurveda has been around for a long time now, and many people swear by Ayurvedic medicine over allopathic medicine even today. In the Adivasi region of Eastern Jharkhand, when someone gets wounded, the first option Adivasis choose isn’t to go to the doctor. We know about natural ayurvedic remedies which help heal a lot of different wounds and diseases. Two of these ayurvedic medicines are the Coat Button plant and Neem leaves, which are used for instant cures and treatments.
Coat Button Leaves
Coat button plants (Tridax procumbens) are found almost everywhere in my village in Jharkhand. It is easily recognizable by its beautiful flower. In our local language, we call it the Rui plant. The leaves of this plant have medicinal qualities and are used to heal wounds. Adivasis also eat the leaves of the Rui plant.
Coat button plants have been known for their antifungal and wound healing properties, along with being a great insect repellant. The plant has also been used to treat diarrhoea, dysentery, and liver disorders.
Preparing The Medicine
Pluck the leaves according to the size of the wound.
The leaves have to be crushed by hand and then rubbed on the palm until the juice comes out.
The juice is dripped on the wound, or a paste is created with the leaves and is applied on the wound.
These medicinal leaves are very useful when one needs instant treatment and when there are no medical facilities nearby.
The neem (Azadirachta indica) tree itself is full of medicinal properties and the benefits of this tree are well known by all Adivasi communities in Jharkhand. The leaves are useful for healing wounds and the medicine is also easy to prepare.
Neem is known for its antiviral and antibacterial properties, along with being excellent to treat acne, skin disorders and to boost immunity.
Preparing The Medicine
Pluck the neem leaves from the tree.
Grind the leaves on a grinding stone to make a paste, using some water droplets to ease the process.
Now apply the paste on the wound or on the cut and continue to do it every day till the wound gets healed.
The neem twig is also used in the Adivasi communities to brush teeth and they help keep the teeth healthy. Neem leaves are also cooked with tamarind and eaten, which has a lot of health benefits.
Adivasis have been using their knowledge of medicinal plants and trees from the forest to treat various diseases for centuries now. This knowledge is still being used in many parts of the country by Adivasis who either don’t have access to medical services or prefer using traditional medicine to heal ailments. This knowledge needs to be preserved for future generations and made more accessible so that more people can benefit from the wonders of natural medicine.
Do you use Ayurvedic medicine to help heal wounds and ailments? Have they helped you?
Note: This article is created as a part of the Adivasi Awaaz project, with the support of Misereor and Prayog Samaj Sevi Sanstha.
This article was first published in Youth Ki Awaaz