CHITRAK, Plumbago zeylanica


Latin name:   Plumbago zeylanica

English name: Leadwort

Sanskrit name: Chitraka

Indian name: Charta, Chita

Medicinal parts used: Root and Bark

Chitrak is a profusely branched perennial shrub with alternate leaves. The plant is available throughout India wildly and is also cultivated in gardens for its brilliant inflorescence. Root and root bark of the plant are used in preparation of various Ayurvedic medicines.

Leadwort is a potent medicinal agent used in the treatment of stubborn chronic rheumatoid arthritis, skin diseases and tumerous growths. It also finds its use in correcting chronic menstrual disorders, viral warts and chronic diseases of nervous system. Extract of various fraction of Chitrak have been identified as anticancer drugs. Roots of the plant contain an acrid crystalline principle called plumbagin. Besides, it contains chloroplumbagin and biplumbagin.

Therapeutic use:

  • Chitrak is used in treating intestinal troubles, dysentery, leucoderma, inflammation, piles, bronchitis, itching, diseases of the liver, and consumption.
  • The leaves of this herb work well for treating laryngitis, rheumatism, diseases of the spleen, ring worm, scabies, and it acts as an aphrodisiac.
  • A tincture of the root bark is used as an anti-periodic.
  • Chitrak root helps improve digestion and it stimulates the appetite.
  • Rootbark is also considered useful in obesity.

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