Learn About Ayurveda, Unani & Siddha Medicines

Prunus Spinosa (Blackthorn)

Prunus Spinosa, also called Blackthorn, is a form of wild plum. It grows widely in the Europe. The flowers and fruits of this plant are used for the medicinal purposes. It possesses astringent, laxative, antioxidant, digestive, and diuretic properties. It is also used to induce perspiration in appropriate cases. It can remove impurities and detoxify the body. It is also used to reduce fever.

HOW IT WORKS

Prunus Spinosa works by producing an astringent, and antioxidant action. It protects the healthy organs of the body by destroying free radicals. It also acts as a diaphoretic agent and induces excessive perspiration. It is also depurative in nature. These properties of Prunus Spinosa are beneficial in removing toxins from the body. It can cleanse the blood and restore the health of organs.

It is also used as a febrifuge agent for reducing fever. The laxative and digestive properties of this medicine can be useful in the management of gastrointestinal diseases. It also acts as a natural diuretic and prevents water retention and edema.

THINGS TO KNOW

Prunus Spinosa possesses a high nutritional value. It provides several essential vitamins and minerals, which are needed for the optimum functioning of the body.

INDICATIONS & USES

  • Cancer
  • Infections
  • Cardiac diseases
  • Skin diseases
  • Deficiency of nutrients

RECOMMENDED DOSAGE

Prunus Spinosa can be used in its third to the sixth potency. Patients can take 3 to 4 pills of this medicine, three times a day. The dose may have to be altered depending on the specific condition to be treated.

BENEFITS & EFFECTIVENESS

Prunus Spinosa is used for the treatment of infections. It can also help to detoxify the body. The use of this herb is recommended for the patients suffering from heart diseases and skin problems.

Infections

Prunus Spinosa is commonly used in the management of infective disorders. It acts as a powerful antimicrobial agent. It exhibits a strong antibiotic activity against a broad range of gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria. It is particularly effective against Salmonella, a gram-negative bacterium known to cause typhoid or food poisoning.

The antibacterial action of Prunus Spinosa can be attributed to the presence of tannic acid, benzoic acid, malic acid, and ascorbic acid in it. These compounds have the ability to destroy the bacteria by rendering them ineffective and creating an environment that is difficult for their survival.

The naturally-occurring organic acids present in this herb can also destabilize the bacteria by rupturing their outer membrane. These effects of Prunus Spinosa result in the death of harmful bacteria and help to clear the infection. (1)

Cardiac disorders

Prunus Spinosa is highly effective in the treatment and prevention of heart diseases. This herb is loaded with powerful flavonoids including Quercetin, Binofuranoside, and Kaempferol. It also contains phenolic acids and anthocyanins, which can promote the health of the heart. It improves the heart functions and thus, reduces the risk of cardiac diseases such as cardiomyopathy, heart attacks, and cardiac failure.

The flavonoid compounds present in Prunus Spinosa reduce inflammation in the heart and help to fight oxidative stress. These effects of the herb can prevent damage to the cardiac cells and muscles against inflammation and oxidative stress thus reducing the risk of heart diseases. (2)

Prevents deficiencies

Most common disorders are the result of the deficiency of one or more nutrients. The unhealthy dietary habits, which include an increased consumption of junk foods and a reduced consumption of nutritious foods, can affect the health of a person. It can also increase the risk of anemia, scurvy, osteoporosis and other conditions as the body is deprived of its source of essential vitamins and minerals.

The regular intake of Prunus Spinosa can help in the prevention and treatment of these diseases. It contains a broad range of nutrients, which are required for maintaining good health. It provides a high amount of vitamin A, vitamin B3, vitamin B9, vitamin C, as well as vitamin E.

It also provides a natural source of minerals such as calcium, potassium, sulfur, phosphorus, and magnesium. These vitamins and minerals enhance the nutritional value of Prunus Spinosa and help to prevent deficiency disorders. (3)

Dental caries

Prunus Spinosa can be used to prevent caries in the teeth. The antibacterial action of this herb against Streptococcus Mutans, a gram-positive bacterium, can reduce the incidence of tooth decay and caries.

Additionally, it also acts as an antioxidant and prevents oxidative stress that is known to increase the risk of dental caries. It works by inhibiting the free radicals from attacking the teeth and initiating the process of tooth decay. (4)

Cancer

Prunus Spinosa can be used for the prevention of cancer. It contains natural antioxidants such as Quercetin, Flavonoids, Proanthocyanidins, Anthocyanins, Kaempferol, and Coumarin derivatives. These antioxidants prevent the free radical damage to the healthy cells and tissues and prevent the development of cancer.

Prunus Spinosa is also a natural source of beta-carotene, and vitamin C, which supports the antioxidant effects of the other compounds present in it thus increasing its anti-cancer potential.

It inhibits the multiplication and growth of cancer cells and prevents the spread of cancer to the healthy organs. It also suppresses the production of pro-inflammatory compounds thus minimizing the damage to the DNA.

These actions of Prunus Spinosa create an environment that’s unfavorable for the survival of the cancer cells thus causing their destruction. (5)

Skin disorders

Prunus Spinosa contains tannins, glycosides, and coumarin derivatives that can enhance the skin health. These compounds keep the skin moisturized and restore its hydration.

The antibacterial potential of this herb can help to prevent skin infections. It can also protect the skin against the free radical damage and prevent premature aging. (6)

SAFETY & TOXICOLOGY

Prunus Spinosa does not cause any serious side effects. Pregnant and lactating women should avoid using Prunus Spinosa as it may produce a toxic effect on the fetus and the baby. Some patients may develop a mild allergic reaction to Prunus Spinosa resulting in skin rashes, itching, swelling, and breathlessness.

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