Follow Us:
Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Indian scientists unlock the paan leaf’s health secrets

Indian scientists have identified five varieties of betel leaf that have anti-inflammatory properties.

By: IANS | Kolkata |
February 1, 2016 2:54:42 pm
Betel leaf, paan, ayurveda, inflammation, anti-inflammatory, pain, soreness, swellings, biodiversity, conservation, University of Calcutta, University of Calcutta and Indian Institute of Chemical Biology, Kolkata Modern Indian scientists are validating Ayurveda’s claims about the humble paan’s medicinal and therapeutic properties. (Source: Thinkstock Images)

The next time you hear the words ‘Meetha patta’ or ‘Madrasi patta’, don’t ignore the humble heart-shaped popular mouth-freshener. Paan — or betel leaf — could provide the key to unlock an arsenal of anti-inflammatory drugs, claim Indian researchers.

Scientists at University of Calcutta and Indian Institute of Chemical Biology in Kolkata, have examined nine varieties of betel leaf and identified the ones that can reduce inflammation.

A part of India’s food culture, Ayurvedic texts have mentioned the medicinal properties and therapeutic effects of betel leaf.

“Usually people generalise paan as one variety and don’t know that some varieties could be causing them harm in the long run,” said Ena Ray Banerjee, of the university’s Immunology and Regenerative Medicine Research Laboratory.

Best of Express Premium
UPSC Key-June 28, 2022: Why to read ‘Hurting religious Sentiments’ or ‘In...Premium
Did NCP hold Uddhav hand, stop resignation, give him false hope?Premium
Record $82 billion dealmaking spree sees India defy global slumpPremium
How Rampur, Azamgarh were won: Behind BJP chipping away of SP votesPremium

“Among the nine varieties, five showed anti-inflammatory properties, one showed the tendency to cause inflammation, and three didn’t show significant anti-inflammatory activity,” Banerjee said on the sidelines of the ‘Frontiers in Translational and Regenerative Biology’ conference on January 31.


Also read

All about Aswagandha, an Ayurvedic herb that boosts female fertility

Diet diary: The not so well-known ‘destroyer’ of blood sugar


According to Banerjee, the findings presented at the conference will pave the way for the “possible development of new class of anti-inflammatory drugs”.

Inflammation — such as pain, soreness or swellings — are important immune responses and several naturally occurring products like leafy greens have the power to curb inflammation and prevent diseases.

Banerjee said the study also links environmental influence to the anti-inflammatory attributes of paan. “The soil and nutrient conditions, climate and farming profile impact the kind of functional role the leaves have,” Banerjee said, adding that focused biodiversity conservation policies should be a major thrust area.

Express Subscription Do not hit the wall, subscribe for the best coverage out of India starting at just $5 per month

📣 The above article is for information purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the guidance of your doctor or other qualified health professional for any questions you may have regarding your health or a medical condition.

For all the latest Lifestyle News, download Indian Express App.

  • Newsguard
  • The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.
  • Newsguard