Medicinal properties of soap nut: Sapindus mukorossi keeps skin in good health
By Syed Akbar Sapindus mukorossi or soap nut is one of the oldest cultivated medicinal plants in theworld. In fact, some botanists trace it to the period of the Vedas, about 5000 years ago.Many do not know that it has a number of health benefits, besides the famous benefit ofkeeping the hair long and healthy. Sapindus is generally used for external applications. Expert herbal doctors oftenprescribe it for internal use in minute quantities to remove accumulated phlegm or mucousfrom the respiratory tract in the form of vomit. Sapindus has properties that promotevomiting (emetic). Care should be taken to avoid contact with the eyes while applyingSapindus for hair or as a body wash. It is not recommended for pregnant women as there are reports of Sapindus causingmiscarriage. It is an excellent external use herb for a variety of skin problems rangingfrom simple freckles to psoriasis and eczema. Since it has properties to kill insects,regular use of Sapindus for hair wash or Coconut oil mixed with Sapindus will help inkeeping the hair free of lice. It is mucolytic or capable of attacking fungi. It is primarily because of this property, Sapindus is prescribed for treatment of dandruff. Other benefits of Sapindus include its ability to kill sperm (as a contraceptive), fightcommon itch, treat chlorosis (a type of anaemia) and control the infection ofHelicobacter pylori, a gut pathogen. ------------------- Home Remedies ------------------- Take about a dozen soap nuts, gently crack them, and soak in a small bowl of water fortwo to four hours. Gently rub the soaked soap nuts against hands to obtain a good froth.The froth is due to its unique chemical called saponin, which has a number of medicinalproperties. Wash your head using this saponin-rich liquid to promote long hair. It alsokills lice and gives relief from dandruff. You may use readily available Sapindus powderinstead of the nuts. Those suffering from skin problems like eczema and psoriasis may wash the affectedportion using soap nut liquid. Regular use will keep the skin smooth and provide relieffrom the problem. Some Ayurveda doctors suggest Sapindus snuff for migraine. It should be taken under thesupervision of expert doctors. For relief from joint pains, prepare a poultice of soap nuts and apply it on the affectedportion. Instead of soap, Sapindus powder can be used for body wash once in a while to removebacterial and fungal infections from the body.