By Syed Akbar Xeromphis spinosa or Mainphal is a shrub that’s native to north India, Bangladesh and Pakistan. Mainphal is widely used in Unani and Ayurveda as well as ethnic medicines practiced by tribals in north India. In English Xeromphis is called emetic nut as it induces vomiting. Tribals have been utilizing Mainphal to induce vomiting to clean the stomach and keep it in good functioning. The fruit of Xeromphis is so powerful that it causes vomiting within a few minutes of consuming the herbal preparation. A number of medicinal benefits of Xeromphis have been listed in Ayurveda, Unani and ethno-medicines of various forests in the country. The herb kills head lice, removes dandruff and promotes hair growth, improves functioning of liver, fights gastric troubles, reduces swelling, gives relief from pain and controls fever. It is also prescribed for stomach ache, pain in the muscles and bones, paralysis, skin problems and diarrhoea. Mainphal is often prescribed for relief from rheumatic pains and respiratory problems including asthma. ======================= Home remedies ======================= To induce vomiting to clear the stomach of poisons, herbal doctors recommend the extract of Xeromphis fruit. The extract can be obtained by soaking the fruit rind of Xeromphis in water for six to eight hours. Filter the water and consume it in small quantity. Within a few minutes it induces vomiting. For relief from lice and dandruff infection, pulp obtained from Xeromphis can be applied externally on the head. Keep it for some time and later wash it off. Besides killing fungus and lice, it promotes hair growth. The bark powder can be consumed for relief from swelling and pain. It is analgesic and anti-inflammatory. Xeromphis herbal formulations available in market can be taken for relief from stomach ache, fever, bronchitis, and asthma and skin ailments. Some herbal doctors claim that it helps in toning up muscles in case of paralysis. The fruit pulp is applied externally for relief from rheumatic pains.