Nithya kalyani is an evergreen herbaceous plant that belongs to the Catharanthus species. Also known as rose periwinkle, nithya kalyani is distinct for its glossy, oval leaves and white, pink to purplish flowers with dark red center. This flowering shrub is endangered in the wild but is widely cultivated in tropical countries. In Asia, nithya kalyani is a mainstay in many gardens but in India, it’s been used since ancient times as medicinal herb.
Nithya kalyani contains more than 70 alkaloids, many of which are known to enhance health. The plant contains powerful vinblastine called vincristine and reserpine. Vincristine cuts the risk of cancer and reserpine lowers blood pressure.
Do note that although the herb is prized for its medicinal properties, it’s also highly toxic when consumed fresh. It has to be processed in order to enhance its efficacy in treating various illnesses.
Health and Beauty Benefits of Nithya Kalyani
Nithya kalyani is traditionally used to treat diabetes in many Asian folk medicines. In the Philippines and China, the plant is boiled for several minutes and consumed daily to help manage insulin level in the body and minimize high blood pressure. Although clinical research about nithya kalyani’s glucose regulating abilities is limited, some tests do suggest that the plant helps in normalizing blood sugar levels.
The nithya kalyani seeds and leaves contain high level of vincamine, an alkaloid linked to enhanced memory and increased cognitive functions. Nithya kalyani helps enhance blood circulation in the brain, assists in brain metabolism, improves mental productivity, prevents memory loss, and enhances thinking ability by preventing the aging of brain cells. The herb may also help prevent dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Delays Signs of Aging
In the body, vincamine is metabolized into vinpocetine, a compound that delays the signs of aging and maintains the youthfulness of the skin. In order words, some active bioactive in nithya kalyani keep the brain and the skin young.
What’s more, nithya kalyani essence could be used as astringent to calm inflamed skin. Nithya kalyani is topically used to treat minor cuts and burns too as well as canker sores. In traditional Hawaiian medicine, nithya kalyani leaves and flowers are boiled and then applied on wounds to prevent external bleeding.
Nithya kalyani is a popular herbal treatment for cancer including leukemia, Hodgkin’s disease, malignant lymphomas, neuroblastoma, Wilm’s tumor, and Kaposi’s sarcoma. Taken as tea, the plant helps inhibit the proliferation of cancer cells to the rest of the body. The Vincristine in nithya kalyani is responsible for the plant’s powerful anticancer properties. Nithya kalyani also contains leurosi-dine and leurosine which helps treat Hodgkin’s disease.
Nithya kalyani is used to treat a myriad of health problems and symptoms or pains caused by hormonal changes. The plant is used to treat diarrhea, throat problems, chest pain, intestinal problems, and inflammation. It’s also used to prevent fluid retention or edema and toothache. Nithya kalyani also helps strengthen the immune system as well as detoxifies the blood.
Just like most herbal medicine, nithya kalyani should not be taken by pregnant or breastfeeding women. If you are in some form of medication, consult your doctor first before using nithya kalyani.