Botanically known as Semecarpus anacardium, it is a native of India, found in the outer Himalayas to Coromandel Coast. In Hindi it is known as भिलावा, in Sanskrit अग्निमुख. It is closely related to the cashew (Anacardium occidentale). It is an evergreen tree upto 7m in height with rough and ash-coloured bark and numerous spreading branches. The leaves are petiolate, alternate, about 45cm long and 10 or 13cm broad. The flowers are small of green-yellow colour. The fruits borne, are pear in shape receptacle which ripens in January or February. Its nuts contain a variety of biologically active compounds such as biflavonoids, phenolic compounds, bhilawanols, minerals, vitamins and amino acids.
The resinous juice of the seed is used to prepare the mother tincture. It is covered by Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia of India Volumes 1 & 7.
In Indian system of medicine it is used for the treatment of various ailments, mainly alimentary tract and certain dermatological conditions. It is indicated in nervous dyspepsia which is relieved by eating (Boericke). It is also used in impaired memory, depression and irritability. It improves diminution of senses, useful in fear of exam in students, low self-confidence (Boericke). Sensation of plug in various parts like eye, rectum, bladder, etc. This agent when applied locally produces redness, inflammation and blisters of the skin. Internally it produces gastric disturbance, with intestinal derangement which is followed by mental stupor and paresis. It is of service when there is a great desire for stool but with the effort the desire passes away without any evacuation. The rectum seems powerless as if paralyzed with a sensation as if it were plugged. It is also of service in eczema when neurotic characteristics of the remedy are present.
Reports have shown noticeable impact on illnesses related to the heart, blood pressure, respiration, cancer and neurological disorders. The seed inside the samecarpus anacardium known as “Godambi” in Hindi is eaten by Indians in winter and was commonly used as a method of birth control for women. This effect has been confirmed by scientific studies.
Recommended dose: Q/1x, 5-10 drops.
- P. N. Varma, Indu Vaid, Encyclopaedia of Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia, Updated edition 2007, B. Jain Publishers, New Delhi.
- W. Boericke, New Manual of Homoeopathic Materia Medica & Repertory [with Relationship of Remedies], Second Re-Augmented & Revised Edition Based on Ninth Edition, Reprint Edition 2002, B. Jain Publishers, New Delhi.
- Andrew Chevallier, The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants, 1st Edition, 1996, Dorling Kindersley, London.
- Arti Sharma et al., Effect of Semecarpus anacardium fruits on reproductive function of male albino rats, Asian J Androl 2003 Jun; 5: 121-124
- Patel, Sanjay R. “In Vitro Cytotoxicity Activity of Semecarpus anacardium Extract Against Hep 2 Cell Line and Vero Cell Line” (PDF). International Journal of PharmTech Research. Vol.1, No.4.
- Semalty M, Semalty A, Badola A, Joshi GP, Rawat MS. Semecarpus anacardium Linn.: A review. Pharmacogn Rev. 2010;4(7):88–94. doi:10.4103/0973-7847.65328
- Dr. P. N. Varma, Kusum Yadav,Ramachandran Valavan, A Compendium of Rare and Clinically Established Mother Tinctures, 4th Edition, Dr. Willmar Schwabe India Pvt. Ltd., A-36, Sector 60, Noida