Last Updated on January 9, 2024 by admin
- Betel nuts, also known as areca nuts or supari, are the seeds from the fruit of betel palms that grow in many Asian countries.
- The scientific name is Areca catechu. Other names include gue, kwai, tamul, kua, kuhva, and supari.
- Popular varieties in India include chali, parcha, neetadaka, Iylon, nuli, kalimak, bura tamul, and tamol.
Components of Betel Nuts:
Betel nuts contain:
- Tannins including arecatannin and gallic acid
- Small amounts of terpineol and lignin
- Alkaloids like arecoline, arecaidine, and guvacine which have vasoconstricting properties
- When chewed with betel leaves, betel nuts produce eugenol which:
- Stimulates a warm sensation
- Elevates alertness
- Triggers an instant happy mood
Betel Nuts (Supari) in Traditional Medicine:
Betel nuts have been an integral part of traditional medicine for centuries.In Ayurveda and traditional Chinese medicine, betel nuts are used extensively for:
- Anti-inflammatory properties
- Antioxidant properties
- Analgesic (pain relief)
- Antiulcer effects
- Neuroprotective properties
- According to Ayurveda, betel nuts help balance pitta and kapha doshas while stimulating digestion when chewed.
- Specific uses in Ayurveda include:
- Removing intestinal worms and tapeworms
- A natural mouth freshener when chewed with leaves
- A digestive stimulant and laxative
- Diuretic properties
- Strengthening heart muscles
- Regulating menstrual flow
Betel Nut (Supari) Uses and Benefits:
1. Syphilis: Grind betel nut with water and apply it on the penis. Its use heals the wounds of penis up caused by syphilis.
2. Loose motions:
- Make small pieces of a betel nut and boil them in one glass water until half water remains then filter it. Drinking this water twice a day stops loose motions caused by weakness of the stomach and intestines.
- Grind thickly 10 grams betel nut and boil it in 100 ml water until it remains half then filter it. Drinking this water twice a day stops loose motions.
3. Mouth diseases: Burn big cardamom and betel nut 10 grams each together. Sprinkling this mixture into the mouth cures all diseases of the mouth.
4. Toothache: Burn betel nut and grind it to prepare powder. Brushing with this powder twice a day cures toothache and swelling. It prevents bleeding from the tooth and stops to the moving tooth.
5. To make the teeth strong: Burn 50 grams betel nut and mix 150 grams chalk in it properly. Rubbing this mixture on the tooth twice a day makes the tooth strong and shiny.
6. Germs of the tooth: Make tooth powder by grinding burnt betel nut. Brushing with this powder daily destroys all the germs of the teeth and tooth becomes clean and shiny.
7. Pyorrhoea: Make tooth powder by grinding burnt betel nut. Brushing with this powder twice a day cures all problems of the tooth and gums.
8. Gums’ swelling:
- Burn betel nut and prepare fine powder of it. Rubbing this powder on the tooth and gums daily ends gums’ looseness.
- Make fine powder by grinding one gram burnt betel nut, one gram alum, 2 grams soap stone and one gram catechu together. Rubbing this powder on the gums reduces the swelling of the gums and all problems of the gums.
9. Gums bleeding: Make the fine powder by grinding equal quantity of betel nut and catechu together. Brushing with this powder twice a day prevents bleeding and discharging of pus from the gums. It also gets rid of gums pain.
- Make the fine powder by grinding equal quantity of betel nut and turmeric together. After that, take 2 grams this powder mixing with water, it provides relief in vomiting.
- Taking betel nut powder and turmeric powder with sugar stops vomiting.
- Loose motions: Taking betel nut pieces with warm water twice a day stops loose motions and intestinal weakness disappears.
11. Bascillary dysentery: Make the powder by grinding half part of ¼ betel nuts and take, it provides relief in bascillary dysentery.
12. Stomach worms: Grind approx 5 grams raw betel nut and mix in 7 to 14 milliliters juice of jambiri. Taking this mixture twice a day destroys stomach worms.
13. Syphilis: Applying betel nut powder on the wound heals up the wound caused by syphlis.
14. Skin diseases: Grind betel nut with water and apply it on the skin. Its application ends scabies, itching, erysipelas and flecks. Mix ash of betel nut with sesame oil and apply it on the skin to get rid of itching.
15. Leprosy: Take betel nut with the root of bitter gourd (Indrayan); it gets rid of white leprosy.
16. Suppuration of navel: Grind smooth betel nut with water and apply it on the navel. Its use prevents bleeding and discharging of pus from the navel.
Betel Nut (Supari) Side Effects:
Common side effects from consuming betel nuts include:
- Abdominal pain
- A 2015 study found these were frequently reported side effects.
- Betel nuts contain the arecoline alkaloid which in large amounts can be poisonous and increase cancer risk according to a 2021 study.
- If you experience adverse reactions, stop consuming betel nuts and contact your doctor immediately.
- Consuming betel nuts in moderate amounts is generally okay. However, be aware of:
- Possible addiction – watch for anxiety, insomnia, mood swings as signs
- Consult your doctor for proper betel nut withdrawal if addicted
- Avoid betel nuts if you have:
- Stomach ulcers – can worsen ulcers
- Heart disease – increases heart attack risk
- Asthma – can worsen symptoms
- Seizures – increases seizure risk
- Are pregnant or breastfeeding
- Avoid giving to children, elderly, as it’s habit forming and poisonous in high doses which can impair organ function.
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Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and should not be considered medical advice. Always consult with a qualified healthcare professional before starting any new herbal treatment.