Strengthens the Body, Prevents from Cancer
In many houses everyday food for dinner is dosa. There are voices that recent ‘Today too its only Dosa?’ Despite it, there are children who rave about a crispy dosa that their moms prepare for them. Dosa is one of our traditional food items. Nevertheless, whatever food we eat can serve as a medicine too. Herbs that could act as medicines can be mixed with food so as to ensure adequate nutrient supply to our body and also prevent from illness. In this way, food can serve as medicine for suffering patients. This helps us get relieved from sickness. It’s an age-old practice to make herbal dosa's based on the recommendations of Ayurveda literature. In olden days, herbal medicines are mixed with rice flour and bread-like food items were prepared to strengthen the body and also to increase biological vigor. Dr. Balamurugan, an Ayurvedic Practitioner explains about various preparations and cures of herbal dosas.
Herbal dosa's that strengthen our body
Erythrina indicia (Kalyana murungai)
It’s a common practice to grow Moringa (drumstick tree) at the front and Erythrina at the backyard of a house. This plant provides many medicinal benefits, especially for women. It helps regulate irregular or problematic menstrual cycle and also relieves eventual pain. It could cure ovarian tumors too. It strengthens the weak uterus and also helps to nurture eggs in the ovary. It cures cold and phlegm especially against sinus and headache, for men. It could kill intestinal worms. It cures regurgitation due to indigestion.
It can be taken in the form of dosa. After removing the veins on the leaves, mix the ground paste with dosa batter. Add cut onion, green chilies, cumin and pepper to the batter and spread it on the pan as dosa. It can be taken once in a week and it is better not to take more than 2-3 dosas.
Cardiospermum halicacabum (Mudakkathan)
Mudakkathan means ‘that cuts through paralysis’. It grows aplenty along the farm bunds during the rainy season. It prevents paralysis. Joint pains and inflammation are cured by the herb. The leaf extract, if applied on the hair and taken bath after some time, will keep the hair clean and away from infection.
It can be added to rice flour and taken as dosa. It can be added in 1/3 of batter quantity, which can prevent indigestion and facilitate absorption as well.
Solanum nigrum (Manathakkaali)
Generally, Manathakkali is considered to be good cure oral sores. It can be grown in the household. It is a very good laxative, curing constipation. It has an appreciable amount of micronutrients such as iron, calcium, phosphorus and vitamins. Continuous ingestion of the leaves helps the skin glow. It strengthens heart function and heals peptic ulcers.
After removing the veins on the leaves, mix the ground leaf paste with dosa batter in 1:3 ratio and make dosas. This will help to cure throat irritation, sore throat, mouth ulcer, belching.
Amaranthus Espinosa (Sirukeerai)
The leaves and stems of Amaranthus are broad. It has much water content and rich in calories, almost equivalent to the amount of food we take. It cures burning sensation of eyes and also the boils on the eyes. It strengthens the liver.
The stem and leaves of Amaranthus can be cut in smaller size and mix the same in the batter to make dosas. It cures urinary tract complications, burning sensation in the stomach, pain in lower abdomen. It facilitates urination and cures constipation, a disease of the liver and also increases blood cells.
Centella Asiatica (Vallaarai)
Centella is known for its activity in the brain as it helps increase brain power. Besides, it can cure sinus problem.
It is better to take it in smaller quantities. It can be mixed with rice batter along with horse gram to make dosas. It facilitates thinking ability and increases brain activity. It purifies blood and brings down body heat. It heals intestinal sores, digestive diseases, mouth ulcer and related infections.
Forum graecum (Vendhayam)
It is known for its ability to cool down the body. It reduces fat accumulation in the body. It controls blood glucose levels.
It can be ground and mixed with rice batter to make dosa. In relieves pain due to menstrual complications if it is taken along with Anethum graveolens (Sathakuppai keerai). It also regulates the menstrual cycle. It helps in the growth of ovum. It heals joint pain and inflammation.
Renal stones can be removed when it is mixed with horse gram. While fenugreek cools down the body horse gram increases heat. Therefore this combination favors in removing renal stones. It also removes bile stones. It controls body weight.
Abutilon Indicum (Thuthi)
The leaves can be half fried as poriyal and taken for curing piles. If it is made as dosa the quantity could be minimized. It can be ground, after removing the veins of the leaves, and mixed with rice batter to make dosa. It can be taken weekly twice. If it is continuously taken it can cure pile related problems. It also relieves of burning sensation during urination, cures indigestion and also strengthens muscles.
Boerhavia diffusa (Mukkirattai keerai)
There are many active ingredients in Boerhavia leaves. It protects reproductive organs, digestive organs, respiratory organs and renal organs. It strengthens the liver and also prevents from jaundice. It protects the heart and prevents it from ailments. Research findings assure that it prevents the internal organs from cancer.
The leaves can be taken in the form of mildly fried poriyal or in the form of rasam, or as dosa. As it cannot be taken in larger quantities, smaller size dosa is appropriate. It facilitates easy urination or micturition and also removes blocks in the urinary tract. It helps in blood cell growth and cures anemia. It removes phlegm. It is a sure cure for asthma and congestive respiratory problems.
Phyllanthus niruri (Keezhanelli)
It grows aplenty nearby water sources. It is highly recommended for curing jaundice and also other liver related diseases. It can be taken in weekly thrice to cure liver related diseases. It helps in removing any toxins in the liver.
The leaves can be ground with rice batter or the extract can be used to make dosa. It helps improving eyesight, facilitates micturition, and also increases blood cells. Those who drink alcohol abusively can take Phyllanthus dosa weekly twice so as to protect the liver from damage. It also helps in removing white spots in the skin.
Eclipta prostrata (Karisalangkanni)
Eclipta is known to have influence in hair growth. It purifies blood and also increases blood cells. It cures skin related problems as well.
The leaves can be made in the form of sauce or can be mixed with vegetable stew. The leaf extract can be mixed with the rice batter to make dosa. It cools the eyes and enhances liver function thereby strengthening it. It helps reduce fat in the body and makes the physique strong and attractive. It also controls excessive bleeding during menstruation.
Note: The herbs mentioned above are available in the local shops in the form of powder. It is better to avoid using them in making any form of the food item.
(This article written in Tamil by Mohanapriya for vikatan.com is now reproduced in English by V Amalan Stanley)