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Family: Anacardiaceae
Genus: Anacardium
Botanical name: Anacardium occidentale
PLANT NAME IN DIFFERENT LANGUAGES
Sanskrit: Venamra, Vrikkaphala, Vrikkabeeja
Hindi: Kaju, Duk
English: Cashew nut tree
Malayalam: Kashumav, Parankimav, Kappilav
MEDICINAL PROPERTIES
The Kashumav tree is large and evergreen, growing to 10-12m (~32 ft) tall, with a short, often irregularly shaped trunk. Theleaves are spirally arranged, leathery textured, elliptic to obovate, 4 to 22 cm long and 2 to 15 cm broad, with a smooth margin. The flowers are produced in a panicle or corymb up to 26 cm long, each flower small, pale green at first then turning reddish, with five slender, acute petals 7 to 15 mm long.
The cashew nutshell liquid (CNSL), a byproduct of processing cashew, is mostly composed of anacardic acids (70%), cardol (18%) and cardanol (5%). These acids have been used effectively against tooth abscesses due to their lethality to a wide range of Gram-positive bacteria. Many parts of the plant are used by the Patamona of Guyana medicinally. The bark is scraped and soaked overnight or boiled as anantidiarrheal;[10] it also yields a gum used in varnish. Seeds are ground into powders used for antivenom for snake bites. The nut oil is used topically as an antifungal and for healing cracked heels.
Kashumav
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