Tamarind is the brown, tart flesh from the pods. The flesh surrounds the brown shiny seeds within the sausage-shaped pod. Pods are harvested at different stages of maturity according to their intended use.
Therapeutic Values of Tamarind
The Tamarind Fruit, flower, leaves, bark and seed are known to have therapeutic values and are known in treating various ailments worldwide. Tamarind is rich in vitamins, minerals and electrolytes. Therefore, this fruit has a wide spectrum of health benefits, Since Tamarind acts as a "coolant" it is largely consumed in Middle-East desert countries. This is particularly so during the fasting period of Ramzan. Tamarind used as a mind cathartic substance (medication). Other known remedial uses of Tamarind fruit are :
- Tamarind drink can lower body temperature. Helps fight heat stroke / sunstroke.
- Tamarind helps in reducing the cholesterol levels in the body, thereby promoting a healthy heart.
- Tamarind juice acts as a mild laxative.
- The juice extracted from Tamarind is effective in curing and treating bile disorder.
- The pulp of the ripe Tamarind is very useful in treating the digestive problems and constipation problems.
- Tamarind pulp is softened in water and consumed to improve the loss of appetite.
- Tamarind is rich in vitamin C and therefore its pulp proves out to be valuable in preventing and curing scurvy conditions.
- Tamarind pulp, leaves and flowers when applied on swollen and painful joints, in many combinations, promises instant relief.
- The juice of the Tamarind pulp helps in curing conjunctivitis. Eye drops, made out of tamarind seeds, are recommended to treat dry eye syndrome.
- Tamarind leaves are extremely useful in treating burns. The soft Tamarind leaves are kept in a pot, covered and then warmed over fire. The burnt leaves are then finely powdered and sieved to remove any gritty particles. This paste is then mixed to gingili oil and applied all over the burnt area. The mixture is very effective over the burnt areas and provides relief from the wound within a few days
- Tamarind has been used to cure sore throats since ages. Gargle of tamarind water is highly beneficial in treating a sore throat.
- Tamarind is used as a water pill to cure jaundice and catarrh.
- The juice extracted out of the Tamarind flowers is consumed for reducing bleeding piles.
- Tamarind fights against cancer. It is an excellent source of antioxidants thereby preventing cancer.
- Tamarind is one of the most effective and easy ways of curing common cold. You can prepare a soup or rasam by boiling diluted tamarind water in a tsp of ghee. Sprinkle a little pepper to it and allow the concoction to boil for few minutes. Tamarind soup, thus prepared, would flush out all the toxins from the body, clearing any nasal and throat blockage.
- Tamarind pulp is also a great healer of fever. You can consume 15g tamarind to reduce the temperature. You can even prepare a sherbet by boiling the tamarind pulp in ½ litre milk with some dates, cloves, sugar, cardamoms and little camphor. This infusion is very effective in fighting the virus that causes fever.
- Tamarind milk that is prepared by boiling the pulp in milk is also quite effective in curing dysentery problem. You can also consume finely-grained tamarind seeds with equal proportions of cumin and sugar 2-3 times a day for positive results.