Indigo - traditional medicine
Ayurvedic uses range from cancer of the ovaries and stomach, epilepsy and other nervous system conditions (particularly depression), bronchitis, haemorrhaging, spleen disorders and disorders of the lungs and kidneys.
|Image: Indigo seeds from Kew's Economic Botany Collection.|
Other traditional uses are for heart and urinary problems, as well as premature greying and hair loss. A paste made from the leaves is used to treat sores, stubborn ulcers and haemorrhoids.
In some parts of India the plant used to be well known for treating rabies and accordingly was given the name 'the dog-bite shrub'. A report from 1890 states: "A wineglassful of the juice of the leaves is administered in the morning, with or without milk, for three days, to those who have been bitten by dogs supposed to be mad.........no disagreeable effect is produced, but when a larger dose has been given it has proved purgative."
This information is provided for general interest only. It is not intended as guidance for medicinal use. Further information on using herbal medicines is available.