A resinous gum, asafoetida emanates from the tap root of a perennial herb. Its botanical name is Ferula asafoetida. Its name is derived from a combination of two words, resin (asa) a Persian word and foetida, a Latin word.
The resin is collected from the stem of the plant as well. Asafoetida is very hard in its natural form and hence it is mixed with flour and gum Arabic to make it usable. The commonly available form is the compounded asafoetida, which has only 30 percent of asafoetida.
CHARACTERISTICS OF ASAFOETIDA
This herbal species is indigenous to Afghanistan and is also grown in India, Iran and Central Asia. It is used as one of the medicinal herbs in native India since ages. It has an unpleasant smell in raw form but gives out a nice flavour in cooked dishes.
Asafetida is used as a digestive aid, condiment in food preparations and pickles. It is predominantly used in vegetarian cooking in India. When sprinkled in hot oil or clarified butter, it gives out an aroma equivalent to sautéed garlic or onion.
NUTRIENT COMPOSITION OF ASAFOETIDA
For every 100 grams of asafetida, 67.8 percent is carbohydrates, 4 percent is protein, 1.1 percent fat, 7 percent minerals and 4.1 percent fibre. Minerals that exist in asafetida are iron, phosphorous, riboflavin, carotene and niacin. It has a calorific value of 297.
Asafetida comprises of 25percent gum, 40-64 percent resin, 1.5-10 percent ash and 10-17 percent volatile oil.
THERAPEUTIC PROPERTIES AND MEDICINAL USES
Asafoetida has several medicinal properties which make it an effective ingredient for herbal remedies. It is known to reduce flatulence as it inhibits the growth of the microflora in the gut region. It is known as a herb which can expel wind and gas from the stomach. It is also popular as a nervous stimulant, sedative and digestive agent.
ASAFOETIDA IS KNOWN TO GIVE POSITIVE RESULTS IN DISORDERS LIKE:
- Respiratory illnesses: It is used to reduce the symptoms in respiratory disorders like asthma, whooping cough and bronchitis. When three to six centigrams of this herb is mixed with one teaspoon of betel leaf juice, a quarter teaspoon of white onion juice and two teaspoons of honey, it acts as a medicine to keep away such problems.
- Impotency: For relieving impotency, about six centigrams of asafoetida fried in ghee and mixed with one teaspoon of fresh latex of banyan tree and honey should be consumed before sunrise for a period of around 40 days. It is also beneficial in relieving premature ejaculation.
- Hysteria: Inhaling asafoetida helps in preventing hysterical attacks. When oral dosage is not advisable a solution of 120 ml water mixed with 2 grams of asafoetida is given as enema.
- Stomach disorders: This herb is used in several digestive formulations and is known as a best remedy for reducing flatulence. In case of stomach ache due to flatulence, asafoetida should be mixed with hot water and a cloth steeped in this water can be used for fomenting the abdomen area.
- Toothache: Asafoetida is used for reducing tooth ache. It should be mixed with lemon juice and slightly heated. A cotton ball dipped in this solution should be kept on the affected tooth for quick relief from pain.
- Antidote: The herb when taken in equal quantity as opium will act like an antidote.
ASAFOETIDA HAS SEVERAL Relieving POWERS THAT MAKE IT A POPULAR INDIAN HERB:
- For children: This herb is extremely beneficial in relieving nervous disorders of children. It also helps relieving colic pains in infants.
- For women: It is very useful for relieving problems related to women like unwanted abortion, sterility, painful menstruation and leucorrhoea. About 12 centigrams of asafoetida should be fried in ghee and mixed with one tablespoon of honey, 120 grams of goat milk and taken three times a day for one month. Its usage influences the secretion of the hormone progesterone. Asafoetida is given to women after childbirth in India. It reduces discomfort during post delivery period.
SAFETY AND PRECAUTIONARY TIPS WHILE USING ASAFOETIDA
Asafoetida should be used in small quantities. It should not be used in infants, pregnant women, people with gastro intestinal problems, epilepsy, bleeding disorder and high or low blood pressure. It is best advised to use the herb under the guidance of a registered practitioner.
AROMA THERAPY AND ASAFOETIDA
Asafoetida is used in aromatherapy as well. The asafoetida essential oil is used in relieving nervous disorders, colic, coughs, pneumonia, muscle spasms, and colic. It is also used for eliminating parasites in the intestine like worms. This oil is useful in reducing chronic fatigue, Candidiasis and digestive sensitivity.
PLANET AYURVEDA PRODUCTS CONTAINING ASAFOETIDA
The following Planet Ayurveda products contain Asafoetida:
It is always advisable to consult a medical practitioner before consuming any of the herbs and herbal supplements. We at Planet Ayurveda prescribe medicines and herbal supplements based on the principles of Ayurveda. We use only vegetarian and natural ingredients to manufacture our products. And we proudly claim that we do not believe in testing our products on animals. You can choose a healthy lifestyle by opting for Planet Ayurveda products.