Azadirachta Indica, commonly known as neem or Indian lilac, is a tree native to the Indian subcontinent, which has been traditionally used for various medicinal purposes. Its leaves, bark, seeds, and oil are rich in natural compounds that have antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties, making it a popular ingredient in Ayurvedic medicine.
The benefits of neem are numerous and diverse, ranging from promoting healthy skin and hair to boosting the immune system and improving digestion. Neem oil is often used to treat skin conditions like acne, psoriasis, and eczema, while neem leaves are commonly used to make herbal teas that help to detoxify the body.
Margosa is available in various forms, including neem oil, neem powder, neem leaves, and neem capsules. Depending on the intended use, the appropriate form of neem can be chosen. For instance, neem oil is commonly used for topical applications, while neem capsules are taken orally as a dietary supplement.
Although neem is generally safe to use, it may cause side effects in some individuals, particularly when used in large quantities or for extended periods. These may include stomach upset, diarrhea, and skin irritation. It is important to consult a healthcare professional before using neem as a supplement or for medicinal purposes.
In this article, we will focus on the benefits of neem for hair and how to make a neem hair pack to promote healthy hair growth and prevent hair loss. We will also discuss the potential side effects of neem and how to use it safely. So, if you are looking for a natural and effective way to improve your hair health, keep reading to learn more about neem and how to use it in your hair care routine.
What is Azadirachta Indica?
Neem leaves botanical name is Azadirachta Indica leaf, some common names of neem are nim tree or Indian lilac and margosa. It is a large evergreen tree, and it is commonly found in almost part of India. It is indigenous to South Asia; the tree occurs naturally in the Decan peninsula and is grown all over India.
It is also common in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Pakistan, Japan, and tropical regions of Australia and Africa. This tree has played an important role in Ayurvedic medicine and agriculture since times immemorial.
Morphology of Azadirachta Indica
Azadirachta Indica Leaves
The neem tree leaves are divided into numerous leaflets, each resembling a full-grown leaf. Neem leaves have immunomodulatory, anti-inflammatory, anti-ulcer, antimalarial, anti-fungal, antibacterial, antiviral, antioxidant, anti-mutagenic, and anti-carcinogenic properties. It is beneficial for skin disorders, and hair problems enhance appetite and boosts digestion.
The leaves are useful in relieving flatulence, promoting the removal of catarrh matter and phlegm, and increasing secretion and discharge of urine. They also act as an insecticide.
The neem fruits are green and yellow with a seed in each, it contains a bitter taste. has antibacterial, antioxidant, anti-microbial, anti-desertification, and detoxification properties. It purifies the blood, prevents damage caused by free radicals in the body, removes toxins, and treats insect bites and ulcers.
The neem seeds contain a substantial amount of essential oil, known as neem or margosa oil. The bitter constituents separated from this oil are Nimbin, Nimbinin, and nimbidin. The active constituent of these is nimbidin which contains sulfur. The blossom yields a glucoside, nimbosterin, and a highly pungent essential oil, minbosterol, nibecetin and fatty acid.
Azadirachta Indica Flowers
The tree has small, white flowers in auxiliary bunches, they contain a bitter substance and an irritant bitter oil.
Azadirachta Indica Bark
The bark of the tree is a bitter tonic and a stimulant. It arrests secretion and bleeding besides counteracting any spasmodic disorder. The root bark has the same properties as the trunk bark. The gum discharged from the stem is a stimulant and tonic with a soothing effect on the skin and mucous membranes.
What is the Nutritional Value of Azadirachta Indica Fruit, Seeds, Leaves & Bark?
Azadirachta indica, commonly known as neem, is a tree native to the Indian subcontinent and is widely distributed in tropical and subtropical regions. The neem tree is highly valued for its medicinal properties, and various parts of the tree, including the fruit, seeds, and leaves, have nutritional and therapeutic benefits. Here's a breakdown of their nutritional value:
Neem fruits are small, oval-shaped, and yellowish-green when ripe. They are typically bitter in taste.
Neem fruits are low in calories and contain dietary fiber, which aids in digestion and promotes a feeling of fullness.
They are a good source of vitamin C, providing antioxidant properties and boosting the immune system.
Neem fruits also contain various minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, and iron, which are essential for the body's proper functioning.
Neem seeds are enclosed within the fruit and have a brown outer covering.
The seeds are rich in essential fatty acids like oleic acid, linoleic acid, and palmitic acid, which are beneficial for heart health.
They contain proteins, amino acids, and minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and potassium.
Neem seeds are also a source of antioxidants and vitamin E, which contribute to overall well-being.
Neem leaves are the most well-known and widely used part of the neem tree for various medicinal purposes.
They are packed with nutrients such as protein, fiber, and minerals like calcium, phosphorus, and iron.
Neem leaves are a rich source of vitamin C and contain other vitamins like vitamin A, vitamin B6, and niacin.
They also contain phytochemicals, including flavonoids, tannins, and carotenoids, which possess antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Dietary Fiber: Neem bark contains a significant amount of dietary fiber. Fiber is essential for maintaining a healthy digestive system, promoting regular bowel movements, and aiding in weight management.
Essential Nutrients: Neem bark contains various essential nutrients, although the exact composition may vary. It may contain minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and potassium, which are vital for bone health, muscle function, and overall well-being.
Secondary Metabolites: Neem bark is rich in secondary metabolites, including various active compounds such as triterpenoids, flavonoids, and polyphenols. These compounds contribute to the medicinal properties of neem, including its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and immunomodulatory effects.
Anti-inflammatory Properties: Neem bark extracts have shown potential anti-inflammatory effects. These properties can help reduce inflammation in the body and alleviate symptoms associated with inflammatory conditions.
Antimicrobial Activity: Compounds present in neem bark have been found to possess antimicrobial properties. Neem bark extracts and preparations have been used traditionally for their antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal effects.
What are the Health Benefits of Neem?
Neem tree is considered an air purifier and a preventive against malarial fever and chorea. All parts of the tree possess medicinal properties. anti-bacterial, antioxidant, anti-microbial, anti-desertification, and detoxification anti-inflammatory, anti-ulcer, antimalarial, antifungal, antiviral, anti-mutagenic, and anti-carcinogenic properties.
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Here are some benefits of Neem / Azadirachta Indica
For Ear Ailments
Neem leaves decoction and juice are useful in various ear ailments like boils in the ear, earache, killing ear insects, and deafness.
For Eye Disease
Neem is very useful in eye disease, it helps to treat night blindness, pains, conjunctivitis, red eye, and itchy eyes.
For Hair Disorder
If there is any hair loss or it has ceased to grow, it helps to promote hair growth and slow down the hair or hair loss. Frequently application of Azadirachta Indica oil is also destroying insects in the hair.
The sap of the tree has effective medicine in leprosy, the patient’s body should be massaged with the saps, and this should be continued for 40 days.
A decoction of fresh leaves of the Azadirachta Indica is beneficial in chronic malaria and fever, because of their action on the liver.
For Oral Disorder
Cleaning teeth regularly with a Azadirachta Indica twig prevents gum disease, it firms up loose teeth and relieves toothache, evacuates the bad odor, and protects the mouth from various infections.
Azadirachta Indica bark is beneficial in piles, bleeding, and pain. Neem fruits are also good for bleeding piles.
For Skin Disease
Azadirachta Indica leaves are very effective and useful in skin diseases, they are especially beneficial in treating boils, chronic ulcers, eruptions of smallpox, syphilitic sores, glandular swellings, and wounds. They can be used as a poultice, decoction, or liniment.
For Post-Parturition Disorders
Azadirachta Indica is very useful in childbirth, administration of neem leaf juice during labor before childbirth produces a normal contraction in the uterus and prevents possible inflammation. It corrects bowel movements and checks the onset of fevers, thereby facilitating normal delivery.
The use of a tepid decoction of neem leaves as a vaginal douche heals any wounds caused during delivery as well as disinfects the vaginal passage.
Some other benefits
Azadirachta Indica is a powerful insecticide to kill soil nematodes and other plant parasites and is useful as a mosquito repellent. Neem twig is also used as a toothbrush and their juice is used as an ingredient in toothpaste and contraceptive.
How to use Margosa / Neem?
Dosage and uses depend upon the health problems and conditions or as recommended by an Ayurveda doctor. The general recommended dosage is 5-10 grams of Margosa / Neem twice a day before an hour of a meal. You can make leaf decoction, oil, and ointments of Azadirachta Indica. Here are the common uses of neem leaves, fruit, bark, and seeds:
- Traditional Medicine: Neem leaves have been used in traditional medicine for centuries. They are known for their antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory properties. Neem leaf extracts and preparations are used for treating skin disorders, digestive issues, oral health problems, and supporting the immune system.
- Skincare: Neem leaves are beneficial for the skin. They can be used to make face packs, masks, or pastes to address acne, blemishes, and skin infections. Neem leaf extracts are also found in soaps, creams, and lotions.
- Haircare: Neem leaves are used in haircare products due to their antifungal properties. They help combat dandruff, soothe an itchy scalp, and promote hair growth. Neem leaf rinses or neem oil-infused hair treatments are popular.
- Pesticidal Use: The bitter taste and insect-repellent properties of neem fruit make it a valuable natural pesticide. Neem oil, extracted from the fruit, is used in agriculture to protect crops from pests and insects. It is considered an environmentally friendly alternative to synthetic pesticides.
- Veterinary Care: Neem fruit extracts or neem oil are used in veterinary care to combat parasites like ticks, fleas, and mites that affect animals.
- Medicinal Use: Neem bark is used in traditional medicine for its therapeutic properties. It possesses anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antifungal properties. Neem bark extracts are used to treat skin infections, reduce inflammation, and promote wound healing.
- Dental Care: Chewing on neem bark or using neem bark powder is known to support oral health. It helps fight gum diseases, tooth decay, and bad breath.
- Manufacturing: Neem seeds are a source of neem oil, which has several applications. Neem oil is used in the production of soaps, shampoos, cosmetics, and other personal care products due to its skin-nourishing and moisturizing properties.
- Agriculture: Neem seed oil is also utilized in agriculture as a natural insecticide and fungicide to protect crops from pests and diseases.
Here are some other uses of Neem.
- Take Azadirachta Indica leaves and boil in 1 liter of water and use this water to massage the ear, it helps in earache.
- Take Azadirachta Indica leaves juice and add an equal quantity of honey, mix it, and little warm the juice. Put a few drops in the ear, which gives relief from pain.
- Two drops of lukewarm Azadirachta Indica oil and put into the ear twice a day, help to cure deafness.
- Take neem juice and apply it to the eyes, it is highly effective in the treatment of night blindness.
- Make a decoction of neem leaves and wash the hair with this, helping to reduce hair loss.
- Take 12 grams of neem leaves powder, and 1/3 tsp of black pepper powder, and mix it well. Take this mixture with water, which helps to cure leprosy.
- Take 15-60 grams of decoction of Azadirachta Indica leaves, which helps to treat malaria and fever.
- Take 3 grams of Azadirachta Indica bark powder, and 6 grams of jaggery powder, mix them and take them in the morning, it is very effective in piles.
- An ointment of neem leaves is also effective in healing ulcers and wounds.
- An ointment is prepared by frying 50 grams of the leaves in 50 grams of ghee and mashing the mixture thoroughly till on ointment consistency is obtained.
Side Effects of Indian lilac
All Ayurveda herbs are plant-based, and they don’t have any side effects but they may react with some allopathy or homeopathy medicine. It is better to consult the doctor if you are on any medications or have special health issues.
Some side effects are mentioned below.
- Consult the doctor if you are breastfeeding.
- Do not take without a doctor’s prescription if you are pregnant.
- If you are on diabetes or on hypertension medication. Consult first the doctor before consuming.
- If you are suffering from kidney disease, consult the doctor first before consuming Neem
- Do not take Neem with liquor, it may interact with it and cause drowsiness.
Azadirachta Indica Hair Pack
This hair pack is very effective in hair fall and dandruff, this is an herbal home remedy for healthy and strong hair.
- Neem Leaf Powder – 2 tbsp
- Indian Gooseberry Powder – 1 tsp
- Bacopa Monnieri Powder – 1 tsp
- Butea Monosperma Powder – 1 tsp
- Mustard Oil – ½ tsp
- Take a bowl and add all the ingredients except oil and mix them well.
- Add oil and ½ cup of water and make a paste for the hair pack.
- Apply this pack to the hair scalp and on hairs.
- Wash the hair after 20 minutes.
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Frequently Asked Question
Q - Is Azadirachta Indica a medicinal plant?
Q - What is another name for Azadirachta indica?
Azadirachta indica is the botanical name of Neem, its English name is Margosa, common names are Indian lilac, Nim, Nim Tree. It is indigenous to South Asia; the tree occurs naturally in the Decan peninsula and is grown all over India.
Q - What diseases does neem cure?
Neem is used in Ayurveda for various health problems like earache, killing ear insects, and deafness, piles, blood sugar and oral disorder.
Q - Who should not take neem?
All Ayurveda herbs are safe to use but in some cases you should avoid the take neem. Pregnant and breastfeeding women, if you are on diabetes or blood pressure medication, if you are suffering from kidney disease.
Q- Is margosa and neem same?
Margosa is a English name of neem, its botanical name is Azadirachta indica. It is found in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Pakistan, Japan, and tropical regions of Australia and Africa. This tree has played an important role in Ayurvedic medicine and agriculture since times immemorial.
Q - How to use neem oil for skin?
Neem oil can be applied topically to the skin to help with various skin conditions. It can be mixed with a carrier oil like coconut oil or olive oil before applying it to the skin. For acne-prone skin, it can be used as a spot treatment or added to a facial cleanser. For other skin conditions, it can be applied to the affected area and left on for a few hours before washing off.
Q - How to use neem leaves for dandruff?
To use neem leaves for dandruff, boil a handful of neem leaves in water until the water turns green. Strain the liquid and let it cool. Then use this solution to rinse your hair after shampooing. Leave it on for a few minutes before rinsing it off with water.
Q - Can neem help with oral health?
Yes, neem has antibacterial properties that can help with oral health. It can be used as an ingredient in toothpaste or mouthwash to help prevent gum disease and tooth decay.
Q - Is neem effective for insect control?
Yes, neem is a natural insecticide that can help repel or kill insects. It can be used in the garden to control pests like aphids, mites, and whiteflies.
Q - How to use neem powder for face?
To use neem powder for the face, mix it with a small amount of water or rosewater to make a paste. Apply the paste to the face and leave it on for 15-20 minutes before rinsing it off with water.
Q - How to use neem oil for acne scars?
To use neem oil for acne scars, mix it with a carrier oil like coconut oil or olive oil and apply it to the affected area. Massage it into the skin for a few minutes before leaving it on for a few hours or overnight.
Q - Can neem help with digestion?
Yes, neem has been traditionally used to help with digestion. It can be taken as a supplement or added to food in the form of leaves, powder, or capsules.
Q - What are the benefits of neem tea?
Neem tea has been used to help detoxify the body, improve digestion, and boost the immune system. It can also help with skin conditions like acne and eczema.
Q - How to use neem oil for psoriasis?
To use neem oil for psoriasis, apply it topically to the affected area. It can be mixed with a carrier oil like coconut oil or olive oil for better absorption.
Q - Is neem effective for lice treatment?
Yes, neem has insecticidal properties that can help kill lice. Neem oil or neem shampoo can be applied to the hair and scalp to help eliminate lice.
Q - How to use neem leaves for weight loss?
Neem leaves can be added to tea or used to make a herbal infusion that can help promote weight loss. However, it is important to note that neem should not be used as a substitute for a healthy diet and exercise.
Q - What are the benefits of neem for pets?
Neem can help repel fleas, ticks, and other insects from pets. It can be used as an ingredient in pet shampoos or applied topically to the pet's fur.
Q - Can neem be used for wound healing?
Yes, neem has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that can help promote wound healing. It can be applied topically to the wound or used as an ingredient in a wound healing salve.
Q - How to use neem for fungal infections?
Neem has antifungal properties and can be used to treat various fungal infections. One way to use neem for fungal infections is to apply neem oil or neem leaf paste directly to the affected area. You can also use neem oil as a natural remedy for athlete's foot, ringworm, and other skin fungal infections.
Q - Is neem effective for managing diabetes?
Neem has been used for centuries in traditional medicine to manage diabetes. Some studies suggest that neem can help regulate blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity. However, more research is needed to fully understand the potential benefits of neem for diabetes management.
Q - How to use neem for skincare?
Neem has antibacterial and antifungal properties, making it a popular ingredient in skincare products. To use neem for skincare, you can mix neem powder or neem oil with a carrier oil such as coconut oil or almond oil and apply it to your skin. This can help treat acne, soothe dry and itchy skin, and reduce inflammation.
Q - How to use neem oil for hair growth?
Neem oil can be used to promote hair growth and prevent hair loss. To use neem oil for hair growth, you can mix it with a carrier oil such as coconut oil and massage it into your scalp. Leave it on for 30 minutes to an hour before washing it out with shampoo.
Q - Can neem cure acne?
Neem has antibacterial properties that make it effective in treating acne. You can use neem oil or neem leaf paste as a spot treatment for acne-prone skin. Applying neem oil or neem leaf paste to the affected area can help reduce inflammation and kill the bacteria that cause acne.
Q - How to make neem oil at home?
To make neem oil at home, you will need neem leaves, a carrier oil such as coconut oil, and a jar with a lid. First, grind the neem leaves into a fine powder. Then, mix the neem powder with the carrier oil and store it in the jar for at least two weeks. Shake the jar daily to help infuse the oil with the neem extract. After two weeks, strain the oil and store it in a cool, dark place.
Q - How to use neem leaves for diabetes?
Neem leaves can be used to help manage diabetes by regulating blood sugar levels. To use neem leaves for diabetes, you can steep neem leaves in hot water to make a tea. Drink the tea regularly to help regulate blood sugar levels.
Q - Is neem safe during pregnancy?
Neem should be used with caution during pregnancy as it can have abortifacient properties. It is best to avoid using neem during pregnancy or consult with a healthcare professional before using neem for any health conditions.
Q - How to use neem oil for plants?
Neem oil can be used as a natural pesticide for plants. To use neem oil for plants, mix it with water and spray it on the plants. This can help control pests and fungal infections without harming the plant or the environment.
Note: While neem is generally safe to use, it can cause allergic reactions in some people. It is always recommended to do a patch test before using neem products on your skin or hair.