26 March 2013

Stupendous values of Bael Tree


Bael (Aegle marmelos) - one of the prominent indigenous(native) trees of India. But now it is widely found in Southeast Asia. The Bael tree is considered to be a sacred one in India. The Bael leaves are used as holy offerings to Lord Shiva traditionally. It has been used by the Indians over 5000 years. It is believed that the Bael tree has originated during the vedic period(about 2000 B.C - 800 B.C) and it was mentioned in the  Yajur veda. It is believed that having this tree in our surroundings purifies and cleanses the environment. The Bael tree has stupendous medicinal values. They are one among the top ten herbs that are frequently used in Ayurveda. Almost all parts of this tree including root, stem, leaves and barks have medicinal values.
Click here to know more on sacredness of Bael tree.

Nomenclature :

Scientific Name     :   Aegle marmelos

Tamil Name          :   Vilvam (வில்வம் )

Sanskrit Name      :   Bilwa / Sirphala

Hindi Name          :   Sirphal

English Name       :   Wood apple / Stone apple / Bengal Quince

Common Name   :   Bael


Here's an image of the Bael tree sapling that I took at Sai Baba Temple, Mylapore, Chennai :



Another notable feature of Bael Tree is that they can withstand wide ranges of temperature, soil types and water logging. This holy tree can be planted in any type of soils having a pH range of 5 to 10. They bear the temperature ranging from -7 degree Celsius to 48 degree Celsius. Hence in India, it is believed that this tree can grow at places where other trees can't be grown and once planted they need just a little care. They can bear drought even for long periods. Being a sacred tree, the Bael trees are mostly found in the temple grounds. Only few people plant this tree in their gardens. The Bael trees are medium sized trees of height ranging from 8 to 18 meters. It has greenish-white flowers. The Bael fruits are hard and woody with smooth pulp. The fruits takes up to 11 months to ripe on the tree.


Images of Bael Tree and fruits from the Internet :

                                                                      









Medicinal values of Bael Tree :

As we read before, almost every parts of this Bael tree possess stupendous medicinal values. The Bael fruit has an immense value when it is about to mature.

             >* The half-ripe or unripe pulp of the Bael fruits are considered as stomachic. The oil from the Bael tree can be used against 21 types of bacteria as per research.

             >* As per Ayurveda,diarrhea and dysentery without fever can be cured using dry Bael fruit. and it acts as a tonic for heart and brain. It is also used for curing tuberculosis.

             >* The Bael leaf extracts are used to control the blood cholesterol levels. They are believed to be more effective in decreasing the cholesterol levels when compared to modern medicines.

             >* It is also said that the Bael leaf extracts can reduce diabetes to an extent. After some researches, it has been proved that the Bael leaf extracts have reduced blood glucose levels up to 54 %.

             >* Peptic ulcer can be cured by concoction of Bael leaves.

             >* Leaves, bark and root of the Bael tree are used in the treatment of snakebite.

             >* The ripe Bael fruit is also used to cure constipation and gastrointestinal problems. And it is used in many other ways for respiratory problems.

Note :  Do not follow or try this voluntarily.Kindly consult doctors or experts before consuming.

Some more facts on Bael Tree :

              As I read up on the internet the Bael fruit can be consumed like other fruits either when they are fresh or dried. They can also be made into juices as like lemon juice. The small shoots and leaves are used for green salads. It is said that the fruit also has some binding qualities which are used along with lime plaster for making water proof wells and mixed with cement for building walls in rural areas. It is good to know about these facts as I read on internet and would be nice if adapted everywhere. Then another interesting fact is that the Bael fruit pulp is added to the water colors by the artists to apply as a protective coating on their paintings. The Bael fruit is also used in the preparation of candy, pulp powder, nectar, toffee, slab, squash and many more.

               
Thanks for reading.

18 comments:

  1. A good and informative one Sush! :) I didn't recognise until I saw the tamil name...
    Wow, so many uses !

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  2. keep rocking girlie ..... informative !

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  3. Very informative post. Thank you.

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  4. Replies
    1. Thanks Venkat :) Sure will give my best :)

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  5. Very informative. In North India, during summer, we consume sherbet made with Bael fruit pulp to beat the heat!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Shaivi ! Wow. That's an additional information. Thanks for sharing :)

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  6. Love your blog! Happy to follow you, you can visit my blog when you find time :)
    http://kitchenista-welcometomykitchen.blogspot.com

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Neela :) Will check out your blog too :)

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  7. Post is edifying and straightforward. Congrats! for this luminous post on Bael Tree,

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Himanshu ji . Glad to see you here.

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