Neem in health and cosmetics fields
Inspite of a phenomenal rise in the pharmaceutical industry and dominance of synthetic drugs in western markets, nearly 70 per cent of the world’s population still depends on the use of medicinal plants for relief from illness. About 10, 000 plant species of higher plants have been used for medicinal purposes. Today, interest has revived in plants as likely sources of bulk raw material for new commercial drugs. Modern analytical tools have not only revealed the enormous variety and complexity of bioactive principals of medicinal plants but also confirmed their potential for use as medicines or as models for synthetic drugs.
Neem tree has quite a few curative properties and it has been widely used in traditional system of medicine for centuries now. Each part of neem is used in medicines. After numerous researches by leading organization and companies neem, has been found to be safest medicinal herbs effective against a number of diseases. The FDA's Office of Special Nutritionals maintains an extensive database of adverse effects from herbal medications. This database does not include any references to Neem that would indicate potential problems.
Following are the properties found in the different compounds found in the neem which make it as one of the best herbal medicine.
Neem in Skin Care
Neem seed oil has been very effectively used for centuries in traditional Indian medicine to assist in the healing of topical skin disorders such as eczema, psoriasis, rashes, acne, dry skin problems, burns and abrasions. It is also rich in fatty acids and glycerides, and together with its healing properties, provides an excellent natural moisturizing base for skin care formulations. Neem seed oil and leaf extracts may be the wonder cure for psoriasis. It relieves the itching and pain while reducing the scale and redness of the patchy lesions. Neem oil is an excellent skin moisturizer while DEET is not recommended for repeated application to the skin, around the face or on the hands of small children. Neem quickly kills external parasites and a neem decoction is safer than and just as effective as standard treatments for head lice and scabies. Soap/Shampoo - Neem oil soaps can be used to treat a variety of illnesses and ailments. Neem oil can be added to regular shampoo for controlling itchy scalp and dandruff.
For pets, neem oil can be added to pet shampoo to kill ticks and fleas or the area where the pets usually use can be treated with neem oil spray. This completely safer than the commercial products and other treatement like malathion which happens to be toxic to the pet when atleast some quantity is absorbed by the skin or when the pet tries to lick the chemical.
Neem against viral diseases
Hepatitis - Tests in the U.S. show neem hampers the virus that causes hepatitis B.
Herpes - Recent tests in Germany show that neem extracts are toxic to the herpes virus and can quickly heal cold sores.
AIDS treatment: The National Institutes of Health reports neem extracts killed the AIDS virus and patents have been awarded for these extracts as an AIDS treatment. AIDS - The National Institutes of Health reports encouraging results as an AIDS preventative and possible cure using neem extracts.
Neem against fungal diseases
Fungal toxin - Neem is toxic to several fungi which attack humans, including those that cause athlete's foot and ringworm, and Candida, an organism that causes yeast infections and thrush.
Neem against Physiological disorders
Neem against diabetes: Oral doses of neem leaf extracts reduced insulin requirements by between 30% and 50% for nonkeytonic, insulin fast and insulin-sensitive diabetes
Neem against cancers: Polysaccharides and limonoids found in neem bark, leaves and seed oil reduced tumors and cancers without side effects.
Neem against heart diseases: Neem delays the coagulation of blood, calms erratic heartbeats and helps reduce elevated heart rates and high blood pressure.
Neem materials mixed in known proportions with some other herbal medicines and administered internally are considered in Ayurvedic system even more efficacious in treatment of obstinate disorders. Neem extracts give significant protection from discomfort and speed the healing of gastric problems and duodenal lesions
Neem in Dental care
The use of neem for dental is an age old practice in south India. Even the best toothbrush and the best tooth paste cannot replace the neem tender branches. These branches contain fine fibres that cleans the tooth while its antibiotic extracts are released constantly during brushing thereby preventing tooth decay and periodontal diseases.
Neem in birth control
Used as a vaginal lubricant, neem oil was up to 100 percent effective in preventing pregnancy. In India and the United States, trials show neem extracts reduced fertility in male monkeys without inhibiting libido or sperm production, making it potentially the first male birth control pill. So Neem should not be taken by anyone who is pregnant or trying to conceive (male or female).
Can neem products be taken internally?
Neem also contains compounds similar to aspirin and should not be used to treat children with fevers and patients banned from taking aspirin. While people in some countries take neem oil internally, it is not generally recommended for taking Neem oil internally without proper medical guide.
Neem in social insect control
For those seeking a safe alternative to potentially dangerous synthetic repellents neem offers an attractive alternative. One compound (salannin) found in neem leaves, seeds and seed oil is a safer but more effective insect repellent than the widely used chemical ingredient called DEET (N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide) currently found in most commercial repellents. This is a suspected carcinogen with long periods of use. Because of neem's proven effectiveness insect repellents made with neem are being used in malaria prone tropical countries. Neem extracts tested by the Malaria Institute were found to repel the mosquito that causes malaria for up to twelve hours. An active ingredient in neem leaves, called irodin A, is toxic to resistant strains of malaria. In vitro studies show 100 percent mortality in 72 hours with a 1:20,000 ratio. Neem provides protection from not only mosquitoes but also from biting flies, sand fleas and ticks.
Neem against diabetes
Oral doses of Neem leaf extracts reduces insulin requirements by 30 %
Neem has been now confirmed to be 100 % effective
Neem replaces DEET in skin care
An excellent skin moisturiser that kills external skin parasites and serves as insect repellants
Nature’s tooth brush !
Using neem twigs as tooth brushes is an age old practice in India