As much as we love the winter season, it is also an avoidable fact that the season is a breeding ground for viruses and respiratory diseases. It becomes necessary to add immunity-boosting vegetables and fruits in our daily diets to save ourselves from frequently getting sick.
Bael, also known as wood apple is one such fruit that is widely consumed during summers and monsoons due to its innumerable health benefits to the human body. It contains natural healing properties and also helps to offer instant relief from various ailments.
Other Names for Bael
Bael fruit is also known as Beli, Bel, Sirphal, Belgiri, Vilva, Bilva, Shivphala, Shivdruma, Wood apple, Bengal Quince, Bilvaphal, Meredy, and Vilvama. These are the local names of this plant in various states/regions of India.
Sources of Bael
Different parts of the Bael tree, such as unripe fruit, leaf, branch, and root, are used to prepare the herbal formulations. Bael is a woody tree that is native to India. It is also widely spread in the forests of Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, and southeastern Asian countries.
Nutritional facts of Bael
Bael fruit is a nutritionally enriched tree, and its approximate composition is given below,
|Components||Composition (per 100 g of fruit)|
|Vitamin A||55 µg|
|Vitamin C||60 mg|
Medicinal benefits of Bael
- Bael fruit is widely consumed in summers and monsoon season due to its several health benefits.
- Bael fruit is a powerhouse of several nutrients like vitamin B1, vitamin B2, beta-carotene, riboflavin, niacin, thiamine vitamin C. This fruit not only contains vitamins but also it is rich in minerals like potassium and calcium. Therefore, it is very famous among herbal formulation researchers.
- Bael products help to provide relief from several health ailments, indigestion, ulcer, diarrhea, piles, and constipation. Due to its natural healing properties, bael is helpful to get relief from many kinds of wounds.
- Bael is helpful to get relief from snake bites, scurvy, gout, and arthritis.
- The Bael juice can help to improve digestion.
- In West Bengal and Odisha, Bael sherbet is served as an instant body cooler and an energizer during summer.
- The leaves of Bael possess antidiarrhoeal, anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and anti-diabetic properties.
- Bael powder can be used as a supplement due to its good amount of iron, vitamins, potassium, calcium, and it is a powerhouse of antioxidants that support metabolism.
Therapeutic uses of Bael
- The raw Bael fruit has a mildly astringent taste, and it helps to get relief from dysentery, tuberculosis, hepatitis, diarrhea, dyspepsia symptoms.
- Bael fruit is considered beneficial for the heart and brain.
- The roots of Bael can be used as an antidote to treat snake venom, and it has got excellent wound healing properties.
- Due to the good amount of water-soluble vitamins in Bael fruit, it is used to prepare different products like squash, candy, toffee, slab, nectar, and pulp powder.
- In some cases, Bael is used to get relief from diarrhea and cholera.
- Bael is helpful in fighting the infection like shigellosis due to its collective effect of anti-bacterial and anti-parasitic properties along with the presence of tannins.
- Feronia gum is extracted from the Bael tree’s bark, which helps control diabetes. The Feronia gum helps regulate insulin production in the body and maintains the low glycemic index in the bloodstream to help maintain the blood sugar levels.
- The unripe Bael fruit pulp or crush and honey help manage dysentery, diarrhea, and different gastrointestinal disorders.
- The decoction prepared using Bael leaf, and the black pepper synergistically gives the laxative property, which can help manage constipation by loosening the stools.
- Bael fruit has excellent expectorant property and helps to manage the cough.
- Bael leaf powder is mixed with coconut oil to prepare a conditioner applied on the scalp, and it helps promote hair growth by providing essential nourishment to the hair.
- The paste prepared using coconut oil and Bael leaf powder is also applied to the eyes to manage any eye complications due to its anti-inflammatory activity.
1: Bael and digestion
The laxative ability of Bael helps in cleaning the intestine to prevent constipation and thereby helps in the digestion process.
2: Bael is considered beneficial for heart and blood purification.
Bael helps in lowering cholesterol levels in the blood. It is useful in kidney problems treating heart and liver problems. Due to its high amount of potassium, Bael fruit helps in the purification of the blood to remove the toxins, which further supports the immune system.
3: Bael and scurvy
Scurvy is a disease that is related to the deficiency of Vitamin C. The symptoms of scurvy include sore arms, legs, and overall weakness. Bael is a rich source of water-soluble vitamins such as vitamin C and is considered a boon for people suffering from scurvy.
4: Bael and health of the hair
Different supplements prepared using parts of the Bael tree possess an antimicrobial property, which is useful to manage various scalp and hair infections such as dandruff, folliculitis, and itching. The oils and lotions prepared using Bael help nourish the hair follicles with good nutrients, which support blood circulation and helps to strengthen the hair roots. Bael products can help to normalize stress hormone secretion to prevent hair fall due to anxiety and stress.
The recommended dosage of Bael
The ayurvedic dosage of Bael varies according to its variants. Different forms of Bael products are –
|Capsule||Take 1 – 2 Bael capsules with excess water after meals.||2 times|
|Tablet||Take 1 – 2 Bael Tablets with excess water after meals.||2 times|
|Juice or Decoction||Take 1 cup of Bael juice or decoction a day along with water after meals.||2 times|
|Powder or Churna||¼-½ teaspoon Bael Powder or Churna with excess water after meals.||2 times|
|Candy||Take 4 – 5 candies per day.||–|
Side effects of Bael
- Bael fruit supplement is helpful in diabetes management; therefore, its overdose can cause a drop in blood sugar below the critical level.
- Bael fruit is rich in tannins. Therefore its excessive consumption over a long time can lead to exhibiting carcinogenicity.
- The high dose of Bael carbohydrates may cause stomach problems and lead to constipation.
Precautions while taking bael
- Consumption of Bael extracts enriched supplement is harmful to pregnant women; therefore, it is important to consult a doctor during pregnancy.
Is Bael good for Irritable bowel syndrome?
Yes, Bael is helpful for Irritable bowel syndrome; the consumption of Bael supports intestinal flora and digestion. It also helps destroy the intestine’s worms to keep the body healthy due to its antiparasitic and antifungal properties.
Can I eat bael fruit and leaf?
Yes, you can eat bael leaf fruit. In fact, the leaves are eaten as salad greens. The ripe Bael fruits have an aromatic pulp, which is pleasant flavoured, and it is used in preparing the beverage, which is healthy.
When Should I Drink Bael juice?
You can drink Bael juice during summer as it is the perfect drink to cool your body. And Bael fruit is sweet in nature, which can refresh your empty body. It is also recommended not to take Bael fruit juice with an empty stomach to avoid acidity and related problems.
Bael is a highly nutritious plant used in the ritual rites of Hindus. Bael leaves, bark, roots, fruits, seeds are used in traditional medicine, it might help in constipation, diarrhea, diabetes and also help to boost immunity.
Disclaimer: The information included at this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation