Serpentina: King of Bitters

Did you know that the history of Serpentina: King of Bitters is one of the most fascinating one?

According to the history, ancient literature mentions about the Serpentina plant. It includes in the works of Charaka (1000-800 B.C.). Where the plant describes as Sarpagandha, under its Sanskrit name. It is a useful remedy against snake-bite and insect stings, thus it is also famous as Indian Snakeroot.

There are many folk-lores about the History of Serpentina: King of Bitters. So, what are the interesting folklores about this plant? First, is that a mongoose would chew upon its leaves to gain strength before engaging a cobra in combat. Second, its leaves when ground and applied to the toes, could serve as an antidote for snake poison. Third, one that has it that the mentally derange person is relieves of his madness if he eats the pieces of the root.

Because of this suppose good effect in case of insanity, the plant is also famous as “Pagal-ki-dava’’ in India. Its generic name comes towards the end of the 17th century by the French Botanist, Plumiers. It is for the famous 16th century author and botanist Leonard Rauwolf of Augsburg.

Serpentina, is large twining shrub, you can find it in the tropical Himalayas. Also, in plains near the foot of the hills from Sirhind and Moradabad to Sikkim. It occurs also in Assam (up to 4000′) and in South India Peninsula along the Ghats to Travancore and Kerala.

Where does this kind of plant can be find? The type of this plant can be find in the Central and South America, Africa, India, Sri Lanka, Burma, China and Japan. The largest number of species can be find in Africa and South America.

What are the other places that this plant can be find? This plant is also distribute to Malaysia and Java. The roots are use as medicine. It has been in indigenous medicine for hundreds of years.

This plant acquired great importance in modern therapeutics following recent scientific research. It can lowers blood pressure. It can also calm insomnia, hypochondria, and certain forms of insanity. This plant is also use to many other diseases like skin disorders and gyne related ailments.