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Ferula Asafoetida Linn

Asafoetida: is the dried latex (gum oleoresin) exuded from the rhizome or tap root of several species of Ferula. Other Names: Anghuzeh (Farsi); asafétida (Spanish); asafoetida; awei (Chinese); aza(Greek); devil's dung; férule persique or merde dudiable (French); haltit or tyib (Arabic); hing (Hindi); mvuje (Swahili); stinkasant or teufelsdreck (German); stinking gum. Origin: Ferula Asafoetida is an herbaceous, monoecious, perennial plant of the UMBELLIFERAE family. Asafoetida is native to central Asia, Afghanistan and eastern Iran, currently it is grown chiefly in Afghanistan and Iran, from where it is exported to the rest of the world. It is not native to India, but has been used in Indian medicine and cookery for ages. Chemical Constituent: An analysis of asafoetida shows it to consist of carbohydrates 67.8% per 100 gms, moisture 16.0%, protein 4.0%, fat 1.1%, minerals 7.0% and fiber 4.1%. Its mineral and vitamin contents include substantial calcium besides phosphorus, iron, carotene, riboflavin and niacin. Its calorific value is 297, contains 40-64% resinous material composed of ferulic acid, umbel-liferone, asaresinotannols, farnesiferols A, B, and C etc., about 25% gum composed of glucose, galactose, l-arabinose, rhamnose, and glucuronic acid and volatile oil (3-17%) consisting of disulfides as its major components, notably 2-butyl propenyl disulfide (E- and Z-isomers), with monoterpenes (α- and β-pinene, etc.), free ferulic acid, valeric acid, and traces of vanillin (LAF). The disagreeable odor of the oil is reported to be due mainly to the disulphide C11H20S2. Traditional Usages: Ferula Asafoetida Linn. is a chief source of Asafoetida, a sturdy, obstinate and sulfurous odor, and oleo-gumresin of medicinal and nutritional significance. Asafoetida is used in food as a flavoring agent and also has been used as traditional medicine for many diseases in the world. Recent studies have shown numerous promising activities mostly muscle relaxant, memory enhancing, digestive enzyme, antioxidant, antispasmodic, hypotensive, hepatoprotective, antiviral, antifungal, anticancer, anxiolytics, and anthelmintic activities. It is used in the prevention and treatment of several problems such as unwanted abortion, unusual pain, sterility, and mainly ailment for women such as difficult and excessive menstruation and leukorrhea. Moreover, it is used for stomach pressure, flatulence, low acid levels in the stomach, and loose stools. This review deals with study of various phytoconstituents, pharmacological, and therapeutic effects of Asafoetida..

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