Herb of the Week: Neem

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-20-2003
Herb of the Week: Neem
1
Tue, 10-19-2010 - 6:41pm

I'm not sure this constitutes an herbal. It's found in the leaves & bark of trees. I notice more & more products for dental hygiene contain neem. It's added to products for ppl as well as pets. It's well supported in Ayurvedic medicine.

Historical or traditional use (may or may not be supported by scientific studies)

Neem has a long history of use in the traditional medical systems of India (Ayurvedic, Unani-Tibb).1 Neem leaf and bark extracts are most consistently recommended in ancient medical texts and by herbal practitioners for gastrointestinal upsets, diarrhea and intestinal infections, skin ulcers and infections, and malaria.2 Neem twigs are the most regularly used toothbrush for a large portion of the population of India and other countries where the tree is common.3 The effectiveness of many of these uses has been confirmed in modern research studies, showing, for example, that neem bark extracts are effective for people with stomach ulcers, that leaf gel can effectively fight periodontal disease, and that leaf extracts can combat scabies infections.4, 5, 6 The claimed contraceptive effects of neem have been confirmed in some animal studies showing that seed extracts of neem are spermicidal.7

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-05-2010
Fri, 11-05-2010 - 4:02pm

I have been very curious about the neem leaves. I have heard wonderous things about their use. i'm just not sure i coudl get over the taste of hte leaf.