Chittamruthu or Amruthavalli Plant

Chittamruthu or Amruthavalli is a climber plant with heart-shaped leaves widely used in Ayurveda to treat various ailments. The word Amruth means being eternal. This plant has an amazing ability to live long and also helps other plants to live longer, making its name apt. It also has a divine and revered status in traditions.

Chittamruthu or Amruthavalli Plant - Tinospora cordifolia
Chittamruthu Plant – Photo from Kottayam, Kerala

Quick Facts

Type: Perennial Herbal Vine
Family: Menispermaceae
Botanical name: Tinospora cordifolia

Common Names:

English: Heart-leaved Moonseed

Hindi: Giloy, Guduchi

Sanskrit: Guluchi, Amruthavalli, Amruthalatika

Tamil: Parivai, Amritu

Malayalam: Amruthu, Chittamruthu

Distribution: Native to tropical India, Sri Lanka

Chittamruthu or Amruthavalli Plant - Tinospora cordifolia
Tinospora cordifolia

Appearance

Chittamruthu is a perennial herbal vine which easily grows once the roots are established.

The stem is delicate with inflated nodes. It has the most uses in medicines. Several sprigs grow downward from the stem. They can be 10 meters long. Once they reach the ground, they produce roots and start growing gradually into a new vine.

The vine climbs easily on trees

Leaves

The heart-shaped leaves have a broad appearance with pleasant green on the upper side. They are short-lived. They can be 10 cm long and 8 cm wide on average. The arrangement is alternate.

Flowers & Fruits

The flowers are unisexual. The male and female flowers appear on different plants. The male flowers occur in groups of 2 to 6 in an inflorescence while the female flowers occur alone but densely packed.

They have light greenish color with six petals and six sepals. The sepals are arranged in groups of three.

The fruits are red and small with a single seed inside each of them.

Chittamruthu or Amruthavalli Plant - Tinospora cordifolia
The stems growing downward

Health Benefits and Medicinal Uses of Chittamruthu

The stem of Amruth plant is used as a medicine in Ayurveda and traditional medicines. It contains an alkaloid called berberine.

  • It has the ability to regulate body temperature. According to Ayurveda, Amruthu is effective against fever. So it is also known as Indian Quinine.
  • It can purify the blood and body by removing toxins.
  • Helps in cleansing the kidney, it can also cure kidney ailments.
  • Effective against diabetes and Arthritis.

Distribution & Cultivation

Tinospora cordifolia is a tropical plant which grows very well in warm climatic conditions and fertile soil. It occurs widely in the tropical forests of India.

It is also widely cultivated all over India as a medicinal herb. Stem cutting is the preferred method for cultivation.

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