Bala / Sida Cordifolia
Properties /Uses : The botanical name of bala is Sida cordifolia and it belongs to family Malvaceae . Bala grows well throughout the plains of India, especially, in damp climate. The roots and the stem being stout and strong, the plant bears the name bala. The flowers are small, yellow or white in colour, found to be solitary and axillary.
The main alkaloid as identified from the roots and stems was ephedrine. Ephedrine, an alkaloid so far observed only in the different varieties of ephedra , was identified. These two plants belong to entirely different divisons of vegetable kingdom.
Bala is sweet in taste. As per Ayurveda, it alleviates vata and pitta dosas. It possesses light, oily and slimy attributes. The leaves, roots and the seeds have great medicinal value. Bala is useful in diseases like seminal weakness, cough – especially tuberculosis with cavitation, asthma, urinary disorders and fever. Externall, the medicated oil of bala, Bala siddha taila, is massaged to alleviate pain and swelling in vata disorders.
Studies reveal that bala extract is the best nervine tonic. It is also rejuvenative, nutritive and stimulant to the heart. it is a good nutritive and aphrodisiac. Bala is a valuable blood purifier helpful in piles. It is especially anabolic to muscle tissue and augments the seminal fluids, and promotes reproduction. As it helps building the muscle tissue, it boosts the strength and hence, imparts a rejuvenative action. As a tonic, it is commonly used in general debility.