Senna /Cassia Augustifolia
Properties /Uses : Senna is native to tropical Africa but now cultivated extensively in South of India. It is propagated from seeds. The leaves are picked before or while plant is in flower and pods are collected when they are ripe and then categorized according to their quality. Ideally, the leaves are plucked four times at 45 days interval between February and September in Tamil Nadu where it is largely grown.
Studies show that the Arabians were the first to use Senna as medicine though it is presently used in several Allopathic, Ayurvedic and Unani system of medicines.
Calcium Sennosides, the extract from Senna is one of the best known herbal medicines. Ideally the leaves of the Senna plant are used in the extraction of Calcium Sennoside. Though slightly bitter, It is very effective laxative has always been specially used for constipation in traditional medicine.
Sennosides are available from 5% to 90 % in content and extensive research indicate that they irritate the lining of large intestine resulting in bowel movement. Senna Extracts has shown effective results in constipation.