E-HERBARIA

  • Name : Akhrot
  • English Name :Walnut
  • Scientific Name :Juglans regia

 

Habitat:

Akshoda is a large deciduous, monoecious tree with tomentose shoots, found throughout the Himalayas up to an altitude of 900-3300 m.1

 

Morphology Description (Habit):

Juglans regia is a large, deciduous tree attaining heights of 25?35 m, and a trunk up to 2 m diameter, commonly with a short trunk and broad crown, though taller and narrower in dense forest competition.

The bark is smooth, olive-brown when young and silvery-grey on older branches, and features scattered broad fissures with a rougher texture. The leaves are alternately arranged, 25?40 cm long, odd-pinnate with 5?9 leaflets, paired alternately with one terminal leaflet. The whole fruit, including the husk, falls in autumn; the seed is large, with a relatively thin shell, and edible, with a rich flavour.2

 

Parts Used:

Stem Bark, Leaves, Cotyledons

 

Phytochemistry:

Walnut Oil and Tannins.

 

Pharmacological Actions:

The primary pharmacological actions of Akhrot are summarized as under:

 

Central Nervous System:

i. Feeding mothers with Walnut Kernels results in improvement in learning and memory of their offsprings.3

ii. English walnuts (Juglans regia L.) are rich in numerous phytochemicals, including high amounts of polyunsaturated fatty acids, and offer potential benefits to brain health. Polyphenolic compounds found in walnuts not only reduce the oxidant and inflammatory load on brain cells but also improve interneuronal signaling, increase neurogenesis, and enhance sequestration of insoluble toxic protein aggregates.4

iii. Walnuts are rich in omega-3 fatty acids that are reported to have beneficial effects on brain function. In an animal study, a significant improvement in learning and memory was observed when walnuts were fed. Walnuts also led to a significant decrease in food intake in trial subjects. Analysis of brain monoamines exhibited enhanced serotonergic levels in brain following oral intake of walnuts. The findings suggest that walnut may exert its hypophagic and nootropic actions via an enhancement of brain 5-HT metabolism.5

 

Digestive System: 

i. Walnut leaf extract acts as a good hepatoprotective and antioxidant agent in attenuating hepatocellular damage.6

 

Endocrinal System: 

i. Juglans regia leaf extract enhances glucose uptake and inhibits PTP1B (protein tyrosine phosphatase 1B); this provides an in vitro-based rationale for the traditional use of walnut leaf preparations against elevated blood-glucose levels.7

ii. It has been observed that treatment of type II diabetic patients with 100mg Juglans regia leaf extract two times a day for three months improves lipid profile and glycemic control.8

 

Musculoskeletal System: 

i. J. regia leaves have been observed to exhibit antinociceptive effect through non-opioid receptors and anti-inflammatory effect against acute and chronic inflammation. The extracts of J. regia could be considered as a promising analgesic and anti-inflammatory agents against diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis.9

 

Others: 

i. The presence of eugenol and methyl salicylate in the leaves of J. regia are consistent with the traditional uses of this plant to treat toothache, rheumatism, and fungal infections.10

ii. The stem bark exhibits antibacterial action against oral pathogens.11

iii. Unlike other fatty diets, Walnuts helps reduce prostate tumour weight and growth rate.12

iv. Exhibiting high phenolic content, antioxidant activity, and potent antiproliferative activity, walnut may act as a cancer chemopreventive agent.13

v. The extract confers significant protection against oral fungal and candidal strains.14

 

Indications:

Stem Bark - Orodental hygiene

Leaf - Type 2 Diabetes mellitus, Arthritis

Cotyledons - General and Nervine Health

 

References:

1. The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India, Part-1, Vol-2.

2. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juglans_regia

3. Asadi-Shekaari M, Karimi A, Shabani M, et al. Maternal feeding with walnuts (Juglans regia) improves learning and memory in their adult pups. Avicenna J Phytomed. 2013 Fall;3(4):341-6.

4. Poulose SM, Miller MG, Shukitt-Hale B. Role of walnuts in maintaining brain health with age. J Nutr. 2014 Apr;144(4 Suppl):561S-566S.

5. Haider S, Batool Z, Tabassum S, et al. Effects of walnuts (Juglans regia) on learning and memory functions. Plant Foods Hum Nutr. 2011 Nov;66(4):335-40.

6. Eidi A, Moghadam JZ, Mortazavi P, et al. Hepatoprotective effects of Juglans regia extract against CCl4-induced oxidative damage in rats. Pharm Biol. 2013 May;51(5):558-65.

7. Pitschmann A, Zehl M, Atanasov AG, et al. Walnut leaf extract inhibits PTP1B and enhances glucose-uptake in vitro. J Ethnopharmacol. 2014 Mar 28;152(3):599-602.

8. Hosseini S, Jamshidi L, Mehrzadi S, et al. Effects of Juglans regia L. leaf extract on hyperglycemia and lipid profiles in type two diabetic patients: a randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial. J Ethnopharmacol. 2014 Mar 28;152(3):451-6.

9. Hosseinzadeh H, Zarei H, Taghiabadi E. Antinociceptive, anti-inflammatory and acute toxicity effects of juglans regia L. Leaves in mice. Iran Red Crescent Med J. 2011 Jan;13(1):27-33.

10. Paudel P, Satyal P, Dosoky NS, et al. Juglans regia and J. nigra, two trees important in traditional medicine: A comparison of leaf essential oil compositions and biological activities. Nat Prod Commun. 2013 Oct;8(10):1481-6.

11. Zakavi F, Golpasand Hagh L, Daraeighadikolaei A, et al. Antibacterial Effect of Juglans Regia Bark against Oral Pathologic Bacteria. Int J Dent. 2013;2013:854765.

12. Davis PA, Vasu VT, Gohil K, et al. A high-fat diet containing whole walnuts (Juglans regia) reduces tumour size and growth along with plasma insulin-like growth factor 1 in the transgenic adenocarcinoma of the mouse prostate model. Br J Nutr. 2012 Nov 28;108(10):1764-72.

13. Negi AS, Luqman S, Srivastava S, et al. Antiproliferative and antioxidant activities of Juglans regia fruit extracts. Pharm Biol. 2011 Jun;49(6):669-73.

14. Noumi E, Snoussi M, Hajlaoui H, et al. Antifungal properties of Salvadora persica and Juglans regia L. extracts against oral Candida strains. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2010 Jan;29(1):81-8.

 

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