Kokum is a plant, which is also known as Garcinia indica. It is a common plant in India, which is used as spice but it also has medicinal properties. Mostly, Kokum is used in cooking, but it is also known for using it in kokum sherbet. Kokum plant is mostly found in Western Ghat region of India. Maybe this is why majorly kokum is used in cuisines of Gujarat, Maharashtra, and coastal states of Southern India.
Sun-dried kokum is often used as a souring agent in food. It tastes salty and sometimes like cranberries. It has numerous health benefits and can be used as a remedy in common health problems like acidity, allergies, indigestion etc.
Properties of Kokum:
It may be an antacid.
It also has antifungal and antioxidant properties.
It has an anti-inflammatory action which might relieve swelling.
It may have anti-dermatitis properties which may help with allergic skin rashes.
It may be an astringent.
It may have a anti-perspirant property to reduce sweating.
Health benefits of Kokum:
Digestion - Kokum acts as natural antacid. It helps with gastric ulceration and burning sensation. It might be used as liver tonic because it helps protect the liver. Overall, It helps in digestion and gut health.
Weight loss - It is helpful in weight management. It acts as an effective suppressant of appetite which helps reduce the hunger and increase the expenditure of energy results into weight loss.
Skin benefits - Kokum might have moisturizing properties. It is widely used in cosmetic industry in making of soap, body lotions and lip balm. However, more research is required to prove these facts.
Preventing Cancer - Kokum contains Garcinol, an anti-carcinogen that prevents intestinal cancer cells from growing without harming normal cells. It also help renew and repair the cells and prevent the cancer of skin, liver, breast, tongue, and colon.
Infections - Kokum's properties might act as traditional antibiotics, which help fight against bacteria like Staphylococcus, which is responsible for many known diseases. It is also effective against fungal infections of the skin and mouth.
Dehydration - Kokum juice has cooling properties, which prevent dehydration and prevent heat stroke in the summer.
Although, Kokum has many medicinal uses, it might have some side effects. Always consult a doctor before using it for any severe medical condition. Also, people suffering from high blood pressure should avoid kokum, especially if they are on any medication.