Chironji or charoli is slightly sweet and acidic in taste and have almond like flavor. Chironji is used in Indian culture due to its health benefits. Seeds or nuts, kernels, fruits, root, oil and gum all parts of chironji (charoli) plant are used in traditional medicines.
Chironji is beneficial in Urticaria, skin rashes, heart muscle weakness, infertility, impotency, oligospermia, headache, excessive thirst, constipation, cough, urinary troubles and chronic fever. It is also used in debility after chronic disease.
About Chironji or charoli
Chironji (also called Buchanania lanzan) share family with cashew nuts, but its taste is like almonds. Its size and shape is similar to soybean. Chironji plant is deciduous tree that can grow up to 15 meter tall.
Chironji seeds are edible nuts present the chironji fruits. Each chironji fruit contains only one chironji seed. It is a substitute of almonds. Chironji oil is used as substitute of almond oil. However, we do not recommend using chironji seeds or oil as an alternative to almonds. Chironji nutrition facts are not supporting the claims for it to being nutritious like almonds. Chironji seeds contain mucilage substance or fat more than 59%.
Chironji in Foods
You can eat chironji in raw form. Mostly it is roasted
Some people use it after roasting or frying in oil to enhance its flavor. Chironji seeds are also used in sweets, traditional sauces and as flavoring ingredients in various Indian recipes.
In traditional medicines, it is used due to its aphrodisiac properties in impotency in men. Generally, ayurvedic and unani physicians use it for many other medicinal purposes, which will be discussed below:
India, Burma, Nepal are native place of chironji plants.
- Chironji seeds
- Charoli seeds
- Buchanania lanzan
- Buchanania latifolia
- Chironji sapida
- Chironji Tree
Buchanania lanzan and Buchanania latifolia are different variety of Chironji tree.
|Botanical Name||Buchanania lanzan or Buchanania latifolia|
Chironji has relation with cashew because both share same family Anacardiaceae.
- Seeds, nuts or kernels
Medicinal properties of each part of chironji are described as under:
Chironji Seeds, Nuts & Kernels
- Sweet & Acrid
- Cooling in action
- Nutritious (Seeds)
- Constipating (Chironji Seeds)
- Strength booster
- Laxative (Fruits only)
- Anti-diarrhea (Chironji gum)
The following constituents are found in chironji seeds:
|Oil, Fiber & Ash||3.5%|
Chemical constituents of chironji Oil
- Triglycerides (dipalmitoolein and triolein)
|Taste – RASA||Sweet|
|Main Quality – GUNA||Unctuousness, Heavy in digestion|
|Potency – VIRYA||Cool|
|Resultant – VIPAKA||Sweet|
|Impact (Body) – PRABHAVA||Strengthening action|
|Impact (Mind)||Calm the mind|
|Impact (Humors) – DOSHA KARMA||Pacifies VATA Dosha & PITA humor|
Indications listed below are mostly for chironji seeds, but when we have described part of chironji tree in brackets, then it implies to that part only.
- Nervine weakness
Lungs & Chest
- Cough (Chironji Fruits)
- Asthma (Chironji Fruits)
- Inter costal pain (Chironji gum)
Heart & Blood vessels
- Cardiac weakness
- Heart failure with reduced ejection fraction
Liver & Abdomen
- Excessive thirst
- Irregular bowel movements
- Constipation (Fruits)
- Diarrhea (Chironji gum)
Kidney & Bladder
- Urinary troubles
- Burning sensation in urine
Skin & Hairs
- Urticaria or Skin rashes
- Dry Skin (local application of seed paste)
- Chronic fever
- Debility after chronic disease
- Male infertility
Chironji Benefits & Uses
Chironji seeds, kernals, fruit, roots, oil and gum are used for health benefits. Traditionally, these are used in herbal medicines.
Chironji seeds, kernels and nuts
Chironji seeds are generally medically used in decreased seminal secretions, Oligospermia and skin diseases. The detail of these benefits and uses is as under:
Chironji seeds are used in home remedies for glowing skin, acne, blemishes and dark spots. You can apply seed’s paste on the skin to get rid of these problems.
Chironji seeds are also used in beauty products and facial masks. Some of them are:
Chironji Seed face pack 1
- Take chironji seeds, crush them and mix with milk to make paste.
- You can apply this facial pack for glowing skin.
You can also use this face pack for acne and blemishes.
Chironji Seed face pack 2
|Chironji Seed powder||5 grams|
|Turmeric Powder – Haldi Churna||2 grams|
|Cow’s Milk||For making paste|
Mix all ingredients and make a paste by adding cow’s milk. Apply on the skin and wash after 30 minutes. This face pack is beneficial for glowing skin, blemishes and painful acne.
Skin Diseases (Itching, eczema & burning sensation)
Chironji kernels are used in folklore medicines for making ointments for skin diseases. It reduces itching and burning sensation symptoms that occur due to various skin diseases.
Neuralgic headache & fainting
Chironji kernels are beneficial in neuralgic headache and fainting. Kernels are crushed and boiled in milk. The milk with kernels is advised to drink twice a day for patients suffering from neuralgic headache and fainting.
Atopic dermatitis or weeping eczema
The powder of chironji kernels and borax are used for weeping eczema. It cures this problem within 4 to 7 days.
- Take 100 grams chironji kernel powder and 15 grams borax.
- Mix both ingredients in rose water.
Apply it on affected part once a day.
Chewing 20 grams chironji kernels helps to cure Urticaria. The remedy may take one to 3 months for curing Urticaria.
However, chironji contains 59 percent fat, but it is a vegetative healthy fat. Due to high fat content, you cannot take it more than 20 grams per day.
It is unctuousness and heavy in digestion, which can make you feel full abdomen for 6 to 12 hours. Due to this reason, it can be used to lose weight.
Taking chironji seeds with milk helps to quench excessive thirst.
Chironji nuts help to reduce fatigue and increases physical stamina. Sportsmen can use chironji nuts for improving their performance.
Chironji kernels have similar property as almonds have. Chironji acts as brain tonic and provides a positive energy to the mind.
Burning sensation, Acidity & Heartburn
Chironji has cooling effect in the body. It helps in burning sensation, acidity and heartburn.
Impotence & Oligospermia
Chironji is traditionally advised to taken with milk to increase count and male performance in cases of infertility and impotence.
Intercostal pain or Intercostal Neuralgia
In ayurveda and Unani medicine, chironji gum is used for inter-costal neuralgia or chest wall pain. The pain occurs due to irritation or compression of intercostal nerves. Chironji gum soothes nerves and gives relief from pain.
The adjuvant used for inter-costal pain is goat’s milk.
Chironji gum is beneficial for rheumatic pain. Milk is used as adjuvant for chironji gum. It is a famous remedy in Andhra Pradesh, India. Traditionally, many people are using this remedy for getting relief from rheumatic pain.
- Chironji gum is collected from the bark of chironji tree. It is used along with buttermilk for treating diarrhea.
- Dried leaves of chironji plant are helpful in diarrhea and loose stools.
- Chironji root powder with yogurt is beneficial for the diarrhea.
The steam distillation method is used to extract the oil from chironji seeds. Chironji oil has many potent medicinal properties and it is used in following health conditions:
Chironji oil is used in inflammation and swelling of tongue. It reduces pain, burning sensation and inflammation of soft tissues.
Prickly heat occurs due to obstruction of the sweat glands or ducts during high humidity and heat. Chironji oil is used on skin to remove blockage and obstruction of sweat ducts. It can be used by mixing it with coconut oil.
Chironji oil for blemishes
You can use chironji oil to get rid of blemishes, itching, rashes and other skin related problems.
For blemishes, mix chironji oil with almond oil in equal quantity and apply on face before bedtime every day.
Depression and Stress
|Chironji oil||10 drops|
|Lavender oil||5 drops|
|Olive oil or Coconut oil||10 ml|
Olive oil or coconut oil are used as base of chironji oil. Mix all ingredients listed above in table and do a gentle head massage. Massage with chironji oil helps in reducing stress and calms the mind.
Rheumatic pain (massage oil)
|Chironji oil||5 ml|
|Peppermint oil||5 ml|
|Turmeric oil||2 ml|
|Sesame oil||100 ml|
Mix these four oils in ratio provided in above table. This chironji massage oil is effective in reducing rheumatic pain, joint swelling, inflammation and tenderness.
Glandular Swelling of neck
Chironji oil is beneficial in glandular swelling of neck. You can apply this oil twice a day for maximum benefits.
Loss of libido
Add a few drops of Chironji oil in milk and drink it 2 hours before bedtime. It improves libido and acts as an excellent aphrodisiac.
Massage oil for aphrodisiac action
|Chironji Oil||5 ml|
|Cinnamon Oil||2 ml|
|Ylang Ylang Essential Oil||1 ml|
|Olive Oil||100 ml|
Mix the oils in given ratio and apply it 30 minutes before bedtime. It improves stamina, time and helps in impotency.
Chironji oil application reduces pain due to spider bite and it reduces the toxic effect on the body. Depending on the species, spider bite can result in transient pain, gangrene and fatal neurotoxicity. Immediate application of chironji oil prevents all these effects of spider bite.
Local application of chironji oil helps for quick healing of wounds. It is used with honey.
|Chironji oil||1 tsp.|
Mix both ingredients well and apply on wounds. This mixture also works as anti-septic and boosts quick healing process.
Brain & Cardio tonic
Chironji leaves are used to enhance and correct cardiac functions. You can also use chironji seeds for supporting brain and heart if you cannot get chironji leaves.
Herbal powder prepared from chironji leaves is beneficial for boosting wound healing. Yu can take 3 grams powder with warm water if your wounds are not healing, especially, in case of diabetes mellitus.
Chironji leaves purify blood and remove the toxins from the blood. It is used in following way.
|Chironji leaves||10 grams|
- Take 10 grams chironji leaves and 250 ml water.
- Boil the mixture and simmer until about 125 ml water remains.
- Drink this chirinji water on empty stomach in early morning.
Seeds, nuts or kernels
3 grams to 20 grams per day
Decoction prepared from leaves
20 ml to 80 ml
Chironji Oil (oral use)
3 to 10 drops
500 mg to 1 gram
Chironji root powder
3 grams to 5 grams
Side effects or cautions
The common side effect of chironji seeds is loss of appetite. If you have a weak digestive system, you may experience this effect of chironji seeds.
However, chironji oil boosts digestion.
Another side effect is constipation with chironji kernels, but chironji raw fruits are helpful in constipation.
Excessive urination is observed with chironji oil. Patients taking chironji oil internally (orally) may experience frequent urination during night.
There is no known interaction with other medicines.
Research Studies & References
- Adaptogenic activity of extract of Buchanania lanzan