The guggul tree can be found from northern Africa to central Asia, but is
generally confined to northern India. Indian bdellium tree is a small armed tree with spine scent
branches and ash - coloured rough bark, peeling off in flakes. The leaves are alternate, simple, smooth and shiny. The leaves are small similar to those of
neem. The flowers are unisexual or bisexual, present as solitaries or in clusters. The flowers are red and the fruit is oval in shape and pulpy in
nature. Flowering - fruiting period is from January to May
The gum resin is obtained by making incisions in the bark and is collected during the winter
season. The resin is pale yellow, brown or dull green in colour. It has a bitter, aromatic taste and balsamic odour.
Indian bdellium tree Gum contains volatile oil 7 to 17 %, resin 25 to 40 %, gum 57 to 61 % and 3 to 4 % impurities. Volatile oil contains cuminic
aldehyde, eugenol, metacresol, pinene, limonene, dipentene and two
sesquiterpenes. Resin contains three free resin acids 0, 13 and y commiphoric acids, esters of another resin acid and two phenolic resins. The
major chemical constituents are
Lignans: Guggullignan-I and guggullignan-IP
Lipids: Long chain aliphatic tetrols: octadecan-1,2,3,4-tetrol, eicosan-l ,2,3,4-tetrol and nonadecan-l,2,3,4-tetrol.
Terpenes and phenylpropanoids: Cembrene-A and mukulol4 were isolated
from gum resin. An essential oil, prepared by the steam distillation of the gum resin, contains myrcene and eugenol.
Sterols : Z-guggulsterone, E-guggulsterone, guggulsterol I, II and III and Sitosterol.
Indian bdellium tree mainly found in arid rocky tracks of Rajasthan, Mysore, Saurashtra - Kutchh (Gujarat) ,
Aassam, Silhat, Sindh and Baluchistan, Singapore, Arabastan and Africa. It grows best in arid and semi-arid climates,
in sandy to silt loam soils, and is usually resistant to drought and salinity. The plant can also be found growing at altitudes of up to 600 to 1100
meters (1968.5 to 3608.9 feet) above sea level, as well as in temperatures ranging from 22 to 39°C.
It is propagated by stem - cuttings and seeds. When the bdellium
tree reaches maturity, it is tapped from the main stem. Tapping is usually takes place during the
winter season in the months of December to February period. It is suitable for tapping when the plant reaches 7.5 cm in diameter.The resin ducts are
located in the bark near the cambial layer. Deep circular incisions are made below the plant, allowing the resin to ooze out and slowly solidify. The color
of the gum is generally a yellowish white and its texture is latex-like.
The collection of the resin can be manual or can be done with a spear, and is done at an interval of
10 to 15 days. The collected gum is graded according to its purity.
The National Medicinal Plants Board has sanctioned conservation and plantation of guggal over 4,000 hectares of forest land in Gujarat and Rajasthan.
Indian bdellium as Medicinal Gum
Indian bdellium Guggul is considered useful in many disease
such as relief from ulcers, obesity, epilepsy, and rheumatoid arthritis. Guggul shows excellent anti-inflammatory effects, acts as a good pain reliever, and
is helpful in curbing wounds and infections. The guggul extract also act
as an effective nerve tonic and stimulate nervous system in general enhancing the functionality of the brain.
Guggul is also helpful in relieving from constipation. Improvement of the blood circulation, relief from high
Guggul for weight loss : Guggul possesses strong disinfecting properties and is a weight loss and fat burning
agent in Obesity that increases various diseases.
Guggul helps to lower cholesterol: It has been shown to reduce total cholesterol up
to 30% in 3 months. Guggul’s cholesterol regulating properties are especially important in reducing LDL by 35% and increasing HDL by
20% in 12 weeks. Guggul decreases platelet stickiness and reduces risk of Heart Disease
and Stroke . It lowers elevated serum cholesterol and triglycerides, while
maintaining or improving the HDL to LDL ratio.
Guggul helps in arthritic pains: Guggul is useful in arthritic pains
and helps in reversing the degenerative changes that occur in joints and bones in Knee Arthritis.
The herb is widely used in diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, gout, osteoarthritis, sciatica, paralysis, hemiplegia, lymphadenopathy, etc.
Guggul helps in skin diseases: Since it acts as a blood purifier, it is widely used in skin diseases. Guggul helps in promoting the production of red blood corpuscles
(RBC) and improving the action of white blood corpuscles (WBC).
Guggul helps in digestive system: It helps in strengthening
the digestive system, easy secretion of digestive juices, works as an appetizer and avoids indigestion and constipation.
It is beneficial in hemorrhoids and colitis and relieves from hyperacidity and belching.
Guggul for treating leprosy: Guggul helps in treating leprosy and eczema. Its extract also helps in fighting tumors.
Guggul for Thyroid: Guggul improves thyroid function, increases fat-burning activity of the body, and increases thermogenesis or heat production
As a wash: Guggul is good for spongy gums, ulcerated throat and aphthous stomatitis, and the tincture is also applied to foul and indolentulcers