Amaltas – The Forgotten Tree

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Cassia fistula, generally known as Amaltas, Indian laburnum, golden shower is a flowering plant whose medicinal uses are rarely known. It is used as herbal medicine and additionally it is also the state flower of Kerala region in India. It is a beautiful tree, small in size and large leaves. It is also grown as an ornamental tree. It was used in ancient times for several medicinal purposes. In Ayurveda, this tree is known as aragvadha, which means ‘disease killer’. In the Vishu festival of Kerala, the flowers have ritual importance. Its blooming flowers are related to Lao New Year. Its importance however is not restricted only to the two, mentioned above.

Plant Description


Amaltas are medium-sized tropical deciduous plants. Its bark is grey in color, barely skinny and on maturing it becomes darkish brown. This plant’s flowers are beautiful and shiny yellow. Its leaves are gentle, busy, deciduous and ovate. The leaves fall periodically and are changed by new leaves solely. Its fruit is a legume with plenty of seeds and it has pungent odor. It is cylindrical in shape with flat circle seeds inside which are black in color when fully matured. When young, its fruit is green in color.

Medicinal Benefits of Amaltas

The whole tree, ranging from leaves to its fruits to bark, is used for treating different disorders. Cassia fistula has many medicinal properties like as astringent, cooling, tonic, laxative, ophthalmic, diuretic, carminative, anti-inflammatory, purgative and anthelmintic. They are listed below.

1. Skin Diseases

The leaves of this tree are used for various medicinal purposes. The foremost one is that it can provide effective relief from different skin disorders like pain, skin irritation and swelling. One can rub its leaves on the affected areas and it is effective too. In short both leaves and paste are effective. They both can be used to treat ringworm. Also it can be used, if one faces inflammation in hand or feet. Amaltas leaves can relieve pores.

2. Immunity Booster

The great antioxidant properties of its barks and fruits can boost our body’ s immune system.  Regularly having extracts from fruits and bark have positive effects on natural immune system.

3. Constipation

Cassia pulp is the pulp obtained from the tree. It is an effective laxative. It is used to treat constipation. Its pulp is mild and a harmless purgative. Just soak 50 grams of the pulp in the night and strain it. Mix this with 25 grams of sugar and the remedy is ready. Its leaves are also effective when taken with water.

4. Cold and Cough

It also offers aid by stimulating nasal discharge. It is used for operating noses, by inhaling the smoke of amaltas’ root after burning. It provides great relief instantly. The fruit of amaltas is used for cough. The fruit contains seed, which are flat circle in shape and mainly used for to treat cough. Its seed is light sweet in taste and eating that seed can give relaxation. Not only acute cough, but it can also treat chronic cough. The pulp helps in relaxation. Mixture of the pulp is to be taken with few teaspoons of ghee. It can cure chronic cough. Paste of the fruit with milk is used for getting instant relief from bronchitis.

5. Fever

The leaves of Amaltas are a proven medicine for treating fever. It is widely used as tonic for reduction of fever. One can prepare a decoction by boiling of leaves in water and the filter and cool it before having. The alcoholic extraction of amaltas plants is used to fight back blackwater fever.

6. Wounds

The herbs of amaltas are a great remedy for the treatment of wounds. The herbs play a quite a role in tissue regeneration. For dressing the wounds, juice extracted from leaves of amaltas is used.

7. Digestive and Intestinal Disorders

Gas problems and other disorders regarding digestion can be cured and relieved by the pulp of the fruit of amaltas. Pulp mixed with almond or linseed oil can be used for easing various bowel movement problems. Application of Amaltas pulp externally around the navel can help children suffering from flatulence.

Apart from the benefits mentioned above, its pods (fruit) are used against diabetes, dysentery, anthrax, blood poisoning and malaria. Furthermore, the amaltas can also be used for making perfumes. Apart from health and medical benefits, there are beauty benefits too. Benefits of amaltas is plenty. From root to bottom it can be fully used. But the irony is, it is rare nowadays.

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