Ayurveda has well-documented the art of using herbs for multiple purposes. The medicinal properties of plants depend on the presence of certain mint) has a plethora of health benefits that include its ability to improve skin, detoxify the body, defend against cough and cold, ease pain, relieve stress, and optimize .present in them. Amongst them, Indian borage (also known as Mexican
What is Indian Borage (Mexican Mint)?
If you happen to stumble across a small green perennial plant in Africa that smells like Cuban oregano, there’s a good chance you’ve found Indian borage, which is also known by other names, such as Mexican Mint, Spanish thyme, country borage, and others. Although it is native to parts of southern and eastern Africa, the demand for this beneficial herb has caused cultivation to spread to other tropical areas around the world with suitable growing conditions. The plant, whose scientific name is Plectranthus amboinicus, is very hardy and grows quickly, requires little water, and can even grow in colder conditions if the weather changes dramatically.
Indian Borage Uses
The leaves of Indian borage are the most sought-after parts of this plant. Why?
- They are ideal for flavoring meat and vegetable dishes, while the ground up dried leaves can be added to soups, stews, and other meals as an herb.
- While essential oils can be extracted from the leaves, they are more commonly used in full or powdered form and can be eaten normally or can be rubbed topically on the skin for some of its effects.
- Due to the presence of potent phenolics such as rosmarinic acid and caffeic acid, researchers have suggested that it has the potential to be used in nutraceuticals.
Speaking of medicinal uses, let’s take a closer look at some of the health benefits of Indian borage.
|Serving Size :|
|Total lipid (fat) [g]||0.7|
|Carbohydrate, by difference [g]||3.06|
|Calcium, Ca [mg]||93|
|Iron, Fe [mg]||3.3|
|Magnesium, Mg [mg]||52|
|Phosphorus, P [mg]||53|
|Potassium, K [mg]||470|
|Sodium, Na [mg]||80|
|Zinc, Zn [mg]||0.2|
|Copper, Cu [mg]||0.13|
|Manganese, Mn [mg]||0.35|
|Selenium, Se [µg]||0.9|
|Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid [mg]||35|
|Pantothenic acid [mg]||0.04|
|Vitamin B-6 [mg]||0.08|
|Folate, total [µg]||13|
|Folate, food [µg]||13|
|Folate, DFE [µg]||13|
|Vitamin A, RAE [µg]||210|
|Vitamin A, IU [IU]||4200|
|Fatty acids, total saturated [g]||0.17|
|Fatty acids, total monounsaturated [g]||0.21|
|Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated [g]||0.11|
|Sources include : USDA|
Health Benefits of Indian Borage (Mexican Mint)
Health benefits of Indian borage (Mexican mint) include the following:
Relieves Respiratory Issues
If you are suffering from a cold, a sore throat, tea from the leaves. The compounds contained in the herb act as a powerful to eliminate mucus and phlegm from your tracts and clear out your sinuses. This can also help to boost your immune system., a stuffy nose, or painful sinuses, you can chew on the leaves of Indian borage or brew
One of the most popular uses of Indian borage is as an effective skin treatment. From bug bites and stings to eczema and psoriasis, Indian borage possesses the anti- compounds that can quickly reduce redness and swelling, while also eliminating itchiness and irritation. Also, borage oil enhances skin and stimulates skin cell activity. The presence of gamma-linoleic acid aids in treating skin disorders such as allergies, , inflammation, and irritation.
If you do choose to extract the essential oil from the leaves of Indian borage, the volatile compounds in that extract include omega-6 fatty acids, such as gamma-linolenic acid. This specific fatty acid has been linked to reducing arthritis by increasing joint regeneration; this can also be important for athletes or those with osteoporosis who have regular impact stress on their joints and bones.
Vitamin C and A
The high content of ascorbic acid found in the herb makes it important as an immune system booster, while and vitamin A content may help improve vision, reducing oxidative stress in the eyes, and even possibly preventing macular degeneration.
Reduces Stress and Anxiety
Although one of the lesser-known benefits of Indian borage, some of the organic compounds and minerals are mildly sedative in nature. In folk medicine, it has been used as an herbal remedy, particularly in tea form – to those with high anxiety or chronic stress to induce relaxation, peace of mind, and healthy, restful sleep.
Indian borage acts as a very effective diuretic, which means that it can rid the body of toxins by stimulating urination; this also reduces the amount of excess salt, fat, and water in the body, keeping the kidneys and lymphatic system functioning smoothly.
Relieves from Fever
If you are suffering from a cold or flu, a common symptom is a fever. Indian borage is considered to be sudorific, meaning that it stimulates sweating, which also helps to clear out toxins through the skin and speed the recovery process. Moreover, borage is also used in Asia and South America to treat cholera and meningitis. It is also used to treat sensory disorders associated with the ears and eyes.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
In folk medicine, Indian borage was commonly used to settle upset stomachs and relieve irritable bowel syndrome by regulating digestion and soothing stomach inflammation. Brewing tea from the leaves of Indian borage is still considered an effective way to take advantage of this health benefit.
Word of caution: The bristly leaves and stems may cause mild contact dermatitis to people with sensitive skin, but generally, there is no allergenic potential in Indian borage. Due to its potent mixture of compounds and chemicals, however, pregnant and breastfeeding mothers are discouraged from using the herb.