Luffa cylindrica (Linn.) M. J. Roem.

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Synonym

L. aegyptiaca Mill. L. pentandra Roxb.

Family

Cucurbitaceae.

Habitat

Cultivated throughout greater parts of India.

English

Smooth Luffa, Spongegourd, sponge Cucumber.

Ayurvedic

Dhaamaargava, Mahaakoshtaki, Mahaajaalini, Raajakoshataki.

Siddha/Tamil

Mozhukupeerankai, Pikku.

Action

Plant—used against pharyngitis, rhinitis, mastitis, oedema, swellings and burns. Leaves—used for chronic bronchitis. Leaf juice is given for amenorrhoea. Flowers—used for treating migraine. Seeds—alcoholic extract exhibited 9.80% fungitoxic activity.

German Commission E included Luffa aegyptiaca among unapproved herbs. Preparations of Luffa sponge, used as a preventive for infections or cold, as a remedy for colds, nasal catarrh as well as sinusitis and suppuration of the sinus, have been negatively evaluated.

The saponins isolated from aerial parts are effective in controlling obesity, also the side-effects of steroids.

The oleanane saponins, lucyoside A-H (at least one component) is ...