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21 Amazing Health Benefits Of Curry Leaves: Weight Loss, Infections, Diabetes And More

Curry leaves (Murraya koenigii) have a refreshing fragrance with a wide range of applications in both health and culinary. They are widely used as a taste enhancer and to treat conditions such as infections, cataract, diabetes, liver problems, heartburn and many more. They are also used in some ayurvedic concoctions.

Curry leaves are believed to be native to India and are widely found in tropical and subtropical regions, along with other countries such as China, Australia, Ceylon and Nigeria. The leaves of the curry plant have wide availability, the reason why they come at a lower price.

The other name of curry leaves is 'sweet neem' as they closely resemble the neem leaves and are also similar in taste.

Curry leaves are consumed either in the juice form or in a paste form. In the market, powdered form of curry leaves is available which can be added in soups, stews and curries. Some people also prefer to drink tea made from curry leaves.

This article will bring to you the numerous health benefits of curry leaves. Take a look.

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Health Benefits Of Curry Leaves

1. Improve digestion

Daily consumption of curry leaves not only help improve digestion, but also help in excretion. The antibacterial property and presence of antioxidants in the leaves may help improve digestion. Also, their cooling effect helps calm the stomach. [1]

2. Help with weight loss

A study has shown that neem leaves may help reduce weight gain, total cholesterol levels and triglyceride when taken at a dose of 300 mg/kg/day, along with a high-fat diet. Mahanimbine, an alkaloid in neem leaves is mainly responsible for the anti-obesity and lipid-lowering effect. [2]

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3. Treat urinary problems

A large number of antioxidants such as quercetin, catechin and naringin in curry leaves, may help tackle all the problems related to the urinary bladder. Drinking curry leaf juice with little cinnamon powder is an effective home remedy to treat urinary problems.

4. Manage diabetes

Curry leaves are a riches source of carbazole alkaloids such as Mahanimbine. This vital compound possesses an anti-hyperglycemic effect and is beneficial for the management of diabetes. Also, the two potent flavonoids in curry leaves; hesperidin and naringin may help manage glucose levels in type 2 diabetics. [3] Drinking curry leaves tea, adding them to your recipes or eating the fresh leaves daily on an empty stomach can be useful to control the blood sugar levels.

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5. Treat morning sickness

Morning sickness is common among pregnant women during the first trimester. Some studies say that adding curry leaves powder to lemon juice with a little jaggery and drinking the mixture twice a day can help treat morning sickness.

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6. Good for eyes

Curry leaves are enriched with vitamin A and are extremely beneficial for the eyes. In many studies, curry leaves juice has been used for the treatment of eye disorders such as cataract.

7. Treat inflammation

Curry leaves have anti-inflammatory properties due to the presence of four new carbazole alkaloids. These compounds may help reduce inflammatory conditions such as asthma or itching. Applying curry leaves paste or oil over inflamed skin can help reduce inflammation. [4]

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8. Skincare

Curry leaves help treat skin rashes, skin eruptions and boils. The antioxidants in the leaves may help prevent the risk of skin cancer by reducing free radicals in the body. A paste made of curry leaves and a pinch of turmeric may help soothe the skin and calm down the irritation. Curry leaves are often applied to bruises and eruptions on the skin for a quick cure.

9. Lower cholesterol

Curry leaves may help lower blood cholesterol levels in a person. Antioxidants in the leaves such as gallic acid, quercetin and catechin may help prevent the absorption of bad cholesterol, thus resulting in increasing the right amount of cholesterol in the body. Drinking fresh curry leaf juice daily helps to keep a check on weight and also avoid bad cholesterol buildup. Besides, curry leaves also help prevent the risk of heart stroke and atherosclerosis. [5]

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10. Beneficial for anaemia

Kari patta is packed with a large amount of iron and folic acid. The easiest way to get the beneficial effect of curry leaves is by soaking a handful of both curry leaves and methi seeds overnight, along with a half cup of yoghurt and having it in the morning. Curry leaves also help in the absorption of iron through other sources. [6]

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11. Have cancer-preventive property

Certain carbazole alkaloids in curry leaves have a strong effect on cancer cells, specifically colorectal cancer, breast cancer, leukaemia, and prostate cancer. Curry leaves are a potent source of proteasome inhibitors that leads to the death of cancer-inducing cells. [7]

12. Treat kidney problems

Curry leaves are widely used as nephroprotective agents to treat kidney problems, especially among diabetics. High glucose levels may cause a range of kidney problems, however, the antioxidants in the leaves may help manage diabetes-related kidney complications, help in kidney regeneration and treat pain related to renal impairments. [8]

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13. Treat heartburn

Curry leaves may help treat heartburn due to their calming effect. They help cleanse the harmful toxins from the body and in turn, treats heartburn. Some studies, however, say to avoid the leaves for people with GERD. [9]

14. Promote hair growth

Curry leaves may help speed the hair growth and maintain the natural colour of your hair. The leaves also make the hair bouncy, cures dandruff and treat damaged hair. They also help fortify thin hair and strengthens them from its roots. Apart from consuming curry leaves as tea, you can also apply the paste of curry leaves on your scalp to get rid of dandruff.

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15. Alleviate diarrhoea

Curry leaves contain carbazole alkaloid that has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. In the case of an upset stomach, the leaves may help treat diarrhoea. Make a cup of tea by soaking a few curry leaves in it. Drink this tea 2-3 times a day to curb diarrhoea.

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16. Avert skin infections

Curry leaves have antioxidative, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties. They may help treat skin infections like pimples or acne. Incorporate curry leaves in daily routine can work wonders for your skin.

17. Rich in antioxidants

Curry leaves contain a powerful chemical compound called carbazole alkaloid, which is a strong antioxidant. Other antioxidants in curry leaves include quercetin (0.350 mg/g DW), epicatechin (0.678 mg/g DW), catechin (0.325 mg/g DW), naringin (0.203 mg/g DW) and myricetin (0.703 mg/g DW). [10]

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18. Heal wounds and burns

Curry leaves contain a compound mahanimbicine in them. This compound helps in wound healing by accelerating the development of the cell. Boiled leaves left over after sieving the tea can make a wound-healing paste for minor cuts, wounds, and burns.

19. Ease constipation

Curry leaves have a mild laxative property that may help ease constipation. They are great to bulk the stool, promote its movement in the intestine and thus, treat the condition. You can add dry curry leaves to buttermilk and drink on an empty stomach to ease constipation.

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20. Reduce stress

The oil extracted from the leaves of curry leaves are great to be used for aromatherapy due to the presence of compound linalool (32.83%). The aroma of the leaves may help soothe the body and relieve stress. The tea prepared from curry leaves can also help relax and calm down. [11]

21. Improve memory and recall.

Studies have shown that consuming curry leaves regularly, either in food or in the form of tea, can help boost the memory and ability to recall details. Some studies also say that curry leaves can help reverse amnesia and cure Alzheimer's disease. [12]

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How To Make Curry Leaves Tea

Ingredients

  • One cup of water
  • 30-45 curry leaves

Method

  • Boil the water in a saucepan and then take it off the heat.
  • Steep curry leaves in this hot water for a couple of hours until the water changes its colour.
  • Strain out the leaves and reheat the tea if it has become cold.
  • Add a spoon of honey and a dash of lemon juice for taste (optional).