Scientific name : Aegle marmelos,
Family : Rutaceae
Bael is also known as Bilva in Sanskrit language. This herb has great medicinal, spiritual and religious significance. Bilva fruits and Bilva leaves are considered sacred and used as offerings to the Hindu Gods like Lord Shiva. This is why it is also known as “Shiva druma” or the tree of Shiva in ancient scriptures.
Bilva is a spinous deciduous and aromatic tree with long, strong and axillary spines. This Bael tree grows up to 18mt in height and thickness of tree is about 3-4ft. Bael Leaves are 3-5 foliate, leaflets are ovate and have typical aroma. Bael Flowers are greenish white in color and sweet scented. Bael Fruits are large, woody, greyish yellow, 8-15 celled and have sweet gummy orange colored pulp. Bael Seeds are compressed, oblong and numerous found in aromatic pulp.
Bhe Acharya describes Bael as a sweet, cardiotonic, astringent, heavy and pitta balancing herb. It balances Kapha, diarrhea and jawars (fevers). It helps stimulate both appetite and improves digestive properties.
Acharya Charaka describes Bael with Shothahara (anti inflammatory), Arshoghna (useful in treatment of haemorrhoids) benefits.
Rasa Kasãya, Tikta
Guna Laghu, Ruksa
Karma : Vata-kapha hara, Grãhi, Dipana-Pacana
Bilva is reported to contain biologically important phytochemicals such as the volatile compounds limonene, β-phellandrene, p-cymene, linalool, α-cubebene, cineole, p- cymene, citronella, citral, β-cubebene, β-caryophyllene, α-humulene, caryophyllene oxide, humulene oxide, and hexadecanoic acid and coumarins such as aegeline, aegelenine, marmelin, furocoumarins, psoralen, o-isopentenyl halfordinol, and marmelosin. They also contain tartaric acid, linoleic acid, tannins, phlobatannins, flavon-3-ols, leucoanthocyanins, anthocyanins, and the flavonoid glycosides.