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Majuphal: Uses, Benefits, Precautions & More!

By Dr Anuja Bodhare +2 more

Introduction: 

Majuphal is a type of outgrowth that forms on the young twigs of dyer’s oak tree, Quercus infectoria. It is generally called Oak galls or Gall nut in English. It is formed because of the deposition of eggs of a type of gall wasp.

The female wasp punctures the bark of twigs and lays the eggs inside the shoot. This process causes a vegetative outgrowth to form around the larva that develops from the eggs, resulting in the development of galls. The galls are an excellent ingredient of various herbal remedies. The galls continue to grow until the eggs hatch and larvae reach maturity. Preferably, the galls must be collected and dried before the insect emerges.1 

Majuphal ayurvedic herb

Did you know?

  • Majuphal has been used in traditional medicine to treat various gastrointestinal disorders. source: PubMed
  • The use of Majuphal has been reported to have a positive effect on blood glucose levels in diabetic patients. source: NCBI
  • Majuphal has been used in traditional medicine to treat respiratory conditions such as cough and asthma. source: PubMed
  • Majuphal has been found to have the potential in treating dental issues like toothache and gum infections. source: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov 
  • Majuphal extract has shown potential in treating skin conditions like acne and eczema. source: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov 

Properties of Majuphal:  

In Asian countries, Majuphal has been a well-known plant product for its medicinal value to treat various inflammatory diseases and infections since ancient times.2 Some of the beneficial properties of Majuphal are as follows:  

  • It may show antioxidant activity.2  
  • It may have anti-parasitic property.3  
  • It may have anti-Candida activity.4  
  • It may show anti-diabetes effect.5  
  • It may exhibit anaesthetic properties.6  
  • It may show blood pressure lowering activity.6
  • It may have beneficial effects on bone metabolism and the central nervous system.6  

Potential Uses of Majuphal:  

Potential Uses of Majuphal for Treating Wounds and Gingivitis:  

Majuphal may have an excellent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant property that might make it a good candidate to treat wounds due to bacterial infections. It can be used as a dental powder, to treat toothache and gingivitis.

The extract from the Majuphal (oak galls) has been used for centuries as an astringent to treat wounds.2  The studies available seem insufficient to validate these claims, therefore consult an ayurvedic physician before taking majuphal for it’s benefit for wounds.

Potential Uses of Majuphal for Treating Parasitic Infections:  

Majuphal may have effective against single or multi-drug resistant parasitic infections caused due to parasites like Leishmania major, Blastocystis spp, and Entamoeba histolytica. The extract of Majuphal, when applied to the affected site, significantly reduces cutaneous infections like leishmaniasis, amoebiasis, and blastocystis.3  You should consult a doctor for prescription and guidance.

Potential Uses of Majuphal in Treating Candida Infections:  

Candidiasis is one of the significant life-threatening infections in women caused due to a yeast named Candida.

Majuphal may help in many parts of the world for postpartum care and treatment of various infections caused due to the Albicans and non-Albicans species of Candida, which are the emerging causes of candidiasis. According to a study, Majuphal extract is effective against various bacterial and fungal infections.4  Further studies are needed to establish the claim of the effect of majuphal for this effect against candidiasis and postpartum care. It is best to consult a doctor.

Potential Uses of Majuphal for Managing Diabetes:  

The root extracts from Quercus infectoria or the dyer’s oak have been proven to have anti-diabetic effects as per the studies conducted in the laboratory.

The extract was found to induce insulin production and release, which reduced the blood sugar levels in diabetic rats. Further investigations may be necessary before its use in humans, but this is one of the ayurvedic medicines currently in research.5

Though there are studies showing the benefits of majuphal in various conditions, these are insufficient. There is a need for further studies to establish the true extent of the benefits of majuphal on human health. Furthermore, every person may respond differently to these herbs. Therefore, it is important to consult a doctor before using majuphal for any medical condition.

Also Read: Early Signs & Symptoms of Diabetes in Men

How to Use Majuphal? 

Majuphal or the oak galls can be either cooked, dried or roasted and powdered.7  

  • Method1: The Majuphal seeds could be cooked and used. But they must be leached out of tannins by washing them thoroughly in running water. Leaching whole seeds take longer as they have to be placed in a cloth bag and placed in a stream.  
  • Method 2: The seeds are dried under the sun and powdered to be added as thickening agents in stews or could be used to make bread. Leaching out tannins from the powder is faster.
  • Method 3: The roasted form of seeds is also used as a substitute for coffee.7  

You must consult a qualified doctor before taking any herbal supplements. Do not discontinue or replace an ongoing treatment of modern medicine with an ayurvedic/herbal preparation without consulting a qualified doctor.  

In a study I came across, researchers investigated the effects of Oak Gall extract on women facing vaginal relaxation. The findings revealed that using a topical gel containing Oak Gall extract may help with various issues, including achieving increased vaginal tightness, enhanced vaginal lubrication, and reduced vaginal dryness.

Dr. Siddharth Gupta, B.A.M.S, M.D (Ayu)

Also Read: Arogyavardhini Vati – Uses, Benefits & Side Effects

Precautions to Take With Majuphal:  

Care must be taken while harvesting the galls at the right time to retain the soft inner tissue with deep greenish-yellow colour and a very astringent taste followed by a sweet aftertaste.1 

No information is available on precautions to be followed while using Majuphal.  However, you must consume majuphal as per advise of your doctor only never try to self-medicate. He will guide you for suitable form and dose.

Based on my readings of Unani and integrative medicine, I have seen that Oak Gall might have potential use in the management of intertrigo, impetigo, eczema, haemorrhages, chronic diarrhoea, and dysentery.

Dr. Rajeev Singh, BAMS

Also Read: Nutmeg – Uses, Benefits, Side Effects & Precautions

Interactions with Other Drugs:

There is a lack of sufficient data regarding the interaction of majuphal with any other drugs. Therefore, consult a doctor before taking it, especially if you are on medication and/or are receiving treatment for any condition.

Based on my understanding, I have learned that Oak Gall is known for its powerful astringent and styptic properties, primarily due to its tannin content. This might make it useful in fending off infections of the oral cavity.

Dr. Smita barode, B.A.M.S, M.S.

Frequently Asked Questions: 

How is Majuphal useful in pregnancy? 

Majuphal extract is a beneficial medication for postpartum care. It is one of the commonly used remedies to fight the bacterial or fungal infections that may occur in women after delivery.4  However, the postpartum care may need medical supervision and diagnosis. Consult a qualified doctor for the treatment of any such conditions.

Can Majuphal be used to treat breast wounds? 

Yes, Majuphal’s powder can be mixed with water and applied to the breast to treat wounds.6  However, more human studies are needed to estimate the extent to which it will be beneficial for human health. It is better to consult a doctor for advice.

What are some of the uses of Majuphal in treating diseases of the perianal area? 

Majuphal powder could be mixed with water to treat haemorrhoids. It can be combined with the powdered rind of pomegranate to manage anal fissures.6  These activities, however, are yet to be proved in humans. Thus talk to your ayurvedic physician before using anything on your own.

What are the other vernacular names of majuphal?

Majuphal is known by different vernacular names: Majuphala, (Bengali); Quzat (Arabic); Maayaaphala (Ayurvedic); Gall Nut, Oak Galls, Magic Nuts, (English); Muphal (Hindi); Gala (Latin);Mazu (Persian); Mashikai (Tamil); Machikaya (Telgu); and Mazu (Urdu)1

Also Read: Ber Fruit – Uses, Benefits, Side Effects & Precautions

References: 

1. (PDF) Mazu (Quercus infectoria): An Overview [Internet]. [cited 2022 Feb 3]. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/215519175_Mazu_Quercus_infectoria_An_Overview 

2. Umachigi S, Jayaveera K, Ashok Kumar C, Kumar G, Vrushabendra swamy B, Kishore Kumar D. Studies on Wound Healing Properties of Quercus infectoria. Tropical Journal of Pharmaceutical Research [Internet]. 2008 [cited 2022 Feb 3];7(1):913. Available from: http://www.tjpr.org 

3. Nik Mat Zin NNI, Wan Mohd Rahimi WNA, Bakar NA. A Review of Quercus infectoria (Olivier) Galls as a Resource for Anti-parasitic Agents: In Vitro and In Vivo Studies. The Malaysian Journal of Medical Sciences : MJMS [Internet]. 2019 [cited 2022 Feb 3];26(6):19. Available from: /pmc/articles/PMC6939732/ 

4. Baharuddin N, Abdullah H, Abdul Wahab WN. Anti-Candida activity of Quercus infectoria gall extracts against Candida species. Journal of Pharmacy & Bioallied Sciences [Internet]. 2015 Jan 1 [cited 2022 Feb 3];7(1):15. Available from: /pmc/articles/PMC4333621/ 

5. Anti-diabetic Activity of Roots of Quercus Infectoria Olivier in Alloxan Induced Diabetic Rats | International Journal Of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research [Internet]. [cited 2022 Feb 3]. Available from: https://ijpsr.com/bft-article/anti-diabetic-activity-of-roots-of-quercus-infectoria-olivier-in-alloxan-induced-diabetic-rats/?view=fulltext  

6. (PDF) Ethnopharmacology of Quercus infectoria Galls: A Review [Internet]. [cited 2022 Feb 3]. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/316999394_Ethnopharmacology_of_Quercus_infectoria_Galls_A_Review  

7. Plants For A Future – Q infectoria [Internet]. [cited 2022 Feb 7]. Available from: https://pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Quercus+infectoria  

Also Read: Rosemary – Uses, Benefits, Side Effects & Precautions

Disclaimer:

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