Sweet flag (Acorus calamus) is a perennial herb with immense medicinal value. It is a semi-aquatic herb with distinctive aromatic underground stems, which has numerous medical properties. The dried rhizome of the plant contains a yellow odorous oil. It is an important ingredient in many Ayurvedic medicines, not just for babies, but also for adults. Hippocrates of Kos, the Father of Modern Medicine, and other medical practitioners around the world have written about the various benefits of sweet flag. Here are 10 common medical uses of sweet flag.
1. Cures Stomach Disorders
Sweet flag provides instant relief from stomach problems, and clears a distended and uncomfortable stomach. It also relieves headaches arising from weak digestion and increases appetite. The sweet flag root is burnt, ground as a paste in coconut oil and applied on the baby’s stomach to ease pain. It is also useful in treating anorexia, gastritis and gastric ulcers.
2. Controls Dysentery And Diarrhea
Since ancient days, sweet flag is extremely effective in curing stomach disorders among children. It is an important ingredient in the treatment of chronic diarrhea and dysentery. Use this herb as an internal infusion.
3. Treats Asthma
Sweet flag is effective in the treatment of asthma. It clears phlegm from the bronchial passage. This herbal medicine is roasted and powdered. Mix 2 grams of it with honey and consume it orally.
4. Cures Common Cold
Sweet flag is a powerful remedy for infants with common cold. Take a pinch of sweet flag with honey for instant relief. You can also combine the powder with breast milk by applying the paste on the nipples of the feeding mother.
5. Eases Whooping Cough
A pinch of roasted sweet flag powder mixed with honey arrests severe bouts of cough, as it is an anti-spasmodic. Administer the same dosage to infants suffering from whooping cough.
6. Removes Intestinal Worms
Sweet flag is very effective to rid children of intestinal worms. Taking a pinch of the powder orally in the morning and evening cleanses the intestines.
7. Cures Oral Diseases
Rub a small piece of sweet flag on the tongue to cure mouth ulcers, bad odors, coating and rawness of tongue caused by inflammation. Ayurveda considers it an anesthetic for toothache.
8. Rejuvenates Nerves
In Ayurveda, sweet flag is an important herb that rejuvenates the brain and the nervous system. It should be used sparingly in limited doses and in diluted form, as it is highly potent.
9. Heals Insect Bites
Sweet flag acts as an antidote for several insect bite poisons. Apply its paste externally on the affected area to reduce inflammation. Its vapor, especially from the roots, repels many insects and bugs.
10. Treats Stammering
Sweet flag relieves stammering. Children who stammer should take a pinch of the powder in the morning and evening.
Warning: Sweet flag is extremely powerful and should not be used directly as an essential oil. Mix or dilute it in carrier oils and use sparingly.
Sweet flag has been extensively used in Indian medicine systems like Ayurveda and Siddha for thousands of years. In Western medicine too, many practitioners have known about its benefits and have used it successfully. In recent years, awareness about the herb has resulted in more people using it as a remedy for treating childhood diseases.