Atibala, Kanghi, Kakhi, Kakhiya, Petari, Country Mallow, Flowering Maples,
Chinese Bell-flowers, Indian mallow, Kanghi, Kakahi, Kakahiya are few
common names of plant Abutilon indicum. It is a medicinal plant with showy
golden-yellow flowers and used in Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani system of medicine for preparation of many medicines. Traditionally, all parts of plant
are used for medicinal purpose.
Atibala is used for medicinal purpose since ancient times. For medicinal
purpose, all parts of plant (leaves, roots, seeds) are used. Atibala is
aphrodisiac and nervine tonic. It is diuretic,
anti-inflammatory and anti-hemorrhagic. Atibala is used in inflammation,
piles, gonorrhea, impotence, low libido, infertility, sperm loss, debility and
as an immune stimulant.
Acharya Charak gave extract of whole plant for fever, weakness and joint
problems. It was used as Rasayan to promote health and keep diseases
at bay. It treats wounds, ulcers and vaginal infections.
Root and bark are used as aphrodisiac, anti-diabetic, nervine
tonic, and diuretic. They have diuretic and anthelmintic
properties. The roots reduces fever, nerves weakness and helps in urinary
problems. They are given for neurological disorders (hemiplegia, facial
paralysis, sciatica) and debility.
Leaves are astringent and stop Bleeding and are helpful in bleeding
piles, diarrhea etc.
Seeds are very nutritive and strengthening. They are
aphrodisiac, emollient and demulcent. They contain about 30 %
protein of good quality. They are used for treating impotency, loss of
semen (spermatorrhoea) and low libido. The seeds are also used in urinary
disorders, as a laxative in piles and in the treatment of cough.
Plant Description: Abutilon indicum, is a perennial plant with very
finely downy branches. It is hairy herb or under-shrub reaching upto a height of
The leaves of plant are simple, alternate, stipulated, 1.9—5 cm long,
broadly ovate, very cordate at base, acute, irregularly and coarsely dentate.
Petioles are very long, 2.5—7.5 cm.
Flowers are regular, bisexual, orange yellow, solitary and
axillary and of 2.5 cm diameter. Sepals are 5, fused into a 5-lobed, cup-shaped
calyx. Lobes are shallow, apiculate. Petals 5, convolute, adnate to stamen-tube;
stamens numerous, fused into a tube.
Ovary is superior, 10-carpellary. style pass through the stamen-tube
and dividing into 5 branches each terminating in a capitate stigma. Seeds
Tap roots are fairly long with a number of lateral branches, 1.5-2 cm
in diameter, light brown, outer surface smooth with dot like lenticels, bark
thin and can be easily peeled off, odour, feeble, taste, astringent and bitter.
The botanical name of Atibala / Indian mallow is Abutilon indicum. It belongs
to plant family Malvaceae.
Malvaceae includes herbs, shrubs, or less often trees. It
consists of about 82 genera, 9 subfamilies and more than 1,500 species,
distributed more abundantly in warm and temperate regions. There are about 22
genera and 125 species of this family in India.
Plants of the family bears flowers which are often showy and
beautiful. They mostly have five petals and sepals and a filament.
Most of the plants belonging to this family contain free mucilage, and,
generally speaking, have emollient, laxative, anti-bilious, and antiscorbutic
properties. Some members yield volatile oils which are stimulant, diaphoretic,
and diuretic. The seeds are often oleaginous. Very few species have toxic
Some of the economically important plants belonging to
Malvaceae are, The cotton plant (Gossypiurn sp.), Corchorus (Jute),
Hibiscus, Okra (A. esculentus), Bombax (Silk cotton tree), Marshmallow (Althaea
ojficinalis Linn.) and Sida.
Below is given taxonomical classification of plant.
- Kingdom: Plantae – Plants
- Subkingdom: Tracheobionta (Vascular plants)
- Superdivision: Spermatophyta (Seed plants)
- Division: Magnoliophyta (Flowering plants)
- Class: Magnoliopsida (Dicotyledons)
- Subclass: Dilleniidae
- Order: Malvales
- Family: Malvaceae – Mallow family
- Genus: Abutilon Mill. – Indian mallow
- Species: Abutilon indicum (L.)
- Abutilon asiaticum W.&A.
- Sida indica Linn.
- Part(s) used for medicinal purpose: Fruit, leaves, seed and roots
- Plant type / Growth Habit: Shrub Subshrub
- Duration: Perennial
- Distribution: Hotter parts of India, in the sub-Himalayan tract and other hills up to 1200 m.
- Habitat: Warm, temperate regions, as a common weed on road sides and other waste places in plains and hills.
- Group: Dicot
- Unani: Mizaj (Temperament): Hot2 Moist1
Vernacular names / Synonyms
- Scientific name: Abutilon indicum (L.) Sweet ssp. Indicum
- Sanskrit: Atibala, Balika, Balya, Bhuribala, Ghanta, Rishiprokta, Shita, Shitapushpa, Vikantaka, Vatyapushpika, Vrishyagandha, Vrishyagandhika
- Siddha: Thuthi
- Unani: Kanghi, Kangahi, Kakahiya, Kakahi, Beejband surkh, siyah
- Hindi: Kanghi
- Assamese: Jayavandha, Jayapateri
- Bengali: Badela
- Kannada: Shrimudrigida, Mudragida, Turube
- Kashmiri: Kath
- Malayalam: Uram, Katuvan, Urubam, Urabam, Vankuruntott, Oorpam, Tutti
- Marathi: Chakrabhendi, Petari, Mudra
- Maharashtra: Peeli booti, karandi
- Oriya: Pedipidika
- Punjabi: Kangi, Kangibooti
- Rajasthan: Tara-Kanchi, Kanghi, Debi, Jhili, Itwari
- Tamil: Nallatutti, Paniyarattutti, Perundutti, Tutti, Vaddattutti
- Folk: Kanghi, Kakahi, Kakahiyaa
- Arabic: Musht-ul-ghoul
- Sinhalese: Anoda
- English: Country Mallow, Flowering Maples, Chinese Bell-flowers, Indian mallow
Constituents of Abutilon indicum
The leaves contain mucilage, tannin, amino acids, glucose, fructose,
galactose, gallic acid sesquiterpene alkaloids, flavonoids, sterols,
triterpenoids, saponins, cardiac glycosides and asparagin (11.5 %).
Asparagin has diuretic activities.
Mucilage present in the plant protects the mucous membrane,
urinary system and helps in gastro-intestinal inflammations, lesions and
ulcers. Mucilage is diuretic and demulcent (relieve irritation of the
mucous membranes in the mouth by forming a protective film). It reduces
Tannin is astringent and stops bleeding on topical application
and diarrhea on oral use.
Roots contain fatty acids (linoleic, oleic, stearic, palmitic, lauric,
myristic, caprylic, capric etc.).
Flowers contain seven flavonoid compounds including quercetin
and its glycosides.
Ayurvedic Properties and Action (Atibala)
In Ayurveda, term Atibala is used for roots of plant Abutilon indicum.
Atibala is sweet in taste (Rasa), sweet after digestion (Vipaka), and is cool in
Atibala is a Madhur Vipak herb. Madhur-Vipak digests into sweet. It
has building, moistening and nourishing effect on body. It is heavy to digest
and reduces metabolism. It is cooling and reduces swelling.
It increases Kapha and decreases Pitta. Madhur Vipak has Anabolic effect on
- Rasa (taste on tongue): Madhura (Sweet)
- Guna (Pharmacological Action): Snigdha (Unctuous)
- Virya (Action): Shita (Cooling)
- Vipaka (transformed state after digestion): Madhura (Sweet)
- Action / Karma
- Balya, Vrishya: Increases strength
- Vatahara: Pacify Vata/Wind.
- Grahi: Inspissants, stomachic, digestive and heating qualities dry the fluids of the bod
- Shukral: Improves sperms.
- Mutral: Diuretic.
Atibala is a Sheet Virya herb. Sheet Virya or Cool potency herb, subdues
Pitta (Bile) Vata (Wind) and increases Kapha (Mucus). Sheet Virya herb gives
nourishment to body and steadiness. It supports building of body fluids.
Atibala roots are used in Ayurveda for treatment of bleeding disorders
(Raktapitta), gout (Vatahar) and urinary disorders (Meha).
Atibala is a nourishing, strength promoting with Rasayana and fetal growth
promoting action. A study was done to find role of Atibala (abutilon indicum)
in garbha sthapaka and garbha vruddhikara prabhava in pregnant women with
history of repeated abortion by Department of Kaumarabritya Prasuti Stree Roga
Institute of Post Graduate Teaching and Research Gujarat Ayurved University
The study was designed to find out the effect of Atibala as a single drug for
Garbhasthapaka prabhava and Garbha vruddhikara prabhava in pregnancy with
repeated abortion history. Sixty pregnant women of second and third trimester
were included and they were divided into two groups. The effect of Atibala was
compared to that of combination of Amalaki, Godanthi and Garbhapalarasa (Amalaki
group). Studying results of Atibala and Amalaki groups during the treatment or
after no abortion took place.
The study concluded Ati Bala (Abutilon indicum) powder is highly
effective for fetal development in compared with powder of Amalaki, Godanthi
Bashma and Garbhapala rasa in pregnant women who have previous repeated
abortions due to Garbhasthapaka (beneficial for maintenance of pregnancy)
and Garbha Vriddhikara Prabhava (Promote fetal development).
Atibala is generally as used an ingredient in preparation of Ayurvedic
medicated oil used externally for massaging in Vatavyadhi (diseases due to Vata
dosha) such as gout, rheumatism, facial palsy, paraplegia etc.
- Bala Taila
- Narayan Taila
- Mahanarayan Taila
Important Medicinal Properties
Abutilon indicum is rich in medicinal properties. The understanding of these
properties will help us to better utilize this herb. These also indicate the
conditions in which we should avoid it.
Below is given medicinal properties along with the meaning.
- Antioxidant: Seeds, Neutralize the oxidant effect of free radicals and other substances.
- Anti-inflammatory: Leaves, Reducing inflammation by acting on body mechanisms.
- Antifungal: Leaves, inhibit fungal infections.
- Analgesic: Roots, Relieve pain.
- Anti-convulsant: Leaves, Prevent or reduce the severity of epileptic fits or other convulsions.
- Anti-diarrheal: Leaves, gives relief in diarrhoea.
- Antidiabetic: Leaves, controls diabetes level.
- Anti-estrogenic: Estrogen antagonist.
- Demulcent: Seeds-Leaves, Relieving inflammation or irritation.
- Diuretic: Seeds-Root extract, Promoting excretion of urine/agent that increases the amount of urine excreted.
- Hepatoprotective: Whole plant, Prevent damage to the liver.
- Hypoglycemic: Leaves, Reducing level of the sugar glucose in the blood.
- Immunomodulatory: Leaves, Modifies the immune response or the functioning of the immune system.
- Laxative: Seed-Leaves, Tending to stimulate or facilitate evacuation of the bowels.
- Lipid lowering: Leaves, lowers lipid.
Medicinal Uses of Abutilon indicum (Atibala)
Atibala is used both internally and externally. It possess potent
anti-hemorrhagic, diuretic, demulcent and laxative properties. Its topical
application stops bleeding from wounds and heals ulcers, wounds and infections.
The seeds give strength and vigor.
- Aphrodisiac, piles, cough: The seeds are used.
- Bleeding piles: The leaves are cooked and eaten.
- Dental problems: Leaf juice and root are taken orally.
- Indigestion: Leaves made into a chutney and consumed.
1. Root extract is taken orally twice a day for two weeks to cure piles.
2. Atibala Abutilon indicum leaves + Makoi (Solanum nigrum) leaves + kali mirch (
Piper nigrum seeds), are ground and paste is taken in dose of 5 grams for 2
3. Leaves paste of Atibala is taken in dose of 5 grams for one month.
Rheumatism: Paste of leaves prepared with mustard oil applied
Toothache and tender gums: As mouthwash decoction of leaves is used.
Ulcers: juice of the leaves prepared into an ointment is applied.
Urinary problems, strangury and hematuria: The roots of plant are used
due to diuretic activities.
Vaginal infections, wounds and ulcers: Decoction of leaves is used.
Dosage of Abutilon indicum
- Leaf powder is taken in dose of 5-7 grams.
- Seed powder is taken in dose of 1-3 grams. Seed Extract is taken in dose of 125 mg-500 mg.
- Root powder is taken in dose of 3-6 grams. Root extract is taken in dose of 250mg-750mg.
Maximum dose of root powder or seed powder is 12 grams.
Contraindications, Interactions, Side-effects and Warnings Abutilon indicum
- It is cool in potency and may increase phlegm.
- It reduces Pitta.