Punarnava also known as Spreading hogweed (latin name: Boerhaavia diffusa), is a creeping vine whose roots, leaves and seeds are used in ayurvedic medicine. The name Punarnava literally means Renewal in Sanskrit.
A well known diuretic, Punarnava is used to treat renal problems, asthma, liver problems and ulcers. It helps in removing excess fluids from organs and is very useful in ascites and edema.
New research on mice has also shown Punarnava to increase immune response to cancer cells and melanomas. It enhances Natural Killer (NK) cell activity, antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) and antibody-dependent complement mediated cytotoxicity (ACC). At the same time it reduced pro-inflammatory cytokines.
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