Well known these tangy, Green/Reddish berries native to India,mostly grown in Konkan region. Commonly known as KOKUM, Used widely in refreshing drinks and coastal curries, kokum offers a wide range of medicinal properties.
The Kokum fruit consist of 3 major parts.
The Kokum Pericarp – which is the rind or peel and contains the highest level of xanthones.
The pulp – which is the fruit and is known for being one of the tastiest fruits in the world.
The seeds – Found within the white pulp.
Common name: Kokam, Goa butter tree, Kokum butter tree, Mangosteen • Hindi: कोकम Kokum • Marathi: भेरंड bheranda, भिरंड bhiranda, कोकंब kokamba, कोकंबी kokambi, रातंबा ratamba, रातंबी ratambi, तांबडा आंबा tambada amba • Tamil: murgal, murgal-mara • Malayalam: കാട്ടമ്പി kaattampi, കൊക്കം kokkam • Kannada: ಮುರ್ಗಿನ murgina, ಪುನರ್ಪುಳಿ punarpuli, devana huli • Oriya: Tintali • Gujarati: કોકમ Kokam • Konkani: भिरींड bhirind, कोकम kokam • Sanskrit: वृक्षामला Vrikshamia, Amlabija, Amlapura, Amlashaka
The fruit is known in India by various names — including Bindin, Biran, Bhinda, Kokum, Katambi, Ratamba or Amsol.
In the English language, it is known by various names, such as mangosteen, wild mangosteen, or red mango.
Botanical name: Garcinia indica.
Garcinia indica, a plant in the mangosteen family (Clusiaceae), commonly known as kokum, is a fruit tree that has culinary, pharmaceutical, and industrial uses. The tree is also ornamental, with a dense canopy of green leaves and red-tinged, tender, emerging leaves. It is indigenous to the Western Ghats, Konkan region of India, along the western coast. It is found in forest lands, riversides, and wasteland, and also gets cultivated on a small scale. It does not require irrigation, spraying or fertilizers.
Kokum fruit contains compounds that have antioxidant – anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. Scientific research indicates activity against several cancer cell lines, including breast cancer, liver cancer and leukemia. In addition, Kokum also exhibits anti-histamine and anti-inflammatory properties.
Traditionally, Kokum has been used for many years as a medicinal treatment for diarrhea, skin infection and wounds in throughout South Asia.Dried Kokum fruit rinds are widely used in cooking as they impart a sweetish-tangy flavor to the food. The fruits contain citric acid, acetic acid, malic acid, ascorbic acid, hydroxycitric acid and garcinol.
Life-enhancing antioxidants is found in Kokum pericarp and is called Xanthone.
PROVEN BENEFITS OF XANTHONES – YOU CAN FEEL THE DIFFERENCE
7.) Anti–periodontic (gum disease)
9.) Anti-seborrheic (skin disease)
10.) Anti-pyretic (anti-fever)
13.) Anti-neuralgia (nerve pain)
14.) Anti-vertigo (dizziness)
16.) Anti-pain (for example, dental pain)
17.) Anti-inflammatory (cox-2 inhibitor; like Vioxx & Celebrex but without side effects)
18.) Anti-ulcer (for example, ulcers of stomach, mouth, small bowel, large bowel)
Potential Benefits of Kokum
3.) Free radical fighter
4.) Cardio support
5.) Immune system Enhancer
6.) Powerful antioxidant
7.) Skin rashes, infections and wounds
Medicinal Properties and Application:
· Kokum fruits contain rich amounts of anti-oxidants that bind with free radicals and prevent oxidative damage to body cells. They also promote cell regeneration and repair.
· Kokum juice is especially popular during scorching summer months as it has a cooling effect on the body and shields the body against dehydration and sunstroke. It also helps in bringing down fever and allergic reactions.
· Kokum seeds contain a high percentage of oil that freezes to form Kokum butter. Kokum butter is extensively used in the pharmaceutical and cosmetic industry as it works wonders on dry, chapped, sensitive, irritated or burnt skin.
· Kokum butter is rapidly gaining popularity over cocoa butter as an intensive skin moisturizer.
· Due to its soothing and healing properties, it is also applied directly to wounds and infected areas on the skin.
· Kokum butter is rich in healthy fats like stearic and oleic acids and can also be used as edible oil.
· Extracts from the Kokum fruit are traditionally used to relieve gastric problems like acidity, flatulence, constipation and indigestion.
· Kokum juice is a healthier and far more refreshing option as compared to commercial bottled drinks. It acts as an appetite stimulant and also has anti-helmintic properties.
· Ayurvedic medicine also uses Kokum infusions to treat piles, dysentery and infections. Kokum is known to strengthen the cardio-vascular system and stabilize liver function.
· The hydroxycitric acid present in the fruit fights cholesterol and curbs lipogenesis, thus aiding weight loss.
The fruits are soaked in jaggery(sugar) syrup to prepare kokam juice, a refreshing and healthy drink. This drink is an excellent remedy for sunstroke and is very popular during summer.
The fruit has been traditionally used to treat flatulence, infections and heat strokes.
Traditional Ayurvedic medicine uses the fruit in infusions to treat skin ailments like allergic rashes, burns, chafed skin and scalds; provide relief from sunstroke; tackle dysentery and mucus diarrhea; improve appetite and quench thirst; treat bleeding piles, tumors and heart problems; and as a tonic for the heart and liver.
HCA is widely used to lower cholesterol. It has been shown to be a good anti-obesity agent as it suppresses synthesis of fatty acids, lipogenesis and food consumption, and brings about weight loss.
The fruit rind has potent anti-cancer and anti-ulcer properties.
Kokum paste and oil are used to hasten healing of wounds and skin problems.
Its powder and decoction are useful to prevent dehydration and loss of nutrients; improve digestion and appetite; reduce constipation and provide relief from piles and anal fissures; improve the working of the liver; regulate the cardiovascular system; cleanse the blood and fight infections; and reduce fever and burning sensations that occur in the body.
Garcinia indica (dried rind known as ‘kokam’) is an Indian spice used in many parts of the country for making several vegetarian and non-vegetarian ‘curry’ preparations,including the popular ‘solkadhi’. The fruits are steeped in sugar syrup to make ‘amrutkokam’, a healthy soft drink to relieve sunstroke, which is popular during summer.
It is a traditional home remedy in case of flatulence, heat strokes and infections. Many therapeutic effects of the fruit have been described in traditional medicine based on Ayurveda. These include its usefulness as an infusion, in skin ailments such as rashes caused by allergies; treatment of burns, scalds and chaffed skin; to relieve sunstroke;remedy for dysentery and mucous diarrhoea; an appetizer and a good liver tonic; to improve appetite and to allay thirst;as a cardiotonic and for bleeding, piles, dysentery, tumours
and heart diseases.
One of the ingredients of kokam, hydroxycitric acid (HCA), has been patented for use as an hypocholesterolaemic agent. HCA is a potential anti-obesity agent. It suppresses fatty acid synthesis, lipogenesis, food intake and induces weight loss. Garcinol, a polyisoprenylated benzophenone purified from G. indica fruit rind, displays antioxidant, anti-cancer and anti-ulcer properties. Apart from HCA and garcinol, kokam contains other compounds with potential antioxidant properties. These include citric acid, malic acid, polyphenols, carbohydrates1,3, anthocyanin pigments and ascorbic acid.
Though studies have been carried out on the antioxidant activities of these two isolated components from Garcinia indica, besides an organic extract, the antioxidant activity of the rind and its various preparations as is being used in cooking, in soft drinks and medicinal preparations has not been evaluated. The levels of antioxidant action studied are (i) radical formation by Ferric Reducing/Antioxidant Power (FRAP); (ii) radical scavenging by Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) and 2,2¢-azobis-3-ethylbenzthiazoline-6-sulphonic acid (ABTS), and (iii) prevention of membrane damage as measured by lipid peroxidation.
These are standard assays used for determining the antioxidant abilities of food preparations.
The aqueous and boiled extracts were prepared so as to simulate conditions of their extraction pertaining to their use for cooking purposes. The aqueous extract was prepared by adding the crushed rind to distilled water and stirring for 60 min, similar to use in many curry preparations.
For boiled water extract, the crushed rind was boiled in distilled water (DW) for 30 min, similar to its use in curry preparations. Commercially available kokam syrup was also used for assessing its antioxidant effects by diluting it to 25% (v/v) concentration using DW as is generally consumed as ‘kokam squash’.
How to use :
Soak dried rinds overnight in one glass of Hot water, drink early morning in empty stomach before brush your teeth, you can add little jaggery if you want. Left over rinds can be used for rasam/curry, grind and make chuttney too or dry again and use later.